25 Best Small Business Ideas for 12-Year-Olds in 2024

The years when the minds of 12-year-olds are focused on education alone are over. Nowadays, kids want to also make money to buy their favorite games, gadgets, attend live events and start a business empire.

The number of kids that are running small businesses is growing steadily. According to CNBC, the number of young entrepreneurs between the ages of 8 to 18 has doubled in the past decade.

Child entrepreneurs are not limited to lemonade stands alone. As a young and ambitious 12-year-old, there are limits to what you can achieve in business. However, there is so much you can also achieve in business.

This article explains some small business ideas for 12-year-olds to explore. These small business ideas for teens are also age-appropriate and brimming with potential.

Never stay in doubt of your potential since you are young. Be bold and courageous. There are some mind-blowing ideas to consider.

Let’s start by answering one of the most frequently asked questions: Can a 12-year-old have a small business? The answer to this question will be the first eye-opener for the possibilities ahead.

Can A 12-year-old Have A Small Business?

Yes, a 12-year-old can have a small business. However, there are business documents they can’t sign unless the parents. 12-year-olds can start and run small businesses, despite age restrictions. There are a few considerations to keep in mind;

  • Legal requirements: Legal requirements for starting a business as a minor vary by jurisdiction. Some require parental consent, and others impose specific restrictions. Therefore, research and understand local laws.
  • Parental involvement: Minors often lack legal capacity, making parental involvement crucial for business management. They provide guidance, support, and guidance. In most cases, your parent will sign documents or take responsibility until the child reaches legal age.
  • Business idea and planning: Develop a viable business idea. Kids should consider their interests, skills, and talents. They should also identify potential products or services they can offer. A business plan outlines goals, markets, pricing, marketing strategies, and financial projections.
  • Start small: Young entrepreneurs should start small-scale operations like pet sitting, lawn mowing, or handmade crafts for less responsibilities.
  • Time management and balancing with school: You need time management skills to business and school responsibilities. It will ensure a child can dedicate time to both without neglecting their studies.
  • Marketing and promotion: The kid can raise business awareness through marketing techniques like social media, flyers, word-of-mouth, and local partnerships.
  • Financial management: Understanding financial concepts is crucial for children to track income and expenses. They will also use it to develop financial responsibility.
25 Best Small Business Ideas for 12-Year-Olds
25 Best Small Business Ideas for 12-Year-Olds

Best Small Business Ideas for 12-Year-Olds

It’s great to see young entrepreneurs like you look for small business ideas! Here are 25 small business ideas for 12-year-olds:

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1. Pet sitting

Some pet owners are always away for long periods, leaving their pets behind. You can offer your services to take care of pets while their owners are away.

Feed the pets before leaving for school in the morning, and take care of them when you are back. It is a means of making money as a kid.

2. Lawn mowing

Start a lawn mowing service in your neighborhood. This business idea is due to families not being around to take care of their gardens.

You will get more clients by telling neighbors about the services you offer and how effective you are. Do your jobs after school. Ensure you balance your studies, home chores, and your business.

3. Babysitting

Provide childcare services to families in your neighborhood. People go to work to make money and cater to their families. Hence, you can take advantage of their unavoidable absence to babysit their children and make money.

Again, there should be a balance between your education, home, and job. Kids that are babysitting make about $50 per month.

4. Car washing

This is a good small business idea for 12-year-olds. You can offer to wash cars for your neighbors or family friends and get paid in return.

Furthermore, you don’t need a space to do this business. You can go from house to house to ask your potential clients if they need your services. Car washing services are appropriate after school hours or during holidays.

5. Dog walking

Dog walking is part of pet sitting. People have busy schedules and are not often around to take their dogs for walking. You can take dogs for walks in your neighborhood and make money from it.

However, ensure to balance your studies, job, and home chores. You can get clients through word-of-mouth and referrals from satisfied clients.

6. Tutoring

I did tutoring business while growing up. It’s simple to start. You can gather your peers and share your knowledge in a specific subject. Furthermore, you can also tutor younger students.

This business idea is for kids that are smart in the area of education. The most sorted out subjects are mathematics and sciences. English is also in demand in Non-English speaking countries.

7. Errand running

People are busy with their jobs. Sometimes they don’t have the time to run errands.

Help busy people run errands such as grocery shopping or picking up dry cleaning. You can also help them buy food items.

Getting clients to help them run errands is easy. You can tell the people in your hoods, social media, and print handbills.

8. Computer assistance

We are in the computer age. Even kids can do unbelievable things with the computer. You can help them type documents and show them how to navigate around the computer.

Furthermore, you can offer technical support to older adults who need help with their computers or smartphones.

9. Homemade crafts

Homemade crafts are a way for kids to unleash their creativity. Create and sell handmade crafts like jewelry, keychains, or greeting cards.

Sell them at local craft fairs, farmers’ markets, or even online through platforms like Etsy.

Your clients include neighbors, students, and people in your area. As your business grows, you will receive orders from clients in other cities.

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This business idea is popular among kids since they do homemade crafts in their free time. It will balance between work and studies.

10. Gardening

Your neighbors might not be available due to work or other business appointments. Therefore, they are unable to work on their gardens.

However, you can help neighbors with their gardening needs, such as planting or weeding, and receive payment for your services.

This will not affect your studies since you work during evenings and weekends. Furthermore, you will get referrals from satisfied clients.

11. Bookkeeping

Businesses need to keep accurate financial records. Some business owners are busy and can’t do booking themselves. However, they can’t afford to hire a qualified accountant to do these tasks.

As a 12-year-old, you must have learned bookkeeping in school. Therefore, you can assist small businesses with basic bookkeeping tasks and receive payments.

This is a way to build a career as an accountant in the future. You can apply for bookkeeping jobs in local shops near you.

12. Language lessons

Lingua Lessons are instructional classes designed to teach a particular language to individuals who want to learn it. 

Offer basic language lessons for younger kids and adults. For instance, when I wanted to migrate to Germany, I enrolled in a language class to learn the language.

My teacher was a little kid. He is from Germany and understands the language.   You can also teach people who want to learn your language and make money.

13. Lemonade Stand

A timeless and on of the best small business ideas for 12-year-olds. Set up a lemonade stand in your neighborhood or at local events. Offer different flavors, create eye-catching signage, and provide excellent customer service.

Get clients to patronize you through referrals from satisfied clients and word-of-mouth marketing.

14. Caricature drawing

Make money while having fun. Caricature drawing exaggerates certain characteristics of a person or object to create a humorous representation. 

Develop your artistic skills and offer caricature drawing services at events or parties. Caricature drawing can be used for editorial cartoons, entertainment, and as personalized gifts.

15. Gutter cleaning

Help is wealth. Your surroundings should be as clean as inside your living room. Since people are always away from work and unable to clean their gutters, you can do it and get paid.

Help homeowners clean their gutters during the fall season. You can get clients through your parents, word-of-mouth, referrals from satisfied clients, and your neighborhood.

16. Event planning

Although event planning is a complex task for 12-year-olds to handle. However, you can help event planners to do their jobs while you learn how to plan events.

Assist with planning and organizing small events, such as birthday parties or family gatherings. You will have time for this business because events are done mostly on weekends.

Furthermore, there will be a balance between your business, studies, and home chores.

17. Jewelry making

Jewelry-making is the business of creating jewelry pieces, such as necklaces, bracelets, earrings, and rings.

Create and sell your jewelry designs. This business idea is ideal for 12-year-olds. You can take it to school and sell it to the students and people in your neighborhood.

18. House painting

Painting means applying paint or other coatings to the interior or exterior surfaces of a house. Kids can offer this service, especially kids whose parents are painters.

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Offer to paint rooms or fences for neighbors or local businesses. You have to learn the basics of painting before accepting jobs from clients.

Furthermore, you can get clients through referrals, word-of-mouth, and banners.

19. Virtual assistance

The COVID-19 pandemic has opened us to business ideas we never thought of, especially those we can do remotely.

Virtual assistance is now common among businesses. Kids can also join the trend. They can help professionals do data entry, research, or email management.

The good thing is that they can work from home in their free time. However, avoid conflict between your job and studies.

20. Car boot sales

Participate in local flea markets. These sales are in open-air parking lots or fields. It allows sellers to display their items for potential buyers to check and buy.

This business idea is also ideal for 12-year-olds. You can also organize your car boot sales to sell used items. Remember to balance between school and business.

21. Bicycle repair

Kids love riding bicycles. Sometimes their bicycles develop faults that will require repairs. These kids often go a long distance to fix their bikes.

Learn bicycle repair skills and offer services to repair bikes in your community. You can fix your clients’ bikes after school hours and make money.

22. Photography

People take pictures every day. Therefore, develop your photography skills and offer services for events or portraits.

Once you are good with your job, your clients can even wait until you are back from school to take the pictures.

Events happen during weekdays, so you will be available to offer your services since you won’t go to school. This will help the school-work balance.

23. Gift wrapping

Have you thought of gift wrapping? Provide gift-wrapping services during holidays or special occasions like Valentine’s Day, Christmas, New Year, Salah, etc.

Furthermore, you can tell people about your services through social media platforms, word-of-mouth, and flyers. This is a means of making money for 12-year-olds.

24. Personalized clothing

Customize clothing items with unique designs, such as t-shirts, hoodies, hats, or other types of clothing. To get started, look for a trusted supplier who can give you blank clothing items for customization.

You could sell to friends, classmates, or people in your local community interested in your products.

25. YouTube channel

Vlogging is growing in popularity, and YouTube is like a school where people can learn almost everything for free.

Kids can start a YouTube channel to share their hobbies or talents.

I often see YouTube channels owned by kids. I am impressed with their jobs. They can also monetize it through ads or sponsored content.

10 Tips for Parents to Help Kids Start a Small Business

Here are the 10 tips for parents to help kids start a small business:

  • Encourage their interests
  • Teach them financial literacy
  • Foster creativity and problem-solving
  • Provide guidance and mentorship
  • Help to conduct market research
  • Develop a comprehensive business plan
  • Set realistic expectations
  • Support networking opportunities
  • Assist them with marketing and promotion
  • Encourage continuous learning

Conclusion: Small Business Ideas for 12-Year-Olds

Young entrepreneurs have several opportunities to consider. The 25 small business ideas for 12-year-olds will open your minds to do things you can only imagine.

It is crucial to take your studies seriously. Parents should encourage their children to explore creativity, develop skills, and build strong work.

Kids can pursue small business ideas like lemonade stands, pet-sitting, and handmade crafts with little or no investment and parental guidance.

Furthermore, young people who launch their own small businesses grow to feel more independent and self-assured. It empowers them to make decisions and take responsibility for their own success.

Therefore, parents, guardians, and mentors have crucial roles to play. They will provide guidance and support while allowing the kids to take ownership of their business ideas. Teaching ethical practices, responsible business behavior, and work-life balance is crucial.

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