*Affiliate links are included in this post.
Out of all the emails that I receive to my Craftaholique email address, I’d have to say my favourite ones are notifications from Etsy to say that someone has bought one of my beading patterns!
Over the last year, I’ve been ramping up my Etsy business and it’s really starting to make a difference to the level of income I earn every month. In fact, without it, I’d be a bit lost now, to be honest!
I’m actually making good money from doing something that I’m really passionate about – and the best part is that it’s mostly passive.
I spend time creating a pattern before uploading it up to my Etsy shop and then I can sell it as a digital download time and time again, without having to do anything further. I do get quite a few enquiries, so I sometimes have to respond to emails, but that’s about all.
Here are some stats of my Etsy income over the last year in case you’re interested!
As you can see, I had a great month in September! Sales have declined a little in the last quarter of the year, but I haven’t been adding as many patterns as I’d like to my shop. Surprisingly though, January is set to be a good month!
Reflecting on my shop’s progress over the last year has got me to thinking that there really are so many opportunities on Etsy for anyone with some design skills to make passive income. The platform is ideal for crafters who are used to making their own patterns – and especially good for graphic designers too.
Take a look below at some of the ways it’s possible to earn income passively with Etsy through digital products.
I’ve already mentioned beading patterns, but you can also sell crochet, sewing and knitting patterns very successfully on Etsy. You can create patterns using tools like PhotoShop or Adobe Illustrator, but there are also specific software packages available that make life a lot easier.
For creating my beading patterns, I use BeadTool 4 currently. In terms of software for creating knitting, sewing or crochet patterns, I may research and review some packages thoroughly for a future post, so watch this space!
2. Printables and templates
So many people love printables! From fancy text quotes and digital cards, through to planning charts and to-do lists, if you’re good at graphic design and have software like Adobe Illustrator, this is a market you can tap into. Once created, they can be downloaded time and time again from Etsy as a digital file, earning you passive income in the process.
You can even use Microsoft Excel and Word to create downloadable templates e.g. Resume templates and sample budget spreadsheets. Take a look at some of these downloadable printables and templates on Etsy for inspiration.
3. Blog and social media headers
If you know how to create backgrounds and profile headers for blogs (e.g. that are built on WordPress and Blogger), you can sell them as premade designs for bloggers to download and use. If you want to earn even more money in this area, you can offer custom design services for bloggers who would like a more tailored design for their blogs. Obviously, bespoke design work wouldn’t class as passive income, but would be a nice earner for you!
In addition, you could charge for creating social media headers for Facebook and Twitter in much the same way. Check out similar digital products on Etsy here.
4. Photo art
Fancy yourself as the next David Bailey? If you’re creative with a camera, why not consider selling your photos as art on Etsy? You could offer printed versions, but if you’re interested in passive income, simply offer digital downloads instead. For examples on Etsy, click here.
IMPORTANT: MAKE YOUR OWN DIGITAL PRODUCTS ORIGINAL!
Do feel free to browse Etsy to see the type of shops on there that are selling digital products already and hopefully you’ll get some good inspiration for what sort of products you might be able to create yourself.
But, don’t attempt to copy what another Etsy shop is already doing. The chances are that you’d fail because you’d be a fledgeling shop doing what successful shops are already doing really well – plus, it’s just not right to try to copy someone who has worked really hard to get to where they’re at.
Figure out what you can create that’s unique compared to other Etsy shops and go from there. Bringing something different to the marketplace will most certainly work in your favour!
I hope this post has inspired you to work on creating a passive income stream through digital products on Etsy. If you have any questions about setting up an Etsy shop, please feel free to leave a comment below and I will do my best to help you!
Before you go, these other posts I’ve written may interest you:
- How to use Pinterest to Significantly Boost Your Etsy Sales
- How Starting a Blog can Skyrocket Your Etsy Business
- How to Start Your Very Own Blog!
*Affiliate links to Etsy are included in this post. This means that if you make a purchase through one of my links, I will earn a small commission at no cost to you or any of the designers above. I only ever recommend products that I truly love and any commissions help me to keep this site up and running. Thank you for using my links if you’re able to.
**All images © Craftaholique.