- Consider offering specialized services, such as medical or grocery delivery, to differentiate your startup.
- Leverage technology like route planning software and mobile apps to optimize your operations and improve customer experience.
- Partner with local businesses, such as restaurants or retailers, to expand your customer base and increase revenue.
In 2023, countries and economies are slowly gaining momentum after a huge dip in 2020 due to Covid-19. The people are gradually becoming more confident about either reviving their old business or starting a new one.
Each new business idea has one thing in common – How to integrate delivery into the business?
The shift in the buying trends of people all over the world has been drastic.
According to an HBR survey, 49% stake of the on-demand population is that of millennials. If you want to serve a significant part of the on-demand population or start a business, this article will be useful for you.
In addition to discussing profitable delivery business ideas or opportunities, we will discuss some statistics and understand why this is the ideal time to start an on-demand delivery business.
Table of Content
31 Best Delivery Business Opportunities
Here are some best service businesses to start.
- Grocery Delivery
- Meal Kits Delivery Service
- Wedding Favors Delivery Business
- Courier Service Business
- Food Delivery Business
- Flower Delivery Service
- Pizza Delivery Business
- Laundry & Dry Cleaning Service
- Bottled Water Delivery Business
- Laboratory Test Business
- Furniture Delivery & Assembling Business
- Newspaper Delivery Business
- Liquor Delivery Business
- Parts Delivery Business
- Packers and Movers Business
- Air Freight Delivery Business
- Lunchbox Delivery Business
- Clothing & Accessories Delivery Business
- Wholesale Book Delivery Business
- Restaurant Meal Delivery Business
- Wholesale Egg Delivery Business
- Bread & Milk Delivery Business
- Coffee Delivery Business
- Fresh Meat Delivery Business
- Cake Delivery Business
- Online Pet Food Delivery Startup
- Digital Products Delivery Services
- Gift Basket Delivery Services
- Stationery Supply Delivery Business
- After Hours Delivery Service
- Errand Service
If you own a local grocery store or a retail store, you can convert it into a grocery delivery business plan that can accommodate potential customers online. You can create a mobile app for grocery shoppers and start selling your products.
Recently, there has been a supply chain disruption by AmazonFresh in which local grocery stores have tied up as partners with brands like AmazonFresh. It allows AmazonFresh to serve its customers through local grocery stores.
Other brands like Walmart and Instacart offer grocery delivery services but with a slightly different business model. Or small business owners can choose to have a grocery delivery startup from their homes.
Meal Kits Delivery Service
Creating special meal kits according to the requirements and delivering them to the right place is one of the biggest trends. When restaurants are shut for business, and people choose to eat healthier, this is a great option. You can create a brand and easily accept orders online.
A business relating to meal-kit delivery garners a lot of attention and has many potential customers like fitness experts, health conscious people, working people, old or sick people. Some of the biggest real-world examples in the fresh meal kit delivery business are HelloFresh, Blue Apron, and Purple Carrot. You can try by starting a homemade food delivery business.
In fact, one of our prime customers, Chef Nicole, who runs a meal delivery business in Miami, is delivering 3x more orders on a daily basis. Earlier, they used to maintain their entire business manually, but with delivery routes planning software like Upper Route Planner, they are saving around 10-hours per week. Know more about their meal delivery business and how they benefited from Upper Route Planner software.
Wedding Favors Delivery Business
Wedding favor business is more of a seasonal business. But you can slowly expand into birthday favors, bachelorette favors, baby shower favors, and other such occasions.
Providing traditional wedding favors with a slightly modern twist in approach is in great demand. Wedding favors delivery business can be a profitable seasonal venture for anyone that has a little bit of extra time and a lot of creativity.
You can easily start your own eCommerce store to sell party and wedding favors or you can choose to sell them on websites like eBay.
Courier Service Business
A few years ago, the delivery of mail and couriers took a long time with higher costs involved to deliver parcels. But with advancements in delivery technology and delivery business models, starting and running a courier business has become easier. With the increase in technological advances, the industry also saw a massive rise in the number of competitors.
A courier service business is relatively easy to start locally, and then you can slowly expand. You can also start by getting a courier license & offering bicycle courier services locally. But because there is enormous competition in the courier services industry, you will have to have a well-defined niche.
Food Delivery Business
The food delivery services industry has witnessed a fanatical growth in the last few years due to upcoming trends. The primary reason is convenience. People can have their favorite dishes delivered from their favorite restaurants through a food delivery app. It has resulted in an unprecedented growth of food delivery apps like DoorDash and SkipTheDishes.
SkipTheDishes is the most widely used food delivery service with fierce competitors like DoorDash, Postmates, and Grubhub. It is a preferred model for all restaurants because they do not have to employ their delivery boys to start their own food delivery business.
Food delivery service is probably the best delivery service business to have these days. The food delivery business industry in the United States has projected a growth of up to $42 billion in 2025.
Looking at this growing graph, if you have made up your mind to start a food delivery business, start a service for food delivery then make sure to prepare an in-detail food delivery business plan to increase the chances of success.
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Flower Delivery Service
Flower arrangement and home delivery is other popular business in recent times. When people could not meet their loved ones in person, they started sending flowers for various occasions. A business relating to flower delivery business doesn’t have to be noticed like a regular flower shop in the town.
You can easily start your online business in a small place with a few delivery boys. A flower delivery service is a great option for local flower sellers who cannot go out for business but still need to make sales.
All you need is an efficient software for flower delivery planning and route optimization for last mile deliveries.
Pizza Delivery Business
In the last few months, homemade pizza delivery is all the rage. It seems like people want more homemade things delivered. As a pizza delivery person, you can provide big brands and deliver homemade pizzas made by a local food business.
Offering homemade pizza is a successful food service and has allowed many people to start a lucrative enterprise through their passion. All you have to do is start small, create a menu, offer online ordering, attract customers, and start accepting online orders to start your own business.
Laundry & Dry Cleaning Service
The laundry and dry cleaning delivery business is a successful delivery service in many parts of the world. It is a great idea to have people’s laundry picked up from their places and then delivered back to their homes.
Laundry & dry cleaning service allows people to get their daily tasks handled by a third party without worrying too much about it. If you already have a laundry business running, all you have to do is employ many delivery boys and step up your business a notch.
Bottled Water Delivery Business
A bottled water delivery business is one of the easiest businesses to get traction from the market. Many companies offer bottled water but only make deliveries for large orders from multiple vendors. If you can be a delivery partner for such businesses, delivering bottled water to individuals, you can have excellent scope for growth.
Laboratory Test Business
The entire healthcare industry has been shaken up in the last year. As more and more people needed to get tested without stepping out of their houses, the laboratory test business started booming. Until a year ago, most people easily managed to go to the laboratory and get all their tests done.
But with the increased risk to their health, people now prefer someone coming over to get their blood work. It has resulted in more medical staff driving around and more people being hired to collect samples and deliver them to the laboratory.
Furniture Delivery & Assembling Business
The challenging part of a furniture delivery and assembly business is the space where you can have display units for each piece of furniture. But if you are selling furniture online and promise furniture delivery, you do not need a physical store anymore. Your customers just need reliable furniture supplied to their doorstep.
You can take inspiration from businesses like IKEA and Etsy that handle the sale, assembling, and delivery of furniture well.
Newspaper Delivery Business
It may be hard to believe, but some people still like to get their daily dose of news from a physical copy of the newspapers. The business of newspaper delivery requires people that are punctual because nobody likes stale news.
Newspaper vendors can’t always go around delivering newspapers, but having a few delivery boys to make the rounds can easily help them cover most areas in the town.
Liquor Delivery Business
In the previous year, people not only got their groceries delivered. It turns out people also got their alcohol delivered. The online sale of liquor surged during the pandemic, and it hasn’t slowed down since then. People have easily adopted the trend of getting their alcohol delivered to their homes and do not seem to let go of the trend.
According to a report by IWSR, the United States is said to take over China to become the world’s largest alcohol e-commerce market. Starting a liquor delivery business is a great idea. There are some really amazing opportunities in alcohol delivery services at this point.
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Auto Parts Delivery Business
The auto parts delivery business is a competitive one. You will have to choose a specific part or a specific type of vehicle that you will deliver for. It is a vast market, but it will be slightly challenging to get a hold of it. It is one of the most lucrative markets, and if you add delivery on top of it, there is a lot of growth for you here.
Packers and Movers Business
The on-demand packers and movers business will not require a lot of initial investment. All you need is a truck and a bunch of people having experience in the moving business. It would be best if you had a great team to get all the work done well. This is another business that has a significant market but is also quite competitive at the same time.
Air Freight Delivery Business
The air freight delivery business is not only high tech and complicated, but it is also quite expensive to get started with. To start this business, you need to be either a commercial cargo carrier or a freight forwarder.
As a freight forwarder, you will need a commercial carrier to shift from one place to another. This kind of business or service industry is difficult to crack. You need strong fleet management and delivery network before starting business like this. It would be best if you had years of experience and a considerable investment to get started.
Delivery charges earned by air freight businesses are also higher compared to other businesses because of the higher fuel costs and investments in the business.
Lunchbox Delivery Business
A lunchbox delivery business is a kind that will find many customers relatively easily. A lunch delivery business has a great scope in most countries, mainly in metro cities. It allows people to go about their busy lives without having to carry their lunch along with them. Lunchbox or food deliveries can be fulfilled in a few minutes before they want to eat it.
As a lunch delivery business or a salad delivery business, you can either tie up with restaurants and fulfill the delivery needs or prepare lunch boxes and have delivery guys deliver those for you.
Clothing & Accessories Delivery Business
Several big businesses have already made it possible to sell clothing and accessories through an e-commerce market. This business requires much effort to stay updated with all the latest trends constantly. If you have an online store, you will also need a place to store all the clothing and accessories for facilitating your own delivery service.
Clothing & accessories is a competitive market, so you will have to create a niche for yourself and offer something different or alter your prices accordingly to meet customer expectations. You will need a strong online presence with social media accounts and possibly a mobile app to establish a great business in the clothing & accessories delivery industry.
For instance, NastyGal came at a time when this industry was just getting started. Even as a small start-up NastyGal built a niche for itself by focusing on curating quirky and vintage clothing to the new generation of women. These kinds of small businesses will allow you to be more creative with your endeavors and appreciate innovation as the business grows.
Wholesale Book Delivery Business
Do not forget, the world’s biggest online seller, Amazon, started as an online book shop, primarily competing with other local bookstores like Barnes & Noble. So, there is no limit to what you can achieve with a book delivery business.
You can start this business by exchanging old books and expanding the types of genres you include. You need not stop at books. You can sell magazines, comics, encyclopedias, books for high school students and university students.
Restaurant Meal Delivery Business
Restaurants have suffered a lot in the past year. At a time like this, these establishments can only survive because of online food ordering. At the same time, most people do not want to step out to get food from the restaurant. But they love to have their favorite dishes delivered to them.
It led to the remarkable growth of companies like Uber Eats, DoorDash, PostMates, and GrubHub. It has become a challenging market to penetrate, but you can start your meal prep delivery business locally and see if it works in your territory or in territories where Uber Eats and DoorDash haven’t reached yet.
Wholesale Egg Delivery Business
A small investment makes it possible to turn your wholesale egg delivery business into an online delivery space. As a wholesale business, you can get individuals as well as restaurants and bakeries as your clients.
The thing about selling food items and goods is that the demand never really dies down as long as you sell a good product.
Adding a mobile app to the business will help you organize your operations and customers better, and you will also be able to accept online payments.
Bread & Milk Delivery Business
Like a wholesale egg delivery business, the bread and milk delivery business will also never die down. You will find customers everywhere. That’s the best thing about selling essential grocery items. So you can expect a steady income and profit from this business.
With this business, you can get individuals and restaurants as your clients. All you have to make sure is that you are selling a fresh product and reliable sources.
Coffee Delivery Business
People are always fond of coffee. It is a popular breakfast beverage that most people rely on before they go ahead with their day. The coffee delivery business can easily serve individuals as well as local offices. You can have a business website and business cards to advertise your coffee business.
The delivery time window for this product will be shorter and mainly limited to mornings or early afternoons. You can easily find a customer base for your coffee business.
Fresh Meat Delivery Business
Fresh raw meat is in great demand. People do not easily find fresh meat everywhere. Even most big supermarkets do not have the freshest raw meat. Even if you are selling a minimal amount of fresh raw meat, you will easily succeed.
You can get in touch with people who do animal farming and handle the logistics part of the business. It allows them to get a hold of their business while not worrying about delivering fresh meat.
Many of us developed a passion for baking during the Covid-19 lockdown. Some of us actually turned into profitable endeavors by baking some delicious cakes and finding consumers all around them.
A new trend now is that people do not prefer buying cakes from bakeries. They usually order homemade cakes from an experienced baker. This business allows you to work from home and easily make connections using online channels.
Online Pet Food Delivery Startup
Our pets have almost as much variety in food and accessories as we do. Pet owners enjoy showering their pets with some delicious treats. The annual revenue for a large business of pet food delivery is in the millions. You can easily expand into adding toys and accessories for pets.
Digital Products Delivery
Delivering digital products and experiences is a code that giants like Amazon cracked in the past few years. But you can choose to do this business locally by selecting a particular type of product by offering smartphone or computer delivery, and then slowly expand into other types like laptops, speakers, television, and music systems. This business requires a large amount of investment, so you must plan accordingly.
Gift Basket Delivery
Gift wrapping and creating a collection of gifts for a particular occasion is an art. It requires specific design, management, and personal skills that allow you to be extremely creative. It is a huge market.
As a gift basket delivery business owner, you can serve individuals, corporations, and local businesses. You can create gift baskets for all different kinds of occasions. It is a specialty that has quite a lot of scope to capture the market.
Stationery Supply Delivery
Stationery delivery is often a business that isn’t taken very seriously. But we all need stationery, whether it is individuals or corporates, in our daily lives. You only need to invest a lot more depending on the variety of products. You will find buyers everywhere. It is pretty easy to find customers and earn with medium effort.
After Hours Delivery Service
After-hours delivery service is a market that hasn’t been captured or realized well yet. It is probably not focused on a particular product. But the focus of this kind of service is to serve after regular hours of delivery. Several courier companies and drug delivery businesses offer after-hours delivery services. But you can choose to take a different approach.
Errand service is another quite interesting industry. It allows people to focus on more critical tasks and outsource some of the menial tasks to independent contractors. This online business will require a little more market research because very few companies have established themselves in offering such delivery services.
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These delivery businesses have proved that the scope for digitalization of the supply chain in most industries is quite enormous. All you have to do is get the market research together, create a delivery app or software, choose a small delivery range or large range, apply for a business license, and start accepting orders.
Why is it Ideal to Start an On-Demand Delivery Service Business?
The primary reasons for kicking-off on-demand delivery startups are:
- Increases overall efficiency
- Increases ease of doing business
- Accountability, payment processing, and tracking becomes easier
- Much more cost-effective
- Supported by sophisticated technology
- The scope of acquiring several potential markets
- Creates more jobs & business opportunities
- Improves convenience not only for customers but also for businesses and middle-men
Cut Down Planning Time & Focus On Delivering More Products
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There is a list of things you should consider before starting or planning to start a delivery business. With a mobile phone, reliable transportation, and an efficient delivery process you can start your own delivery business. In addition to that, you need to offer excellent customer service skills to your clients.
To start a pickup and delivery service, you will have to invest in the right vehicles, licensing and permits, form a legal business identity, establish a strong marketing plan, and acquire clients through various sources.
A delivery business makes different amounts of money depending on what they are delivering, the areas they are delivering in, and the fee they charge for each delivery. The business makes money in the form of delivery fees, commission, and advertising. The revenue models can be peer-to-peer, business-to-consumer, subscription-based, or business-to-business.
You can promote and market your delivery service by creating a website, advertising, posting on local bulletin boards, publishing press releases, getting registered in online directories, social media platforms, and networking. To make your business stand out from the rest, you must have a strong promotional strategy.
You do not require a large sum of startup costs initially. You can start with a vehicle, a mobile phone, and a bunch of clients. You eventually have to raise money when you have to register your business, buy an office, and advertise your business.
Creating a business plan for delivery service businesses includes research or market analysis, creating a company profile, building a proper team for operations, getting financial backup (upfront costs & main ongoing expenses), and making customer discovery. Take a look at a step-by-step approach on how to create a business plan for on-demand delivery businesses. It will provide you with some useful insights.
Some of the top delivery service business ideas are meal-kit delivery, flower deliveries, alcohol delivery, grocery delivery business, medicine delivery business or drug delivery business, and courier business idea. Food & medicine delivery falls under essential service and are great delivery options to start with.
After 2020, most people prefer and have become used to online ordering, whether it is food, grocery, or furniture. Most delivery businesses, like food delivery business, grocery delivery business, flower delivery business, liquor delivery business, medicine delivery business, and post & courier business ideas, are popular and profitable business ventures to go with.
The major steps for starting a delivery business are:
- Creating a legal business identity.
- Setting up business accounts.
- Creating & defining your brand.
- Acquire potential clients & start selling your services.
For details on each of the above-mentioned steps, read our article on how to start a delivery business here.
Make Your Delivery Business Idea a Reality
We hope these profitable delivery business opportunities for small business owners have proved to be helpful. If you still have the question of “how to start a delivery service?”, you will need a little more research on a business idea of your choice.
For further assistance, you can reach out to us. We’d be happy to help. At Upper Inc, we are currently trying to start conversations around many ways of starting delivery service businesses & the next steps involved. You can reach out to us for a one-to-one meeting if you are thinking of integrating delivery or want to know how to do it.
If you are already running a food delivery business, bicycle courier service, or pet food delivery business, or any delivery business for that matter, you can provide us with your inputs. We will make sure to share them with our audience.