20 Business Ideas for Teens

Teens have unique advantages when it comes to starting their own businesses, including access to resources, understanding of technology, and the potential for risk-taking. If you are a teen looking to start a business or a parent who wants to inspire your child, here are 20 business ideas for teens.

business ideas for teens

Criteria for Choosing Business Ideas for Teens: Our Methodology

To guide teens towards entrepreneurial ventures that are feasible and enriching, we use a set of specific criteria. These criteria help identify opportunities that are compatible with a teen’s lifestyle, interests, and developmental stage. Each criterion is rated on a scale from 1 to 5, where 1 indicates the least importance and 5 the highest importance in our review process:

  • Low Start-Up Costs and Financial Risk
    • Importance: 5
    • We prioritize business ideas that require minimal initial investment and have low financial risk, considering the typical budget constraints of teenagers.
  • Flexibility and Compatibility with School Schedule
    • Importance: 5
    • The business should offer the flexibility to work around school hours and other academic commitments. Ideas that allow for variable working hours or seasonal operation are ideal.
  • Opportunities for Skill Development
    • Importance: 4
    • Business ideas that provide teens with valuable skills and practical experience, contributing to their personal and professional growth, are highly valued.
  • Market Demand and Viability
    • Importance: 4
    • We assess the current market demand and feasibility of the business idea, ensuring it is realistic and achievable for a teen entrepreneur.
  • Digital and Online Potential
    • Importance: 4
    • Given teens’ proficiency with digital technology, business ideas that leverage online platforms, social media, or e-commerce are considered advantageous.
  • Safety and Legal Considerations
    • Importance: 5
    • It’s essential that the business idea is safe for teens to operate and complies with any legal age restrictions or requirements.
  • Community and Social Engagement
    • Importance: 3
    • Business ideas that involve community interaction or have a social aspect are beneficial, as they help teens build networks and social skills.
  • Scalability and Long-Term Potential
    • Importance: 3
    • While not the primary concern, we consider the potential for growth or transition into a more substantial venture in the future.

By applying these criteria, our aim is to identify business ideas for teens that are not only feasible and safe but also offer significant learning experiences and opportunities for personal development.

Best Small Business Ideas for Teens

Teen Business IdeasDescription
Photography BusinessTeens can start a photography business to express their art and develop skills through photography while earning money doing something they love.
Social Media InfluencerUtilizing popular social media platforms to build an audience, share unique perspectives, and create engaging content, teens can make a name for themselves as social media influencers.
Graphic Design BusinessA small business idea with big potential, teens can be graphic designers and create amazing visuals that stand out from the crowd, exploring creativity, developing design skills, and earning extra cash.
Lawn Care BusinessOffering services like mowing, trimming, and fertilizing lawns in their neighborhoods, teens can start a lawn care business to earn money while honing their manual labor skills.
Delivery Service BusinessTeens can provide delivery services for items like pizza and groceries, earning money while developing customer service skills and staying physically active.
Child Care ServicesTeens can provide quality and reliable child care in their local area, offering parents an opportunity for their children to be cared for while nurturing their own interpersonal skills and earning money.
Selling on Online MarketplacesTeens can start an online business selling products on online marketplaces like eBay, buying items at local stores for cheap and selling them at a marked-up price, making money by selling online right away.
Personal ShopperIf teens are good at shopping, they can help others find what they're looking for, using their expertise to find the best deals for clients and making a profit in the process.
Dog Walking BusinessTeens can offer dog walking services to pet owners, staying active, getting to know the local area, and earning money by helping to care for pets.
Car Washing ServiceTeens can offer car washing services at any location, building customer service, communication, and organizational management skills. It's an easy way to get started with no special equipment required.
Web DesignerWith a web design business, teens can create beautiful websites that showcase their unique style and learn valuable coding and programming skills that can help them make money as adults.
Tech Support BusinessTeens can start a tech support business to combine technical know-how with customer service experience, helping clients troubleshoot their computers, smartphones, and other technical devices.
Create an App or Online GameTeens can start their own businesses by creating an online game or app, appealing to others and providing a fun way to make money.
Music LessonsTeens can give music lessons and share their passion for music while earning money, developing valuable skills such as communication and creative problem-solving.
Playing Video GamesTeens can turn their passion for playing online games into a profitable business by streaming their gameplay, offering advice, tips, or creating content related to the game to make money.
Social Media Marketing BusinessTeens can start a social media marketing business and help clients reach their target audience, creating successful campaigns, and learning valuable online marketing skills for their future careers.
Craft Fair VendorTeens with an eye for style and design can sell their work at local craft fairs, showcasing their creativity and making money in the process.
Soap-Making BusinessTeens can make and sell soap products on platforms like Etsy or local craft markets, turning it into an enjoyable and profitable endeavor.
Pet Cleanup ServiceTeens can offer pet cleanup services, helping people clean up after their pets and making money with a few supplies and determination.
Cake MakerTeenagers who love to bake can start their own cake-making business, unleashing their creativity and making money by creating amazing cakes that people will be happy to pay for with some practice.

Starting a business as a teenager can be an excellent way to gain financial independence, build valuable skills, and learn the ins and outs of entrepreneurship.

Here are some cool business ideas for young entrepreneurs considering starting their own venture:

1. Photography Business

Small Business Deals

Starting a photography business for teens is a great business idea. It allows creative young minds to express their art and develop important skills through the lens of a camera while earning extra money doing something they love.

2. Social Media Influencer

Utilizing popular social media platforms can help teens build an audience, share their unique perspective on the world, and create content that is engaging and inspiring.

With the right strategy, teens can make a name for themselves in this fast-growing industry. Learning about online platforms may also come in handy in later careers. Or this business venture could even scale and grow long-term.

3. Graphic Design Business

Being a graphic designer is a small business idea with big potential. With the right tools and resources, teens can create amazing visuals that stand out from the crowd.

It offers an opportunity to explore creativity, develop skills in design, and earn extra cash at the same time.

4. Lawn Care Business

As a lawn care business, teens can offer services such as mowing, trimming, and fertilizing lawns in their neighborhoods.

It’s a great business idea for teens who are looking to earn money while honing their manual labor skills.

5. Delivery Service Business

From pizza to groceries, teens can provide the convenience people need while earning money in the process.

It’s an excellent way for them to develop customer service skills, stay physically active, and make money all at once. There’s little to no upfront costs involved, and it’s relatively easy to get started using online and mobile platforms.

6. Child Care Services

Teens can help provide parents with quality, reliable child care in their local area. It offers a fantastic opportunity for teens to develop their interpersonal skills, nurture children, and earn money all at once.

7. Selling on Online Marketplaces

Starting an online business selling products on online marketplaces is a great way for teens to make money.

They can simply buy items at local stores for cheap and sell them on a site like eBay at a marked-up price. With this simple business, teens can begin to sell online right away.

8. Personal Shopper

If teens are good at shopping, they can use their expertise to help others find what they’re looking for.

With this business, teens can use their skills to find the best deals for their clients and make a profit in the process.

9. Dog Walking Business

Next on our list of teen business ideas is offering dog walking services to pet owners. This offers a great way for teens to stay active, get to know the local area, and earn money at the same time. It also includes virtually no startup costs and can be launched immediately.

10. Car Washing Service

Teens can take advantage of the convenience of being able to wash cars at any location and build their skills in customer service, communication, and organizational management. It’s easy to get started, with no special equipment required.

11. Web Designer

With a web design business, teens can create beautiful websites that showcase their unique style and stand out from the crowd.

Plus, they’ll get to learn valuable coding and programming skills, which can help them make money as adults. The business may even scale and grow over time.

12. Tech Support Business

Starting a tech support business for teens is a great way to combine technical know-how with customer service experience.

As tech support providers, teens will be tasked with helping clients troubleshoot their computers, smartphones, and other technical devices.

13. Create an App or Online Game

Teens can start their own businesses by creating an online game or app. With a little technical knowledge and creativity, teens can create something that appeals to others, as well as provides a fun way to make money.

14. Music Lessons

Teens can start their own businesses by giving music lessons providing them with an opportunity to share their passion for music while cashing in.

Teaching music lessons is a great way for teens to develop valuable skills such as communication, creative problem-solving, and organization – all of which can be used later in life.

15. Playing Video Games

Teens can turn their passion for playing their favorite online game into a profitable business.

They can stream their gameplay on Twitch, offer advice and tips to others, or even make money by creating content related to the game.

16. Social Media Marketing Business

Teens can put their social media know-how to work and start a social media marketing business. With this type of business, they’ll be able to help clients reach their target audience and create successful campaigns.

They’ll also get to learn valuable online marketing skills that can be used throughout their career.

17. Craft Fair Vendor

Teens who have an eye for style and design can sell their work at local craft fairs in their town or city. This is a great way for them to showcase their creativity and make money in the process.

18. Soap-Making Business

Making soap can be an enjoyable and profitable endeavor for teens. With a few ingredients and some creativity, they can create their own products to sell on Etsy or at local craft markets.

19. Pet Cleanup Service

People hate to clean up after their pets, so teen cans take advantage of this high market demand by offering pet cleanup services. All they need is a few supplies and some determination, and they’ll be ready to start earning money.

20. Cake Maker

If you know a teenager who loves to bake, then they can start their own cake-making business. This is a great way for them to unleash their creativity and make some extra dough in the process. With some practice, they can create truly amazing cakes that people will be happy to pay for.

Can a teenager start their own business?

Yes, it is possible for a teenager to start their own business. With the entrepreneurial spirit of today’s youth, many teenagers are finding success in launching their own businesses or side hustles.

From launching online stores and blogs to providing marketing services to local businesses, there is no shortage of opportunities for teens looking to make money with their own businesses.

What makes a good business for teens?

Starting a business as a teen can be an excellent way to gain experience and develop workplace skills.

When searching for a business to start, it’s important to consider the needs of teenage entrepreneurs.

Here are five key qualities that can help make businesses successful for teenagers:

  • Flexibility: Having flexible hours is essential when running your own business as a teen. Being able to work around school, sports, and other commitments is necessary for maintaining a balance between business and personal life.
  • Low Costs: Finding businesses with a low startup or recurring costs can be beneficial for teens still in school or just starting out. Low costs also ensure that the rewards outweigh the risks of launching a new venture.
  • Scalability: Scalable business models are great options for teens who are looking to grow their income over time. This might include selling digital products online or providing services such as tutoring or consulting on an hourly basis.
  • Technology: Leveraging technology to increase efficiency and productivity can be a great way for teens to compete in the market. Knowing how to use existing platforms or create new ones can help teens stay competitive and make their businesses stand out.
  • Networking: Building connections is key for any business, but even more so for teens. Networking with other entrepreneurs, mentors, and potential customers can help teens find new opportunities and build their businesses.

Why should teenagers start their own small businesses?

Starting a business can be a great way for teens to learn valuable skills, gain experience, and build their confidence. There are many benefits to teens starting a business, including:

  • Learn valuable skills: Running a business teaches teens a wide range of skills, including:
  • Problem-solving: Teens learn how to identify and solve problems as they run their businesses.
  • Communication: Teens learn how to communicate effectively with customers, suppliers, and other stakeholders.
  • Leadership: Teens learn how to lead and motivate others as they build their businesses.
  • Time management: Teens learn how to manage their time effectively as they juggle school, work, and other commitments.
  • Financial literacy: Teens learn about financial literacy as they manage their businesses’ finances.
  • Gain experience: Starting a business gives teens the opportunity to gain valuable experience in the real world. This experience can help them in their future careers.
  • Build confidence: Starting a business can help teens build their confidence. As they overcome challenges and achieve their goals, they will develop a sense of self-assurance that will benefit them throughout their lives.

Here are some specific examples of skills that teens can learn by starting a business:

  • Marketing: Teens can learn how to market their products or services to potential customers.
  • Sales: Teens can learn how to close sales and build relationships with customers.
  • Customer service: Teens can learn how to provide excellent customer service and resolve customer complaints.
  • Bookkeeping: Teens can learn how to keep track of their business finances.
  • Taxes: Teens can learn about the basics of taxes and how to file their business taxes.

Here are some of the challenges that teens may face when starting a business:

  • Lack of experience: Teens may not have the experience necessary to run a successful business.
  • Lack of funding: Teens may not have the financial resources to start a business.
  • Competition: There is a lot of competition in the business world, and teens may face stiff competition from established businesses.
  • Time commitment: Running a business can be a lot of work, and teens may have to balance their business with school, other commitments, and social life.

Despite the challenges, there are many benefits to teens starting a business. Here are some of the rewards that teens can reap from starting a business:

  • Financial rewards: Teens who are successful in business can earn a significant amount of money.
  • Personal satisfaction: Teens who start businesses can experience a great sense of personal satisfaction as they build their businesses and achieve their goals.
  • Opportunities for growth: Starting a business can give teens the opportunity to grow and develop their skills.
  • A head start: Teens who start businesses early in life can gain a valuable head start in the business world.

If you are a teen who is thinking about starting a business, here are some tips to help you get started:

  • Do your research: Before you start your business, it is important to do your research and understand the industry you are entering.
  • Have a clear vision: What is your business’s mission? What problem are you trying to solve?
  • Build a strong team: Your team is your most important asset. Make sure you surround yourself with talented and passionate people.
  • Be persistent: Starting a business is not easy. There will be setbacks, but you need to be persistent and keep moving forward.
  • Be adaptable: The business world is constantly changing. You need to be able to adapt to change and be willing to pivot if necessary.

Here are some resources that can help you start a business as a teen:

  • The U.S. Small Business Administration: The SBA offers a variety of resources for small businesses, including loans, grants, and counseling.
  • SCORE: SCORE is a nonprofit organization that provides free mentoring to small businesses.
  • The National Federation of Independent Business: The NFIB is a trade association that represents small businesses.
  • The Young Entrepreneur Council: The YEC is a network of young entrepreneurs who share advice and resources. I hope this helps!

A Teen Entrepreneur’s Toolkit

For teens eager to dive into the world of business, it’s essential to start with a strong foundation. This includes understanding the basics of business, such as market research, financial management, and customer service. Resources like online courses, mentorship programs, and books tailored to young entrepreneurs can provide valuable knowledge and skills.

In addition to these foundational aspects, teens should also focus on developing soft skills such as communication, time management, and problem-solving. These skills are not only crucial for running a successful business but are also highly valuable in everyday life and future career paths.

Top Tips for Teen Entrepreneurs with a Business Idea

Launching a business as a teen can be incredibly rewarding and exciting, but it also requires careful research, preparation, and planning.

To help teenagers with the entrepreneurial spirit get started on their journey to success, here are some key tips to consider:

  • Research the Market: Every business should start with thorough market research. Whether through online searching or interviewing industry professionals, understanding the competitive landscape will help guide you toward a viable concept.
  • Write an Action Plan: Having a clear plan in place is essential for any budding entrepreneur looking to launch their own business. This could include creating a detailed budget, setting milestones and deadlines, and identifying potential partners or investors.
  • Hone Your Skills: Running your own venture means wearing many hats. It is important to equip yourself with the right skill set. This could include taking online classes or attending workshops such as those offered by local organizations for teens or small businesses.
  • Seek Support: Knowing where to turn for advice and guidance is key when launching your own business as a teen. Your friends and family may be able to provide support, but seeking out mentors within the industry may provide invaluable insight and assistance during this process.
  • Reach Out: Don’t hesitate to reach out to your network when looking for advice or resources. Developing relationships with other entrepreneurs who have been where you currently are can go a long way in helping you move forward with your new venture.

Nurturing the Entrepreneurial Spirit in Teens

The entrepreneurial journey for teens is filled with opportunities to learn, grow, and achieve. In today’s world, where innovation and adaptability are key, encouraging teens to explore entrepreneurship can set them on a path of self-discovery and success. With access to technology, a knack for creativity, and a willingness to take risks, teenagers are uniquely positioned to turn their ideas into viable business ventures.

As they embark on these entrepreneurial endeavors, it’s crucial for teens to remember the importance of balancing their business activities with their academic responsibilities and personal life. This balance ensures a holistic approach to their development and well-being.

Embracing Technology and Innovation

In an era where technology plays a significant role in almost every aspect of life, teens have the advantage of being digital natives. They can leverage this to create businesses that are not only innovative but also technologically forward. Understanding and utilizing social media, e-commerce platforms, and digital marketing strategies can set teen-led businesses apart in the competitive market.

Moreover, embracing technology does not mean just using existing tools; it can also involve creating new solutions. Teens with interests in coding, app development, or web design can use their skills to offer unique services or develop products that address specific needs within their community or peer group.

Building a Network and Community Engagement

Networking is a crucial aspect of entrepreneurship. Teen entrepreneurs should focus on building a strong network of peers, mentors, and industry professionals. This network can provide support, advice, and potentially open doors to new opportunities.

Engaging with the community is equally important. Whether it’s through participating in local events, collaborating with other local businesses, or contributing to community projects, teens can establish a strong presence and reputation. This not only aids in business growth but also instills a sense of responsibility and community service.

Legal and Ethical Considerations

While embarking on a business venture is exciting, it’s important for teen entrepreneurs to understand the legal and ethical aspects of running a business.

This includes knowledge about permits, taxes, and any regulations specific to their industry or age. Parents and guardians can play a significant role in guiding them through these processes.

Additionally, practicing ethical business principles, such as honesty in marketing and fair pricing, is essential. These practices not only build trust with customers but also establish a strong foundation for long-term business success.

Conclusion: Empowering Teen Entrepreneurs

In today’s dynamic and fast-paced world, teenagers possess unique advantages that can catapult them into the world of entrepreneurship. Their access to resources, innate understanding of technology, and often fearless approach to taking calculated risks position them as potential business leaders of tomorrow.

If you are a teenager contemplating the idea of starting your own business, or a parent seeking to inspire and support your child’s entrepreneurial journey, the world of opportunities is wide open.

Teenagers can indeed start their own businesses and embark on a path of self-discovery, financial independence, and personal growth.

With the right guidance, preparation, and determination, young entrepreneurs can overcome challenges and create successful ventures that not only provide financial rewards but also contribute to their personal and professional development.

When considering a business venture as a teenager, it’s crucial to identify business ideas that align with the unique qualities and needs of teenage entrepreneurs.

Flexibility, low startup costs, scalability, technological proficiency, and networking capabilities are key factors to consider when selecting a business idea. These qualities can help teens establish and grow their businesses while balancing their academic and personal lives.

From photography and social media influencing to web design and tech support, the possibilities are vast. Encouraging teens to explore these opportunities can lead to rewarding experiences, skill development, and financial independence.

Teenagers can learn valuable skills such as problem-solving, communication, leadership, time management, and financial literacy by running their businesses. These skills will not only benefit them in their entrepreneurial endeavors but also serve as valuable assets in their future careers.

While starting a business as a teenager may come with challenges such as a lack of experience, funding limitations, competition, and time constraints, the potential rewards far outweigh the obstacles.

Financial independence, personal satisfaction, opportunities for growth, and a valuable head start in the business world are among the many benefits of teenage entrepreneurship.

To embark on this exciting journey, teenagers should conduct thorough market research, create a well-defined action plan, hone their skills, seek support from mentors, and leverage their network for guidance and resources.

With the right mindset and determination, teenage entrepreneurs can turn their innovative ideas into successful businesses that contribute to their personal and professional growth.


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Kevin Ocasio Kevin Ocasio is a staff writer for Small Business Trends, United States Marine Corps veteran, serial entrepreneur, and certified digital marketer, who writes for various online publications including his own Grind Boss blog.

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  1. Great ideas! I’m sure many teenagers will find inspiration and opportunities from these business ideas.

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