4 Great Halal Business Ideas: In The New Normal

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It’s 2020 and the world is changing fast, thanks partly to the COVID-19 pandemic. The most impactful transformation around the world is digital transformation, caused by lockdowns and the need for social distancing. 

What is the best business to start in 2020?

The best businesses to start in 2020 center around digital transformation. We’ve identified four business ideas.

1 – Selling Online
Rationale: E-commerce has grown by leaps and bounds during COVID-19, and consumer habits will continue to buy online
2 – Digital services 
Rationale: As more businesses go online, they need services to adapt to the new environment. These include digital marketing, web development and social media.
3 – Online work tools
Rationale: More companies are opting for remote work, or work from home arrangements, as it could save as much as 20% of office-lease costs, in addition to safer working conditions during the pandemic.
4 – Mobile Apps and Software To Help With Digital Transformation
Most small businesses have a need for improving their processes by going digital. To help with their digital transformation, they require infrastructure and software for conducting their work online.

Among the most notable digital transformations that are changing our habits, which have lasted since the COVID-19 outbreak. Consider these statistics:

  • 54% more people in the US are cooking and eating at home, 
  • More people will continue to work from home, as much as 33% in the US. Large tech companies, such as Google, Twitter and Facebook, have announced that they will continue with remote work. 
  • Global online retail (e-commerce) traffic has increased significantly, from 16 billion visitors in January 2020 to 22 billion visitors in July 2020.
  • Grocery deliveries apps downloads increased by 337% during COViD-19, and restaurant delivery apps downloads increased by 51% during COVID-19, based on Apple App Store data. 

(sources: Harvard Business Review, Statista, Marker

Halal Business Ideas With Low Investments 

These low investment businesses can be done from home too. 

  • Ecommerce, or selling online –  is a good way to start a business that has low investment requirements.  You can start small, with just a few items, and promote them online, and you make a profit on the difference between what you sell and how much you bought them for, as well as other marketing costs.
    • You can choose either to sell online via a marketplace (such as eBay, Amazon, etc) or start your own store. To find out the pros and cons of each, read about them here
    • If you don’t have any products in mind, of what to sell, consider using Google’s own data – Rising Retail Categories
    • If you have a product or a niche, you can also do preliminary market research into the detailed category. For example, the screenshot below shows Google’s shopping insights of the vitamins and supplements niche for the past one year. 

Digital services –  Selling your expertise is a great way to start a business with a low startup cost. Such examples are digital marketing, web development, accounting, copywriting, graphic design, and so on. You can either market your services directly by using social media, or you can list them on freelancing sites such as freelancer.com, or upwork.com. 

Get more resources and tools to start and grow a business here

Is Dropshipping Halal?

If you’ve done some research on e-commerce, you may have heard about dropshipping. Dropshipping is basically marketing and promoting someone else’s products as your own, and getting the supplier to ship directly to your customer without you (the seller) buying the stocks and shipping them yourself. In essence, you don’t touch the product at all, and yet, the customers think the products come from your online shop.

So, is dropshipping halal? 

While we’re not Islamic scholars at all, we’ve done some research into it, and found the concept to be non-halal. This is because it is not permitted for us to sell something we don’t own and give the impression that we own the products that we sell. For more information, you can read about the Islamic ruling on Islamweb

Halal Business Ideas For Startups

For tech-based people, you can start a business as a startup, focusing on providing solutions, and these can be delivered as a Software-as-a-Service or as a mobile app.  

For Remote Work environments.  Online collaboration tools are in demand, given that more companies are opting for their staff to work from home for safety reasons, for social distancing practicalities, and more importantly, cost savings for the employers. 

  • Teamwork apps have the highest growth segment at 60%, 
  • Communication platforms and video as-a-service at a growth rate of 30% each
  • Unified communication as-a-service and contact center as-a-service at a growth rate of 24% and 18% respectively.

Source: FinancesOnline

For Digital Transformation. Companies that seek to move more of their work online need help with their digital transformation to require infrastructure and software for conducting their work online.

Most small businesses have a need for improving their processes by going digital.  These include allowing businesses to run financial operations and accept online payments. For instance, a small independent retail store can get a cheaper point of sales system by using an iPad as a point of sale system instead of a terminal point of sales system. 

Another example is that Shopventory, an app that helps retailers keep track of their inventory. Shopventory will help you see what isn’t selling well so you can discount it and skip a restock. It also alerts you if it suspects theft. The app helps small business owners stay up to date on their inventory. 

What you need to figure out is what problems do these businesses have, and whether you can provide them with a solution that is cost-effective and easy to use. 

More recently, we wrote about business ideas in 2020 after the Coronavirus impact which you can read here.

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