One of the good small business ideas is to open an internet café business. This can be started with low investment by any individual including a housewife.

How to start an internet café?

1) Choose a good location:

The success of the internet café business depends on the location you choose. Choosing a good location near business centers or colleges would be a good idea. However, it would also depend upon your budget.

2) Infrastructure:

Unless your internet café looks good and beautiful, it would not attract customers. You need not spend thousands of dollars or lakhs of rupees on infrastructure. Just pick up some beautiful wallpapers and see that your shop looks beautiful. The woodwork for cabins may cost you, but it is essential.

3) Desktop systems:

The number of desktop systems would depend upon the size of your business. The ideal size would be having 10 cabins with 10 desktops to start with.

4) Internet connectivity:

Several internet service providers are providing good internet connectivity with as low as Rs 3,000 per month for internet café business purposes. However depending upon the capacity, you can choose the appropriate plan that works out well for you.

5) Recruiting staff if required:

Generally, it can be run on your own, but if you feel an additional person is required, you can hire a person.

6) Maintenance charges:

Once you set up the business, you need to incur maintenance charges and that could be either weekly or monthly. It includes internet connectivity charges, monthly rent or lease charges, staff payments, desktop maintenance charges, etc.

Do budgeting required for such an internet café business?

Since this is like any other business, please have your budget plan. You need to know how much you require to spend on infrastructure and other assets. You also need to know how much you may expect every month and what would be your expenses and outflow. While you do the budgeting of your business, it would come out whether it would be profitable from the first month, and if not, when it would be profitable (break-even point). There would not be any disappointment at a later point in time, as you know up front, what would be the inflow and outflow of cash.

To whom this business is suitable?

This business would be suitable for everyone including housewives. If you have an additional resource who also can provide a helping hand even part-time, this could be a good business opportunity.

Who is using Internet Café now?

Do still people come to internet cafés in this 3G generation? The answer is yes. Your customers are not the one who works in MNC or big IT companies. Your customers are low-income people and college students who may not afford to have such facilities at home. Also, you need to provide value-added services in the internet café center to attract more customers or have regular customers.

What are value-added services?

In an internet café, you may provide internet services, webcam services, and printing options. However, if you can add a scanning facility, Xerox, courier facility, etc., it would add value to your business. As an example, if a person comes to your internet café, may use your internet services, takes a print and couriers them from your internet café itself.

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