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Hook, Line, and Sinker: Where to Find Your Next Great Idea

next business idea

Do you have an entrepreneurial spirit but no idea for your next venture? The good news is that now is a great time to start a new company. Corporations have seemingly lost the ability [1] to innovate in recent years, making startups the big producers of growth and invention in today’s market.

As the economy continues to improve, so do your chances of financial success. According to this report [2], 156 U.S. companies went public in 2013, raking in proceeds exceeding $38 billion.

But before you can create a successful company, you need a great idea. One of the best ways to strike upon a profitable idea is to look at current trends in technology, demographics and the market. Find a promising (but not yet oversaturated) industry on the rise and then a way to innovate within it.

To help you with this process, here are some of the most promising industries for the coming years.

Your Next Business Idea

Health Food

Health food, including organic, local and gluten-free food, is on the rise. The market for gluten-free food was estimated [3] at $10.5 billion in 2013, and is predicted to rise to $15 billion by 2016. Additionally, 95% of specialty food stores [4] offer all-natural items and 88% offer local foods (food produced within 200 miles of where it is sold).

Millions of people have food allergies and gluten-intolerance, which is likely a contributing factor to this industry’s growing prominence. The public is also increasingly wary about chemicals and hormones in their food.

“Consumers want transparency. They want to know, ‘what am I putting in my body?’” says Alicia Syrett, CEO of Pantegrion Capital.

So what does this industry offer would-be business owners? Many companies are now producing gluten-free products; even the Girl Scouts added a gluten-free offering [5] to their line of cookies.

With so many specialty products already available, it might be more profitable for entrepreneurs to invest in side industries that support the health food industry. You could become a provider of local, gluten-free ingredients, a retailer that specializes in health food or a marketing consulting firm that focuses on helping organic grocers market their products.

App Creation

Creating an app is one of the easiest and most affordable ways to start a new business. In fact, apps can be developed for less than $10,000 — a modest startup cost that most entrepreneurs could drum up without the aid of investors or loans. And the public can’t get enough of apps. A recent study shows that mobile usage has surpassed [6] desktop usage and apps make up 86% of the time that mobile users spend on their phones.

But what sort of apps should you develop? One burgeoning field is mobile health. With the entire healthcare industry in flux, this is a great time to enter the market and innovate with mobile technology. In fact, a recent report predicts that by 2017, the mobile health market will reach a full half of mobile users, which comprises billions of people.

Entrepreneurs should develop easy-to-use apps that will simplify the myriad of complexities associated with the healthcare industry, allowing patients to manage their healthcare more easily.

Another up-and-coming area of app development is business-related apps.  Mobile apps can help businesses streamline processes and improve employee productivity. But this is an increasingly crowded field, so make sure your app is sleek in its design, easy-to-use, and has a clever hook to catch potential clients’ attention.

Products for Young and Old

As the baby boomers move into retirement age and beyond, society is faced with an ever-increasing aging population. So products and services geared toward elderly care and convenience are a safe bet in the coming years. Retired individuals increasingly wish to live both comfortably and independently [7], so companies that can provide care, housekeeping, food service, or all of the above are highly sought after.

But entrepreneurs should also look at the other end of the age spectrum. With birth rates increasing, baby products, including clothing, strollers, diapers and shoes, are in high demand. And new mothers have come to expect to be able to order any product online from the convenience of their own homes.

In fact, baby clothing alone is predicted to make $6 billion in online sales in 2014. But it’s a crowded market (by 2018 there will be more than 6,000 companies [8] selling baby products online) so make sure your product is fresh and innovative.

It can be hard to know which industry to choose for your next business venture. But market trend predictions can give you a great start. Health food, app development, and products for both babies and retirees are sure to be rich and innovative industries for years to come.

Idea [9] Photo via Shutterstock