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Hello, friends! Let’s talk today about how to sell on ETSY!

I started selling on Etsy about eight years ago. My shop sold home decor and gift items, and was doing so well I decided to open up a second shop selling printables.

While the shop was only active for a couple of years, after which I moved on to other things, it didn’t take long for the shop to become successful and for me to gain thousands of sales before all was said and done.

While learning how to sell on Etsy is never easy, I will say that selling printables was much easier than I thought it would be. I sold my printables as instant downloads, so after a buyer purchased a printable, it was automatically sent to me! So easy on my part. I also sold art prints in various sizes, but after selling fragile/awkwardly shaped items for so many years, printing out and shipping prints was, relatively speaking, a piece of cake.

sell on etsy

I won’t get into how to open an Etsy shop in this post (no need to reinvent the wheel), but I will share all I’ve learned through the years on how to best sell printables. These tips will help you to (hopefully) garner sales quickly and make a bit of money in the process!

Before Opening Your Shop As with any Etsy shop, good photos are the most important thing to make your shop look professional to buyers. The great thing about selling printable art on Etsy, though, is that you can easily purchase a pre-made, styled frame image, and insert your printable image in your frame using your photo editing software of choice.

Simply open both your styled image and your printable image, drag the printable on top of the frame, and resize to fit the opening.

sell on etsy 2

You may also want to consider adding a watermark to your photos, so that they cannot be stolen and reused by other shops (which has happened to me more than once).

After adding photos, you’ll get into the meat of your description. I’ve explained in a past post about descriptive titles and tags on Etsy, and you’ll also want to make sure you have a clear and concise item description. Also in your description, you’ll want to note that any frames or styling elements in your photos are not included with the buyer’s purchase.

Be prepared, also, for lots of questions from customers about how to print printables . The more you can spell out in your description, the fewer questions you may be asked later.

Last, but not least, if the listing is for a printable only, make it very clear at the very top of your description that the listing is for a digital file and that no physical files will be shipped. Also, note whether or not you’ll give refunds on digital items (my policy was always “no”, but do what you think is best).

Upload your image for instant download, and it’s ready to be purchased. It’ll be automatically delivered once the buyer pays, so, unless there’s customization needed, nothing needs to be done on your part (just make sure your listings are set for auto-renewal so that the sold printable is relisted immediately).

Customizing Printables As you can imagine, people love customizable printables. Whether it’s for a baby gift, baptism, or wedding gift, buyers love the idea of purchasing a printable that’s custom to their needs.

how to sell printables

This state printable was my shop’s best seller; buyers bought it often for best friends and family members living in different states. Obviously, though, it needs to be customized. If you sell customizable printables, be sure to make a clear note in the item’s description with what information you need from the customer, how long until the printable is ready and how it will be delivered to the customer.

I always added a color chart (background, states and hearts could all be customized) as the second image in the listing so customers could further customize their printable . I’d ask, in the description, for them to leave their color choice(s), states and where they want the hearts places in Message to Seller.

Pricing Printables Printable pricing, as you can imagine, varies greatly. I found charging $5 for an Instant Download printable to be a good middle-ground, remembering, of course, that both transaction fees and listing fees will be taken out of that $5.

For customized printables, I always charged $8. This always seemed fair, as customized printables take more work, and, of course, are custom. Leave a bit of margin in your pricing to not only compensate for fees, but for the occasional coupon code or other promotion (if you so desire). Everyone loves to feel like they’re getting a bargain!

Promote Your Shop I’ve been fortunate to have my work featured in many blogs and magazines, and, if this is a goal of yours, too, good shop promotion will help you get there. Be sure to share your work across your social channels, and take a moment to read this post on How to Get Press for Your Etsy Shop!

You can also consider starting a blog for your shop. This blog, by the way, was actually started to promote my shop, and later became a source of income on its own, thanks to Mediavine!

There is so much to say about how to sell printables on Etsy. I’ll definitely add to this post periodically. If you have other questions or comments, please leave a comment below and I’ll get back to you!

Thanks for reading all about SELL ON ETSY {HOW TO SELL PRINTABLES ON ETSY}! Have a lovely day.


Monday 29th of May 2023

I would like to start selling printable on Etsy. My question is, since I am creating my own one of a kind custom art printables, should I have my initials or some sort of logo of mine on every piece I’ve created when I post it on my shop and then get rid of the logo once I sell it digitally? Just a thought I had…

Harsh Munshaw

Thursday 11th of June 2020

Hey team! Thank you for sharing this! These insights are great! And have so many take aways from all the above ideas!!

Do take a look at our Etsy shop for DIY Wedding Stationery & Invitations :

Any feedback / suggestions are welcome! :)

Thanks again!


Thursday 12th of March 2020

Hello! I know this article is older but i had a quick question. I am starting a shop for custom invitations and printables - not instant downloads. I know this might sound silly but should i be listing it as physical or digital? If I choose digital it forces me to attach a file to be downloaded but if i choose physical i have to fill out shipping info. What would you suggest? Thank you!


Thursday 12th of March 2020

This is a great question. I do this: I label it as digital (so that it doesn't confuse people as to what they're getting), and when it asked me to upload a file I'll upload a generic image that says something like :"please remember to check your email for a proof within 48 hours" or "please remember to email a picture to (my email) so I can start work on your project." Hope that helps.


Thursday 8th of November 2018

Tha k you for sharing your tips. My question is .. this is something that I would Live to do but am at a loss as to what needs to be my study background to learn this art. Plz guide