As many of you know, I post on this blog about my investing journey, my side hustles, and other pieces of advice in order to share some of my wisdom in the hopes that it will help all of you.
I’ve mentioned that I earn ~$2,500 annually from Redbubble before, but I’ve never dug into the details of how I do this, or what it takes to earn this much from a print-on-demand site.
Well, now I’ve taken the time to write down how I did this, and to give step-by-step recommendations for others who are looking to duplicate what I’ve done. It is absolutely possible.
I want to give you a preview of my ebook that I’ve published on Amazon to help others to this – it’s called The Beginner’s Guide to Redbubble: Tips on how to get started from a veteran Redbubble seller who’s earned over $5,000 selling on Redbubble.
The Beginner’s Guide to Selling on Redbubble
II: Getting Started
III: Content Strategies
IV: Being Consistent
V: Pricing Strategy:
VI: Keywords & Descriptions:
VII: A Note on Advertising
VIII: Putting it All Together
IX: The Leftovers
I spent a lot of time trying to come up with the perfect opening line that describes this book. But after lots of drafts, I decided instead to start with telling you what this book is not.
What this book is not:This book is not a get rich quick manual. It is not a secret formula to help you earn hundreds of dollars per month on Redbubble with a few hours of work and a stroke of inspiration.
This book is a realistic view into the world of a print-on-demand seller. By the time you’re done reading, you’ll have realistic expectations about the industry and you’ll be well on your way to making more money. I tried to include things in this book for everyone – from the person who’s just starting to the more experienced seller. All my knowledge in my years of selling has been dumped into this book – so I hope that you find it useful.
Selling on print-on-demand websites is hyper-competitive and contains tens of millions of uploaded artworks across multiple platforms. Is it possible to get lucky and get a lot of money quickly? Yes. But don’t count on it, this business is a grind and until you get the fantasies of spending a few weeks to get rich or uploading one work that gets you thousands of dollars out of your head, you will not be successful.
I’m here to provide helpful, realistic tools that will equip you to make money on print on-demand sites and generate passive income.
You may be thinking: why is this guy qualified to be writing this eBook? Well, I’ve been creating art on Redbubble for almost three years, and I’ve earned over $5,000 in income during that time.
I believe that anybody can do what I’ve done, so I want to share my knowledge with all of you. It takes a lot of hard work, but it’s not “hard” so to speak. It just takes time.
Here are some screenshots from my Redbubble stores to show you. In total, I have three stores. I have three stores in total, but I only upload to one of them these days. In total, I’ve uploaded over 15,000 works to all of my stores.
As you can see, I’ve made a total of over $5,000 from one of my Redbubble stores in just about three years.
I’m not going to pretend to be the know-it-all guru who knows every best approach about every possible print-on-demand topic. But, I do know a lot and I want to share what I know in the hopes that it gives you the knowledge and tools required to have print-on-demand income contribute positively to your life.
I have a disclaimer before we get started – this ebook was finished in Spring of 2022. If you’re reading this in the future, some of the content could be out of date. However, you can take the principles I share throughout the ebook and apply them to your understanding of what it takes to run a successful print-on-demand store.
Let’s get started!
II: Getting Started
Before I get into the details, I think it’s important to give a general overview of what “print on demand” means and what stores are the biggest players in the space.
A “print on demand” company is a company that allows you to upload and sell your artwork on its platform. Your art is printed on a variety of products depending on the site, like t-shirts, stickers, mugs etc. All you need to do is provide the art and the company takes care of everything else. They produce the merchandise, market the artwork, source it, ship it to customers, deal with returns and customer service, etc.
This means that your slice of the profit pie is usually much smaller because you’re not dealing with those things. But, in exchange all you need to do is create the art and these companies handle the rest.
Here are some of the biggest print on demand companies:
- Amazon Merch
There are other companies that do this, but I’ve listed the most popular websites.
The only platform that I use on this list is Redbubble. What you will read in this eBook will be focused on Redbubble, but the principles I share will be applicable to any of these other platforms.
Tooling: Getting started
Before I got started on Redbubble, I had no idea how to make anything. I didn’t know photoshop and wasn’t particularly interested in art as a hobby.
But, over time I learned how to use specific design platforms. If I can do it, you can too.
The amount you’ll need to learn will vary on the kind of art you’d like to produce.
Do you want to post well-constructed artistic content? If so, it will take a while for you to learn how to get good.
Are you looking to post simple text-based designs with no art? Then it won’t take you that long to learn.
In the simplest terms, you need to learn how to make your art into a .jpg or .png format to upload on one of these sites.
For text-based designs, this is very easy. The biggest problem you need to solve for is how to create a transparent background for your art.
If you don’t do this, any text based or general art that you create will have a white square as the background. This doesn’t look good and won’t work on any colors other than white.
Here’s an example of what your art would look like if you did not have a transparent background.
This doesn’t look good. I would never buy this shirt and neither would 99.9% of your target audience.
How do you get rid of this white background? You use a photo editing tool to download your art with a transparent background.
This may sound intimidating at first, but you don’t necessarily need to know all of the fancy stuff. Below are a few examples of tools that you can use to edit photos and download them in the correct file format for Redbubble.
Each of these tools also gives you the ability to size your picture and create the transparent background necessary to put it on various products.
Photo Editing Tools:
- Adobe Photoshop
I want to call out one thing – if you use one of these photo editing platforms, you may need to pay for it. I pay $12.99 per month for Canva pro because it allows me to automatically download a picture with a transparent background. The photoshop suite from Adobe will allow you to do this as well, but there is a subscription fee for this software.
I mentioned Pixlr on this list because you’re able to create images for free with a transparent background, it just takes a little bit longer than Canva does.
Here’s their website: https:// https://pixlr.com.
As a general principle, you will need to spend money to make money. This is very normal, especially if you’re planning to get into print-on-demand selling long term. Every business has its maintenance costs – it makes sense to spend money on useful tools to make you money.
My recommendation for the size of your saved file is to size your photos as large as you possibly can. This will allow you to have a high-resolution image when you upload your work. If your photo resolution is too small, when you try to enlarge your image, it will look grainy and stretched.
I don’t think an exact size matters, but when I create a custom picture size on Canva that’s 4000×4000 when I upload my text-based designs. This size gives me the image quality I need on all of Redbubble’s products. You could create a similarly large file photo size with some variation, and it will be plenty large to upload.
Tracking Your Store’s Visitors:
Want to keep reading? Please consider purchasing it on Amazon here: https://www.amazon.com/Beginners-Guide-Selling-Redbubble-started/dp/B09ZSQ55MJ
I spent months writing it – and I guarantee you’ll get the value of the purchase back with the information gained, especially if you are beginning your print on demand journey.
Until next time!