One of the best things about being a young entrepreneur these days is the sheer number of options you have for starting a business. And among the best options for entrepreneurial teens? Working from home! Run your small business completely online!
Here are 7 ideas to get started on your fully remote small business.
1. TRANSLATION SERVICES
Do you speak another language (or two) fluently? Better yet: did you grow up bilingual? You can get paid to translate from home!
Sure, companies and individuals can use Google Translate. But AI-generated translations miss that special human touch. A specific turn of phrase in one language doesn’t necessarily translate well word-for-word into another language. And idioms don’t translate well, either. For example, the English word “insight” means something very specific to English speakers. But using Google Translate to switch “insight” to Spanish gives you “visión,” which isn’t quite the same thing.
Professional business owners don’t want to alienate non-English-speaking customers and partners. Or worse, offend them.
Charge by the number of words or by the hour. Accept work that’s interesting to you. Build partnerships and network with potential future employers!
2. WEB DESIGN
Although you grew up online, not everyone has the instinct for technology that you have. Even simple services like Squarespace aren’t as intuitive for some people as they are for you. And let’s face it: businesses without a website are very nearly things of the past.
This is where you come in. As a tech-savvy young person, you can get paid to build a company’s website. Major global corporations like Disney and McDonald’s have enough money to hire entire teams to manage their websites. Small business owners and startups, however, can’t afford an entire web management team.
From graphic design to layout to content, you can choose a specific area to specialize in, or you can be a one-stop web design shop! (And don’t forget to make your own website as beautiful as possible. It’s like your business card!)
3. HANDMADE CRAFTS
The crafting world contains nearly an infinite number of ways to make and sell products. Consider:
- Knitting or crocheting
- Tote bags
- Cell phone cases
- Greeting cards
And those are just a few ideas! Anything you make with your hands can be sold online.
Don’t know how to knit? No problem! YouTube has tons of how-to videos for free. Still not feeling like a “maker?” Google “easy crafts to do at home” and you’ll find millions of ideas for simple crafts that don’t require a lot of tools, materials, or art skills.
Once you master a craft, set up a shop online and start selling. Make sure you take high-quality photos of your products to entice customers. One of the best things about selling handmade crafts online is that you can make products in your own time and let your online store do all the work!
4. FREELANCE WRITING
Are you a wordsmith with a keen eye for grammar? Do you know what an Oxford comma is and why it’s important? Does proofreading give you a sense of purpose in life? If so, freelance writing might be for you!
There are many reasons why someone would hire a freelance writer. A few of those include:
- Blog content
- Professional emails
- YouTube scripts
Find freelance writing gigs online at places like Upwork and Fiverr. Make sure the jobs you take are legit and can pay you a fair amount for your work. Some clients will pay per word, others will pay per project. Some projects may require you to do research, so make sure you take that into account when accepting a gig.
Once you get a few gigs, you can put together a portfolio. The more work you do, the more you can charge for jobs.
AP classes aren’t just for getting into college. Make some money from all those hours of studying! Are you in one or more Honor Societies, as well? Even better! Professional programs charge a lot of money. Be the value tutor of every parent’s dream by offering a more affordable one-on-one online alternative. Even if you’ve never been to France, you might be surprised at how willing parents will be to have an AP French student tutor their kids. All you need is a computer with a good internet connection and a little bit of patience for your pupils.
6. ONLINE RESALE
Technically, this one isn’t 100% online. You might have to do a little real-world work to get this business up and running. But if your idea of the perfect weekend is browsing flea markets and second-hand stores for the perfect find, then online resale might be your entry into entrepreneurship.
While there are plenty of online resale sites already out there, you can make yours stand out by specializing in a product or category. Maybe you only sell children’s clothing or antique candlesticks. Whatever you do, make sure you have a beautiful, easy-to-navigate website with high-quality professional photos of your products. Consider investing in a home postage service like Stamps.com to avoid trips to the post office. Invest in attractive packaging so that your customers are delighted upon opening your shipments.
Make money and help the environment by reusing other people’s cast-offs!
7. VOICEOVER WORK
Has anyone ever told you that you have a lovely voice? Has everyone told you that? Do you have a quiet place at home and a good microphone? Can you read? Say hello to your new voiceover career!
Voiceover actors are needed for everything from podcast ads to animated movies. Record a little demo of yourself reading as a variety of characters and for different types of projects. Then put yourself on a site like Voices.com.
This business is a great choice for theater people, future teachers, and aspiring business leaders. It gives you plenty of opportunities to perfect your speaking voice, enunciation, and delivery. It also teaches you how to adjust your tone and pitch depending on what you’re saying and to whom.
Are you multi-lingual? You have an even better chance of getting hired!
Not all young entrepreneurs are cut out to be camp counselors, babysitters, or lawn mowers. But hopefully, these 7 ideas will get you started on a fully remote path that’s right for you!
Young entrepreneurs who attend high school in Florida may be eligible for a Kantner Foundation college scholarship. Click here to learn about what we offer and how to apply.