Teenagers today have many more choices for jobs than previous generations have had. Living in The Digital Age means even young teens can get an online job.
High-Paying Jobs for Teens – Real Work Online
Entrepreneurial teenagers have always found ways to make money. Cutting the neighbors lawn, helping out with building a patio, delivering the newspaper, and baby, pet, or house sitting have been around since the Dark Ages. You know, way back in the ’90s.
Of course, the internet is the place to go these days for any teenager looking for real online work. But can you find high-paying jobs for teens?
The answer is much like old-school job hunting. There are plenty of easy jobs out there, but they don’t pay very well. Jobs that take more time or more specialized skills generally pay better.
The biggest limiting factor for teen workers is the age limit imposed by various websites. For every step of the process – from looking on job boards to selling things on eBay or Etsy – you have to check the minimum age requirement. Always get the age requirement from the site you’re considering since rules often change, and other sites may be out of date.
Types of Online Jobs for Teens
Jobs you find online can generally be categorized four ways:
- Click to get paid jobs
- Traditional employment done remotely
- Freelance or gig work
- Starting your own online business
It’s essential to realize the differences between these different ways of working online. You need to find the path that sounds most interesting to you personally.
It may come as some surprise that working online is actually more challenging than working a regular job. When you walk in to apply for a regular job, you’re competing with fewer job applicants.
You’re also better able to make a good impression with your smile, appearance, or interpersonal communication skills. All of these things make snagging a job at your local supermarket a lot easier than working online.
When seeking online work, you’re competing against all sorts of people from all over the world. Retirees sitting at home, who are experts and have worked in their field for decades, can log in and do freelance work for extra cash.
There are teenagers just like you, working from their homes in India or China, competing for the same jobs as you. But for them, $5 is enough extra money to cover their meals for the day. They’re a lot less likely to do the same work for less money.
And in all of these situations, competition is fierce. Clients or employers will wind up with hundreds of applicants to sort through, so yours will have to stand out. If you’re starting your own business, you’re doing so along with thousands of other people.
In short – it’s tough to get started and takes a considerable amount of effort to find high-paying jobs online.
Click to Get Paid Work
There are low-paying jobs that have you do some small task, like take a survey or watch a video, and receive a few cents every time you do it. That’s right – a few cents. We are not talking about big money here.
Most of the websites that sponsor this type of work are designed with teens in mind. As a result, many of these sites allow young teens from 13 years old and up to work online.
Here are a few examples of the sorts of tasks you can earn quick cash doing online.
- Take online surveys for extra cash with companies like Survey Junkie
- Watch ads for companies like InboxDollars
- Listen to music online for sites like Slice the Pie
- Beta test websites or apps
Be a Remote Worker
There are remote jobs online that will send you a paycheck. The problem with these is that, like traditional employment, you’ll have to find and apply for jobs, interview, and then show up for work.
These jobs pay significantly better, or at least pay more consistently, than the other options. But examples directed at teens and entry-level jobs are very hard to come by.
Here are some typical examples of remote worker jobs, but you can do nearly any job a company has remotely these days. It all depends on how the company is set up and who they like to hire.
- Be a virtual assistant
- Take calls as a customer service representantive
- Do data entry work
Be an Online Freelancer
Another type of job you can do involves a little more work on your part. You can sell your skills as a freelancer. Whatever you’re good at, you can find people to pay you to do it for them.
You can use job board websites (freelancer.com or upwork.com) that help connect you with clients, but it’s up to you to sell yourself. You will spend much of your time finding clients – which doesn’t pay anything until someone hires you to do something.
Many of the successful online freelancers have worked traditional jobs for years and then moved online. Don’t expect jobs to come easily or pay very well when you’re starting out.
Nearly without exception, you have to have a strong portfolio of work to impress your clients.
Here are a few examples of freelance jobs that are commonly done online.
- Be a graphic designer and create original artwork, designs, or illustrations for customers
- Be a freelance writer – write articles, blogs, or products reviews for clients
- Edit photos or videos for content creators
- Be a social media manager and handle a company’s social media posts and ads
- Create apps or write software
- Design and build websites
- Take an online tutoring job
- Do freelance jobs for companies like transcriptionist, virtual assistant, data entry specialist, or customer service representative
- Proofread other people’s writing
- Listen to and review recordings of telephone calls
Start Your Own Business
The final thing you can do online is to become your own boss. That means you’ve got to create the product that people want and get it out there to the people who want it.
These jobs sound great on paper – but the amount of work it takes before you get your first cash can be incredible. But the rewards can be incredible too, as long as you find something to sell that people want.
Freelancers are also running their own businesses. But with freelance work, you typically get paid when you perform a task. For example, let’s say you are a freelance artist.
A client commissions you to create a digital illustration for a t-shirt they want to sell, and they pay you $300 to do so. That’s freelance work at its finest!
But from the business owner’s perspective, you had to work extremely hard for that $300. There’s nothing wrong with that, but is there a way to increase your earning potential for each illustration you create?
If you’re a good artist, why sell the artwork only once? Why not put that t-shirt in your own store to sell? If you sell a few thousand of those shirts, you could make a lot more than $300.
Of course, building a t-shirt business isn’t free, and there are many steps along the way. But the basic idea is that once it’s set up, it can keep making you money forever from that one illustration you made – with no further effort on your part. That’s called passive income.
There’s no website you can go to get paid for a business idea – you’ll have to start your brand and get to work. And everything about that business, from the legal aspects to sales and money management, is your responsibility.
Here are just a few ideas of popular online business.
- Sell t-shirt designs or other print-on-demand items on your own website using a drop-shipping supplier like Cafepress
- Resell merchandise that is drop-shipped from suppliers like Alibaba
- Sell your own crafts on a site like Etsy
- Start a website or blog to make money off of ads or affiliate marketing
- Resell or “flip” items on eBay
- Become an influencer – create your own brand on social media sites like Instagram or YouTube
Frequently Asked Questions
What Online Jobs Are There for 13-Year-Olds?
If you’re a young person looking for online work, it can be tough to find options. This is because the minimum age for most websites is 16 years old or older.
But many sites are specifically geared towards teens, especially basic survey taking or opinion research websites. These are a great place to start!
How Can I Get a Job Online at 16?
Online jobs for high school students are more plentiful than those for young teens, which makes sense as that’s how things work in the real world too. The online business you want to work for are bound by the same legal regulations that brick-and-mortar businesses are.
When you reach 16, most websites will allow you to access their services. By the time you are 18, every website and option is available to you. Online jobs for college students are excellent summer jobs and great ways to build experience and a portfolio for your career.
What is the Best Online Job for Teenagers?
There’s no one answer to what the best online work for a young person. What works out well for one individual might spell failure for another.
You should also consider that just because you can work online doesn’t make it the best option. Many teens will find greater rewards in more traditional work, taking jobs like camp counselors or pet sitters. Even jobs as simple as this have an online component nowadays.
How Can Teens Make Money Online?
There’s nothing specifically different about making money online as a teen or as an adult. The Summer job pool is the same, and the options are the same.
But teens are more likely to accept entry-level work and minimum wage jobs like taking online surveys, tutoring jobs, graphic design, pet sitter, or freelance writing.
What are Some Tips for Success in the Job Market Online?
Here are some of the best practices for looking for and working an online job. A lot of this is common sense stuff. Unfortunately, many people still think that because work is done online, it must be less demanding or less professional than work done in person. The reality is, nothing could be further from the truth.
First, always check that age requirement for all websites you do business with. You’ll have to set up accounts with various websites to use their services, and they’ll all have a user agreement. By using their service, you agree that you meet their minimum age requirement.
This is especially the case for online job opportunities such as affiliate marketing. You’ll also need to be old enough to have a bank account to receive online payments.
You’ll have to get paid for your work, and the easiest way to do that is with a Paypal account. Paypal has a minimum age requirement of 18 years old, but they also have a student program. Under this, young teens can get a Paypal account as part of their parent’s account.
That’s okay because it’s vital always to keep your parents in the loop. Being independent is the goal, but it’s constructive to have someone to ask for advice. Parents can also help you navigate tricky waters when it comes to payment and accounts.
Like all businesses, you’ll have to keep close track of your business expenses and earnings. To the extent possible, keep your business transactions separate from your personal ones.
At a minimum, you’ll want to be able to see how much you’re making from your online work. That way, you can figure out if you want to keep doing it or if you need to find more lucrative methods of working online.
As you look for online jobs, study and learn about how to run your own business. Once you move beyond surveys and task and remote job work, all working online is essentially running your own business.
You have to keep track of your funds, and you have to market and sell yourself. Creative freelancers are running their own business as are teens you start online retail shops.
Always know your worth. Some people work online and put in a crazy amount of hours to make a few dollars. Don’t get ripped off – always ask yourself, what am I making per hour?
It’s one thing if you are starting and you enjoy the work. You might also be learning an important skill or building your portfolio. But at some point, that investment should translate into making more money per hour.
Finally, it’s vital to remember that online feedback is everything. Many job boards and freelancer websites are based on the feedback you receive from clients. Bad reviews mean that you will have fewer clients in the future.
Maybe worse, that might force you to lower your rates and take a pay cut to attract more clients.
Final Thoughts Re Online Jobs For Teens
No matter how old you are, as a high school student or college student, there are lots of unique opportunities for online work. The key is to find a job that you connect with, that you enjoy doing so that doing the work doesn’t feel like work.
That’s a bit like building niche content websites for me. It doesn’t feel like work.
Learning how to get jobs and make money online is an important life skill in today’s world. It’s a path to learning high income skills. Many working adults have side hustles and do gig work for extra cash. Getting started early is a great idea!