5 Best Small Business Ideas for Teens

You’re not just a kid anymore—you’re an adult! Well, sort of. In many ways, you’re still young and still figuring things out in your life, but that doesn’t mean you can’t create something extraordinary in your free time.

Craft making finding a niche, and selling to teens is one of many great small business ideas for teens. However, it’s not a great idea to start one before you have some cash. That said, several types of small businesses are particularly suitable, to begin with, little more than an idea, a passion, and a willingness to work hard. Start by putting together your product or service: choose what you can make yourself (like jewelry) or something that needs to be purchased from outside vendors (such as snacks), and decides what you want to sell.

  1. Musical instrument building

Whether you’re a wannabe rockstar or want to find something new to do in your free time, building instruments is a great small business idea for teens. Teens are naturally creative and DIY-minded. By starting early, it’s possible to build a successful side business that can provide extra cash and let you craft musical instruments well into adulthood. Even if music isn’t your passion, it’s easy to find other markets that can use custom-made instruments like guitars.

  1. Website or app development

Building websites and mobile apps is a great way to make money as a teen. And, if you want to keep your day job while pursuing your side business idea, app development is an excellent small business idea because it can be done remotely. While most programming languages are best learned in person, everything else can be done online. That means you won’t have to worry about going to work early or staying late to learn how to code—you can do it from anywhere! If building something from scratch isn’t of interest, there are plenty of opportunities for teens with web-development skills. Freelance projects are always posted on sites like oDesk and Elance; many are quick and easy ways to make extra cash.

  1. Computer repair service

You don’t have much to invest in a business as a teen, so a computer repair service makes such an excellent small business idea. Computers are everywhere and, as such, are constantly breaking or malfunctioning. Even if you live in an area with multiple computer repair services, teens can easily be given opportunities that adults aren’t due to their charming naïveté about computers. You may not know exactly how computers work at first, but you can figure it out quickly—and once you understand how they work, making money from them becomes even more straightforward than you could ever imagine.

  1. Selling products online

Suppose you have a knack for fashion and set up an Etsy shop. If you love crafts, sell your wares on Etsy or eBay. And of course, if you’re tech-savvy, starting your website or becoming a freelance writer are other lucrative small business ideas with low startup costs and high potential earnings.


Small business ideas are a great way to be your boss and make money while in high school or college. Many teens begin their careers with a small business venture, but lack of experience is often one of the most significant barriers to success. With a bit of planning and execution, though, you can have a profitable business—and maybe even more importantly—the work experience that will get you noticed by future employers. Before starting your new small business venture, use these five tips to help ensure its success.