10+ Best Small Business Ideas to Start in Maryland [2023])

Discover top small business ideas to kickstart your entrepreneurial journey in Maryland in 2023. Ignite your passion and profit today!

By Nick Cotter
Updated Feb 07, 2024

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Welcome, future entrepreneurs! So, you're looking to dive into the world of small businesses, eh? And what better place to start than the vibrant, diverse, and opportunity-filled state of Maryland? Ah, I can already see the spark in your eyes; you're ready to take on the world. But wait, where to begin? What business idea would be the best fit for you? What's hot in Maryland right now, and what's projected to be even hotter in 2023?

Well, my friend, you're in luck. We've put together a list of the 10+ best small business ideas to start in Maryland in 2023. This isn't just any list; it's a treasure trove of inspiration, filled with ideas that are practical, profitable, and perfectly suited to Maryland's unique business landscape. So, grab a cup of coffee, settle into your favorite chair, and let's embark on this exciting journey together. Ready? Let's get started!

Local Tour Guide Service

Our Local Tour Guide Service offers a unique and enriching experience for tourists who want to explore and understand the local culture, history, and attractions in depth. One of our major strengths is our team of seasoned tour guides who are native to the area, providing authentic insights and stories that you won't find in guidebooks. Here are a few reasons why choosing our service is a good idea:

  • We offer personalized, flexible tours tailored to your interests and schedule.
  • Our local guides have extensive knowledge about the area's history, culture, and hidden gems.
  • We ensure a safe and comfortable journey throughout your tour.
  • You'll get an authentic experience, interacting with locals and trying regional specialties.
  • Our service is reasonably priced, providing a high-quality experience at an affordable cost.
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Specialty Food Store

Opening a Specialty Food Store in Maryland is a fantastic idea due to the diverse population and high demand for unique, quality food items. Maryland is known for its rich culinary culture and residents are always eager to try new, exotic flavors and cuisines. The state's robust economy and high-income levels also mean that people are willing to pay a premium for specialty food items.

  • High demand: Maryland's diverse population and culinary culture create a high demand for specialty food items.
  • Willingness to pay: The state's robust economy and high-income levels mean that consumers are willing to pay a premium for specialty food items.
  • Location: Maryland's strategic location in the mid-Atlantic region makes it easy to source fresh, local ingredients and attract customers from neighboring states.
  • Culinary culture: Maryland is known for its rich culinary culture, which includes a love for seafood, international cuisine, and farm-to-table dining.
  • Support for local businesses: Maryland residents are known for their strong support of local businesses, which would benefit a specialty food store.
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Examples of successful businesses:

Maryland has been a thriving hub for small businesses, with numerous success stories that serve as inspiration for aspiring entrepreneurs. From innovative tech startups to unique retail ventures, the state has seen a diverse range of small businesses flourish. Here are some notable examples of small business ideas that have succeeded in Maryland:

  • Under Armour: Founded in 1996 by Kevin Plank, Under Armour has grown into a global athletic apparel and accessories brand. The company's innovative products and strategic marketing efforts have propelled it to become a major player in the industry.
  • Columbia Sportswear: Started in 1938 by Paul Lamfrom, Columbia Sportswear is a renowned outdoor apparel and footwear company. With a focus on quality and functionality, the brand has become a favorite among outdoor enthusiasts.
  • McCormick & Company: Established in 1889, McCormick & Company has become a leader in the spice and flavorings industry. The company's extensive product line and commitment to quality have made it a household name.
  • Black & Decker: Founded in 1910 by S. Duncan Black and Alonzo G. Decker, Black & Decker is a well-known manufacturer of power tools and home improvement products. The company's innovative designs and reliable products have contributed to its success.
  • Marriott International: Started in 1927 by J. Willard Marriott, Marriott International is a globally recognized hospitality company. With a vast portfolio of hotels and resorts, the company has established itself as a leader in the industry.
  • MedImmune: Founded in 1988, MedImmune is a biotechnology company specializing in the development of vaccines and antibody-based therapies. Its groundbreaking research and successful products have made it a prominent player in the healthcare industry.
  • Urban Pirates: A unique and entertaining small business, Urban Pirates offers pirate-themed boat tours and events in Baltimore's Inner Harbor. The company's immersive experiences and family-friendly entertainment have made it a popular attraction.
  • Flying Dog Brewery: Founded in 1990, Flying Dog Brewery is a craft beer company known for its bold and innovative

Personal Fitness Trainer

A Personal Fitness Trainer is a certified professional who possesses the knowledge, skills, and abilities to design safe and effective fitness programs. They instruct and assist people in reaching personal health and fitness goals. They can work with you one-on-one or in a small group setting to provide a level of attention and instruction that ensures the effectiveness of your workout routine, and they can also offer advice and guidance on healthy eating and lifestyle choices.

  • Personalized workout: A Personal Fitness Trainer creates a specific workout plan just for you based on the goals you want to achieve. This personal plan gives you better results than a general workout plan.
  • Instruction: A trainer teaches the proper way to perform each exercise in your routine. They demonstrate the movement, coaches you through it, and corrects any issues with your posture or technique.
  • Motivation: Regular sessions with a Personal Fitness Trainer enhance your motivation to continue with a workout regimen. Also, knowing that you'll meet with your trainer soon will motivate you during workouts.
  • Variety: An experienced trainer teaches you a variety of exercise methods, which can keep you from getting bored. They also help you to make adjustments as your fitness level improves to ensure continued progress.
  • Accountability: A Personal Fitness Trainer holds you accountable, so you're more likely to stick to your fitness goals if you have a scheduled session with a trainer.

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Home Renovation Services

Home Renovation Services in Maryland are a fantastic idea for several reasons. These services can help to increase the value of your home, improve its functionality, and make it more aesthetically pleasing. A professional renovation service can provide expert advice and high-quality workmanship, ensuring that your renovation project is completed to the highest standards.

  • Value Addition: Renovating your home can significantly increase its market value. This is particularly beneficial if you plan to sell your property in the future.
  • Improved Functionality: Home renovation services can help to improve the functionality of your home. This could involve creating more space, redesigning the layout, or updating old fixtures and fittings.
  • Aesthetic Appeal: A well-renovated home is more aesthetically pleasing. This not only makes your home more enjoyable to live in, but it can also make it more appealing to potential buyers.
  • Expertise and Quality: Professional home renovation services have the expertise and experience to ensure that your project is completed to a high standard. They can provide advice on design and materials, and they can ensure that the work is carried out to the highest quality.

Pet Grooming And Boarding

Opening a Pet Grooming and Boarding business in Maryland is a fantastic idea due to several reasons. Maryland is known for its pet-friendly environment, with a large population of pet owners who treat their pets as part of their family. This leads to a high demand for quality pet care services.

  • High Pet Ownership: Maryland ranks high in pet ownership, meaning there is a significant customer base for pet grooming and boarding services.
  • Pet-Friendly Policies: The state has laws and regulations that encourage responsible pet ownership, creating an environment where pet businesses can thrive.
  • Income Levels: Maryland is one of the wealthiest states in the U.S., which means pet owners have more disposable income to spend on services like grooming and boarding.
  • Affluent Neighborhoods: Areas like Bethesda, Potomac, and Chevy Chase have affluent residents who are willing to pay for high-quality pet services.
  • Outdoor Activities: Maryland's diverse geography, from beaches to mountains, encourages outdoor activities. Pet owners often need reliable boarding services for their pets during their travels.

Related business ideas:

Craft Beer Brewing

Setting up a Craft Beer Brewing in Maryland is an excellent idea due to a multitude of reasons. Maryland offers a conducive environment for brewing craft beer, with its rich history, supportive local communities, and favorable government policies. Here are some compelling reasons:

  • The state of Maryland has a rich history of craft brewing that dates back to the 18th century. This heritage provides a strong foundation for new breweries, making Maryland a desirable location for craft beer enthusiasts.
  • Maryland has a diverse population with a wide range of tastes. This offers a great opportunity for craft breweries to experiment with various flavors and styles, catering to a broad market.
  • There is a strong sense of community and support for local businesses in Maryland. This local patronage can help a new craft brewery thrive and grow.
  • The state government offers a supportive regulatory environment for craft breweries. Maryland has passed several laws in recent years to promote the growth of the craft beer industry, including tax incentives and relaxed restrictions.
  • Maryland's central location on the East Coast makes it an ideal distribution hub. Breweries in Maryland can easily distribute their products to major markets in the Northeast and Southeast.

Independent Real Estate Agency

Starting an Independent Real Estate Agency in Maryland is a good idea for several reasons. As an independent agency, you have the freedom to operate your business in a way that aligns with your personal vision and values. Maryland, in particular, offers a thriving real estate market with diverse opportunities for growth and success.

  • Control over business decisions: As an independent agency, you can make decisions that best suit your business without having to conform to a franchise's rules and regulations.
  • Flexibility in marketing: You have the freedom to create and implement your own marketing strategies, allowing you to stand out in the competitive real estate market.
  • Profit retention: Without franchise fees, all profits made are yours to reinvest in your business or take as income.
  • Thriving real estate market: Maryland has a strong real estate market with a high demand for both residential and commercial properties.
  • Diverse opportunities: Maryland's diverse regions, from urban centers like Baltimore to coastal areas like the Eastern Shore, offer a wide range of real estate opportunities.

Event Planning Service

Event Planning Services in Maryland are a great idea for a variety of reasons. They can help you plan and execute your event with ease and professionalism, ensuring that every detail is taken care of. Whether you're planning a small gathering or a large corporate event, an event planning service can make the process much smoother and less stressful.

  • Expertise: Event planners have the knowledge and experience to ensure that your event runs smoothly. They understand the logistics and details that go into planning an event, and can help you avoid common pitfalls.
  • Time-saving: Planning an event can be time-consuming. By hiring an event planning service, you can delegate these tasks and focus on other important aspects of your event or business.
  • Connections: Event planners have a wide network of vendors and suppliers. They can help you find the best deals and ensure that you have everything you need for your event.
  • Stress-free: Organizing an event can be stressful. An event planning service can take on the bulk of this stress, allowing you to enjoy your event without worrying about the details.
  • Customization: Event planners can help you create a unique and customized event that reflects your vision and meets your specific needs.

Independent Coffee Shop

Starting an independent coffee shop in Maryland can be a lucrative and rewarding venture. Maryland, known for its diverse population and vibrant culture, offers a perfect setting for a unique, cozy, and welcoming coffee shop. The state's robust economy and high income levels also mean that people are willing to pay for quality products and experiences.

  • High demand: Maryland has a high number of coffee lovers, students, and professionals who frequent coffee shops for leisure and work. This guarantees a steady stream of customers.
  • Diverse population: The state's diverse population opens up opportunities for a coffee shop that caters to different tastes and preferences. Offering a variety of coffee blends and food options can attract a wide range of customers.
  • Strong economy: Maryland's strong economy and high average income levels mean that people have disposable income to spend on quality coffee and unique coffee shop experiences.
  • Support for local businesses: Maryland residents are known for their support of local businesses. An independent coffee shop can benefit from this culture of supporting local, independent establishments.
  • Great locations: Whether it's in bustling downtown Baltimore, near the University of Maryland, or in a quaint coastal town, there are numerous ideal locations for a coffee shop in the state.

Mobile Food Truck

A Mobile Food Truck in Maryland is a great idea due to several reasons. Maryland is a bustling state with numerous events, festivals, and a thriving nightlife, making it an ideal place to operate a mobile food truck. The state also boasts a diverse population, which means a variety of food preferences and tastes, providing ample opportunity for a food truck business to thrive.

  • High Foot Traffic: Cities like Baltimore, Annapolis, and Silver Spring have high foot traffic, which can lead to a steady stream of customers.
  • Diverse Population: The diverse population in Maryland means a variety of food preferences, which can cater to different types of food trucks.
  • Numerous Events: Maryland hosts numerous events and festivals throughout the year, providing additional opportunities for food truck businesses.
  • Vibrant Nightlife: The vibrant nightlife in cities like Baltimore provides a great market for food trucks, especially those offering late-night snacks.
  • Cost-Effective: Starting a food truck is less expensive than a brick-and-mortar restaurant, making it a good idea for entrepreneurs with a limited budget.
  • Flexibility: A mobile food truck offers the flexibility to move to different locations and cater to different crowds, increasing the potential for higher profits.


Founder and CEO

I'm Nick, co-founder of newfoundr.com, dedicated to helping aspiring entrepreneurs succeed. As a small business owner with over five years of experience, I have garnered valuable knowledge and insights across a diverse range of industries. My passion for entrepreneurship drives me to share my expertise with aspiring entrepreneurs, empowering them to turn their business dreams into reality.

Through meticulous research and firsthand experience, I uncover the essential steps, software, tools, and costs associated with launching and maintaining a successful business. By demystifying the complexities of entrepreneurship, I provide the guidance and support needed for others to embark on their journey with confidence.

From assessing market viability and formulating business plans to selecting the right technology and navigating the financial landscape, I am dedicated to helping fellow entrepreneurs overcome challenges and unlock their full potential. As a steadfast advocate for small business success, my mission is to pave the way for a new generation of innovative and driven entrepreneurs who are ready to make their mark on the world.