Starting a business in 2018: where?

About 160,000 companies are founded each year. To be successful, you depend on many factors. One of the things that can help is a good business idea. What are popular categories in 2018 where you can start a business?

If you want to start your own business and be successful in the long run, then it may not be the best solution to start a business with something that may be hype now, but which may be completely out of fashion in a few years. But at the same time, it also applies: If you enter a market that is barely exploited by others, you may well be the ultimate market leader in a few days in a market that continues to grow with your business.

But what are products, services or trends in 2018 whose market is not yet so large, but which has great growth potential?, which informs people who want to start a business, has made a great list of 14 business ideas for 2018.

Do you want to start your own business? Read what it takes to become an entrepreneur and also see our overview with which you can make money online.


Lagom is not a brand of chewing gum, but the Swedish word for ‘moderate’. Lagom is a lifestyle that revolves around ‘not too much, but also not too little’, in other words: just right. Finding balance in the things you do, buy and want. In practice, this means, among other things, a more sustainable lifestyle. One has to live minimalistically, but what about sustainable clothing instead of mass consumption? And good food? Fine, do it! But not too much. Lagom can be applied to many products, so you can build a great business around it and thus reach an ever-growing group of consumers who want to live more consciously.

nineties nostalgia

Every now and then you see them on Facebook: posts that think back to the 1990s with a certain nostalgia. Photos and videos of Furbies, flippos and cartoons like David the Kabouter and Dinobabies can count on many likes and reactions every time. The nineties are hot. You can also start a potential business with this. And this is mainly because those who grew up in the 1990s are ‘millennials’: a very interesting target group for marketers. They are young, have money and are still relatively easy to influence.

Teen helpers

The young section of millennials, say people born around or after 2000, grew up in a society where social networks are strongly entrenched in everyday life. Adolescents regularly experience digital and emotional pressure from these websites and apps, which can have a negative impact on their mental health. According to, companies that can boost teens’ confidence again will be in high demand this year. Whether it’s getting teens out more often or building trust in a particular clothing brand or lifestyle, companies with a positive message will be popular in 2018!


So-called superfoods were already very popular and that will not change in the coming years. What is changing is the miracle cure that is in the spotlight this time around and can count on a lot of buzz among social influencers, vloggers and other influential people. 2018 looks set to be the year of blue algae. Just search for ‘spirulina’, the name of this blue-green saltwater algae. You will be bombarded with blogs praising the natural product to heaven. It is often sold in powder form and contains, among other things, vitamins A, C, D, B6, B12, calcium, iron, magnesium and many proteins. Are you selling this natural product?

The rental generation

Many factors have made it increasingly difficult for the younger generations to buy a house. And because many young people also do not want to be tied to a thirty-year loan or prefer to spend their money right away rather than save it up, many young people have become part of a generation that prefers to rent rather than buy. And of course, an entire economy revolves around this. How about an app that makes it easier to share a home with someone (and removes all the associated problems) or a solution that helps young people find a cheap place to live in places that are less convenient (to live with) a single elderly person or a rental property in a recreational park)?

Beauty products for everyone

There is a trend going on in the beauty and fashion world that underscores the countless differences among women. “Everyone is beautiful in their own way,” is the message. Whether you are thick, thin, dark or light-skinned, gay or straight: you can be seen. Not only large, existing brands are now focusing on this, there are also start-ups that revolve solely around spreading this noble message. Fortunately for you, there are still plenty of opportunities for a start-up company to gain market share here.

Voice assistants

Ecommerce News Netherlands already wrote: “E-commerce voice assistant is experiencing a breakthrough”. Tech giants like Amazon, Google, Apple and Alibaba are currently investing heavily in devices that listen to the user and can thus perform numerous tasks. There are now dozens of cell phones, speakers, watches and other gadgets on the market with a built-in voice assistant. This market will also grow significantly in the Netherlands; Google has for some time been looking for a copywriter who can write Dutch texts for Google Assistant. So if you have programming skills, then the killer app that knows how to use voice commands is a logical step?

Premium mixed drinks

Gin and tonic are back in full swing, leading to a new influx of gin and tonic brands taking over the market. But other mixed drinks are also gaining popularity. This is partly due to the high demand for natural, organic flavors. And if the sugar tax is ever introduced in the Netherlands, you better be prepared for it!

Elder care

Aging is a big problem. There is a great shortage of nursing home beds and there is also room for improvements in the number of employees in elderly care. Do you want to create growth in your company, but at the same time do you also want to do something good for your fellow human beings? Then starting a business in the care of the elderly is not a bad plan. “Even though you need access to capital when starting a healthcare facility, government financing, private investment and commercial mortgages are increasingly available to project developers to balance supply and demand.”


Boxing may not be new, according to And why not? It’s a fun (but intense) way to burn calories. And not only do you improve yourself physically, it is also ideal to give yourself a boost mentally. Boxing matches are becoming increasingly popular among TV viewers (in August 2017, Mayweather and McGregor boxed against each other, and 5 million Americans would pay the necessary $ 100 to watch the fight at home via pay-per-view), and big stars are also increasingly speaking appreciation of the sport. And then there is piloxing, a combination of pilates, boxing and dance exercises, ideal for burning calories. Enter this market in 2018 and beat your opponents!

The women’s health market continues to be a vibrant business because it is something that will always be needed. But this market could also use some innovation at the same time. For example, in the form of solutions to fertility problems or an app that reminds women to take birth control pills. And breastfeeding is also popular. There are even professional breastfeeding shots! Enough topics to start a business in.


The proportion of Muslims in the Netherlands increased slightly last year. Nearly 4.9 percent of all adults in the Netherlands now call themselves Muslims. It is a fairly large target group that you can reach with a product or service that is specifically designed for their lifestyle. Whether it’s an online store filled with halal products or a fashion brand that knows how to make scarves perfectly in the same style as other clothing, this market is still underexposed and you can certainly still achieve success with your new business.

The fourth meal

According to the British supermarket Waitrose, ‘the fourth meal’ will become a trend in 2018. More and more people would no longer stick to the traditional meal plan with breakfast-lunch-dinner, but would also include a fourth moment of the day to prepare a (small) meal eating. If you eat hot food at six o’clock, why not have some tasty cheese on toast just before you go to bed? And if you come to the gym after work, a well-stocked salad in the late afternoon can be a smart plan. Modern consumers want to be able to eat their favorite foods 24 hours a day, and businesses should jump in.

Internet of Things security

The Internet of Things is on the rise and we are seeing more and more household appliances that are in touch with the Internet and each other. It is expected that around 22.5 million devices worldwide will be part of the Internet of Things network by 2021. Of course, there are numerous initiatives for this, but do not forget that security is also becoming an increasingly important theme. No one wants hackers to gain access to private data because, for example, a washing machine easily leaks data from a smartphone to a fake WiFi network. “Over the next 12 months, there are two major options in this area: new devices coming to market with waterproof protection from the start, or custom security that can be easily applied to existing devices.”

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