There are many kinds of businesses. Here is how I choose to classify them, though I'm sure I'll miss some:
Agricultural: growing the food we need, on cultivated land.
Raw-Nature Businesses: Mining, drilling, grazing and beekeeping, lumber and fishing operations all take raw materials from the earth, so they can be turned into usable products.
Grazing, for example, produces meat protein from land that is too poor or too fragile to be cultivated.
It is a good use of land and a good source of protein. So is bee-keeping, using public lands.
Manufacturing and Processing: Taking Raw-Nature products and agricultural products and refining them for consumers.
Two examples would be, refining bauxite ore into aluminum, and then turning aluminum into air conditioner parts.
Or turning farm-grown corn into cornmeal for corn bread.
Sales: Also called retail or wholesale merchandising.
Where products are offered for sale, ready-to-use, or ready-to-install, for individuals and businesses.
Furnaces, toilet paper and pens are things that both businesses and households use.
Some items, like furnaces, need to be installed before using.
Technical Services: Installing or servicing items or machinery that consumers need.
There are different kinds of services: Furnace installation is a type of technical service.
So is getting new brakes on the car, or help with a broken computer.
Intellectual Services: Architects, lawyers and tax preparers use their education to help us,
and help us stay in compliance with various codes, and with the laws of physics.
Financial Services. Banking, investment and insurance companies, are financial services.
Medical and Dental Services. You know about these. This category includes research done by medical bio-chemists.
Domestic Services: Lawn services, house-cleaners, babysitters, furniture movers and dog walkers all help our homes function properly.
Utilities: These are things we need or want, and are delivered to our homes via pipes or wires.
Electricity, gas, water, sewer and phone/cable service are all forms of utilities.
Leisure Services: A lot of leisure is just keeping busy while goofing off, or learning things away from home;
The Apple Jack Festival in Nebraska City, Nebraska is one example. Nebraska City is where Arbor Day took root.
Airplanes that take us to see grandparents, the motels we stay in, the movies we see, sports we watch, the historical sites where we learn stuff, are all leisure services. Restaurants provide food for special occasions, for vacations, when mom is tired, or when schedules are tight.
Government services: Besides some utilities, governments provide other things for us in exchange for our tax dollars.
Schools, first responders, snowplow drivers and mail delivery are a few of the services we receive from the government.
Hidden Businesses. There are important businesses that help us live, that we may not think of. Transportation is one of them.
When your Adult buys coffee, it comes from far away. It is grown in Central and South America, parts of Africa, Asia, and Australia.
It is often transported from the plantation to the local coffee factory by donkey,
then transported from the factory to the seaport by trucks.
Then transported from foreign seaport to US seaport by ship.
Then transported from a US seaport to a coffee warehouse in the US by truck,
and after other processes, it is finally available for purchase.
There is a lot of transportation involved in a cup of coffee (and chocolate too).
Eric J. Rose