Example Business Ideas

Dark Business Ideas for Goth Entrepreneurs

Written by Jay Shapiro for Gaebler Ventures

All things dark and beautiful. Gothic business can be as successful as any other if you do it right. Knowing your market and knowing what your client expects is the key.

It's hard to entirely classify the Goth culture or subculture, branching as it does, into many a side genre. However, as blurry as the edges might be, the eyeliner is still black and clearly defined and the demand for Goth products growing.

This recent upsurge in Goth interest is partly attributable to TV series like Twilight and Vampire Diaries, the vampire myth being one that is embraced by those of gothic sensibility. Having said that, these are somewhat sanitized interpretations of gothness. Those who take Goth a little more seriously will seek darker more sophisticated entertainments and products too.

That's where there's a market for good quality gothic merchandise. All too often an item is described as Goth or Emo simply because it is black. EBay sellers are especially guilty of trying this ploy, in the belief that they can appeal to this particular market. It doesn't work, the dark clientele is one that is very discerning and the clothes, the make up products, the books and the music have to be right.

Businesses that will have Goth appeal are:

  • Online alternative clothing stores - The Goth consumer likes to shop online. The more unusual style of dress that they favor isn't catered for in mainstream stores on the high street. If high street chains to offer what is consider gothic style apparel it is often a rather dilute form and not what the more hard core devotee is looking for.
  • Jewelry - Again, the high street doesn't offer a wide variety for this market. Online markets like Etsy and EBay are great places to set up shop especially if you offer bespoke pieces.
  • Unusual music CDs, DVDs and books - Online stores that cater for the Goth, Emo, and Punk scene are a godsend to the alternative shopper. Too often they struggle to find a particular album, movie or novel. Offer these dark goodies under one roof.
  • Hair and make-up- Goth doesn't follow mainstream fashion trends or move with the current flow. It is its own trend. The beauty requirements of Goth ladies and gentlemen and girls and boys might not always be available from mainstream shops. Set up a hair and beauty store that always sells the shadowiest eye shadows, the darkest eye liners and the reddest lipsticks. Your clients will thank you for doing so when those colors are no longer on the shelves at the mall in summer.
  • Social Networking – Sites that specifically cater for the consumer with a gothic sensibility are great places to earn advertising revenue. If you offer places where people of like mind can show off their pictures of their Cosplay outfits you'll be creating an environment with real visual appeal.


Specialist interest products are often able command higher prices than mass produced mainstream ones. If you can source well made goods wholesale you stand a good chance of being successful online. The best way to throw light onto the art of dark business? It's probably going to come more naturally to you if you are of gothic tastes yourself. Fake it and your customers will see through you.

Jay Shapiro is a freelance writer based in the UK. Jay has a particular interest in the emotive aspects of the entrepreneur's character. "Alongside the nuts and bolts of business, the character of the person is often the ingredient responsible for success."

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