With NO Initial Investment
Tell me if you ever been here…
You are struggling financially but getting a second job is not an option. You want to sell your art for extra cash but don’t have the money to invest for merchandise, etc… You don’t want to put things on credit or take a loan, maybe this is not even an option for you.
Well, my friend, the benefits of living in this day and age is that there is ALWAYS a way thanks to the internet.
Now I will say that, for every path you take, there will be nay sayers AND there will be work. There is no way around it.
So how can you start selling your art this coming year, with as little to nothing of initial investment? This is not counting your art supplies, but let’s be honest guys, you don’t need a surplus amount of supplies. I do want to mention, that one of the biggest complains I hear from people is, the transaction fees. NOTHING in this world is free, and you shouldn’t expect it to be so. Let go of that notion and I promise you that your way of looking at this will change. When you acknowledge that we are ALL trying to eat and that is OK, you will not focus SO much on this. Now yes, be smart and pay attention to who charges what but don’t get caught up in it. Let’s focus on getting your work out there with NO initial investment.
Sell in Person
The best way for me to sell my original pieces or crafts have always been PayPal. I understand that this seems antiquated to some BUT what I like about PayPal are the following.
- You can have a product catalog for easy access.
- If you have a free website, it is easy to create and include buttons without adding an ecommerce widget to your site.
- You can create subscriptions, invoices and special links.
- You can use a QR code for specific product or your PayPal account.
- You can order a free card reader and seller kit.
- Allows you to accept credit card payments even without the reader.
- You can have a Tip Jar with a QR Code
- Plus, if it’s been here this long then you know it is reliable.
Sell on Social Media
Now, the ABSOLUTE best way to do this across all platforms is utilizing a tool such as KOJI .
Koji is a bio link tree but the possibilities of all you can do with this specific one, are amazing. Now I recommend a tool like this because it allows you to utilize ONE link and use it in ALL of your platforms. Let’s get into SOME of the things you can do with Koji.
- Koji allows you to add apps specific to your needs, such as;
- Physical Store Front, where you can build a store front and sell your physical goods.
- Digital Store Front, if you want to sell digital wall art, digital files such as stickers, crads, planners, etc..
- Affiliate Link lists, so you can share affiliate links to supplies you use and/or more
- Encourage growth, by allowing you to provide check-in rewards or giveaways
- Create subscriptions so that people can pay to see VIP content.
- Koji also allows you to have all of the streams from all of your platforms in ONE account and you choose when to transfer it out.
- Because you are using one link for all of your platforms, it adds continuity and consistency of your branding.
- The app also allows you to earn for any referrals made and this referral link is already embedded into your koji profile.
I can go on and on about the things you can do with koji but there’s honestly too many things to list on this one post.
If you want to try KOJI for yourself, check it out HERE!
Sell SPECIFICALLY on Instagram and/or Facebook
I’ll mention this separately because you can actually have a store ON IG or FB. When I first started, it was mandatory for me to have a Facebook store for me to sell on Instagram, but this is no longer the case although I don’t see why not have it. It is all linked so you are only uploading it once and then making edits if needed. Meta has actually been working really hard to improve the functionality of these stores so you can actually handle all the aspects of your ecommerce, form taking payments to purchasing and printing a shipping label. What I like about this is that you can tag your posts to your products regardless of how many followers you have and without having to direct people to your bio.
Sell on Print on Demand Sites
Print on demand sites are a great way to get your artwork and designs on merchandise without having a stock of it. Please keep in mind that you are getting a margin for your designs so it may look small but you are not paying for the merchandise, shipping or other costs. On the other hand, the design is YOURS, so you can upload it to various print on demand sites.
I love Print on Demand sites, because it allows you to see your products on a variety of products without committing to a specific one since you are not stocking it. It also allows you to tap into a market that is not your own AND you don’t have to worry about the design of the website or adding new products. I will say that, you still must promote your products and your shops in order to be successful.
These are the Print on Demand Sites that I personally use and the reasons why.
- RedBubble– RedBubble is the one I feel is the most user friendly as far as uploading goes. The audience they serve tend to be the younger crowd so you’ll see that prices are more affordable and you’ll find products such as T-shirts, totes, stickers and more.
- Society6- I love Society6 because I feel that it caters to the artistic crowd. It tends to pay a little more attention on home decor and trends, from the wall art to the furniture. Yes, I said furniture!
- Spoonflower– Now Spoonflower was fun to get into because they specialize in fabrics and wall papers. I was able to tap into surface designs and create patterns that include my cultural background to actual fabrics. This means that they cater to a different audience all together. This is for the vrafters, sewers, interior designers, fashion designers, etc…
- SpreadShop/SpreadShirt- Full transparency, I opened this one thinking of the future. Spreadshop is the merch shelf used on YouTube so I wanted to get that ball rolling.
- TeePublic- The name says it all. We are all about T-Shirts here. Or at least is what they are known for BUT they do have other items as well such as wall art, notebooks, pillows and more.
- Zazzle- Very similar to TeePublic but I do feel that they cater more to individuals that want to get customizable items for themselves, not necessarily for artists, but that’s just me.
Sell on Etsy
Last but not least I’ll mention Etsy. I am NOT Anti-Etsy and I’m sure you have heard a lot of debate on whether artists or artisans should be on Etsy. This is my personal view. If you do not have your own ecommerce website or not much traffic, if you you do not have a following, if you do not have an initial budget to invest, by all means GO ON ETSY! I can tell you why I believe some people are anti-etsy but that’s a topic for a different post.
Overall, I feel this is a good place to get your feet wet and get used to running your own business.
Which method are you considering so far to sell your art this coming year?
DISCLAIMER: There may be affiliate or referral links on this blog post. Affiliate links and referrals help me grow as an artist.