It drives me crazy to see kids wasting time on social networks doing things such as changing their profile image, liking their friends posts or mindlessly scrolling through their news feed like a zombie.

But you can’t blame them for this sort of behaviour, because most of them just aren’t aware of the world of possibilities when it comes to social networks, including how to make money on it!

Most kids I meet are after some spare pocket money, yet aren’t always prepared to do their chores to earn their keep. So how about letting them know that it is possible to use social networks (and other online tools) to MAKE MONEY online.

Here’s a few suggestions on how:

1. Sell off old unwanted items for the family or friends

It’s super easy these days to snap a picture of an unwanted item of clothing, an old toy, a piece of furniture, and pop it on one of many Facebook groups and sell it. Cut a deal with your child (depending on their age) to either:

  • Photograph all the items ready to pop on the group
  • Post all the items along with a description and photo on the group
  • Manage the transaction process – perhaps giving them the full 100% of what they manage to negotiate for the item, or a percentage of for their efforts. Conversely you could get your child to ‘scout’ for items you or your friends or other family members are in the market for, to present you with options that fit criteria you have outlined, and to receive a flat amount or percentage of the item that is ultimately purchased.

2. Set up an online store on Facebook

There are a number of apps which allow you to set up an online store directly on a Facebook Page (not a profile) with very little effort. To get started you’ll need a Paypal account (if the kid is not over 18 years to get one, perhaps they could use yours to get started).


Aradium was created by Ryan Mills, a Brisbane based entrepreneur and allows you to add a shopping cart to your Facebook. Connect it with Paypal or Braintree and start selling! This is a great option if you want to test a market, or not go through the expense of setting up a website, or are selling low cost or low profit margin items.

More info: www.facebook.com/aradium


Ecwid allows you to set up an Online Store for WordPress, Drupal and Facebook. You can have up to 10 products for free and 100 products for only $12.50/month.

More info: www.ecwid.com


BeeTailer is a user-friendly Facebook store app that works in accordance with your online e-commerce store. It has a wizard to guide you through set-up and allows you to customize the look and feel of your Facebook store. You can design promotional campaigns and entice your visitors to become a fan of your page. It also gives you detailed analytics on your Facebook store performance for future improvement. Users select products to purchase on Facebook but the purchase is made on your online store. This app supports but is not restricted to online store platforms, such as Magento, Magento Go, Shopify and Prestashop.

See more: www.beetailer.com


This app does not have a free version, however, it contains some interesting features like product categorization, social sharing options, product search, ‘Buy Now’ button customization, bestsellers highlighting, product import through Google Base Feed or XML product feeds, and so on. The StoreFrontSocial app comes with a free trial so you can try it before buying.

See more: storefrontsocial.com


This app allows you to set up a Facebook store that supports over 5000 products. It has multilingual support and also supports over 50 currencies. The design is customizable through CSS (a type of web code, which you may need assistance with if you don’t have these skills).

To install it, search for ‘shoptab’ whilst in Facebook.

3. Sign up as an affiliate on a product and sell it via social networks

With affiliate marketing, you can sign up to one company or several company’s affiliate programs, and earn commission for successful sales you generate online for them. Affiliate marketing is huge in America, with many companies offering the opportunity to ‘affiliate’ direct on their company websites. Some criteria may have to be met for the person to affiliate, which the child may or may not meet.

To better understand the concept, let’s say that I produce my own amazing skin care range that I sell online. Let’s say I am prepared to share 20% on the sale of any product as a commission for someone who wants to promote them on my behalf and $1 for any lead i.e. someone who signs up to my database but does not purchase (because I know most other marketing strategies will cost me a whole lot more per lead when all is said and done). I agree to work with either an affiliate marketplace or a company’s own internal affiliate program, I get some affiliate media created i.e. banners and buttons and then these get placed in an ‘affiliate marketplace’.

Professional affiliates, websites and organisations trawl these sites regularly and may search specifically for ‘skin care products’ because they have a website all about ‘beauty’. They check the media I have made available to them that will suit their website’s shape, download it and place it on their site. I begin to receive leads and sales, and I only pay for what I get. i.e. if I get no sales or leads I pay nothing. If I get a stack, I pay the agreed rates, but no more. It’s a win-win for everybody really. I win because I sell more products, have larger exposure and am getting more leads (all passively remember!), the network wins because I am a client of theirs, and the person buying the stuff wins because they were searching for exactly that and being found in more places helped them find me!

The biggest affiliate market places are:

www.viator.com - a good one if you are in the travel industry

Check out some of the links above and see if any of them might be relevant for you or your child to list on either as a merchant (i.e. someone who promotes their products/services through these networks) or as an affiliate (i.e. someone who sells other people’s products/services for a commission).

4. Offer your services online

Yes, that’s right. It is possible to earn money online even as a student on sites like fiverr.com, freelancer.com (which is an amazing Australian success story), odesk.com, and others where you can get offer your skills in a variety of areas such as writing, editing, social media posting or management, web designing, graphic design, bookkeeping and more whilst you are still studying.

On these sites there is a ratings system where people will say how they found working with you. Encourage your child to start early (check the minimum age on each site before doing so) by establishing an account listing all the services you can assist with, offering your services, doing a good job and ensuring you get good ratings.

Who knows, you may do so well at the freelance thing, you don’t even have to go out and get a job. I’m serious!!!

N.B. While there are some fabulous opportunities for kids online, it is imperative to also teach them about online safety, and consider their age when passing on these valuable tips.  

  • Not sure I could trust them online doing that sort of stuff. Much prefer them have a garage sale or lemonade stand. At least that way I can keep an eye on what they’re doing


  • I had to laugh when my sone was 3 and my hubby and I were discussing selling something and he piped up “put it on ebay” I think we were in shock for a while trying to work out how it worked that out haha kids they pick things up.


  • Very interesting! I didn’t think much about selling beyond Ebay. Thanks, Lots to look into here.


  • this will show kids how to be little entreprenuers lol


  • Make sure your kids know how not to lose money on-line.


  • This is such an interesting, helpful article, not only for the children but also adults who wish to earn a bit extra using their skills.


  • Very good suggestions but I pretty much knew about them all.


  • great ideas, thanks for sharing


  • This is an absolutely amazing article for parents and children


  • Cleaning out the house is great but getting a big of extra $ is also great. I also enjoy seeing others do the same thing because it usually means that I get something at an awesome price and help their purse.


  • Some well thought out ideas, some I’ll definitely have to look into.


  • we’re doing a big clean out at the moment so selling unwanted things is a great idea


  • I’d be concerned about what my children were selling and for what price.


  • Who knew there was so many ways to sell.


  • That’s really interesting, a bit scary though. I think I would rather force them to do their chores for a while yet.


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