So you want your own business but don’t know where to start. Below are 8 tips for those looking to start a business at 17.
Starting a business and becoming an entrepreneur does not always mean luxury vacations every other week. But it can mean achieving financial freedom and choosing where and when to work.
If you want to start a business as a 17-year-old you will need to write out a plan, find out what works in your niche, and create a professional website. On top of that, understanding profit margins and learning how to properly monetize are other important aspects of starting a business at 16.
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Can I Start my Own Business at 17?
You can start your own business at 17. In fact, many teenagers start their own businesses and end up making thousands of dollars every month.
Of course, the amount you make from starting a business will depend on a variety of different factors. The 17-year-old spending 40 hours a week on their business will most likely have a higher chance of succeeding compared to someone only spending 20 hours a week on their business.
What Business Can a 17-Year-Old Start?
A 17-year-old can start an affiliate marketing, dropshipping, print on demand, or blogging business. Each of these businesses can be done online from home which is perfect at 17.
Affiliate marketing and dropshipping both involve a lot of marketing and advertising, using social media and such.
With print on demand, you simply upload a design to one of the many print-on-demand platforms and a lot will do the marketing for you.
Starting a blogging business can be great for those passionate about a topic and willing to write a lot of content surrounding that one topic. Typically, bloggers rely on organic traffic from search engines and do not need to spend a lot of money on advertising.
8 Tips For Starting a Business at 17
Here are 8 tips for starting a business at 17 in 2024.
1. Write Out a Plan
Every business owner needs to write out a plan for their business. It should include all your goals and aspirations for the business. Along with how you are going to achieve those goals.
With a written plan you will lay out exactly what needs to get done. It will serve as the framework of what is to come.
It’s better to start a business with a plan in mind rather than with no preparation.
2. Find Out What Works
Most businesses enter a market where their competitors have achieved some sort of success. It’s rare that you will enter a market with no competitors.
But something you should do when first starting out is to find out what works in your industry or niche. Do businesses in your industry heavily rely on social media marketing? Maybe they prioritize building an email list?
Whatever it is, you should find out what works and try to implement parts of that into your business. For example, if your industry gets high conversion rates when using email marketing, work on building an email list.
3. Create a Professional Website
Having a website for your business is similar to having your own physical store before the internet. It’s a place where people, even potential customers, can see what your business does and sells.
Creating a professional website will help bolster your image online and often lead to more people turning into paying customers.
4. Understand Profit Margins
Understanding profit margins is very important for business owners to learn. Failure to do so could result in you losing more money than you actually gain.
To calculate profit margin you simply need to divide profit by your revenue. The higher profit margins a business has, the better. High-profit margins usually mean more cash for the business.
After all, if you sell $100 worth of product, wouldn’t you like to keep a higher percentage of it? Advertising is usually a huge expense for a business. Higher advertising costs tend to result in a lower profit margin.
Think about it this way; if you sell fifty dollars worth of product but spend twenty dollars to advertise and promote it, your business only keeps thirty dollars. That thirty dollars would be your business’s profit.
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5. Learn How To Monetize
When you start your business at 16, you are going to have to learn the best ways to monetize it. Anyone can start a business and claim to be an entrepreneur. But does it really count if you do not make any money from your business?
Your monetization methods will vary depending on what type of business you start. If you sell physical products, that would be your way of monetizing.
If you start a blogging business, you might make money from advertisements or selling affiliate products.
There are many different ways to monetize your business. Your job is to find out which works best for your business and implement it.
6. Maintain Professionalism
As a teen business owner, you need to stay consistently professional when running your business. Anything from interacting with customers to sending professional invoices needs counts towards you maintaining professionalism.
Customers demand professionalism, as they should. They worked hard for their money and will only spend it on businesses that they deem trustworthy.
But there are ways to maintain professionalism when running a business. As mentioned previously, a well-designed website is one part of maintaining professionalism.
Even just sending high-quality professional invoices could bolster your business’s professionalism and increase trust with the customer.
7. Market Your Business
The easiest way to go about marketing your business is to use social media. You could spend money on paid advertising. But if you are willing to spend some time using social media you could get the same, if not better results.
At 17, there’s a good chance that you currently have more time than money. So using social media is going to be your best bet.
Just remember to consistently post on whatever social media platform you decide to use. A lot of social media platforms reward those who post most consistently.
Check out our articles on growing and making money on social media:
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- 9 Best Ways to Make Money on TikTok
- 15 Best Instagram Post and Story Ideas
- How To Grow On Instagram (0-50k followers)
8. Track Business Income and Expenses
Tracking your business’s income and expenses is also something to be aware of as a 17-year-old business owner. By tracking your business’s income and expenses you can evaluate how you are doing as a business and help you avoid any tax problems.
If you are a small business owner or thinking about starting your own business, you need to use FreshBooks.
If you are 17 and thinking about starting your own business, do it! Just know that it is not something that will happen overnight.
Customers will not just start throwing their money at you. It takes work to grow a business. However, the entrepreneurial lifestyle makes it all worth it.
Especially if you choose to start an online business. You could make as much, if not more than you would by working a 9 to 5. Having the option to work when and where you want is truly amazing.
That is something that every 17-year-old should be working towards; achieving financial freedom.
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