5 Places to Find Good Startup Ideas

Not every entrepreneur comes pre-programmed with good startup ideas. Some have the dream but don’t know what to build. Here are five resources that could help you decide what kind of business to start.

Good startup ideas are everywhere – if you know where to look

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You Can Identify Good Startup Ideas From Gaps, Evolution and Failures

1. Consumer Trends and Forecasts

Research, studies and articles sharing stats on consumer and business trends and forecasts are available for nearly every industry. This type of data can help you identify emerging markets which are forming in response to:

  • Demographic and population changes  
  • New or advancing technology
  • Changing consumer preferences or generational preferences

Census data and data analysis can give you insight into population and demographic changes. You can also find similar data available in the real estate industry as well as reports about housing, jobs and similar content. This content can tell you where to look for up and coming markets that are not yet saturated with businesses like the one you envision.

Technology changes pervade virtually every industry. Trade and industry organizations publish information about new and emerging technology all the time. CB Insights published an amazing infographic noting that there are more than 150 Startups whose innovations are transforming brick-and-mortar retail.

We see this every day in our industry. Innovations in merchant services, payment processing, virtual, mobile and brick-and-mortar point-of-sale, gift cards and loyalty programs are constant. Knowing which to implement, and implementing technology effectively is one of the ways we add value so our clients can create competitive advantages and compete to win in their marketplace.

2. Education

What do you know? Your areas of expertise and experience could translate into a business where you teach others, test products, write technical specs, provide expert reviews, etc. This could be especially rewarding if you are able to identify an area of expertise that really lights you up, where you can invest not only knowledge but passion to educate others.

3. Under-served Markets or Market Segments

In most industries, there are lots of medium-to-large players already on the field. The good news for you as an entrepreneur is that good startup ideas can still translate into success, because those big players are all competing for the same customers or buyers. By identifying markets or sub-market niche audiences who are being underserved (or aren’t being served at all), you can carve out a target audience that few direct competitors will be going after.

4. Ideas other Entrepreneurs Threw Away – or Failed At

Even good startup ideas can fail, for a variety of reasons.  CB Insight’s latest data as to the top 10-ish reasons that even good startup ideas fail includes:

  • 42% – Inadequate market need
  • 29% – Inadequate funding
  • 23% – Inept team
  • 19% – Inability to compete
  • 18% – Pricing / cost issues
  • 17% – User un-friendly
  • 17% – Inadequate business model
  • 14% – Inadequate marketing
  • 14% – Poor customer care
  • 13% – (Tie) Poor market timing, lost focus, unhappy investors)

Looking at that list, note that none of the respondents said their idea wasn’t good. In every case, startup failure is attributed to poor execution, not poor ideas. Bad timing for one entrepreneur might make an idea perfectly timed for you. Changes in the market might mean that an idea that wasn’t sustainable last year is now viable. Accurately projecting costs (and setting pricing), ensuring funding, building a sound business model or assembling a competent team could enable you to succeed with good startup ideas that others were unable to accomplish.

5. Pain Points

Underserved markets point to gaps in the marketplace. Pain in the customer or buying journey show you where a better business model could mean a competitive advantage. Your own pain points as a consumer or in business could even show you where to start. Additionally, you can look at social media and online reviews to see where companies are failing to deliver product or service quality, or the quality of experience the customer expects.

Good startup ideas deserve good payment processing solutions:

If you’d like to learn more about how you can save money on payment processing or use point-of-sale and other merchant services technology to your competitive advantage, let us know! Complete the form below and we’ll be in touch.

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