50 Business Ideas for Kid Entrepreneurs
Whether it’s summer break and your kid wants an activity to pass the time or you’re trying to instill innovative habits with a good side hustle, encouraging your child to start their own business can pay big dividends. Start with this list of ideas, then get to selling.
Items to Make and Sell
- String Bracelets - There are plenty of online tutorials on how to make bracelets — simply buy some thread and you’re on your way. Kids can sell them online, to friends or at craft fairs. Genius Tip: Sell craft products with an online sign up.
- Calligraphy Art Prints - A few nice pens, some cardstock and creativity are all you need for this idea. Simply search Pinterest for some artsy ideas, watch a few YouTube videos, and then start selling! Your kiddo can market their artsy inspirational quotes or custom prints as college dorm or school locker decorations.
- Video Game Guides - Is your kid a video game ace? Have them write tips for conquering popular video and mobile games and sell as booklets or an online subscription service.
- Cake Pops - Making and selling cake pops for special events or birthday parties is a great way for children to learn baking and business skills. They can start a bake sale for a nonprofit or set up a booth in your neighborhood.
- Greeting Cards - Creating and selling cards for holidays and events is a quick and easy way to make money. Hand-letter them, paint them with watercolors or even create graphics using design software — just be creative!
- Farmer’s Market - Plant a garden in the spring and sell your produce at a small stand in your neighborhood. Not only will kids learn how to grow food, they’ll learn how to manage a business.
- Flower Stand - Plant flowers in your yard with the kids and then sell as either bouquets or individual flowers. Just make sure you don’t pick flowers from other people’s yards!
- Slime Guru - This is a popular — but messy — craft. Save other parents the mess by making the finished product and selling it for their kids to play with.
- Crochet Pot-Holders - Learning to crochet is a practical skill. Kids can learn from YouTube videos or local classes and sell their creations.
- Pillowcase Dresses - If you have amateur clothing designers in your house, teach them how to make pillowcase dresses. They can sell them online or to friends with young children.
- Knit Scarves and Hats - With a pair of needles and yarn, kids can keep occupied for hours making scarves. Sell them for a profit at a craft fair.
- Birthday Party Favor Bags - Children can offer a few “packages” of birthday party favor bags (i.e. “Under the Sea,” “Magical Unicorns,” etc.) and sell them to parents who are party planning so they’ll have one less thing to worry about. Genius Tip: Use these 35 party favor ideas for inspiration.
- Bird or Squirrel Feeders - Children can make and sell these feeders around the neighborhood to aspiring wildlife watchers.
Services to Provide
- Parent’s Helper - While your kids might not be old enough to babysit, they may be responsible enough to be a “parent’s helper.” With this job, your child will look after a toddler or preschooler while the child’s mom or dad is still in the house, getting chores or other work done.
- Weeding and Yard Work - If you live in a neighborhood, post in a bulletin or on your HOA website that your child will weed the yards of your neighbors for an hourly rate. It will keep them outside and busy all summer long!
- Pet Sitting - Many families go on vacations throughout the summer and need someone to feed or walk their pet. Going door-to-door or asking friends can result in a lot of business!
- Cleaning and Organizing - While this might be better for older kids, many people will pay to have someone clean and organize their garage or closets.
- After-School Tutoring - Students can provide tutoring and homework help to younger children. Post fliers around school advertising specific subjects and tutoring rates.
- Dog Walking - People who work full-time are often looking for someone to walk their dogs during the day. Bonus: Your kids will get exercise and get paid at the same time.
- Errand Running - Depending on how old your child is and/or how close you live to a supermarket, they can walk, bike or drive to a store and pick up a few items for neighbors.
- Recycling - Some cities will pay money if you collect cans and bring them in to a recycling center (check your city laws). Walk around and collect cans from places around your city!
- Laundry - Depending on how old your child is, have them help out neighbors and family friends (or even you), with laundry and folding. Just make sure you teach them the proper way to do it first!
Coordinate a babysitting schedule with a sign up. SAMPLE
- Visiting Princess - Many families will pay to have a princess visit their younger child’s birthday party. If your child is in middle school, playing a Disney princess at a birthday party can be fun and make them some money. You could also do this with a super hero party.
- A Midsummer’s Night Play - If there are a lot of children in your neighborhood, help them rehearse a play and put it on, either at your house or at a neighborhood clubhouse. You can charge for tickets and the kids can keep the profits.
- Makeover Birthday Parties - If you have an ambitious makeup artist on your hands, he or she can do nails and/or braid hair for young children’s birthday parties.
- Vacation Planning - It may sound odd at first glance, but many families struggle to plan vacations, and having a teen who can research and present different options would save a lot of time. It would also help your teen learn about budgeting.
- Wedding Invitations - If you have any friends looking to address their wedding invitations on a budget, a teen with pretty handwriting or good cursive could be the perfect fit.
- Leaf Raking - Have children rake and bag leaves for a neighbor’s yard — or for your own for a discount of what you’d pay a professional.
- Garage Sale - As kids grow up, they can sell their old toys and clothing at a garage sale or consignment store.
- Birthday Party Magician - A child who can learn a quick magic routine is a cheap option for someone planning a birthday party. It’s fun and an exciting first job!
Organize clients and run a pet sitting business with a sign up. SAMPLE
Ideas for Younger Kids (Ages 6-12)
- Toy Reviewer - Set up a YouTube account for your child and let them review their favorite toys on a blog. Use referral links to earn money as people buy the products. You can teach them about online marketing early.
- Lemonade Stand - Spice up a classic idea by traveling to popular events around your city — from music festivals to sports games. You’ll sell a lot and get to enjoy fun events in your hometown. You could also set up shop along a popular trail. Just check to see if you need any permits before you get started.
- Chore Chart - This one is an oldie but a goodie. A list of chores with a payment for each chore is a great way to encourage children to provide extra help around the house.
- Car Wash - This one can stay close to home. Go door to door near your house and ask neighbors if they would like a car wash for a few dollars.
- Plant Watering - Children can water plants for families who are out of town or even for those who need gardens or flowerbeds tended to.
- Garden Decorations - Have young children paint rocks or sun-catchers and sell them for people to put in their gardens.
- Farm Work - If there are any local farms around you, let your children learn how to care for animals or pick fruits and vegetables for a small amount of money.
Organize multiple lemonade stand volunteers with a sign up. SAMPLE
Ideas for Older Children (Ages 13-18)
- Helpful Driver - If your child is old enough to drive and responsible, they can drive younger children to and from camps and activities during the day while their parents are at work.
- Brand Ambassadors - If you live in a place with a lot of small businesses, they will often pay teens to be brand advertisers who hand out promotional items or post on social media about the company.
- Pool Cleaning - If your neighbors have pools, have your children volunteer to clean out leaves and other debris to keep the water clean.
- Painting - Older children can be hired to paint fences, rooms or sheds around your neighborhood for a much lower cost than professionals.
- Hair Stylist - If you have a teen with hairstyling skills, help them advertise to do fancy hairstyles for dances, birthday parties or weddings.
- Lawn Mowing - Teens can go around their neighborhoods and offer to mow lawns for a set price. With any luck, they’ll get regular clientele!
- Neighborhood Camp Counselor - Encourage your teen to recruit their friends and put on a neighborhood camp for younger kids in their area. They can put on sports camps in a nearby soccer field, arts and crafts camp at the park or coding camp at home or the library. Teens will gain both cash and great mentoring skills!
- Live Music - Students who play an instrument or sing can play live music for birthday parties and other events.
- Professional Techie - Teens can help older adults who can’t need assistance with their smart phones or TV preferences to set up new devices.
- Fixing Bikes or Skateboards - If you have a budding skater in the house, suggest that he/she try fixing other people’s broken bikes and boards. When they get really good, they can even flip old, broken boards and sell them like new for a profit.
- Raising Chickens - If your land has space for a few feathery friends, buy some chickens and have your teen or pre-teen collect and sell the eggs to your neighbors.
- Home Chef - Older kids who can work a stove can be hired to cook family dinners for you or busy neighbors who don’t have time to cook. They do everything — from prep to clean up!
- Swimming Lessons - Older kids who are certified life guards can teach swimming lessons to younger children in the neighborhood.
Before you know it, your little entrepreneurs will be off, and they’ll be learning valuable business lessons they can use the rest of their lives!
Kayla Rutledge is a college student who spends most of her time writing, singing for her church and eating quesadillas.