40 Best Shopify Business Ideas You Can Start (2020)

Want to start a Shopify related business idea but not quite sure what to start?

The good news is, there are so many opportunities to become an entrepreneur and build an innovative product/service in this line of work.

If you're looking to start your own Shopify business, there are several low-capital options you can choose from.

We put a list together below of the most profitable Shopify ideas you can start today!

Here they are:

1. Start an online courses business ($60K/year)

Lidiya Kesarovska from The Netherlands started Let's Reach Success over 7 years ago, a online courses business.

  • Revenue: $5,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 0
  • Location: The Netherlands

Back in 2013, I had already discovered my passion - personal development - and had realized writing is the best way to express myself. So I combined these and started a self-improvement blog.

Starting the blog was the best decision and not giving up on it over the years (even when no traffic or money was coming in) was what helped me move forward.

It was first just a hobby and I knew nothing about blogging. Over the years, after publishing a ton of content, gaining traffic, learning about SEO, email marketing, social media, and all the ways to monetize a blog, it became a real business.

how-i-created-a-5k-month-online-course-about-blogging

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Lidiya Kesarovska, on starting Let's Reach Success ($5,000/month) full story ➜

2. Start an online poster store ($720K/year)

Humphrey Yang from San Francisco, California, USA started Craft Oak over 3 years ago, a online poster store.

  • Revenue: $60,000/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 3
  • Location: San Francisco, California, USA

My backstory is that I had quit my job at a mobile gaming company in Nov. 2016, where I had been working for nearly 3 years in monetization. My goal at that job was to monetize our users via in-app purchases based on data that was available to me within the game’s ecosystem.

To be honest, I had zero experience in e-Commerce, but I did know from my previous job that I was good at learning from data, setting up and creating experiments over and over again, and making business decisions with the information provided to me.

I had always wanted to "start" something on my own, and when I was talking about doing that in January of 2017, I was approached by a friend who wanted to also start something - but for him, it would be a side gig because he had a full-time job already. This friend would become my business partner, and still is a part of the business today - he would like to remain anonymous for the purpose of this Starter Story.

starting-and-growing-a-customized-maps-startup-to-60k-month

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Humphrey Yang, on starting Craft Oak ($60,000/month) full story ➜

3. Start a furniture business ($444K/year)

John Humphreys from Austin, Texas, USA started Humphreys almost 4 years ago, a furniture business.

  • Revenue: $37,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 1
  • Location: Austin, Texas, USA

Since I was a kid I have always had a sense of wonder about the world and the mechanisms behind it. Whether it be a jet engine or a windshield wiper-I have thought about the creative process behind these things since I was 10 years old.

I drew houses as a kid. My dad grew up in a home designed by a student of Frank Lloyd Wright, it was a solar home and it had an odd features. One example is, the entire back wall that was about 100 feet long and 15 feet high comprised of windows that all opened. In front, there were functioning levers that had fans which would draw airflow in and out.

Growing up I thought I wanted to be a pilot. I was described in high school by a classmate as “poetic” which I found offensive. I tried a hand in many things; managing a farm and pre-school, which were two businesses I inherited. This type of work wasn’t for me.

my-story-starting-a-400k-year-handcrafted-furniture-business

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John Humphreys, on starting Humphreys ($37,000/month) full story ➜

4. Start an online rug store ($264K/year)

Manuel Mas from Crevillent, Valencian Community, Spain started Mundoalfombra.com almost 20 years ago, a online rug store.

  • Revenue: $22,000/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 5
  • Location: Crevillent, Valencian Community, Spain

My father has a big background in manufacturing rugs because he worked from 12 years old till now on this industry in Crevillent, so he knows the product, the processes, the suppliers and the people who run this business in our town of 27,000 inhabitants.

I studied computer engineering in the early 2000s and loved the online world. I knew then that the near-future of commerce will be the World Wide Web and eCommerce will be exploding in the next few years. I remember my first orders on Amazon.com from Spain or eBay in the first years… books and other products traveling about several weeks till arriving home…

So the fusion of the Internet and the rug world was clear, then Mundoalfombra.com was created. The experts in rugs and carpets arrived in the online world. Products manufactured in the same town with direct serving, great quality, short delivery times in Spain and Portugal, good prices, exceptional customer support and good relationship with suppliers. The experience in the offline world was shipped to online with a new company. From the old grand-grandfather ́s company experience, born in 1890, to a new opening, and from natural fiber rugs to hundreds of different models and fibers.

how-we-started-selling-rugs-and-carpets-online-in-the-early-2000s

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Manuel Mas, on starting Mundoalfombra.com ($22,000/month) full story ➜

5. Become a virtual assistant

Examples of a successful virtual assistant:

For further info, check out these books and products:

article

6. Start a crowdfunding platform ($4.8M/year)

Howard Marks from Los Angeles, California, USA started StartEngine almost 8 years ago, a crowdfunding platform.

  • Revenue: $400,000/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 22
  • Location: Los Angeles, California, USA

After the second video game company I founded, Acclaim Games, was acquired by Walt Disney (Playdom was the original buyer), I wanted to take a break from the entrepreneurial side of the business and become an investor. I set a personal goal for myself to invest in 60 companies, and since I was living in LA, I decided to invest in startups in LA too.

Where do you start with that goal? How do you find entrepreneurs to support? As I started this journey, I realized that an accelerator model was quite effective for my purposes, and so StartEngine, the accelerator, was born.

We offered companies $20,000 for a 10% stake in the company and 90 days of mentorship. Given we were one of the first accelerators in LA, we had a lot of interest. Ultimately, we accepted around 5% of applicants and had 60 companies participate in the StartEngine accelerator in total.

how-we-built-and-launched-a-100m-equity-crowdfunding-platform

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Howard Marks, on starting StartEngine ($400,000/month) full story ➜

7. Start a candle business ($240K/year)

DShawn Russell from Raeford, North Carolina, USA started Southern Elegance Candle Company almost 5 years ago, a candle business.

  • Revenue: $20,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 3
  • Location: Raeford, North Carolina, USA

I started Southern Elegance right after my son was born as a hobby. Initially, I made a bunch of random bath and body products in addition to the candles. When I decided to get serious, I looked at everything and decided to just focus on one product and chose candles because they had the potential to be the most profitable. I chose a niche that I could speak authentically about. My ideal customer was easy to identify because it was basically me. (But, don't use that a marketing strategy. It just happened to work in this case) I was born and raised in the South. I LOVE living here and couldn't imagine living anywhere else. I created a company around all the things that I love to do.

Choose your partners carefully and trust your gut. I made very bad decisions by going against what I thought I should do and listening to “experts” and lost a ton of money.

I was working in education at the time and I absolutely hated it. One day walked into work and quit my job to make candle making a full-time career. I had absolutely no background in sales, manufacturing, marketing or anything business-related. I basically had no clue as to how it was going to work or if this was even a viable plan. Everything was a learning curve, and I spent hours learning a new skill then implementing it.

With very limited resources, (basically no money) I went to the school of Google and Youtube. I took some online classes on Branding and Wholesaling. I hired a business coach and I literally hit the streets selling. For the first year, I would sell my candles at any Church function, fair, festival, school bazaar… I did not care. I sold candles outside in the middle of the summer and the dead of winter. I also sold on any and every online platform that would accept me. Etsy, Amazon, Faire, Modalyst, Houzz, etc. All the money I made went back into building the brand, I was lucky to have a husband to pay the bills but it was tight financially. When I finally felt comfortable I approached stores to carry my products. And we slowly built a base of stores to sustain the company.

how-i-started-a-20k-month-southern-inspired-candle-business

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DShawn Russell, on starting Southern Elegance Candle Company ($20,000/month) full story ➜

8. Start a shipping company

Examples of a successful shipping company:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a shipping company:

For further info, check out these books and products:

article

9. Start a naming and branding service ($3M/year)

Darpan Munjal from Illinois, USA started Squadhelp ago, a naming and branding service.

  • Revenue: $250,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 20
  • Location: Illinois, USA

Originally from New Delhi, my fascination with computers began at a young age. With only one available in my school, my fascination and curiosity for computers only grew stronger and followed me well into my college and adulthood; I was successfully accepted into an engineering college and soon after graduation received a computer consulting job from Tata Group. In addition to Tata Group, I applied for a job in Chicago at Xpedior, a startup company, where I was a consultant for numerous e-commerce and dotcom companies.

As silly as it sounds, failing is the only way to understand how to grow individually and professionally.

I launched Squadhelp as an experiment in 2011 when I was personally struggling to come up with a great name for another venture. In the beginning, I never assumed Squadhelp would grow to become a large business opportunity - the initial intention was for the platform to be used as a resource by other startups who were in similar situations. However, as the platform and creative community grew organically, Squadhelp began receiving of customers through word of mouth.

how-i-started-a-250k-month-business-crowdsourcing-company-names

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Darpan Munjal , on starting Squadhelp ($250,000/month) full story ➜

10. Start a children footwear brand ($780K/year)

Laura Garcia Perdomo from Paterna, España started zapato FEROZ about 4 years ago, a children footwear brand.

  • Revenue: $65,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 2
  • Location: Paterna, España

Although I am a Canarian by birth, I am a Valencian by adoption, many years ago I left my beloved islands with the intention of training in Industrial Design in Valencia.

I began combining classes with work in a design studio, where I had contact with various fields: product design, graphic design, corporate identity ... although the turns of destiny made me fully enter the world of footwear before finishing the race.

From that moment, more than 10 years ago, the world of leathers, soles, linings, and laces, has been very present in my working life, working for various brands, both national and outside our borders.

how-we-created-a-65k-month-healthy-children-s-footwear-brand-that-sells-almost-everything-on-launch-day

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Laura Garcia Perdomo, on starting zapato FEROZ ($65,000/month) full story ➜

11. Start a sporting goods store ($101K/year)

Kyler Russell from Midwest, Wyoming, USA started Comfy Cup LLC about 4 years ago, a sporting goods store.

  • Revenue: $8,400/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 2
  • Location: Midwest, Wyoming, USA

I loved playing baseball, but felt that the hard athletic cup I was required to wear was, well, a pain in the crotch. I tried almost every youth athletic cup on the market and nothing felt comfortable.

Starting a business seems like a really hard thing to do, but it is really just lots and lots of tiny steps in the direction you need to go.

Honestly, I threw a fit about wearing it before every practice and game, but I had to wear it. During one of my pre-game frustrations, my mom said, "If you don't like something. Quit whining about it and come up with a solution!"

how-a-12-year-old-started-a-100k-athletic-cup-product

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Kyler Russell, on starting Comfy Cup LLC ($8,400/month) full story ➜

12. Start a handmade goods business ($1.8M/year)

Samuel Davidson from Nashville, Tennessee, USA started Batch Nashville, LLC about 7 years ago, a handmade goods business.

  • Revenue: $150,000/ month
  • Founders: 3
  • Employees: 6
  • Location: Nashville, Tennessee, USA

During the summer of 2013, my co-founders (Rob Williams & Stephen Moseley) and I were discussing all the great things our hometown of Nashville had to offer, especially in the way of small-batch, handmade gifts and treats. But, there was no one-stop shop to get all of these items (you had to run around town or attend certain farmers markets or festivals).

Lo and behold, we actually hit the 200 mark our first month. The local media covered what we were doing and sales jumped to 600 for the second month and then 1,000 or month three (well beyond our original goal!).

Could we come up with a way to consolidate all of these local, small businesses making awesome products under one roof?

how-we-validated-and-launched-a-subscription-box-company

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Samuel Davidson, on starting Batch Nashville, LLC ($150,000/month) full story ➜

13. Start a pet store ($240K/year)

Mike Leon from Orlando, Florida, USA started Bike Tow Leash over 17 years ago, a pet store.

  • Revenue: $20,000/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 1
  • Location: Orlando, Florida, USA

I am a mechanical engineer graduate from Georgia Tech. My wife Betsy, GA Tech EE graduate, and I met her first day at school. We married after graduation. We have two daughters Jessica and Sam. After GA Tech I developed airline products up until when the 9-11 terrorist attacks occurred.

After the 9-11 terrorist attacks, Betsy and the girls, then 5 and 8, met Cindy at Publix getting groceries. She had a black Lab puppy in a light blue cape with her. From that encounter, my family and I volunteered raising service dog puppies for individuals with disabilities as a way of giving back to our community and country. In honor of those lost, we named our first puppy Tribute.

Raising service dog puppies is a wonderful volunteer opportunity, which ultimately provides companion animals to individuals who suffer from seizures, or who have mobility, vision or hearing impairments.

how-i-started-a-6-figures-business-selling-a-dog-accessory

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Mike Leon, on starting Bike Tow Leash ($20,000/month) full story ➜

14. Start a kitchen supplies store ($4M/year)

Michael “Medium Rare” O’Donnell from Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA started Cave Tools over 7 years ago, a kitchen supplies store.

  • Revenue: $333,333/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 1
  • Location: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA

The true start of my journey goes back to college when I took an unpaid internship with a serial entrepreneur. I always wanted to be an entrepreneur, but I never knew anybody that was actually running a successful business. It made me realize that I could play things safe and get stuck in the rat race of a regular job or I could take responsibility for my own destiny and build a business that would help create the freedom I desired in life. Just 6 months after graduating from Penn State, I took the leap and started my own marketing agency.

That experience exposed me to the world entrepreneurship and gave me the confidence to start my own marketing agency just 6 months after graduating from Penn State.

When I started, there was no grand design to build out this giant brand.

how-we-built-a-2m-year-business-selling-barbecue-tools

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Michael “Medium Rare” O’Donnell, on starting Cave Tools ($333,333/month) full story ➜

15. Start a dropshipping business ($144K/year)

Amanda Austin from Erie, Pennsylvania, USA started Little Shop of Miniatures over 3 years ago, a dropshipping business.

  • Revenue: $12,000/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 0
  • Location: Erie, Pennsylvania, USA

I was unhappily working in marketing for a Fortune 500 insurance company when I started looking at ways to create a new income stream. I became interested in ecommerce and invested in a course to learn more. I compiled a list of keywords for products that had decent search volume and not terribly competitive to rank for in organic search. I used Long Tail Pro to get ideas--I had so many when I first started!

My business is a small, mostly passive income stream and I’m okay with that. There is so much more I could be doing with my store, but right now I am loving the extra income stream that allows me to work part-time at my day job and spend more time with my infant daughter.

A bunch of keywords in the dollhouse miniatures space fit the bill. I used Long Tail Pro and looked for keywords that were competitive--which on there is a score in the twenties or low thirties. I also wanted them to have at least 2,000 searches per month. This is not a ton, but five keywords with that search volume that are not that competitive can lead to a decent number of organic traffic if you build your site the right way. My advice to aspiring entrepreneurs is to find a niche with a nice handful of keywords you can rank for with quality content and a nice backlinking strategy. Don’t try to be number one for some saturated keyword that has a million searches a month. Go for keywords where you stand a chance of ranking--this is usually so-called long tail keywords that are really phrases--for example, “wooden dollhouse furniture” instead of just “dollhouse.”

how-i-started-a-part-time-dropship-business-on-shopify

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Amanda Austin, on starting Little Shop of Miniatures ($12,000/month) full story ➜

16. Start a children's clothing business ($0/year)

Cameron Olthuis from Park City, Utah, USA started Sawyer about 3 years ago, a children's clothing business.

  • Revenue: $0/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 3
  • Location: Park City, Utah, USA

My online entrepreneurial journey started when I was 21 and my then girlfriend was pregnant with our first child. That was almost 17 years ago. I was working a minimum wage customer service job, had no post high school education, and knew that I needed to make big changes in order to provide a better life for my family. It’s been a long journey that’s seen its share of ups & downs, with times where I literally wasn’t sure how I would be able to feed my family the next day. Somehow, it worked out, and I always knew the sacrifices would pay off if I stuck with it.

Most recently, my role was VP, Audience Development at CBS Interactive. During my 6 1/2 years at CBS, we grew from the #13 Comscore property to #6. That’s an elite group: Google, Facebook, Yahoo, Amazon, Microsoft and then CBSi. Prior to my role at CBSi, I ran audience growth at a startup called Clicker, which was acquired by CBS for a nine-figure sum. That was quite a learning experience.

The entrepreneurial spirit in me was calling the entire time I was at CBS Interactive. I never expected to be there for as long as I was, but incentives in the form of stock options that hadn’t vested and a big paycheck helped keep me around. That and I also enjoyed the learning experience, challenges of working on the biggest internet properties, and working for the CEO, who’s been a great mentor to me. But, my time had come. CBSi was running like a well-oiled machine and the excitement was no longer there for me. I needed to work on something that was meaningful to me again. I was also a partner in a content arbitrage business at that time with yearly revenues of around $7.5 million at its peak. That helped make the decision to leave easier. This was, of course, non-conflicting to my work at CBS.

starting-a-kids-clothing-brand-and-growing-to-12k-mo

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Cameron Olthuis, on starting Sawyer ($0/month) full story ➜

17. Become a shopify app developer ($0/year)

Disha Shidham from San Francisco, California, USA started Savy almost 3 years ago, a Shopify app developer.

  • Revenue: $0/ month
  • Founders: 1
  • Employees: 1
  • Location: San Francisco, California, USA

why-not-making-a-deal-on-shark-tank-was-the-best-thing-that-ever-happened

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Disha Shidham, on starting Savy ($0/month) full story ➜

18. Start an online t-shirt business ($1.8M/year)

Matt Snow & Meredith Erin from Los Angeles, CA, USA started Boredwalk over 6 years ago, a online t-shirt business.

  • Revenue: $150,000/ month
  • Founders: 2
  • Employees: 10
  • Location: Los Angeles, CA, USA

Matt grew up in the DC area and always loved drawing and illustration, but it took a back seat to more “grown-up” pursuits when he first went to college (only to then drop out and join the workforce). Meredith went to school in DC, and after running into each other at various concerts and DJ sets eventually started dating. It was around this time that Meredith found some old illustrations Matt had done and encouraged him to go back to school and get his graphic design degree. She was already well-established as a software engineer, but Matt was still trying to figure out what he wanted to do professionally.

Three years later, after a move up to Baltimore and armed with a hard-earned degree, Matt started working for other people as a designer...and hated it. Around this time the two started their first brand, Ex-Boyfriend, as a weekend hobby, making trinkets like duct tape wallets and wrist cuffs out of recycled beer cans and selling them on Etsy. This eventually grew into a small collection of graphic tees. While Matt is an excellent technician who can execute design concepts well, Meredith is the art director and ideas person who comes up with 99% of the concepts that eventually become our designs.

As our order volume started to grow, we pivoted to focus more on the apparel, since we could outsource the printing and fulfillment of those, whereas the other items we were selling at the time were very high-touch and labor-intensive.

how-we-started-a-150k-month-original-designs-apparel-and-accessories-brand

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Matt Snow & Meredith Erin, on starting Boredwalk ($150,000/month) full story ➜

19. Start a fashion accessories brand ($120K/year)

Eric Morton from Wilmington, Massachusetts, USA started Cuff Style almost 2 years ago, a fashion accessories brand.

  • Revenue: $10,000/ month
  • Founders: 4
  • Employees: 4
  • Location: Wilmington, Massachusetts, USA

Cuffstyle LLC was founded by myself, Jason, Chris, and Carl.

Carl came up with the original concept while trying to solve a very simple problem he was having. He loved playing acoustic guitar, but shirt sleeves always seemed to get in the way while he was strumming. He would typically fold his shirt cuff up just enough to keep it out of the way, but the cuff would constantly fall back down while he was playing. He wanted a way to keep the cuff held back, and he thought cufflinks would do the trick. Unfortunately, he didn’t own any French cuff shirts, so he started to improvise, and thus the idea was born.

All in all, we believe the key to success in business is not being skilled in any specific technical area, but rather being skilled at networking, managing, and motivating people.

how-we-invented-a-10k-month-innovative-cuff-adapters

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Eric Morton, on starting Cuff Style ($10,000/month) full story ➜

20. Become a shopify consultant

Examples of a successful shopify consultant:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a shopify consultant:

For further info, check out these books and products:

article

21. Become a shopify set up expert

Examples of a successful shopify set up expert:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a shopify set up expert:

For further info, check out these books and products:

article

22. Become a cosmetic salesperson

Examples of a successful cosmetic salesperson:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a cosmetic salesperson:

For further info, check out these books and products:

article

23. Start a social media marketing business

Examples of a successful social media marketing business:

24. Start a wedding gown rental business

Examples of a successful wedding gown rental business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a wedding gown rental business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

article

25. Start a home decor business

Examples of a successful home decor business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a home decor business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

article

26. Start a holiday decoration business

Examples of a successful holiday decoration business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a holiday decoration business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

article

27. Start an organic food store

Examples of a successful organic food store:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a organic food store:

For further info, check out these books and products:

article

Examples of a successful link building service:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a link building service:

For further info, check out these books and products:

article

29. Start a wholesale business

Examples of a successful wholesale business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a wholesale business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

article

30. Start a car accessories business

Examples of a successful car accessories business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a car accessories business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

article

31. Start an office equipment rental

Examples of a successful office equipment rental:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a office equipment rental:

For further info, check out these books and products:

article

32. Start a travel directory

Examples of a successful travel directory:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a travel directory:

For further info, check out these books and products:

article

33. Become a shopify reseller

Examples of a successful shopify reseller:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a shopify reseller:

For further info, check out these books and products:

article

34. Start a book store

Examples of a successful book store:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a book store:

For further info, check out these books and products:

article

35. Start a language translation service

Examples of a successful language translation service:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a language translation service:

For further info, check out these books and products:

article

36. Become a domain reseller

Examples of a successful domain reseller:

For further info, check out these books and products:

37. Become an affiliate marketer

Examples of a successful affiliate marketer:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a affiliate marketer:

For further info, check out these books and products:

38. Start a shopify forum

Examples of a successful shopify forum:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a shopify forum:

For further info, check out these books and products:

article

39. Start a plant stands business

Examples of a successful plant stands business:

Here are some great videos on how to get started with a plant stands business:

For further info, check out these books and products:

article

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Starter Story,   Founder of Starter Story

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