5 Ways to Get Into the Mobile Phone Business without Selling Phones

Hand holding a mobile, cell phone, smart phone
••• Bloom Productions/ Taxi/ Getty Images

Startup businesses related to mobile phones, and the various technologies used on these devices, can be very profitable business ideas because the market is growing at a fast pace. Especially when you consider that 80 percent of Internet users own a smartphone, and users spend an average of 69 percent of their media time consuming various types of media on their mobile devices.

The boom in mobile phone usage continues to expand around the globe covering all income spectrums. A mobile phone is no longer an expensive business luxury or status symbol, but a necessity for many. In fact, when you consider that a third of Americans live in a household with three or more smartphones, you would be hard-pressed to find someone who does not use a mobile phone, at least occassionally.

Big business means big investments in technology and infrastructure to further build out the business. For the small player, the opportunity to start a cell phone business exists on the fringes or niche markets, but there is no denying that the opportunity exists. And you no longer need to become a reseller of mobile devices to enter and thrive in this growing market.

Both big and small companies from all industries and markets are vying for a share of a large and ever-growing mobile pie. With a flood of large competitors, is there room to start a mobile phone business? These five business ideas represent some of the hottest business opportunities to start a mobile space, and several have very low barriers to entry, creating the potential for quick profit.

1. Mobile Marketing

With more than 2.5 billion smartphone users worldwide, the potential to create a marketing business in this space is huge. Spending on mobile ads is only a small fraction of the market, with the growth of SMS marketing and other mobile advertising tactics.

2. Mobile Phone Apps

Third-party applications ranging from business productivity to game downloads offer a viable business opportunity. Eighty-nine percent of smartphone users consume media through an app, so if you have the ability to launch an app development business, you can enter a 

3. Mobile Web Design

Some websites are mobile friendly, but many are not. The challenge of fitting web pages on tiny screens for multiple devices with easy navigation is a market need that's rapidly expanding. In some cases, mobile websites are beginning to trump mobile apps, when they are designed right, making this business opportunity a particularly promising path.

4. Location-Based Mobile Services

Cameras in the phone were a killer application but now having GPS (Global Positioning Satellite) on mobile phones provides a host of new business opportunities having to do with the ability of the GPS to provide services with the location of the user. How does this work? You're walking past a department store and you get an alert that an item you've bought before is available there on sale. 

5. Mobile Accessories

From fashion conscious teens to savvy soccer moms, the need to customize, personalize and bling out your cell phone is a strong market. Smartphones Experts, a network of mobile phone e-commerce stores, grew from under $500,000 in revenue to over $16 million in 3 short years. What's your mobile phone accessory idea? There is room for many more. 

Now that you have discovered some of the most lucrative business opportunities related to mobile, it's time to explore what it takes to launch a successful business. Follow these tips for starting a business and make sure your mobile phone venture is set up for success.

Edited by Alyssa Gregory