How to Increase Your Sales on POD Websites – 15 Tips

how to increase sales on print on demand websites 15 tips

Are you an artist trying to sell your work on Society6, Redbubble, Zazzle, or another POD (print on demand) website?

Well I’ve been doing it for a few years now and have some tips to help you get more sales!

If you’re just getting started or haven’t set up your store(s) yet, you may want to check out these posts first:

Read on to find out how to increase your sales on Society6 and Redbubble specifically, but many of these tips can be used across other POD platforms such as Zazzle, TeePublic, CafePress, Fine Art America and many others.

Tips to Increase your Sales on Print on Demand Websites

  1. Try to complete at least one business or social media related task per day. For example: one tweet, one Instagram post, one new design, one update to your website etc. If you can do more than one task that’s great, but just that one thing will help your business without being too overwhelming.
  2. Comment and like other artists’ work. This does not apply to all PODs but can be especially helpful on Society6 and Redbubble to get more eyes on your designs.
  3. Connect with other artists on social media (Facebook groups for example) or forums where available (Zazzle). Ask for feedback from them if you feel comfortable doing so!
  4. Upload as much high quality work as possible. The more designs you have, the more chances you have of making a sale.
  5. Research the latest trends and use them as inspiration to create new designs in your own style. You can use Pinterest or check the top selling designs on your chosen POD platform.
  6. Have social media pages, even just one or two and focus on them. Instagram and Twitter great for artists. On Facebook it’s challenging to get likes on your page, but it could get your real life friends interested. Try using new tools like Facebook or Instagram stories, or even Snapchat if you are adventurous.
  7. Don’t forget about your stores or leave them alone for long periods of time. Try to stay somewhat active and consistent on all of them (uploading new work, commenting/following etc.) I’ve definitely noticed an increase in sales/activity when I’m active. If you have too many stores to stay active, maybe pare it down to the few that you have been most successful on.
  8. Don’t stretch yourself too thin.  Going off the point above, if you have too many stores you might feel overwhelmed or too lazy to upload work to all of them, so I suggest deleting those ones you don’t like or don’t have much success with.
  9. Read up on other sellers tips especially top sellers if they have shared these tips online. CatCoq, for example, has shared some great information on her website. See what these top sellers are doing and figure out how you can get where they are. Use them as inspiration for your brand.
  10. Make different versions of the same designs that are well received. Different colour variations of a popular design or rework an element of that piece so it can have more mass appeal.
  11. Have a website or blog external to your social media, like this one! It helps with your visibility and to show up in Google searches.
  12. Tell your family, friends and coworkers about your stores and they might support you! You could even gift them stuff from your own stores for Christmas and birthdays etc. to get them excited about your work.
  13. Something I’m currently working on – Go back through your old designs and either delete ones that aren’t working for your brand or update titles, keywords etc.
  14. Always keep learning.  There are lots of great sources online for marketing your brand or honing and learning new skills.  Check out Skillshare for some free or paid courses in marketing, design and many other skills.
  15. Subscribe to my blog!  I’m always posting new content on selling your art on POD websites so make sure you don’t miss out.

Thanks for reading and I hope you’ve found this blog post helpful.  Let me know if you have any other tips to add in the comments below!

Cheers,

Julie

Check out these other posts for more information on selling your art on POD websites:

Complex Mandala Drawing Template

mandalas template sketchbook drawing

Hey guys! Considering the success of my Mandala Drawing Templates, I decided to create this new, more detailed version of the template so now you can draw even more complex mandala designs!

Just click on the template image below to open it up a new tab and then you can right click and choose “save image as” to download it to your computer.

complex mandala drawing template

Print the template off on an 8.5 x 11″ piece of paper and then use it as a guide underneath copy paper or even sketchbook paper to draw your mandala!

I find it works best to paperclip it on at least 2 sides to prevent it from moving around under the page while you draw.

You could also use this template as a layer in your digital painting program to help you draw digital mandalas.

Here is a mandala I drew using this template:

mandalas template diy art drawing

I hope you will find this mandala template useful!

Let me know what you think by leaving a comment below, and feel free to share your mandalas with me on Instagram by tagging me @julieerindesigns, or post a link to your drawing below!

If you’re new to drawing mandalas, or want something a little less complex, you might want to check out my other Mandala Drawing Templates here!

Have a great day everyone and have fun drawing those mandalas.
 
Cheers!
 
Julie

Selling your Art on POD Websites: TeePublic Edition

selling art online teepublic

I’ve recently started selling my designs on a new Print On Demand website, called TeePublic.  I’ve made a few sales so far, and I wanted to share with you my experiences.

Read on to find out more about selling art on TeePublic and see if it might work for you!

Open a free TeePublic store and start selling your artwork today!

First Impressions of TeePublic

  • This POD is very T-shirt focused (it is TeePublic after all).
  • Prices are comparatively very reasonable.  Maybe your friends/family won’t pay $30 for your t-shirt but they might be willing to pay $14!
  • Caters to branded and/or fan art.  (Personally I avoid this because I’m not willing to have my stuff taken down due to copyright infringement)
  • Punny and funny designs also seem to do well.

Ease of Upload

  • Very quick and simple uploading process.  Few steps.
  • Intuitive tagging (suggestions come up even before you start typing)!
  • Must use a .png image for the t-shirts (ie. no background).
  • You can upload patterns for some products like pillows or totes, but you can only use one version of the image, you can’t upload a different file for the t-shirt (so in that case there would be no t-shirt for that design).
  • As mentioned above, there is no ability to upload multiple versions of the same design to suit a different product type, so keep this in mind.
  • You can resize and centre your design easily.

TeePublic Storefront

  • Pretty basic. Focus is on the design and T-shirts.
  • No models, just images of the products by themselves.

Here is a screenshot of my store front:

teepublic home page

T-shirt product page display:

tea pot head tshirt teepublic

Products and Pricing

  • A fairly small range of products but they are quite affordable.
  • Basic t-shirts are $14 for the first 3 days after upload, then they go up to $20.
  • T-shirts go on sale for $14 at least 1x per month. (Other products go on sale too)
  • A wide variety of shirt styles including hoodies and kids’ clothing are available.
  • They also have stickers, totes, tapestries, phone cases, mugs, pillows, notebooks and prints.
  • Prices in USD.

Shipping

  • Starts at $5.99 to the U.S. and Canada.

Payment

  • Paypal or Payoneer payment options.
  • Paid monthly on the 15th for previous month’s earnings.
  • Affiliate program available, but you have to apply.
  • They also have a “refer an artist” program, where you can potentially get paid if you refer someone to open a store and they make sales.

TeePublic Community

  • There is a Facebook group but it isn’t very active.
  • No obvious forum.
  • Ability to follow other designers but not to like their individual works.
  • Less sense of community than other platforms such as Zazzle or Redbubble.

Promotional Tools

  • You will get an e-mail once a month or so letting you know about upcoming sales.
  • In this email are links to download various advertisement templates catered to different social media platforms, which can be used and edited in Photoshop.
  • Teepublic advertises their top design picks on the homepage and through e-mail campaigns so if you can get noticed by them, they’ll do the work for you!

Summary

  • If your work is very graphic, and especially if you do fan art, TeePublic could be a great option for you.
  • Their website and uploading process is simple and easy to use.
  • Their affordable prices, especially $14 T-shirts, is an excellent way to entice buyers.

So, what are you waiting for?

Check out TeePublic today and let me know what your thoughts and experiences are in the comments below!
 
Cheers,
 
Julie

Selling your Art on POD Websites – Redbubble vs. Society6

selling art online print on demand society6 vs redbubble

Hey guys, I’m back with another comparison post about selling your art on POD (Print on Demand) websites!

This time I’m comparing 2 popular websites I sell my artwork on, Society6 and Redbubble.  I’ve broken down my comparison into sections to make it easier to compare and hopefully find what you’re looking for more easily.
So read on to learn more about selling your art on POD websites and find out which one might work best for you!

Store Front

As of this time, I prefer Rebubble’s store frontStore fronts are easily customized with a header, profile photo, bio, optional journal entries, and collections.  Your latest art works are also shown this page.

On the design page you will see the default product you chose when uploading the artwork, and below that is a button to show which other products are available.  You can also see reviews (of the product, not your art) and comments people have left you.  [Pro tip – leaving comments is a great way to connect with other Redbubble artists!]

You can also “like” designs and “follow” other artists on both websites, which I recommend doing.

Society6 has recently updated their store front. Right now (as of April 2019), you can click on edit shop then choose “Sort By” and then choose either Random, New or Popular. I recommend choosing “Random” so it shows a good assortment of your products and designs.

You can also customize your store front with a banner and a logo or profile image.

Audience

Both Society6 and Redbubble cater towards a young, hip, and trendy audience.  Think festival gear, college dorm or first apartment decor, stickers, and unique accessories. Trendy pattern designs and sayings are popular on both websites.

The audience on Redbubble seems to be slightly younger than Society6 as they focus more on stickers which are popular with teenagers and young adults.  However, Society6 recently introduced stickers too which are gaining in popularity.

Overall I think the target audience for both of these sites are young adults (20s and 30s) and their parents buying gifts for them.

Ease of Upload

Redbubble’s uploading tool is the easiest of the POD sites I’ve tried.

It’s great because you can upload your main design and then customize it for each product type.  There are options for tiling the image (to create a pattern), or you can replace the image entirely if neither of those options work.
You can also change the background colour on Redbubble, which is handy when working with designs that have a transparent background.

As of April 2019 you can now “copy” the settings of an existing design to make uploading a similar design even easier!

Society6 has also recently updated their uploading tool to make it more like Redbubble’s, which is great. However, it still has a few issues and lacks tools like tiling or the ability to change the background colour.  It’s not a big issue – you just have to adjust your image accordingly. Also, transparent (png) images don’t work well except for stickers.

In general, both are pretty easy to upload but Redbubble has the edge in my opinion.

Products

blue gold mandala pattern scarf redbubble

In terms of products, both offer a similar range which includes apparel, electronics cases, and home decor items. The prices are about the same as other online POD stores and they often run 20% off or other similar promotions.

Redbubble has some unique products that are not on Society6, such as mini skirtsdresses and scarves among others.

Society6 also has unique products such as furniture and yoga mats.

The quality is pretty good on both sites and varies depending on the product.

I have a really nice tapestry from Society6 that I used as a bed sheet in the warmer months. Friends have purchased mugs and beach towels and were very happy with what they received.  T-shirts and hoodies can be hit or miss.
Both websites add new types of products from time to time so look out for that.

Earnings and Payment

Redbubble earnings are paid automatically around the 15th of every month (to Paypal, or direct deposit), and there is a $20 minimum threshold.

Similarly, Society6 pays automatically to Paypal, with whatever balance you have on the 1st of every month.

Both are reliable and I haven’t had any issues getting paid from either.

Marketing

The folks at Redbubble and Society6 are pretty good at marketing and driving traffic to their respective sites, so it’s mostly a matter of getting your own designs out there (which is easier said than done).

Check out my post on Social Media Marketing Tips for Artists to learn more about marketing your designs.

Most products have nice display images that you can screenshot and use for your own marketing initiatives.  You can also find some nice promotional tools on the Redbubble blog, such as fun templates like this one:

throw pillow mock up template selling art redbubble

Society6 also has a curator link on each product page, so you can receive extra royalty not only on your own products but other’s as well!

Another nice thing that Society6 does is they will send an email out before a sale so you can prepare, and they provide you with an overlay to create your ads. Usually it’s just text containing the discount and promo code so you can layer it over or within your own images.

Example:

society6 sale promo template example

Shipping

Redbubble and Society6 both have reasonable shipping costs which varies depending on the product and package weight.

Redbubble has headquarters located in San Francisco (U.S.) and Melbourne (Australia) so the products are shipped from one of those areas depending on your location.  Also, you get a free sticker with purchase and their packaging is super cute.

Society6’s headquarters is also in California but some products are manufactured in different locations within the U.S., so you might get multiple packages.  Sometimes they offer free shipping worldwide promotions.

Shipping from both stores is pretty quick, and you can choose a faster shipping method if required.

Note: Some products take longer to manufacture than others so it could take longer to ship and receive!

Summary

Both Society6 and Redbubble are great options for selling your artwork online, but overall I prefer Redbubble!

However, both have great things to offer and it all depends on what you feel comfortable with and works with your art style.

Personally, I use both because, as they say, don’t put all of your eggs in one basket 😉

Want to learn more about selling your art online?  Here are some more great posts to check out!

Selling your Art on POD Websites – RedBubble Edition

Selling your art on POD websites Redbubble edition

Hello fellow starving artists!  Today I’m sharing some info about selling your art on POD (print on demand) websites, specifically Redbubble.

Some of you may have seen my earlier post about selling your art on POD websites where I compared the pros and cons of Zazzle vs. Society6.

In this post I will be giving a review of my experiences with Redbubble where I have been selling my art for a few years now.

Read on to learn more about selling your art on Redbubble!

Store Front

My first impressions of Rebubble is that they are artist focused, cater to a trendy audience and have a sense of humour.

Their website layout is sleek and easy to navigate. On the home page there are rotating featured artists and art works that are updated daily.

You can easily customize your store front with a header, profile photo, bio, optional journal entries, and collections.  Your latest designs are also shown here.

The design pages have tabs that show available products, reviews (of the product, not your art) and comments.  Pro tip – leaving comments is a great way to connect with other Redbubble artists!

You can also “like” other people’s designs and “follow” other artists, which I recommend taking advantage of.

Products

In terms of products, the range is similar to Society6, and includes apparel, various electronics cases, and home decor items. The prices are about the same as other POD’s and they often offer 20% off or other promotions.

Redbubble has some unique products that are not on other POD’s such as mini skirts, dresses and scarves. Below is a picture of a scarf I purchased featuring my Blue and Gold Mandala Pattern.

redbubble scarf

I love this scarf, the print turned out beautiful and the fabric is and soft and silky. I find it is well made.

I’ve also purchased a hoody, t-shirt and stickers with my own designs.  All are good quality and I’ve had no issues, however I did find the t-shirt a bit large for a Small.

A really popular product on Redbubble are stickers.  I usually sell a few every day, mostly of my Rose Gold Mandala design.  Below is a picture of several of my sticker designs. They are super cute, and affordable too!

redbubble stickers

Ease of Upload

Redbubble’s uploading tool is by far my favourite out of all the POD sites I’ve tried.

I find it efficient because you can upload one image of your main design and adjust it straight in the browser for each product.  There are also tiling options, or you can replace the image entirely if neither of those options work.

You can also change the background colour which can be very handy when working with transparent designs.

NEW in 2019: You can now copy existing settings from another design, making uploading similar designs a breeze!

Earnings and Payment

It took about a month after opening my store before I saw any sales, but since then I have been getting consistent earnings every month.  (I should note here that I was lucky enough to have a design featured on the front page which boosted my sales a lot.)

It’s not going to replace my day job any time soon, but any amount of extra cash is always welcome!

You can adjust the markup for individual products (in Account Settings), but it is automatically set to 20%.

Earnings are paid out automatically around the 15th of every month (to Paypal, or direct deposit), and there is a $20 minimum threshold.

Redbubble does not has an affiliate program like some of the others PODs (like Society6 and Zazzle).

Marketing

The folks at Redbubble are pros at marketing and driving traffic to their website, so it’s just a matter of getting your own designs out there.

Check out my post on Social Media Marketing Tips for Artists to learn more.

If you’re lucky and get featured on their front page, then you’re good to go for a while. You can also find some nice promotional tools on the Redbubble blog. For example, fun marketing templates like this one:

throw pillow mock up template

Shipping

Redbubble has headquarters located in San Francisco (U.S.) and Melbourne (Australia). Products are shipped from one of those areas depending on your location.

I have found they offer reasonable shipping costs to Canada, and even more reasonable within the U.S.  The shipping is generally pretty quick, and you can choose a faster shipping method if required.

Also, you get a free sticker with every purchase! 

Summary

In sum, I highly recommend Redbubble for selling your art online!

I hope you’ve found some useful information here. If you have any questions, or want to share your own experiences with Redbubble, feel free to leave a comment below!

Cheers!  Have a great week.
 
Julie
 

Social Media Marketing Tips For Artists

social media marketing tips for artists

Are you an artist trying to figure out how to market yourself on social media? I was too, just a few years ago!

Since then, I’ve learned a lot and wanted to share some tips with you guys!

Please note: I’m not an expert on this matter, but I have managed to triple my stats on a few key social networks over the past year, and slowly but surely grown my online presence since creating the Julie Erin Designs brand.

To illustrate this, below is a screenshot of my Wordpress stats since starting this blog in 2013, and as you can see, it has gone up steadily each year.

stats

By the way, I do have a full time job and other life commitments outside of this endeavor, so I am only able to dedicate a few hours per week to creating and marketing my designs.

This leads me into my first tip which is: Dedicate just 5-10 minutes a day to your social media game.

  • Start by taking on just one task per day on one of your social accounts.
  • Some examples include: Tweet an image of your latest work (don’t forget to include relevant hashtags). Like and/or follow some new users on Instagram.
  • Don’t feel overwhelmed.  You should be able to do this during your coffee or lunch break, on the way home from work on the bus, after dinner, or whenever you have an idle moment.

Focus on just a few social media platforms.

  • Try out different platforms but then hone it down to just a few, and then focus on content and growing your followers.  My top 3 are Twitter, Instagram and Facebook. I dabble on others but I get the most engagement for my time on those 3.

Set up a social media calendar, so you can easily plan and see what you need to do for the week.

  • Don’t overwhelm yourself with an over-loaded calendar.  Start with just one task per day that can be completed within a few minutes.
  • Create a visual calendar using your computer, a planner, or you can find lots of downloadable worksheets online.
  • Do what works for you and your schedule.
  • Learn the etiquette for your chosen social media app.  On Twitter you can share multiple times per day, but on Facebook you may only want to share something every few days.
  • Example: Monday: Tweet about your latest design, tweet 2 sold items. Tuesday: Share a new design on Instagram.  Wednesday: Blog post about new design, and post to Facebook page.  Friday: Tweet new blog post.

Have a blog.

  • Use it to showcase your art work, items for sale, share art tips, supplies you use, your sketchbook, whatever you can think of.
  • Connect with other art bloggers. Follow/like/comment on their posts.
  • Pro tip: Don’t forget to link to your blog from your social media profiles.

Use (free) apps to make your life easier.

  • Buffer or Hootsuite.  Use one of these apps (or something similar) to schedule a few posts to your social media accounts for the day. This could even be your one task of the day, if that’s all you have time for.
  • Crowdfire or similar apps which help you track followers and unfollowers.  You can also search for people who follow similar accounts and then like/follow them.
  • Photo editing apps such as Canva and Photogrid. There are several out there, so find one that you like. Use it to create and edit images of your designs and products right on your phone.  While you could also just make these images in Photoshop on your PC, being able to make promo images on the go makes it so much easier to get it done when you have a spare moment.
  • Example of an advertisement I created using the Photogrid app:
mandala rainbow pastel leggings yoga workout pants

Keep a list of content ideas.

  • Keep a list on your phone or somewhere, so you never run out of ideas for fresh content!
  • Examples: Sold items, new designs, WIP’s and sketchbook shots.
  • Check out my Twitter and Instagram feeds for more content ideas!

Make use of hashtags (important for Twitter and Instagram especially).

  • Use relevant hashtags so that people can find your work.
  • …but don’t overdo it. Figure out what works on which platforms.
  • Monitor those hashtags and like/follow others who are posting to that hashtag.

Make use of tagging (Instagram and Twitter).

  • Sometimes, when appropriate, you may want to actually tag another user (such Zazzle or Redbubble for example) on Twitter or Instagram, if you are showcasing their product. You may get lucky and they might even re-tweet or feature your product!
  • Go through their tagged feeds to find similar users to like and follow.

Engage with similar users.

  • Connect with other bloggers, as mentioned above.
  • I sell my art work on POD websites such as Zazzle, Redbubble and Society6, so I try to engage with others who sell on those sites as well.  I do this by either liking their work directly on those sites, on social media, through forums or Facebook groups.

To learn more about selling your art on POD websites, check out my detailed post on the subject!

Post to shopping websites.

  • If this is appropriate to your style of art work, you may consider posting your products on shopping websites such as Pinterest and Wanelo.

If you have the opportunity to do so, take a social media marketing course at your local college or university.

  • I took a short course which was very informative and turned me on to some new apps and strategies.
  • Think of it as an investment in your business.

Speaking of SEO (search engine optimization)use it!

  • Do a quick search and learn some SEO basics which is especially important for your blog.

Other resources you may find helpful:

I hope you guys have found some useful information here, and don’t forget to follow my blog to get more tips like these in the future!
 
Feel free to share some of your own social media marketing tips below!
 
Cheers,
 
Julie