A lot of videos I’ve found with items you can sell online are more graphic design based, like templates and worksheets. So today I’m going to give you some ideas that are more tailored to you as an artist.
These are vector art that can be scaled to any size. These are a really good thing to get into because it’s a more specialized way of making art that not everyone is familiar with. These will allow people to create items with their Cricut or Glowforge.
- Mandalas – these are really popular right now, and customers like to cut them out of paper with their Cricut and then assemble. This is a very specialized type of SVG that not everyone knows how to make, so it’s a great market to tap into. Here’s my Mandala tutorial in Vector Q on iPad!
- Decals – single color or multi-color. Customers can use these to create iron-ons, car decals, stickers, etc. Here’s my tutorial for single-color SVGs and multi-color SVGs on the iPad.
- Shadow Boxes – These are really popular and very specialized. Not many people know how to make these so it’s great to get into this. You can tailor them to interests or holidays. Here’s my Shadow Box tutorial in Vector Q!
- Hand-Lettered Quotes – Although these are kind of everywhere, if you are very excited about hand-lettering, and you can find some unique way of doing it (maybe tie some of your own art into the design) then I say go for it.
These are raster files that can be used for graphic design, coloring, etc. Always save these as 300 DPI.
- Coloring Sheets – If you love drawing in just outlines, coloring sheets are so fun to make! I love to draw mine in Procreate on 8.5×11 size (300 DPI). Save as a PDF for your customers.
- Prints – If you like doing full-color artwork, you may like creating downloadable prints. These are really nice because the customer can download it and print it at home themselves.
- Bookmarks – Either full-color, or with black outlines for color-your-own bookmarks. Lay them out on an 8.5×11 sheet so the customer can just print out the 8.5×11 sheet.
- Greeting Cards – These are nice because someone may need a greeting card in a hurry, so they can purchase a downloadable one from you and print it themselves.
- Sticker Sheets – Either full color, or with black outlines for color-your-own stickers. If you create a PNG with a transparent background, then they can use the Cricut to cut around the stickers (or cut out by hand).
- Scrapbook Paper Patterns – Repeat cute icons, or experiment with brushes & colors. People can download them to use as backgrounds for graphic design, or print out for scrapbooking or card making.
- Clip Art – Draw clip art around certain animals or themes. Great for graphic designers to use.
- Borders & Banners – Hand-drawn borders, frames, ribbons to overlay text on, pennant banners, etc.
- Why sell digital downloads? Digital downloads are great because once you create the work, you can sit back and just let them sell. You don’t need to ship anything to your customer. For the most part they are self-sufficient. You may get a few messages here & there asking for help, but I actually don’t really get questions very often at all.
- Places to sell: I sell mine (and also buy!) on Etsy, and I love it. I have a membership with Envato Elements so that I can download art from there, but I don’t know what their percentage is for sellers. I know a lot of people use Creative Market. Definitely look around and weigh your options.
- Copyright: Places like Creative Market that only sell digital downloads are already set up to handle different copyright situations like whether you want to offer a commercial license, etc. (personal license = personal use only, where the customer is just using the art for themeselves, commercial license = the customer is going to sell the item they make with the art) But if you’re selling on Etsy, be sure to mention the terms in the description. You can even use Etsy variations to add a drop-down to allow people to choose whether they want the item for personal or commercial, and charge more for commercial.
- Avoid art theft: Do a reverse Google Image Search with your most popular design to catch people using your art. If you find it on Etsy, Ebay, or Alibaba (or most other big sites) you can report the seller for copyright infringement
- Include instructions: You can make a PDF of instructions to include alongside your digital file. I like to use Google Docs to create mine, then export to PDF.
- Cricut files: You don’t need a Cricut to create files for the Cricut. You can download Cricut Design Space for free, and then import your SVG to make sure everything came through ok (each color on a different layer, no weird shapes, everything looks normal).
- Artwork dimensions: For vector files, you don’t need to worry about file size. But for raster files, you want to make sure you have a big enough file size. Definitely do it in 300 DPI. For dimensions, they really depend on the product you’re selling, but for more general products that can be used for anything (like clipart, borders, etc) err on the side of making it bigger. I’d start at 10″x10″ at 300 DPI, since that is the standard scrapbook paper size. I wouldn’t go smaller than that.
- Subject Matter: Think about upcoming seasons, and make content for that. You can also mix in things that will sell throughout the year, like birthday, woodland theme, etc.
- Bundles: Once you’ve created a lot of one kind of item, create another listing which will be a “bundle”, so you can sell all of your bookmarks together, or all of your stickers, etc.
- Customizable digital files: I use Templett to create customizable digital files. You would upload the illustration to Templett, then add any text that will be editable in Templett. The customer can customize the file themselves! Here’s my tutorial for creating a customizable Etsy product in Templett.