Startups

Make Learning Fun With 23 Awesome Business Ideas for Kids (2024) – Shopify


“I was kind of nervous,” says 11-year-old Ryan Gill about starting his own business. “I wasn’t really ready to talk to people that I didn’t know that well. But I feel confident now.” 

Ryan started his candle brand, Frères Branchiaux, with his brothers when he was only eight. Building a business with her sons was something mom Celena saw as a way to grow their skills outside the grade school curriculum. Alongside math and reading, the boys learn about supply chains, customer service, and marketing.

Entrepreneurship is a fun family activity that has learning baked in. Plus, it’s a way for kids to make money to save for college—or Nerf Blasters—and discover a new passion. Think beyond the lemonade stand: This guide contains 23 unique business ideas for kids that you can help them start today. 

Benefits of helping kids start their own business

When kids start a business before they graduate high school, they have an advantage on college and job applications. There are a number other benefits to raising kid entrepreneurs, including:

Foster their interests

Introducing children to entrepreneurship early on is an age-appropriate way to draw lines from their interests to an infinite number of career options. Kid entrepreneurs can even discover new interests, like kidpreneur Simone Hufana, who discovered the joy in being a mentor, and plans to work with kids when she grows up.

Build soft skills

Kid-run businesses can fill in the gaps in formal education with business and life skills to help them succeed. Kids can learn valuable skills like communication, problem solving, social media marketing, and coding an ecommerce store.

Find a learning style that sticks

A child who struggles in math, for example, may otherwise click with numbers through a hands-on activity like coding a website. In this way, entrepreneurship can unlock an ability or interest that was previously inaccessible. When Lily Harper left school due to bullying, her mom struggled to get her to learn the curriculum through homeschooling. The two launched a business together, helping Lily thrive with a learning style that suited her energetic personality. 

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23 creative business ideas for kids

  1. Inventor of the Next Big Thing
  2. Magnificent maker
  3. Online content creator
  4. Peer-to-peer tutor
  5. Costume constructor
  6. Pint-sized pop-up shop owner
  7. Plant or pet sitter
  8. Coding wizard
  9. Entertainer extraordinaire
  10. Budding artist
  11. Tiny tech support
  12. Social impact crusader
  13. Festival or beach vendor
  14. Skateboard repair tech
  15. Neighborhood helper
  16. Recycling collector
  17. Kids’ book author and illustrator
  18. Baking boss
  19. Summer camp CEO
  20. Reseller
  21. Professional gamer
  22. Greeting card designer
  23. Babysitting boss

Ready to help your kids start their own business? We’ve compiled a list of ideas to appeal to different personalities and interests. Each kid business idea includes a list of skills your child can learn through their new startup.

1. Inventor of the Next Big Thing

With parental help, a kid-invented product can be mass-manufactured or made by hand and sold online. Kids interested in STEM can put their skills into practice by identifying a problem common to their generation and develop a product to solve it.

When Carson Kropfl’s skateboard wouldn’t fit in his locker, the then 11-year-old invented a version that would—a move that landed his business a deal on Shark Tank.

The founder of Lockerboard poses in a warehouse with another person
Carson Kropfl (left) grew up alongside his business and Lockerboard is now sold in sporting goods stores across the US. Lockerboard/Instagram

Skills earned

  • Design
  • Problem solving
  • Research

2. Magnificent maker 

Small handmade goods like beaded jewelry, soaps, and bath bombs can be sold via online markets with the help of parents. There are plenty of kid-friendly crafts to make and sell—pick one that piques your child’s interest and suits their skill level. 

Many of these crafts require a little upfront investment for supplies, and kids can manage the production side of the business solo. With parental supervision, kids can learn to create a website and online store to sell goods online. 

Skills earned

  • Creativity
  • Marketing
  • Fine motor skills

3. Online content creator

Illustration of a kid riding a skateboard while filming himself with a smart phonePerformative kids with a strong interest in a certain hobby (say, gaming or fashion), can build a following by creating video reviews, demos, or unboxings for platforms like YouTube, Twitch, TikTok, or podcast networks. Eventually this hobby can become an online business, monetized through ads, sponsorships, or merch

Your aspiring kidfluencers will gain confidence and learn technical skills that can prepare them for high school, college, or creative careers. Parents may need to monitor social channels for safety purposes, depending on the age of the child. 

Skills earned

  • Video editing
  • Community building
  • Dealing with bullies (online trolls)

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4. Peer-to-peer tutor

A studious kid can help their peers and younger students by tutoring online or in person. They’ll need exceptional communication skills, a reliable internet connection, and a subject they specialize in. Help your child create a simple website to advertise services and book sessions. 

Skills earned

  • Empathy
  • Technical knowledge
  • Patience

5. Costume constructor

The global cosplay costume market is poised to reach $23 billion by 2030. Kids who are great with their hands and know how to sew, sculpt, paint, or work with a 3D printer may have interest in starting their own costume business. A costume-making kid can use social media to market their skills. With the help of their parents, they can set up an Instagram shop, eBay account, or even their own ecommerce store

Skills earned

  • Attention to detail
  • Fine motor skills
  • Social media marketing

6. Pint-sized pop-up shop owner

A lemonade stand is a gateway to a pop-up shop or market booth. This is a great business idea for young entrepreneurs who want to learn people and sales skills. Pop up a table in the front yard and help your kids sell anything from home-baked sweets to seedlings to handmade crafts

This type of business was the gateway for Riley Kinnane-Peterson, who, at age five, turned her annual yard sale jewelry stand into a massive online business: Gunner & Lux.

Portrait of Gunner & Lux's kid founder
With the help of her two dads, Riley Kinane-Peterson grew Gunner & Lux from a yard sale table to a brand sold by JCrew. Gunner & Lux

Skills earned:

  • Communication
  • Sales
  • Working with money

7. Plant or pet sitter 

Plant care, dog walking, and pet sitting have typically been odd jobs suited to younger kids looking for some extra allowance—especially when they’re still too young for babysitting.

But kids who enjoy this work can turn it into a more formal pet business. Parents can help set up a basic website that highlights services and prices, and even accepts online bookings and payments. A dog walking business is a great option for kids with busy schedules who can fit in clients before and after school and activities.

Skills earned

  • Time management
  • Responsibility
  • Customer service

8. Coding wizard 

Coding and digital skills are increasingly important for many future careers. Several programs are geared toward teaching code to kids, depending on how they learn best. Once they have the hang of it, help them start a business designing and building websites for others, teaching code, or offering other digital services within the community.

Skills earned

  • Coding
  • Problem solving
  • Communication skills
💡 Looking for ideas for older kids? Explore Shopify’s list of business ideas for teens looking to build their résumé or earn extra money for college.

9. Entertainer extraordinaire

A kid magician pulls a dollar sign out of a hatCreative skills like playing an instrument, demonstrating card tricks, or cosplay performance could become the basis of your kid’s first business. Even younger kids can find customers through school, the neighborhood, or by word of mouth and work as an entertainer or performer at parties and special events.

This kid business idea pairs well with online content creation, too. Kids can opt to start a YouTube or TikTok channel to grow an audience with their talents.

Skills earned

  • Creativity
  • Public speaking
  • Confidence

10. Budding artist 

A love of art, craft, or design can be nurtured in your child by introducing them to the business side of the creative world. If your little one dreams of a career as an artist, help them explore the possibilities in the field. Parents can set up a simple online store and a print-on-demand integration, letting kids sell their art on t-shirts, mugs, and stickers.

This is another idea that has multiple possibilities. Kids who also excel in front of the camera may decide to become a content creator, shooting art tutorials or offering design classes online.

Skills earned

  • Website building
  • Creativity
  • Customer service

11. Tiny tech support

Gen Alpha—the generation that includes any child born after 2010—was raised on technology, more immersed in it from a young age than any other generation before. “Technology is such a big influence on the way they see the world, the kind of opportunities, the kind of skills they want to develop,” says Abdaal Mazhar Shafi, entrepreneur and co-founder of UpstartED. Because of this, they are helping to close the technology gap.

Your kid might know more than you do about how to solve a technical problem. Help them start a business by advertising their tech support services to neighbors and the local community. This is one of the best small business ideas for kids because it taps into their strengths and gives them experience interacting with older people.

Skills earned

  • Technical skills
  • Working with older adults
  • Communication skills

12. Social impact crusader

Social causes can inspire great business ideas for kids. If the goal of the activity is not to make money but to build skills, a social impact business teaches valuable lessons in compassion and giving back to their community. Gen Alpha is a cohort that is particularly in tune to climate change. “They want to move quickly. And it’s not just about reading—they want to do something about it,” says Abdaal.

Kids can, with parents’ help, start an official charity or donate proceeds from any other type of business to a cause of their choosing. They may also choose to use coding or technical skills for a good cause, offering free services to nonprofits.

When young Jahkil Jackson was exposed to the homeless population in his town, he was moved to start his own organization, Project I Am, to help provide supplies to his neighbors without homes.

Jahkil Jackson spins a basketball on his finger
Jakhil Jackson was only five when he had the idea for his social impact business. Project I Am

Skills earned

  • Compassion
  • Fundraising
  • Activism

13. Festival or beach vendor 

Parents looking to fill long summers with fun and educational experiences can help kids start a vending business. Kids can buy in bulk (with funding from parent “investors”) and sell items like water, Popsicles, or sunscreen at local events, festivals, or even the beach. Think of it as a mobile version of the classic lemonade stand. 

Some venues and city parks will require permits or vendor fees, and parents should expect to be hands-on. Give kids autonomy, however, by empowering them to make signage or design a cart or booth.

Skills earned

  • Design
  • Money skills 
  • People skills

14. Skateboard repair tech

If your child is already into skateboarding, they likely already have a built-in audience for this business idea: other kids at the skatepark. With low-cost tools and the help of YouTube tutorials, an enterprising kid can set up a local skateboard repair service. And, using a mobile model, they’re offering an innovative on-the-spot service for tightening or changing wheels. 

Skills earned

  • Fine motor skills
  • Communication
  • Money handling

15. Neighborhood helper

A kid mows the lawn and dollar bills stream out behindThere are a number of services that kids can provide through a small business right in their own neighborhood. Kids can start a service business offering lawn care, raking leaves, snow removal, and running simple errands.

To market their business, kids can make fliers and find clients by visiting neighbors and asking for referrals. Or, with parental help, they can set up a simple Shopify store to sell time slots using a scheduling app.

Skills earned

  • Using manual and electric tools
  • Time management
  • People skills

16. Recycling collector

Don’t wait for Earth Day to teach your kids about sustainability. If your city has a robust recycling program, collecting recycling is a great way for kids to make money and help the environment. Recycled goods like bottles and cans can be turned into cash in some regions. Or, kids can collect a specific type of trash to convert into new goods, like totes woven from used plastic bags or drinking glasses from recycled bottles.

Skills earned

  • Activism
  • Conscious consumerism 
  • Staying organized

17. Kids’ book author and illustrator

Are you raising a natural storyteller? Little ones with big imaginations will love this kid business idea that’s easy to execute with the help of print on demand. There’s no need to get a publisher’s blessing to produce an illustrated children’s book to sell. Find a print on demand company that can help you self-publish and bring your child’s stories to life.

Skills earned

  • Writing skills
  • Creativity 
  • Publishing 

18. Baking boss

Does your little one always want to help family members in the kitchen? This business idea lets them explore the world of cooking and learn basic math skills while scaling recipes. Help your kid turn that hobby into a business by baking cakes for birthday parties or selling sweets at the local farmers market. 

Charlie Kobdish started his food business when he was just 10 years old. His advice for other kidpreneurs? “Come up with something that is new so that you can surround the market on your own.”

Charlie Kobdish holds out a bag of candied nuts
Charlie Kobdish wants to be a lawyer and a politician when he grows up. His business had opened up speaking opportunities to help him grow the skill. Charlie’s Treats

Skills earned

  • Creative thinking
  • Money management
  • Communication skills

19. Summer camp CEO

Older children and teens can provide a valuable service to help local parents during the summer months. Help your kid develop a summer camp program they can run from their backyard. Consider theater camp, art camp, or gardening camp—choose a theme that plays to your kid’s strengths. Kid entrepreneurs can make their own money, all while teaching them valuable life and business skills.

Skills earned

  • Working with younger children
  • Teaching skills
  • Scheduling and planning

20. Reseller

This is a low-investment business idea for kids who are into fashion, trends, décor, and vintage clothing. Kids can earn spending money by scouring local thrift stores for rare and unique finds and reselling them for profit through local online marketplaces or a dedicated online store. Many resellers use Instagram to reveal new “drops” in their stores. With parental supervision, this is a great way for kids to learn to use social media for business.

Skills earned

  • Photography
  • Website creation
  • Social media marketing

21. Professional gamer

Professional gaming is often seen as a business for older kids. But, many young teens have become expert gamers and earn a living doing it. If your kid is video game savvy, they can enter tournaments or start streaming their games live on a platform like Twitch. There are many ways to monetize an audience as a gamer, like running ads on a YouTube channel or becoming a game tester. 

Skills earned

  • Social media and streaming
  • Fine motor skills 
  • Social skills 

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22. Greeting card designer

If your child has an interest in art and graphic design, consider helping them start a greeting card business. They can learn to use digital programs like Canva or Illustrator or scan cards made with traditional art mediums then use a print-on-demand service to sell them online. This is a great small business idea for kids who want to grow their social skills too. Print a batch of cards that your kid can sell at a local market.

Skills earned

  • Knowledge of digital content tools
  • Interpersonal skills
  • Writing skills

23. Babysitting boss

Taking care of younger children is one of the most popular kid business ideas. Older children and teens can take babysitters and first aid courses then advertise their services locally. 

Skills earned

  • First aid and safety
  • Communication skills 
  • Child development

Tips for parents and educators for starting a kid-friendly business

Small children get tutoring from an older personMost of the business ideas for kids that we shared in this article require little upfront investment or prior experience and can be started from home. Kids can teach themselves necessary business skills through free online learning tools, gaining experience with research in the process. 

Parents should still provide guidance along the way and consider multiple factors, like time commitment, startup costs, and risk. Follow these guidelines for helping young people safely enjoy and succeed at entrepreneurship:

  • Make it fun. Good business ideas for kids focus on the child’s interests and strengths, so they don’t feel like it’s another chore.
  • Give them ownership. Pick a small business they can run with minimal supervision. Note: You may need to oversee a few aspects that require parental sign-off for minors.
  • Start small. Keep it simple and flexible so the business can bend around school and activity schedules. 

Additionally, some small businesses that involve using the internet or interacting with people should come with a set of rules that help protect children.

  • Involve all the family members. Making entrepreneurship a family activity has the added benefit of teaching kids to work as a team.
  • Introduce them to potential role models. Teach your kids about successful entrepreneurs—especially those who they can identify with (similar background, etc.). 
  • Set boundaries. Some small businesses that involve using the internet or interacting with people should come with a set of rules that help protect children. For example, many kids who run YouTube channels or other social pages have parents who vet content and conversations and manage the accounts.

Help your kid bring a business idea to life

Creator and commerce tools continue to emerge, making it increasingly easy for kids to experience entrepreneurship and earn extra cash. It’s a meaningful way for parents and educators to connect with kids’ interests, create fun learning moments, and grow their independence. Think beyond this list for an experience unique to your kid’s personality—the business ideas for kids are endless.

Illustrations by Sjoerd van Leeuwen

Business ideas for kids FAQ

What’s a good business for a kid to start?

A few good business ideas for kids include:

  • Lemonade stand 
  • Pet sitting business 
  • Birthday entertainer
  • Lawn mowing
  • Selling old stuff at garage sales
  • Pet sitting
  • Selling handmade crafts
  • Professional gamer 
  • Content creator
  • Coder
  • Car wash business
  • Babysitter

What is the best age to start a business?

The best time to start a business is a personal choice. In your youth, you have fewer responsibilities and more energy and risk tolerance. As you age, you potentially benefit from having more experience, money, and a network. Jump on a great business idea when you find it—no matter what age. If your business fails, consider it a learning opportunity to guide your next venture.



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