A great business idea can be described in a number of ways, and each description can be pretty subjective. For example, one person may consider a great business to be one that helps people, while another will gauge a great business by how much money it makes. But it is most useful to define a great business as the complete package--in order for a business to be truly great, it needs to change the world.
What is a Great Business Idea?
Generally, a really great business is one that is a pioneer in its industry (meaning that it's formed from a brand-new business idea, not recycled), requires a small investment, has a high demand from the public, takes over and maintains a large market share in its industry and requires low maintenance on the part of the owners. A great business has a high return on investment and will manage to turn a profit within the first few years of operation. Also, a really great business idea will manage to help the community in some way, be seen as ethical by the majority of people and improve the quality of life for users.
How Are Great Business Ideas Developed?
Great ideas for businesses usually come from open-minded people who identify a solid need and have the know-how and technical knowledge to fill that need. Late night television is full of infomercials displaying great new inventions that were developed in basements and garages or just by people who needed a personal problem solved. In some cases, people stumble upon a wonderful concept for a new business by accident or inspiration. Creativity is also key in the development of great business ideas.
About Great Business Ideas Through the Centuries
The 18th and 19th centuries were full of great inventors who brought us inventions such as electricity, phones and the typewriter. The 20th and 21st centuries brought expansions on previous ideas and innovations that no one in the previous centuries could have imagined. There are a number of great business ideas that have been developed in recent times. These ideas helped to shape the world, make life easier and entertain the masses.
Great Business Idea #1: The Microsoft Corporation
The Microsoft Corporation was founded in 1975 by Bill Gates at the cusp of the Internet and computer revolution. Bill Gates was a pioneer in his industry, releasing computer products that had never been seen before. The company became a household name in the mid 1980s; just about every person in the world had the Microsoft operating system on their computers at one time. Now the company makes billions of dollars each year ($60 billion in 2008).
Great Business Idea #2: Motorola Cellphones
Many people don't realize that the concept of a cellphone has been around since the late 1940s, but the first commercially available cellphone didn't come out until 1983 when the Motorola Company released the DynaTAC 8000X. This marked the beginning of the cellphone craze; nowadays it's uncommon if someone does not own a cellphone. Cellphones have made it easier for people to connect with their loved ones, especially in an emergency. As a pioneer in the cellphone industry, Motorola became synonymous with cellphones and made over $36 billion in 2008.
Great Business Idea #3: Facebook
When a business manages to become worth $15 billion in its first few years of operation, it's safe to say that the owner had a great idea. That is the tale of Facebook, a website company formed by Mark Zuckerberg, a Harvard student, in 2004. Today over 150 million people use Facebook, and it had an estimated $300 million in revenue in 2008. In addition to its financial success, Facebook is doing a great service to the community by connecting long-lost friends, college buddies and family members.