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Recession Proof Business Ideas

recession proof business ideas

Recession-Proof Business Ideas to Best Businesses to Start in a Recession

Here is a list of Businesses based on past experiences that have thrived in up and down economies.

best businesses to start during a recession involves considering industries that are generally recession-proof or even thrive during economic downturns. Here’s a chart that outlines some potential options:

Business Type Description Reason for Recession Suitability
Healthcare Services Medical clinics, home healthcare Essential services with inelastic demand
Repair Services Auto, home, and electronics repair People opt to repair rather than replace
Financial Services Debt management, accounting Increased need for financial advice
Education and Training Online tutoring, professional courses Upskilling during unemployment
Discount Retail Dollar stores, wholesale Consumers look for cheaper options
Cleaning Services Commercial and residential cleaning Continued need for sanitation, especially in pandemics
IT and Cybersecurity IT support, cybersecurity services Increased reliance on technology and data protection
Grocery and Food Staples Local grocery stores, delivery services Essential goods always in demand
Thrift Stores and Consignment Second-hand clothing and goods Consumers seek budget-friendly options
Utility Management Energy-saving solutions, utilities audit Businesses and homes look to reduce expenses

These businesses are typically characterized by their ability to maintain steady demand, offer essential services or goods, or benefit from cost-cutting measures that consumers and other businesses undertake during tighter economic times.

What is the difference between a Business Recession and a Depression?

A recession and a depression are both economic downturns, but they differ in their duration and depth:


  • A recession is officially defined in many countries as two consecutive quarters of decline in real GDP.
  • Recessions are characterized by a decrease in the demand for goods and services, business closures, layoffs, a slowdown in industrial production, and a drop in various economic indicators such as income, retail sales, and employment.
  • Recessions are generally shorter in duration and can last from a few months to more than a year.
  • The effects of a recession are significant but typically not as severe as a depression.
  • Monetary and fiscal policies can often mitigate recessions, such as adjusting interest rates, taxes, and government spending.


  • A depression is a more severe economic downturn that lasts for many years.
  • Depressions involve a substantial decline in economic activity across the economy that lasts for several years.
  • They are marked by prolonged periods of unemployment, a steep decrease in credit availability and consumption, deflation or very low inflation, a significant fall in output and production, and widespread business failures.
  • Depressions are much rarer than recessions. The most famous example is the Great Depression of the 1930s.
  • The impact of a depression is more drastic, and it usually requires more significant policy changes and government intervention to recover from a depression.

In summary, the main differences lie in their severity and duration, with a depression being a more severe and prolonged version of a recession.