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19 exciting business ideas for teens to start their own business

business ideas for teens

Starting a business as a teenager is an exciting and empowering endeavor. However, it all begins with a critical step—the choice of the right business idea. Your business idea is not merely the foundation upon which your venture is built, it's also the cornerstone of your brand and reputation as a teen entrepreneur.

In light of this, we’ve put together 19 teen business ideas, including why selecting the perfect one is so important. We'll uncover how your chosen business idea can shape not only how you are perceived in the entrepreneurial landscape but also how it paves the way for the future success of your enterprise.

What makes a business idea a good one for a teenager?

A good business idea for teens possesses several key qualities that make it feasible and suitable for this age group.

  • Interest and passion: A business idea that aligns with a teenager's interests and passions is more likely to be enjoyable and sustainable. When you love what you do, it doesn't feel like work and this is especially true for younger entrepreneurs.

  • Low startup costs: Business ideas that require minimal initial investment or can be started with personal savings are ideal for teenagers who may have limited access to capital. So look for opportunities that don't require significant financial resources.

  • Flexible schedule: A business that allows flexibility in terms of working hours is important for teenagers who need to balance their business with school, extracurricular activities and personal life. Learn more: Side business ideas, How to make money as a student

  • Learning opportunities: A good business idea should provide valuable learning experiences. It should enable teenagers to acquire new skills, whether in marketing, finance, customer service or problem-solving. Sometimes the learning of these new skills might be more impactful on a teen's future than the profitability or success of the business itself.

  • Local niche: Consider business ideas that address a local or niche market need. Understanding the specific needs of your community can be an advantage. For example, in a community with a lot of young children, a babysitting business might be a good fit for a teen.

  • Low risk: Choose ideas with manageable risks. Teenagers often have less financial cushion to fall back on, so businesses with lower risk profiles are preferred.

  • Legal and regulatory compliance: Ensure that the business idea complies with legal requirements and regulations, particularly any age-related restrictions for young entrepreneurs. Parents or guardians helping their teen to set up a business should check the local state and federal laws and regulations, or consult with a business expert or attorney.

19 business ideas for teens to start today

Looking to kickstart your entrepreneurial journey as a teenager? We've curated a list of 19 exciting business ideas that are not only age-appropriate but also can help you earn some extra cash while gaining valuable skills and experience. From tutoring and pet care to digital marketing and event planning, there's something here for every ambitious teen to start today (A lot of these are also great business ideas for students too. )

01. Tutoring

Offering tutoring services in subjects you excel at, whether it's math, science, languages, or other academic areas is a great business to start. You can start small, from your home or your student's home. Tutoring can also be done online, allowing you to target students all over the country or world.

02. Babysitting

If you live in a community with large numbers of children, chances are the demand for babysitting services is high. This might include taking care of children once they’ve finished school, until their parents finish work, or in the evenings and weekends. If you plan to start a babysitting business, it’s advisable to take first aid classes designed for the care of babies and children. Babysitting is also one of several great small town business ideas.

03. Gardening and lawn care

Live in a neighborhood of private houses with lawns? You can start a lawn care business that includes lawn mowing, gardening, landscaping or yard cleanup services around you. Consider practicing on your own lawn first.

business ideas for teens - lawn care

04. Car washing

Setting up a car washing service, either at your home or at the homes of potential customers is a great business idea for a kid or teen. You don’t need much to get started, perhaps some buckets, cleaning clothes and soap for cars. It’s also a great business idea for weekends.

05. Dog walking and pet sitting

Starting a dog walking business, or pet sitting one, for busy pet owners in your area is a great teen-focused business idea. Dog walking is a business idea that you can make happen in between school hours and at weekends, it also requires no setup costs. For pet sitting, if you love animals, this is a great way to get into entrepreneurship and generally involves taking care of pets in their own homes, while their owners are away. If you have experience of having taken care of pets at home, even better.

business ideas for teens - dog walking and pet care

06. Handyman services

One great business idea for a teen is starting a handyman business offering basic handyman services like small repairs, painting, or assembling furniture. These services might be in demand from elderly customers in your household or others who are not able to perform simple handyman skills for themselves. To get started you’ll most likely need a comprehensive toolbox and basic painting supplies.

business ideas for teens - handyman

07. Photography

If you’re a teen with photography skills, you can offer photography services for events like birthdays, family gatherings, or portraits and start your own photography business. Practicing taking photos at your own family events is a great way to build your skills and gather photos to create a portfolio of your own, in order to market and service your business.

business ideas for teens - photographers

08. Crafts and handmade goods

If you consider yourself a creative teen, why not start selling crafts online? You create and sell handmade crafts or goods on platforms like Etsy at local craft fairs, or through your own website. Whether it's knitting, needlepoint, making homemade clothes, pottery, or something else, starting a craft business as a teen is a great way to turn a passion or hobby into a business.

business ideas for teenagers - crafts

09. Baking

For teens who like to bake, baking and selling homemade treats and cakes can be a great way to start a baking business. To start small, you can bake and sell from your home but just be mindful that if your business scales you might need to find a larger location. There can be state and federal regulations when selling baked goods and food, so make sure to adhere to those. Baking business ideas for teens include cakes for birthdays and special occasions or events, decorated cookies and cupcakes.

business ideas for teenagers - baking

10. Personal shopping or stylist services

Do others often compliment you on your style, do you love shopping and dressing others? One potential business idea for a clothes-focused teen is personal shopping or styling. You can offer services assisting others in shopping for clothing and accessories and provide styling tips by starting a blog.

11. Digital marketing services

A potential business idea for a teen is starting a marketing business. This might involve helping local businesses with their digital marketing efforts, such as managing social media accounts or creating websites. Maybe there is someone in your family with a business who needs help managing their social media accounts, who you could build your skills up on and use to showcase to other potential clients how you can help their marketing efforts.

12. Reselling vintage or secondhand items

As a teen, you could consider selling vintage clothing. You can consider sourcing and reselling vintage or second-hand clothing, collectibles or furniture online. Start with your own home, or amongst extended family members, to see what they might be happy for you to sell on. Then you can check out second-hand stores or fairs around your area to find things to sell online.

teen business ideas, vintage reselling

13. Event planning

A fun teen business idea is starting a party planning business. This could involve helping to plan and coordinate events such as birthday parties, holiday events and even post-prom celebrations. Perhaps you already help plan family events, or parties for friends and starting an event planning venture is just another step forward. You could help with just designs and concepts, or the actual setup of each event itself.

14. Graphic design

If you're skilled in graphic design, one potential business idea for a teen is offering your services for creating logos, flyers, or social media graphics. If you’re looking to use this business idea to start your business, it’s worth creating a graphic design portfolio, in order to showcase examples of your work to attract new clients.

15. Music lessons

For music-orientated teens, a great business idea could be offering music lessons either online, from home, or at a student's house. Focus on lessons for the areas of music you know or excel in, whether that's the piano, guitar, drums, or singing. With music lessons, you can choose to take on just a few students or build up a busy business with many more.

business ideas for teens - tutoring

16. Fitness coaching

One potential business idea for teens who are fit and active and love to exercise is fitness coaching -or making money as a personal trainer. Offer fitness coaching sessions or create workout plans for clients looking to stay active and healthy. You can start a fitness business from home, at the local park, online, or anywhere with space for exercise sessions.

business ideas for teens - fitness coaching

17. Blogging

A great and easy-to-start business idea for teens who love to create and write is blogging. All you need is a computer, a website, an internet connection and something to write about. Once you start writing and publishing the key is to promote and monetize your blog, turning it into a business based on your writing and opinions. You can also consider writing blog content for companies who need it.

Tip: Use a blog maker to easily go live with your blog.

business ideas for teens - make a blog, blogging - blog maker, wix

18. Home organizer

One business idea for teens, with little to zero startup costs, is working as a home organizer. This entails helping people to organize their clothes, books and other personal effects for a tidier, more organized home. You can also take this service a step further by offering to help your client organize and run a yard sale to clear any unwanted clutter.

19. Cleaning services

If you’re a teen who isn’t afraid of hard work and helping others, starting a cleaning business could be the best teen-focused business idea to get your venture started. You won’t need a lot of supplies to get started, apart from basic cleaning ones and you can start off building your business amongst family and friends.

teen business ideas, cleaning

Can teenagers start their own business?

Teenagers can start their own businesses and in most states, age is not a barrier to entrepreneurship. In fact, several successful entrepreneurs began their journeys as teenagers - Mike Mittredge of Yankee Candles was just 16 when he got his business started (learn how to start a candle business of your own) and Mark Zuckerberg was just 19 when he founded Facebook (now Meta).

How to start a business as a teen?

Starting a business as a teenager is an exciting venture and it's entirely possible with the right approach and determination. Here are some necessary steps to consider starting a business the right way.

  • Identify your interests and decide on your business idea: Start by identifying your interests and passions. What do you enjoy doing in your free time? What problems do you see around you that you could solve with a business idea?

  • Market research: Research your chosen business idea thoroughly. Understand your target audience, competition and market trends. This will help you refine your concept and identify potential challenges.

  • Create a business plan: Develop a business plan outlining your idea, goals, strategies and financial projections. A business plan is crucial for clarifying your vision and attracting potential investors or lenders.

Check out these best small website builders to get started.

Here are some examples of business plans to create

  • Take into account and follow legal considerations: Depending on your location and the type of business, there may be legal requirements to consider, such as registering your business, obtaining licenses or complying with zoning regulations. Research the legalities in your area for starting a business and the different types, be it an LLC or eCommerce model.

  • Financing your business: Determine how you will finance your business if any at all. Teen business owners often have limited access to capital, so consider starting small or exploring options like savings, crowdfunding or seeking financial support from family and friends

  • Branding and website: Create a strong brand identity by establishing an online presence. Build a business website and use social media platforms to promote your business.

  • Product or service development: Develop your product or service with a focus on quality and meeting customer needs. Consider prototyping and testing your offering before launching it to the public.

  • Marketing: Develop a marketing strategy to reach your target audience. You can use social media, email marketing, content marketing and other online and offline channels to promote your business.

  • Networking and mentorship: Connect with other entrepreneurs, mentors and organizations that support young business owners. This networking can provide guidance, advice and potential partnerships. Don't hesitate to seek guidance and support from adults, mentors and organizations that assist young entrepreneurs. They can provide valuable insights and resources.

  • Figure out your time management: Balancing school, personal life and business can be challenging. Effective time management is crucial to ensure you can manage all your responsibilities effectively.

  • Learn and grow: Entrepreneurship is a learning journey. Embrace failures as opportunities to grow and adapt your business based on what works and what doesn't.

  • Compliance and taxes: Understand the legal and tax obligations associated with your business in your state. It's essential to keep accurate records and meet your tax obligations, you may need to consult with a professional tax lawyer in order to do this properly.

What is a good business idea for teens aged 11-15?

A good business idea for this age group should align with the teen's interests and passions. This not only makes the venture more enjoyable but also increases the likelihood of success.

Consider business ideas that are feasible for a young entrepreneur. This might involve minimal investment, simple operations and tasks that can be easily managed with school commitments.

Focus on business ideas that cater to the local community. This could involve services or products that neighbors or family friends would be interested in.

Look for opportunities that allow for skill development. Whether it's learning how to manage money, market a product, or provide a service, the experience should be educational. Ensure that the business idea has the support and supervision of parents or guardians. Legal and safety considerations are crucial at this age. Opt for a business idea that offers flexibility in terms of time commitment. School and extracurricular activities should remain the top priority.

Some good options for this age group include: dog walking, lawn care and landscaping and blogging.

What is a good business idea for teens aged 16-19?

Consider teen business ideas that address a specific problem or need. This age group is often better equipped to identify and tackle real-world issues. Encourage ideas that foster independence and responsibility. Teens in this age range are usually more capable of handling tasks like managing finances, marketing, and customer interactions.

Explore business ideas that leverage technology. Teens in this age group are typically more tech-savvy and can capitalize on online platforms, social media or e-commerce.

Look for business ideas that provide networking opportunities. This could involve collaborating with other young entrepreneurs, participating in industry events, or connecting with mentors.

Consider business ideas that align with potential career interests. This age group may use their business ventures as a way to explore future career paths or gain relevant experience for college applications. Think about ideas that have the potential for financial growth. Teens in this age group may be thinking about saving for college or gaining financial independence.

Some good options for this age group include: website design and management, social media account management, selling handmade crafts online, building eCommerce websites, or dropshipping.

Business ideas for teens and young adults FAQ

What skills can teens learn from starting a business?

  • Communication skills: Learn to effectively convey ideas and negotiate.

  • Financial literacy: Understand budgeting, pricing, and basic financial management.

  • Problem-solving: Develop the ability to find solutions to challenges.

  • Creativity: Cultivate creative thinking for business ideas and marketing strategies.

  • Customer service: Learn to interact positively with customers.

How can teens balance school and business commitments?

Can teens aged 11-15 start a business?

Explore more business ideas


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