Are you a young entrepreneur looking for ways to earn money while at school or college?
As long as you work hard and know your market, it is relatively easy to make money by selling things as a student.
The best things to sell at school to make money may partially depend on whether you are an elementary school, middle school, high school, or college student trying to save money. The needs of each age group are different and should be catered to accordingly.
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- What to Sell at School for Cash?
- 1. Food & Beverages
- 2. Mobile Phone Cases
- 3. Bracelets and Necklaces
- 4. Customized Clothing
- 5. Video Games
- 6. Books
- 7. Stationery Items
- 8. DIY Crafts
- 9. Your Skills/Knowledge
- 10. Small Toys and Fun Gadgets
- 11. Concert/Event Tickets
- 12. Digital Products
- Final Tips for Making Money at School
What to Sell at School for Cash?
Let’s get started! Here is a comprehensive list of the best things you can sell at school to make money.
1. Food & Beverages
This is the most popular way of making money at school. From selling brownies to selling lemonade, there are a variety of options for you to choose from.
- Candy: This is popular among children of all ages. Go to your nearest candy store and buy a bag of sweets according to your budget.
- Chocolate Bars: Who doesn’t love chocolate? There is an endless list of choices: Snickers, Twix, M&Ms, KitKats, and many more. You can sell individual bars or make cute bundles of different chocolates and sell them at a fixed rate.
- Chips: Everyone loves a nice salty snack and loves to munch on some good chips, whether between classes or as a light snack.
- Sandwiches: Clean and tasty homemade sandwiches are popular with students. Make a complete snack bag with the sandwich, a napkin, and even some mints. It will help you stand out more. Even if this is already being sold at your school store, people always prefer a safer and healthier option.
- Pizza: A classic favorite! Make a delicious pizza with your favorite toppings, or order some pies from a local chain and sell it at a higher price per slice for a profit.
- Brownies: The all-time favorite brownies are sure to help you make a few bucks. No one resists a tasty brownie. Make sure you work on the aesthetics and visual appeal because that will attract more students.
- Popcorn: a light, salty snack that everyone loves to munch on
- Soda cans: we all need a tasty drink to wash down our snacks
- Lemonade: for people looking for a healthier alternative to soda, lemonade is the way to go
- Waffles and pancakes
- Cup noodles
- Baked goods: If you love baking, this is perfect for you. You can focus on one thing or sell multiple items like Cakes, pies, donuts, muffins, etc. Use small, cute baskets or make small parcels for selling these.
Whatever item you choose to sell, rest assured, you will make a few bucks at least, if not more. From elementary school kids to college seniors, someone will always be hungry!
Let your fellow students know what you’re selling, especially during recess time or between classes. This is when students are looking for snacks or extra lunch food.
Check out these 5 Easy Foods to Sell to Make Money.
2. Mobile Phone Cases
Mobile phones are an integral part of our life. No one can imagine spending even a day without going through our social media apps.
Fancy cases for mobile phones have become increasingly popular. There is a wide range of designs available now, like cartoon characters, movie characters, flowers, glitter, abstract designs, and more. These cases let students express their personalities.
You can sell custom cases to students who own cell phones. Additionally, you can keep accessories such as screen guards, headphones, and pop sockets. If you have a good quality of stylish and useful products, you’ll be steadily in business.
3. Bracelets and Necklaces
Accessories are always major sellers. Students like stylish and trendy accessories they can pair with their outfits for a reasonable price.
Use the help of a friend or family member who has experience in making various accessories. They can teach you the basics of crafting jewelry. If you make them with good-quality parts, these items have the potential of generating a lot of cash.
In addition to selling these items at school, you can also sell them online. Create a website or use social media to market and sell your products. This could be your very first startup!
Remember to price these items fairly. If people can buy something from a branded store for the same price, they will likely go for that rather than buying from you.
A friend of mine with only 30k followers on Instagram sold almost $1k worth of bracelets for Valentine’s Day this year.
4. Customized Clothing
Who doesn’t love a stylish customized hoodie? Or a trendy t-shirt for the summer?
There are many clothing items you can sell with customized designs. It is a great business idea if your clothes are budget-friendly and not overly priced. Keep in mind the weather constraints as well. Roll out the t-shirts and crop tops in summer and keep the jackets and hoodies for the winter.
Note down the designs for each student in a little notepad, such as color, design, size, and logo. For each item you sell, make sure to ask them to refer their friends and family to you. You can even sell your clothes outside of school.
Some clothing items and styling accessories you can go for include:
Use a website like CustomInk or UberPrints to design and order your clothing.
Some good design ideas include school-themed clothing (mascots, inside jokes, etc), designs you can sell to clubs at your school or clothing (like the film club or drama club), or just things you know your classmates like.
5. Video Games
You will find many gamers on your campus. Most of them have a console or a PC. If you know a place that sells video games at a low price, you can take them to the gamer kids at school and sell them.
Make sure you have popular titles for sale. It won’t be easy to sell old versions or lesser-known games.
Some students prefer to use laptops or mobile phones to study, while others prefer to have a book in hand. Sometimes books are either hard to find or expensive, especially if students have waited until the last minute to buy them.
You can stock up over the summer and sell textbooks to students at your school for a good price. Make sure you keep the updated versions of books.
But who said books are limited to studies only? You can even sell fiction/non-fiction leisure books. Bookworms will appreciate this opportunity and could become your regular customers.
See our guide on how to get free books you can sell later on.
7. Stationery Items
No student is complete without a notebook and pens. Some students are careless and forget their things at home, while others are more prepared but can’t resist the lure of colorful stationery for taking notes.
If your school does not have a stationery shop on campus, this is a golden opportunity for you.
Students are in constant need of good quality school supplies. You can purchase items in bulk from wholesale stores, which will increase your profit margin. Some things you can sell are:
- Pencils and pencil cases
- Pencil sharpeners
- Chart paper
- Painting supplies
- Color pencils
- File folders
- Geometric tools
You can find many of these things at a local dollar store, so even if you only charge $2 each, that’s a 100% profit!
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8. DIY Crafts
If you are a creative person, you can make DIY crafts and sell them to students or even sell them online on Etsy.
There are many ways to market your product. For more info see what are the best things to sell on Etsy.
Make products from paper, cardboard, or other fancy stuff. If you are good at painting or drawing, you can sell your work of art as well.
Advertise your craftwork on social media and WhatsApp groups. Check YouTube for various craft tutorials.
You can also make crafts for special holidays like Christmas. If you live on a college campus, you might find customers who want to decorate their dorm rooms!
9. Your Skills/Knowledge
If you are good at one subject or studies in general, tutoring is a great option to earn money at school.
You can put your skills to good use and help those who are struggling. The school library is an excellent place to tutor students. Or you can always go to their home or invite them to your place.
It is an excellent opportunity for both of you. You can hone your teaching skills, and your student will have a better understanding of the subject. Advertise your services on the school notice board and post on your social media accounts as well.
10. Small Toys and Fun Gadgets
Small toys like fidget spinners and stress balls are popular among kids.
Other items such as phone cables and power banks are some cool gadgets you can keep with you, which kids and young adults often need.
11. Concert/Event Tickets
Everyone loves attending concerts and the next big event. People are constantly on the lookout for tickets to watch their favorite artists perform or attend a fun event.
Keep track of the upcoming events, buy a batch of tickets, and sell them to students who decide they want to attend last minute.
12. Digital Products
If you are a tech-savvy or creative person, you can design and sell digital products like printables, personalized desktop wallpapers, or even unique ringtones.
Create designs using software like Adobe Illustrator or free platforms like Canva. Offer items like planners, study guides, artistic prints, or even personalized desktop wallpapers.
If you’re musically inclined, crafting custom ringtones might be a unique avenue to explore.
Final Tips for Making Money at School
It is not difficult to sell a product. The challenge is to find a product good enough for someone to buy.
We hope the small list of items in this article has given you some ideas to help you make money at school. You can even combine some of these ideas and create a new type of resale business altogether!
Make sure to observe your customers and see what their demand is. Making a good product choice is crucial for your business. If you’re selling perishable goods, start slowly and don’t buy too many before you know how much you’ll be able to sell.
Last but not least, keep the price budget-friendly. Students are already paying a lot for their studies and typically find it difficult to buy expensive things.
However, while you want to keep prices affordable, don’t cheap out with low-quality items that will break or not stay good for long. Otherwise, you’ll struggle to get repeat customers.
With extracurriculars and examinations taking up your time, you may be reluctant to take the step to start selling things at school to make money. But remember, Rome was not built in a day. It will help if you put in extra effort and hard work to achieve your goals.
You can generate a good amount of money if you play your cards right. This could be your first step to starting your very own business.
If you do not have an immediate use for the money, put it into your savings. You can save it for later use or pay down your college student loans!
Next, check out over 100 other side gig ideas you can use to make money in school and throughout your adult life too!