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How to Make Money Selling Printables on Etsy

One of the easiest ways to earn a passive income is to sell printables on Etsy. All you need to do is visualise the idea, create the project, upload on Etsy, price your printable and then promote it. Before you know it, online shoppers on Etsy will be buying, downloading and hitting the print button.

Want to get started selling printables on Etsy? in our guide, we help you learn what printables are, where to design printables and more.

What are Printables?

A printable is a digital product usually in pdf format that people buy, download and print for use. As a digital file, it can be available in other formats such as png, jpeg or jpg. Examples of printables you can sell on Etsy include…

  • Spice rack jar labels
  • Journals
  • Planner pages
  • Printable wall art
  • Gift tags
  • Birthday party invitations
  • Wedding décor
  • Candy bar wrappers
  • Wall art quotes
  • Calendars
  • Worksheets
  • Lesson plans
  • Book covers and more!

Printables are an excellent way to make extra money. As a passive product, all you need to do is create it once and start reaping the benefits over and over again. They require little maintenance, you don’t have to ship them physically and are easy to customise. You don’t have to print most printables. You can use them as digital files such as book covers, eBooks and digital planners.

Are Printables Profitable?

Of course, selling printables such as journals, wall art, and other digital products is profitable. There are several reasons why selling printables is profitable.

First, you don’t maintain any inventory. For printables, Etsy keeps tracks of your sales.

Second, printables provide low overhead and turn a high profit. Research shows that a seller can make £5,500 in the first 9 to 12 months. After that, the seller can start making £1,000 to £5,000 per month as a passive income.

Third, printables are easy to customise. You can change the design, colour, font, images and others from the comfort of your home or on the go. The key to making profits when you sell printables is to create a product that people want and will use.

Where Can I Design Printables?

There are several platforms where you can design your printables.

Canva…

With Canva, you can create beautiful designs. As a graphics design platform, Canva offers a drag and drop editor to create printables such as cards, journals and many more. It has thousands of pre-made free templates that you can browse by category.

Besides the free templates, it has several features that allow you to customise the pre-made templates. For example, using curved text, you can give your design an edge over the rest. Curved text shapes your text into arcs or circles. This adds flair to your design.

Another feature you can use is Stellar photo effects. These effects transform your photos into glamour shots. Canva offers plenty of photo effects such as Liquify, Glitch, Pixelate and more. To get started, sign up for a free Canva account.

PicMonkey…

PicMonkey is an online photo editing platform just like Canva. You can create printables and beautiful designs such as social media graphics, logos and beautiful photos. PicMonkey has millions of stock photos. By using the one-click background remover, you can create a new design where you can tweak exposure, add effects and touch up the image.

You can electrify your designs by adding vector shapes, lush textures, adding gorgeous fonts or upload your own. PicMonkey is not free. It offers three pricing packages:

  • Basic – £9.08
  • Pro – £14.12
  • Team – £37.82

The good news is PicMonkey is available on the web and mobile.

Adobe Spark…

With Adobe Spark, you can design printables such as worksheets in minutes. The graphics design platform has hundreds of pre-made worksheet templates you can edit, upload to Etsy and start making money.

Besides worksheets, you can create other printables on Adobe Spark. Adobe Spark offers full access to premium templates and fonts.

You can also buy graphics, photos, clip arts and other products from Envato Elements and Creative Market. Using Adobe Spark, you can customise these elements to create a stunning printable that you can upload on Etsy and sell as a printable.

Crello…

Crello is similar to Canva. It offers 30,000 trendy and professionally designed templates carefully picked by its designers. You can edit the templates in minutes on Crello’s drag and drop editor. Crello allows you to remove background from any image, add a frame to photos, add speech bubbles and text.

It also allows you to flip, rotate, resize and apply beautiful filters to your design. Crello has free and paid plans. Both offer access to over 9,000 animated templates and a stock image library of 180 million files.

On Crello, you can design printables in over 60+ design formats for print and web. To get started, sign up for a free Crello account. For unlimited downloads and the ability to invite team members to design together, select the Pro plan – $7.99/month.

Snappa…

Create stylish printables with Snappa. With Snappa, you can whip up stunning designs in minutes, even if you don’t have graphic design experience. Snappa has thousands of pre-made templates.

The templates are perfectly sized, so you don’t have to start from scratch. Just access the more than 5 million free, high-resolution stock images, and customise them. You can add text, effects and graphics in seconds. Snappa is both free and paid. To get started, just sign up for a free Snappa account.

Besides the tools above, you can use Adobe Illustrator, Adobe InDesign, Adobe Photoshop, Google Sheets, Slides and Docs.

How Much Money Can I Make Selling Printables on Etsy?

Listing printables on your Etsy shop sets you up for a passive income. As a newbie, you can make £50 to £100 a week. Per month, sales can reach £500 to £1000. However, your earnings depend on your printables and pricing strategy.

If you sell trendy printables such as wall art, floral initials, dog or Mr & Mrs, you can make lots of profits every month. By selling evergreen printables such as wall art, worksheets, and others, you can turn your side income into recurring revenue.

We have a secret for you. The key to making a lot of money selling printables on Etsy is creativity. Your printables should be creative. You don’t need graphic design experience to create stunning designs or fancy design software. Get started with free graphics design platforms such as Canva.

Do not create complicated designs. Just incorporate clean lines, clear fonts, images, textures and other effects. The biggest mistake a lot of people make when designing printables is over designing.

How to Open an Etsy Store

Want to start selling on Etsy? Opening your first Etsy shop is easy. Here is a step by step guide that will walk you through the process of setting up your Etsy store and adding your first products.

Step One – Create an Etsy Account

To start opening your first Etsy shop, head to the Etsy website. Enter your email address, first name and password.

You can check the box to receive exclusive offers, personalised tips for shopping and selling on Etsy. Click “Register.” Alternatively, you can click Sell on Etsy on Etsy.co.uk. Scroll to the middle of the webpage and click “Open Your Etsy Shop.”

Enter your email and click ‘Continue’ or sign in with Google, Facebook or Apple details.

Step Two – Select Shop Language

Your shop language is separate from the language you’re currently viewing the site with. To change the language you’re viewing the site under, select You > AccountSettings > Preferences. The language you view the site under is a personal reference.

To select the shop language, sign in. Click Shop Manager > Settings > Languages and Translations > Manage Languages. You can select any language to translate your listings and shop aside from the default language. If you use the default language, buyers speaking other languages will not understand your descriptions.

Step Three – Select Country and Currency

Etsy operates in 83 countries worldwide. After creating your account, you need to select your country. Sign in to your Etsy account, click on You > Settings and in the region section, select your country. Click “Update Preferences.”

Besides the country, you need to select a currency you’ll use for your listings. If your currency is different from your bank’s currency, currency conversion fees will apply. From your Etsy dashboard, click You > Shop Manager > Finances > Payment Settings > Currency.

Select your preferred currency and whether you’d like Etsy to round your listings price to the nearest whole number.

Step Four – Choose a Memorable Shop Name

A memorable Etsy shop name is the first step to building a strong foundation for your brand. If your shop name is easy to pronounce and spell, shoppers can recognise your brand immediately. How do you go about giving your Etsy shop a memorable name?

First, look at other businesses elsewhere and on Etsy. Identify what you like and don’t like about their brand name. Are the shop names easy to remember, pronounce and spell? A good example is StoneCraft. We recommend selecting brand names that reflect your listings and style.

A benefit of such brand names is that shoppers can understand what you sell quickly. Adding product names or phrases to your brand name improves your ranking on Etsy and the web.

Second, ask your family or friends what they think about your new brand name. Getting feedback allows you to know if your new brand name is memorable or not.

Third, think globally. Before you select your brand name, do a little research online. Research allows you to know how your words translate into other languages. We recommend using search engines such as DuckDuckGo and Bing, unlike Google. By doing so, you’ll have a more global view.

Once you select a brand name, perform a memory test, make it SEO friendly, ensure its original, short and sweet. Also, your Etsy shop name should meet the following requirements:

Must be 4 to 20 characters in length

  • No profanity
  • No special characters or spaces
  • Must no infringe on another’s trademark
  • Must not be in use by an existing Etsy member

Learn more about choosing your Etsy shop name.

Step Five – List Your Printable

Now that your shop has a brand name, it’s time to list your items in your Etsy shop. Click Shop Manager > Your Shop > Add a Listing. Start uploading images of your printables. Select a thumbnail image, add listing details, describe your listing, and add pricing.

Listing your printables is similar to listing other items on Etsy. Under Type select Digital Item. The only additional step is to add your files to your listing. Etsy allows shop owners to upload up to five digital files.

The maximum size for each digital file should not exceed 20 MB. Currently, Etsy supports the following formats:

  • JPEG
  • GIF
  • Jpg
  • BMP
  • PDF
  • PNG
  • ePUB
  • iBook

Uploaded digital files will appear in a list together with their names, upload date and file sizes. The file name you see is the same one your buyers will see. Be sure to name your files correctly before uploading them. Etsy limits file names to 70 alphanumeric characters, underscores, hyphens and periods.

You can add a note which buyers can see on their download page. To remove a file from your listing, click the “X” next to your listing date/time.

Step Six – Choose Your Payment Methods

Etsy supports several payment methods, but this depends on which country you’re in. When opening your shop, you need to enter your debit or credit card. Etsy accepts the following cards:

  • Discover
  • American Express
  • Mastercard
  • Carte Bleue (France)
  • Visa

Your card information is secure on Etsy. If you live in Germany, Netherlands or Austria, you are not required to have a credit card on file. Sellers on Etsy must enrol in Etsy Payments with integrated PayPal to sell on Etsy.

To set up payment, click Shop Manager > Finances > Payment Settings > Bank account country. Enter the required information as a business or individual, plus your bank details. Etsy will require you to verify this information.

To verify your bank account, click Shop Manager > Finances > Payment Account > Verify bank. Enter the amount of the small deposit received in your bank account, then click Verify bank. You can also find the Verify bank button in Shop Manager under Shop Advisor.

If you fail to verify your bank in 90 days, Etsy will suspend your shop. Check out Etsy for a full list of countries eligible for Etsy payments.

Step Nine – Open Your Etsy Shop

When you finish with the sections above, you can now open your Etsy shop. All you need to do is click “Open Your Shop.” The web address for your Etsy shop will be in the following format:

  • https://XYZ.etsy.com
  • https://www.etsy.com/shop/XYZ

XYZ stands for your shop name.

Step Ten – Promote your Etsy Shop

You can market your Etsy shop using the Etsy Ads Campaign. Your ad will appear on Etsy search results and other pages. To set up your ads on Etsy, click Shop Manager > Marketing > Advertising to set your daily budget. Set the maximum amount you’re willing to spend per day.

The default amount is $1. Once you finish, click Start Advertising. Etsy will display your listing on:

  • Etsy Search
  • Market Pages
  • Category pages

They will appear on the Etsy app and the web.

Learn more How to set up and manage an Etsy Ads campaign.

What Printables Sell Best on Etsy?

There are plenty of things you can make into printables. Below is a list of ideas to help you get started.

  • Popular Artwork and Clipart
  • Wall Art
  • Gift tags
  • Recipes
  • Greeting cards
  • Thankyou Cards
  • Line Drawings
  • Crochet Patterns
  • Menu Meal Planner
  • Embroidery Fonts
  • Scavenger Hunts
  • Photography
  • Family Last Name Farmhouse Wreath
  • Classic Hymns Sheet Music
  • Party Games
  • Party Invitations
  • Inspirational Quotes
  • Finance Planner
  • Credit Score Tracker
  • Budget Planners
  • Colouring Pages
  • Art and Decor
  • Savings Planner
  • Cleaning Checklist
  • Health and Fitness Trackers
  • Flashcards
  • Meal Planners
  • Household Planners
  • Weekly Planners
  • Wedding Planners
  • Monthly Calendars
  • Printable labels
  • Activity Books
  • Chore Charts
  • Mazes
  • Summer Worksheets

Check out Etsy for more popular printable ideas.

Final Thoughts

Etsy has over 40 million active users. Of these, 13% are from the UK. The platform has an intuitive ad campaign that makes it easy to promote your printables to buyers. To stay ahead of your competitors, we recommend creating original products. Do not copy designs from other Etsy sellers or platforms.

Creating copies could be a problem, especially if the seller you copied from finds out and contacts Etsy. Instead of copying, take inspiration from other sellers. Don’t forget to offer a variety of printables and keep updating your listing with new designs.