Geopolitical conflict, inflation, continued supply chain, and labor shortages curtailed much of the momentum we hoped to gain in 2022. Still, consumers continue to spend and travel, hitting record highs amidst recession fears. Despite the economic slowdown, many sectors of the small business community thrived this past year.
In particular, several industries and sectors are experiencing growth, including construction, healthcare services, personal services, green economy and information technology (IT), according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS).
This is good news for entrepreneurs looking to start a new business or expand their products and services. We’ve compiled a list of some of the fastest-growing small businesses in recent months.
According to a recent survey by home remodeling and design website Houzz, 37% of surveyed homeowners completed a remodeling project in 2022, with 23% planning to start a home improvement project in the next 12 months. They also note that median spend renovation projects jumped to $18,000 in 2021, from $15,000 in 2020 and $13,000 in 2019.
The survey cites that the most popular areas being remodeled are bathrooms and kitchens and that 91% of homeowners plan to hire at least one professional, including general contractors, electricians and cabinetmakers, to help them execute their vision. Get more home improvement business ideas.
Solar photovoltaic installers
Also known as solar panel installation, technicians assemble, set up, and maintain solar systems that convert sunlight into energy. With more homeowners looking to save money, improve their current spaces and decrease their energy consumption, it’s no wonder that this industry is experiencing growth.
According to the BLS, job growth for solar photovoltaic installers is projected to grow 27% through 2031.
Entry into this field is relatively simple, requiring only a high school diploma. And with a median wage of $23 per hour, this is a solid choice for those sustainability-minded entrepreneurs.
Most installers learn the trade while on the job, working with other experienced professionals. Similarly, electricians and roofers might consider photovoltaic-specific training to expand their skills and services.
Smart home installer
You may already use smart technology in your home, from connected doorbells to thermostats, refrigerators and lighting. In fact, a recent survey reveals that the average house in the U.S. now has approximately 20 connected devices.
Overall, the smart home services market is expected to grow 11% by 2028 as more people begin adopting intelligent technologies and the technology itself becomes less expensive.
Besides homeowners looking to upgrade their living spaces with smart devices, home automation (the automatic and electronic control of household features) is quickly becoming standard for newly constructed homes. Additionally, as more Millennials and Gen Z begin buying homes, there will be an increase in smart home services, increasing demand in this field.
Barriers to entry for this job are pretty low as most of your education will happen via experience and on-the-job training. There are various certifications you obtain, including Cedia and Schneider Electric.
Plus, if you’re already in a related field, such as security installation, HVAC technician, electrician, appliance repair, or lawn care, you can easily transition to this role, expand your skills, or offer upgraded services.
Home health care
Home health care was already one of the fastest-growing industries before the pandemic, and this trend will likely to continue. Traveling nurses and other in-home caregivers willing to assist the elderly and patients with disabilities with basic living needs can earn a comfortable wage, even with little education.
As the U.S. population ages and medical costs for long-term care facilities rise, families will look for less expensive alternatives to caring for their family members at home.
Because many home health aide and personal care assistant jobs require only a high school diploma and job opportunities are expected to grow by 25%, this field will be in-demand for many years to come.
Though we’re no longer limited to working out in our living rooms, many people are unwilling to give up the safety and convenience of at-home workouts.
If you’re a fitness enthusiast who’s good with technology, digital fitness can be an opportunity, as growth for the industry is expected to grow to $24.8 billion by 2027.
Even if you’re not looking to train virtually, the demand for personal fitness trainer services is expected to grow at a compounded rate of 4.8% between 2022 and 2032. In particular, outdoor, home gym, and functional fitness training are areas of high interest.
In the United States, the BLS projects job growth for fitness trainers and instructors to increase by 19% through 2031 — much faster than average across all job categories.
With no advanced degrees required and a median wage of nearly $20 per hour, becoming an fitness trainer has a low entry barrier for health-conscious entrepreneurs.
Digital content creators
Digital content creation isn't new, but as businesses continue to rely on digital marketing to attract and retain customers, the industry is expected to see steady growth over the next few years.
Businesses need help with podcasts, writing, graphic design and video production. If you have experience in one or more of these areas, you can leverage your skills to start a content creation business.
Start-up costs are relatively low. Often, all you need is a computer, internet connection, phone and some software to begin. And you can run this type of business from your home.
Animal caretakers and trainers
Pets are big business in the U.S., with pet owners spending $124 billion in 2021. $9 billion was earmarked for pet services, including grooming, boarding, training and more. (And this isn’t including the caretaking of larger animals at zoos and sanctuaries.)
Many people consider pets a part of their family and are more willing to pay more than pet owners in the past. Pet spending shows no signs of slowing any time soon, with pet sitting alone expected to expand 12% through 2030 and pet training to grow 6% through 2026.
This interest and demand in animal services are reflected in job growth. The BLS projects job growth for animal care and service workers to increase by 29% through 2031 — much faster than average across job categories.
While pay varies depending on the services offered, entering the field is relatively easy. Generally, all that’s required is a high school diploma, however, some specialized fields may require a bachelor’s degree in animal science, biology, marine biology or a related field. Other professions like animal grooming or pet training may require certifications or vocational training.
Manicure and pedicure technician
Although nail salons were hit hard by the pandemic, owners clawed their way back and quickly reopened due to demand. Spurred by the desire to lead a healthier (and aesthetic) lifestyle through wellness and grooming, both women and men are hitting the salons resulting in higher employment for nail techs.
Considered an affordable luxury by many Americans, nail services are in demand by individuals of all income levels. With always-changing nail trends and more complex services offered, spending has increased to the tune of $8 billion annually.
This demand has spurred job growth for nail technicians to increase by 22% through 2031 — considerably faster than other job categories.
You don’t need a higher education degree to get into this field, but you’ll need to complete a state-approved training program and will need to pass a nail tech licensing exam in most states in order to operate.
The demand for cybersecurity services has skyrocketed as virtually everyone has increased their time online, whether it’s a small business needing IT consulting solutions or individuals looking for help after a security breach.
If you’re an IT consultant with a security background, the time is ripe for developing your business and finding your niche.
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