How to Sell Digital Designs on Etsy: A Beginner’s Guide

Maybe you’re an artist or a digital nomad who loves to create digital designs. Or maybe you’re a stay-at-home mom who needs a little extra income. Whatever your reason, learning how to sell digital designs on Etsy can be a great way to make some extra money and generate passive income.

However, selling digital downloads on Etsy can be difficult, especially if you’re not sure how to price or market your designs.

Additionally, some people find it difficult to create digital designs that are both beautiful and professional-looking.

This article will help you overcome those challenges and start making money from your beautiful digital designs by using a simple but proven step-by-step approach.

Let’s get started!

The words "How to sell digital designs on etsy" in yellow over blueish background.

What are digital designs and why should you sell them on Etsy

Digital designs are simply designs that have been created using a computer. This can include things like logos, illustrations, invitations, or even fonts.

Why should you sell digital designs on Etsy? Well, there are a few reasons…

First of all, Etsy is a great platform for selling digital products and downloads. It’s easy to set up your shop and the platform has a large audience of potential customers.

Secondly, as an artist, you can earn a lot more money selling digital designs than you can by selling physical products. Digital designs can be sold over and over again, which means that you can make a lot more money in the long run.

And finally, digital designs are perfect for people who want to start their own business but don’t have the time or resources to create physical products (or don’t want to have to worry about shipping-related issues!).

How to create digital designs

Learning how to create digital downloads/designs can be a lot of fun, but it’s also a very competitive market when it comes to selling products online. If you want to be successful, you need to create designs that are both beautiful and professional-looking.

So, how do you create digital designs and Etsy printables? (downloads that can be printed at home after purchase)

The process of creating digital designs can vary depending on the software you use and your level of expertise.

However, most digital designs are created using Photoshop or Illustrator. If you’re not familiar with these programs, there are plenty of online tutorials that can teach you how to use them.

If you want to start with an even easier tool, you could start designing (and even selling) items using the free web-based app Canva. This tool is amazingly simple to use and it has lots of ready-to-use templates you can choose from.

Here’s a great video tutorial on how to sell simple designs on Etsy using Canva:

Next, here are a few tips for creating digital designs that will stand out from the competition:

1. Start by brainstorming some ideas

This can be anything from a new logo for your business to a set of illustrations for a children’s book.

2. Start sketching out some rough concepts

Don’t worry about getting things perfect – just focus on getting your ideas down on paper or in the digital software you prefer to work with.

3. Refine your concepts

Start refining your concepts until you have a final design. Make sure that all of your elements are in balance and that the design is visually appealing.

4. Export your design

When you’re happy with your design, export it from the designing software as a high-resolution PDF or JPEG file.

5. Upload and sell

Upload the exported file or files to your Etsy store and start selling! (more on this step below).

Uploading your digital designs to Etsy

When you’re ready to sell your digital designs, the first step is to upload them to Etsy. You’ll need to create a listing on the Etsy website (a product or Etsy shop name).

This process is relatively simple. First, go to and click on the “Sell” tab at the bottom of the page. Then, follow the instructions and register as a seller.

Screenshot of the bottom menu from Etsy's website
Screenshot from Etsy’s website

Next, click on “Create a New Listing”. You’ll then be asked to choose a category for your product. Select “Digital Downloads” from the list of categories.

Here are a few tips for doing this upload process successfully:

1. Make sure that your designs are high-resolution

If you want your designs to look good, they need to be high-resolution. This means that they should be at least 300dpi.

2. Give your customers several options

When you’re uploading your designs, make sure to give your customers several options, such as different file types and sizes.

3. Use keywords in your title and description

When you’re creating your listing, use keywords in the title and description so that potential customers can find your design easily.

To do this, do some basic keyword research by using the search bar on the Etsy website, and see what it suggests when you start typing. Then, write down some good keywords and take a look at the competition as well, while you’re at it.

Screenshot of the search bar on Etsy's website
Screenshot from Etsy’s website

4. Give your customers a preview

Make sure to include a preview of your design so that potential customers know what they’re buying.

Pricing your digital designs

When learning how to sell digital designs on Etsy, the part of pricing your digital designs can be a bit tricky. You don’t want to charge too much and scare potential customers away, but you also don’t want to charge too little and miss out on potential earnings.

Here are a few tips for pricing your digital designs:

1. Do some research

Before you start setting prices, it’s important to do some market research and see what other designers are charging for similar products. This will give you a good idea of what the market is willing to pay.

It is also a good idea to scroll among the top-selling digital products on Etsy for some additional product ideas.

2. Consider your costs

When you’re setting your prices, make sure to factor in all of your costs, such as the cost of the software you used to create the design.

You also need to consider the amount of time you spent on creating the design. If it took you a few hours to create the design, then you should charge more than if it only took you a few minutes.

3. Price your products accordingly

Don’t price your products too low or too high – price them according to the value that they provide to your customers.

4. Use a pricing strategy

Using a pricing strategy can help you find the right price for your digital designs. Here are a few strategies that you can use:

A. The Cost-Plus Pricing Strategy

This strategy involves adding your costs to a desired profit margin. For example, if it cost you $10 to create the design and you want to make a profit of $5, then you would charge $15 for the design.

B. The Competitive Pricing Strategy

This strategy involves setting your prices based on what your competitors are charging. If you’re selling similar products to what they’re selling, then you should charge a similar price.

C. The Value-Based Pricing Strategy

This strategy involves setting your prices based on the value that your products provide to your customers. If your product is high quality and provides a lot of value, then you can charge a higher price.

Marketing your digital designs on Etsy

If you want your digital designs to be successful, it’s important to market them correctly. Here are a few tips for marketing your digital designs on Etsy:

1. Create a strong title

Your title is one of the most important elements of your listing. Make sure that it stands out and catches the attention of potential customers.

2. Write a good description

Your description should be well written and provide a lot of information about your product. It should also be keyword rich so that potential customers can find it easily.

3. Use high-quality images

Make sure to use high-quality images in your listing. This will help potential customers see the quality of your product and increase their chances of buying it.

4. Use social media

Promote your digital designs on social media platforms such as Twitter, TikTok, Pinterest, and Facebook to reach a larger audience.

A blog is also a great way to market your designs. Here’s how to create a new blog.

Tips for success when selling digital designs on Etsy

If you want to be successful when selling digital designs on Etsy, there are a few things you need to keep in mind. Here are some key tips:

1. Offer something unique

When you’re selling digital designs on Etsy, it’s important to offer something unique that sets your products apart from the competition. If you can offer something that no one else is offering, then you’ll be more likely to succeed.

2. Provide high-quality products

It’s also important to make sure that your digital designs are of high quality. Remember, potential customers can’t physically see or touch your product, so they’re relying on the quality of the images and the description to make their decision.

3. Be responsive

When potential customers reach out to you with questions or concerns, it’s important to be responsive and address their needs. If you can build a reputation for being responsive and helpful, you’ll be more likely to succeed.

4. Offer great customer service

Finally, always offer great customer service. If customers have a positive experience with your product and your customer service, they’re much more likely to come back and buy from you again in the future.

Final words on how to sell digital designs on Etsy

As we’ve seen, there are a few things you need to keep in mind in order to be successful when creating and selling Etsy digital downloads.

First, offer something unique that sets your products apart from the competition. Second, provide high-quality products. And third, always offer great customer service. By following these tips, you’ll be well on your way to automated sales and “side hustle success”!

I hope this brief “Etsy seller handbook” and guide on selling printables and digital designs have been useful.

If you want to learn about other creative side hustles then check my curated list.

Frequently asked questions

What is a digital design?

A digital design is a design that can be used electronically, such as on a website or in an email.

How do I create a digital design?

There are many ways to create digital designs. You can use an online service like Canva, or you can create your own designs using software like Adobe Photoshop or Illustrator.

How do I upload my digital design to Etsy?

To upload your digital design to Etsy, go to your Etsy listing and click the “Add Images” button. Then, select the file from your computer that you want to upload. Finally, click the “Upload Image”.

What are the best file types for Etsy digital downloads?

The most practical and common file types for selling digital designs and downloads on Etsy are JPG, PNG, SVG, EPS, and PDF.