Updated: May 26
Making money as a teen doesn’t have to involve working a minimum wage job or mowing lawns in your neighborhood. The digital world is full of opportunities to make money and is also a great place for teens and kids to use their initiative to create their own opportunities online.
In this post you'll learn:
12 Reliable Ways that Teens Can Make Legit Money Online
Ways to Stay Safe on the Internet
How to Start Your Own Business & Grow Your Brand
Table of Contents
Today’s young generation uses technology and the internet on a regular basis to complete their schoolwork, interact with friends and play games. Teenagers and kids can use their knowledge of the online space to create their side hustle or business. Here are ten effective ways for teenagers and kids to make money online.
1. Create a Website to Sell a Product
With the multitude of resources and platforms online, opening and running your own website has never been easier.
First, you will need to pick a market or niche. Once you have selected a market or niche, look at the competitors in the space to identify an existing product you can create or find a hole in the market that you can fill.
After you have decided which product(s) to sell and how you will create or source them, it’s time to create a website. Shopify is a robust platform that can be used to build an online store, view detailed sales reports, and seamlessly add integrations to take your website to the next level.
If selling a traditional physical product is not your forte, you can add apps or integrations to your online store to perform other functions. Some great Shopify apps include:
LoyaltyLion: Create a rewards and loyalty program where customers can earn points for purchases, referrals, reviews, email signup, and more. Customers can then redeem their points for a discount or free item that they choose.
ReCharge Subscriptions: Create a subscription service that allows customers to sign up for product-based or digital subscriptions. For product-based subscriptions, this app automates the creation of an order in your store and charges the customer (with their consent, of course) automatically each month.
Printful: No product? No problem. Printful allows you to upload artwork and designs. Printful will provide free digital mockups of your designs on a wide range of products. Once a customer purchases an item, Printful will create and ship the item to your customer.
Starting a website can be done at any age. Adam, a 13-year-old entrepreneur in California, created an online store in the fingerboard market, a niche market of miniature skateboards that can be ridden with your fingers. When starting his business, he purchased an expensive mold online to create his wooden decks. He was not impressed by the quality of the mold and noticed that there was a hole in the market for affordable yet high-quality molds. Adam taught himself 3D design using YouTube and other tutorials and used the knowledge to create his own fingerboard molds. Not only does Adam make decks with his own molds, but he also sells molds to customers that are 3D printed on demand.
2. Create a Print-On-Demand Business
A print-on-demand (POD) business allows you to sell a wide variety of products without actually owning any inventory, purchasing machinery and equipment, or spending time and resources on shipping logistics to fulfill orders.
The first (and most important) thing you will need for a POD-based business is a handful of solid designs or ideas. You can create your own digital designs on devices you already own, such as a computer, iPad, or iPhone. These can be general artwork designs or can be geared towards a specific niche or hobby. Gearing your designs towards a niche hobby is recommended because it will allow you to target a specific audience with your store. If you are not artistic or cannot create your own designs, you can also come up with text phrases that will appeal to your customer base.
Once you have your designs, it is time to find a POD service. If you would like to build a brand around your products, the best option is to use a Shopify store. Recommendations for Shopify POD integrations include:
These add-on applications will integrate into your existing Shopify store and allow you to fill your store with physical products that feature your designs. You have to offer your customer a wide range of products including clothing, mugs, phone cases, sticker, pillowcases, wall art, pet products, and more.
Most POD integrations have robust tools to create digital mockups of each product with your design on it, and this mockup can be used as your product photo. It is then up to you to create a compelling title and description for the product that will stand out to your market.