When I was a kid, there was just about nothing cooler than having my own money. Having my own money meant I could do whatever I wanted with it!
But without any kind of allowance or way to make money, I had to wait for my earnings. (Birthdays and tooth fairy visits were my only money-making opportunities.)
We don’t want our kids to grow up too fast, nor do we want them to feel the stresses or pressures that come with having a job.
But for those go-getter kids with aspiring entrepreneurial attitudes, offering them an avenue to early business building can set them up for a lifetime of success!
More than Making Money
While money may be the primary motivator for anyone looking to start a business, there are numerous other benefits to running your own show. (No matter your age!)
If you’ve got an entrepreneurially minded kiddo, lean into that! Encourage them to go for it—and remind them that you’ll be there to support them every step of the way.
Is starting a business your child’s solution to buying that bike or video game they’ve been wanting for a while? Sure, could be. But there’s so much more they stand to gain.
Here’s how else your child can benefit from being a business owner:
- They learn practical career and life skills like talking to customers and clients, balancing work time and free time, using a computer, and managing money.
- They develop independence.
- They apply academic lessons to real life. For example, they need to understand math to track finances and spelling to create packaging or advertisements.
- They build confidence.
- They think creatively.
- They learn how to turn their dreams into reality through hard work.
Business Ideas for Kids
Your child’s business idea doesn’t need to be big or complicated. In fact, they’re likely already doing things that they could turn into a business. Here are a few ideas to get your little entrepreneur started:
Nurturing Pets and Plants
Before your kiddo steps into babysitting gigs, start small: pets and plants!
For animal lovers, checking in on pets while the owners are away is a dream job. Feeding time? Easy. Grooming? No problem. Cuddling with a furry friend on the couch? The best part!
Plus, caring for others’ pets teaches important life skills like responsibility and reliability. If your child’s been begging for a pet of their own, you can’t beat real-life experience!
If dogs and cats aren’t your little one’s world, plants are the next best thing. From bountiful vegetable gardens to potted household ferns, maintaining a watering schedule for traveling neighbors is a lucrative business opportunity.
Speaking of neighbors, your neighborhood is the perfect place for your budding entrepreneur to start their business!
They can try:
- Mowing lawns
- Pulling weeds
- Raking leaves
- Shoveling snow
- Putting out and bringing in garbage cans
- Picking up mail
Think classic lemonade stand—with a twist!
Setting up a lemonade stand is always an option, of course. But challenge your child to brainstorm other alternatives, too! (You know, for when business is slow.)
Here’s what else your child can sell curbside:
- Handmade jewelry
- Snow cones or ice cream
- Thrifted items
- Garden-grown produce
- Baked goods
- Drawings and paintings
Author and Illustrator
Is your child a natural-born writer, gifted artist, or both? Encourage them to write and illustrate their own book!
These days, it’s easier than ever to publish a book. (Even if you’re a youngster.)
Try services like StoryJumper or Blurb to help your child create their story. Once it’s complete, you can load it onto platforms like Amazon and list it for sale!
Dancer, magician, or pianist, your child can put a price tag on their talents.
Ever walked past a performer on the street accepting tips for their talents? Your child can do the same. Who doesn’t love to watch a child prodigy perform?
If the street stage isn’t your child’s style, they can turn to platforms like TikTok and YouTube to showcase their performances or teach their talent to others. Making videos online can turn into a paycheck pretty quick, if they’re lucky!
Or, why not put on a talent show? Round up skilled kids in the community and put on a show with a small entrance fee. The possibilities are endless!
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
Did you know that you can get paid to recycle? Get green for going green!
Encourage your little one to research recycling in your area. Can they earn any cash from recycling aluminum, plastic, or glass? Teach them how to sort their recyclables. Maybe they could collect recyclables from neighbors, too!
If you’ve got a master chef under your roof, ask them if they’d be interested in selling their snacks and tasty treats for special occasions!
Cupcakes, cookies, breads, pies—whatever your kid likes to cook or bake, there’s a market for it.
Help your child open up sales during the holidays, like pies for Thanksgiving or gingerbread cookies for Christmas. Or they could offer cakes and cupcakes for birthday parties. Maybe they could whip up a variety of their favorite treats and sell them at a nearby market or fair!
Business Ideas for Teens
If your child is a little older, here are some more advanced business ideas:
You might be surprised to know that streaming computer and video games online is pretty popular. On platforms like YouTube and Twitch, you can find all sorts of streaming videos about games like Minecraft, Fortnite, and more!
If you’ve got a teen with killer gaming skills, consider allowing them the opportunity to stream their gameplay. As they continue to gain followers, they may be able to monetize their account!
With a little bit of creativity, scrapbook paper, scissors, and glue, a whole lot of magic can happen! If your teen loves arts and crafts, they could make a pretty penny from selling cards they create. Everybody needs a stash of birthday and thank you cards!
If handmade cards aren’t your teen’s forte, they could try selling another kind of creation. Artwork, jewelry, candles, quilts—there’s no shortage of demand for these unique, handcrafted items.
Need a platform? Etsy is one of the best for crafty businesses!
Struggling students tend to be less intimidated by tutors close to their own age. If your teenager excels in academics, they can impart their wisdom and help a fellow student succeed.
Not only will your teenager get paid for their efforts, they may learn a thing or two through teaching!
Caring for Kids
Babysitting is an excellent business model for teens who are responsible enough to take care of kids. Between neighbors who need a regular sitter for date nights and nieces or nephews who want some quality time with their aunt or uncle, there’s plenty of business to build up!
With a bucket, soap, hose, and some rags, your teen could quickly become the town’s favorite car wash! They’ll likely be a cheaper and more effective alternative to an automatic car wash, and you just can’t beat the convenience of a car wash that comes to you.
Ms. or Mr. Fix-It
Whether it’s bikes and skateboards, cell phones, toys, or clothes, your handy teen can make a buck from fixing things for friends and neighbors!
People seeking repair services are already expecting to pay for them. Why not offer them an affordable alternative?
Does your teenager have a knack for all things hair, makeup, or nails? Encourage them to offer beauty services for special events, like school dances or family photos!
They could also start their own YouTube channel with tutorials, challenges, unboxing videos, and more.
No matter the talents or hobbies your child has, they can transform what they love into a successful small business. (If that’s what they want to do!) And with Troomi, you can provide your child with fewer distractions and greater opportunities for creative thinking and enriching life experiences.
Troomi empowers kids to learn, do, and become anything—including business owners!