Creator Tutorials

  • Dream Studio Course Review

    In this post I’ll be reviewing my experience taking Dream Studio Course in order to create a better filming setup at home. After recently sharing my Entire YouTube Studio Setup On One Desk, I realized an in depth Dream Studio Course review would be useful.

    During my office makeover I enrolled in Dream Studio Course to help guide the process. Usually I don’t take courses, but the many technical aspects of this project felt overwhelming and I knew a guide would be helpful.

    Dream Studio Course Review and Results
    Dream Studio Course Review and Results

    Disclosure: Since I had massive success with this course and recommend it I’ve included affiliate links. If you choose to use my course affiliate links I will receive a commission. If you choose not to you can also head to dreamstudiocourse.com.

    What Is Dream Studio Course?

    Dream Studio Course helps you transform your home studio into a professional looking set.

    The 6-week course provides expert guidance, community & feedback in a semi-guided program that walks through the entire studio design process.

    Since it is a semi-guided course, there is a mix of learning styles:

    1.  Self-paced aspects to learn at your own speed, AND
    2.  Interactive aspects where you get personalized guidance from Kevin & the Dream Studio Course team

    This style of course gives you time to learn, work on your studio, and then get feedback for improvement.

    The Dream Studio Course covers everything you need to go from overwhelmed beginner to confident professional. The course covers everything you need to know if you film regularly and want to be taken seriously.

    Dream Studio Course

    Who Should Take Dream Studio Course?

    I took Dream Studio Course as a YouTube content creator looking to improve my video quality. I wanted to do this by creating a more functional home filming studio.

    Many of the others that took the course at the same time as me had completely different backgrounds!

    Most were trying to figure out a filming set up for things like Zoom calls for work and teaching online via video. People in my cohort of the course included:

    • therapists working via Zoom sessions
    • professionals working remotely
    • teachers sharing lessons via videos
    • public speakers creating new speaking outlets
    • online course creators
    • small business owners
    • YouTube content creators

    There was a wide range of people in the course with many different objectives. This created a very unique and creative experience in the cohort version of the course. Additionally, it also provided unique feedback from the course leader as he shared all the feedback for each person.

    dream studio course
    Dream Studio Course Lessons On Positioning

    What Will You Learn In Dream Studio Course?

    The Dream Studio Course covers a huge amount of material.

    In the course you will learn:

    • how to layout your room for the best filming set up
    • color psychology that will affect what your video conveys
    • interior design techniques to create a professional look
    • how to create visual depth and balance for viewers
    • shot composition for the best results on camera
    • camera settings for beautiful cinematic results
    • how to choose a camera and lens for your needs
    • which lights to buy and how to set them up for perfect lighting
    • ways to naturally light yourself to make yourself look attractive
    • how to use your microphone and get the best sound quality
    • techniques to improve any weaknesses in your unique setup

    The course covers your background, video equipment, lighting, sound gear and more. You will learn about the specifics – even with measurements included – but also the WHY behind the decisions.

    Learning about why things created certain results helped many of us tweak our own setup successfully.

    My Dream Studio Course Review

    Before I quit my job to do YouTube full time I wanted to upgrade my filming setup to something more professional. My YouTube channel had stagnated and I had been stuck at 18,000 subscribers for almost half a year.

    A friend who knew Kevin suggested his Dream Studio Course and the enrollment lined up with my timeframe for improving my home studio. I enrolled in a cohort version of the class and started on the lessons.

    My Dream Studio Course Studio Makeover

    The before and after of my office was not super dramatic visually since I did not change many large features. However, the functionality changed dramatically as did the video quality results. Every time I step into my office I’m ready to work and have multiple clean workspaces where I can begin working.

    The video quality improved drastically. I went from looking like a hobby YouTuber to a professional.

    The Dream Studio Course allowed me to customize my setup with the items I already had while learning how to create a professional studio. I took a cohort based version of the course so when I encountered roadblocks or needed studio feedback I was able to get that each week.

    My Dream Studio Course Studio Before And After

    I filmed with my phone and a single ring light when I started taking the course. It was acceptable for me. In fact, I managed to grow a good following and YouTube income with just my phone and a ring light tripod.

    Filming Setup Before

    However, I knew I could up my game if I had the right knowledge and guidance.

    I was overwhelmed by the technical aspects of creating a filming studio, but the course made it much easier to digest these concepts.

    By the end of the class I was filming videos with a much higher quality.

    dream-studio-course-after
    after-shot-for-youtube-studio-makeover
    Filming Setup After

    You can clearly see the difference in quality with these before and after screenshots.

    I upgraded my camera quality by switching to a camera recommended in the course. You can see how the quality changed in the clips included in the video above.

    Biggest Lessons From Dream Studio Course Studio

    Additionally, the lessons learned about how to setup my studio provided the biggest changes.

    The main things that helped improve my video quality:

    • learning about lighting and how to position lights to make myself look the best
    • how to create depth and visual interest with your video background
    • positioning the lens and camera to create an angle for the effect you wanted
    • camera basics like aperture and ISO to use your camera to the best of it’s ability

    All of these were things I learned in the Dream Studio Course. While I believe upgrading my camera would have improved the quality aspect, the true change came from creating a studio designed for video.

    I say this because when I first got the new camera I set it up on auto. I did not know which settings to use to get the best quality video.

    My camera was obviously a step up from my phone, but it did not provide the best quality automatically. I didn’t get the amazing look until after I had adjusted my lighting and accurately changed the settings on my camera.

    Dream Course Studio Pros & Cons

    Every course I’ve ever taken has pros and cons and Dream Studio Course was no different.

    Hopefully by sharing some of the pros and cons it will help you determine if this course would help you.

    Dream Studio Course Pros

    • lessons were easy to digest and quick to move through
    • you are given rounds of feedback on your setup to help troubleshoot
    • multiple studio examples are provided to copy and get started instantly
    • camera settings are discussed with the full picture in mind
    • technical aspects are broken down into easy to understand concepts
    • office hours gave one on one question and answer time that was incredibly valuable
    • cohort based course I took provided peer feedback which was invaluable
    • throughout the course more resources were added as students asked new questions
    • bonus “Camera Basics” provided to help you learn how to use your camera

    Dream Studio Course Cons

    • there is a LOT of info and you might not finish the course
    • you need to buy new items unless you already invested in gear
    • the speed of the course can be too fast if you delay in purchasing gear for the setup – if you have trouble making buying decisions you might feel rushed

    Some of the cons with this course are similar to many others I have personally taken. I rarely finish a course in full unless it is short and sweet. With a meatier course like Dream Studio Course I found myself skipping lessons and never returning as I found the ones I needed most.

    Filming Setup Before & After

    My office makeover began with a basic filming setup. I was using an iPhone to shoot all of my content and wanted to upgrade my filming setup for both quality and practicality.

    I was inspired for this project by this video about setting up a YouTube studio on a desk.

    While I didn’t follow the original plan exactly, the idea sparked a great feedback session with Kevin and the Dream Studio team. He helped me work through reusing as much gear as I could since I already had a few lights. However, the concept was exactly what I wanted – an easy setup ready to go every time I sat down at my desk.

    Thanks to being enrolled in the Dream Studio Course at the same time as this project I was able to ask questions when I wanted to customize something to my situation.

    I created a modified version of the YouTube Studio setup on one desk with a standing desk on wheels to make it portable.

    YouTube Studio Setup On One Desk For Filming Videos

    I played around with creative lighting sources after learning about in the course. I knew from the lessons in the course that lighting could make a huge difference in my videos.

    One of my favorite office additions was the lighting behind my bookcase.

    Colorful Back Lighting For Bookcase

    The colorful lighting and different filming setups made a huge difference in my office.

    I felt more professional and happy any time I walked in to the room. I had very little setup time required and was able to walk in and begin creating immediately.

    This process truly helped create a better filming workflow in addition to creating a beautiful space to film YouTube videos.

    A faster workflow along with better YouTube video planning has led to ever increasing YouTube income.

    YouTube Studio Office Gear

    Now when I share videos I get questions asking what equipment I’m using to create my videos.

    In an effort to make it easy for someone else to copy this setup or quickly buy any of the cool stuff in my functional and fun office, I’ve created a list of all the items used.

    YouTube Studio Setup On One Desk Gear List

    Standing Desk Filming Setup For YouTube Videos

    Here’s the list of everything used to set up my filming studio on a desk:

    Office Gear List

    Full Office Setup For Filming YouTube Videos & Blogging

    Here’s a list of everything else in my office!

    Hopefully this list of items used in my office will help you create your own unique set up!

    If you are considering the Dream Studio Course, I definitely recommend it if you are a beginner or get overwhelmed by the idea of pulling together all the different aspects that go into creating a filming studio.

    Dream Studio Course Review and Results

    Read More

  • Entire YouTube Studio Setup On One Desk

    Over on my Youtube channel I recently shared my home office makeover that included my entire Youtube studio setup on one desk.

    Office Makeover Before & After

    This was one of the home improvement projects I wanted to complete during my maternity leave so that I was able to film YouTube videos more quickly before and after work. I ended up quitting my job to do YouTube full time soon after maternity leave so I’m even happier that I was able to plan out an amazing room for myself to work in each day.

    The before and after of my office was not dramatic visually but more so functionally. Every time I step into my office I’m ready to work and have multiple clean workspaces where I can begin working.

    It’s ideal for my personal use but I’m also able to utilize the multiple desks for letting my daughter or husband join me as well.

    Customizing My YouTube Filming Set Up

    During this process I enrolled in Dream Studio Course. I don’t take courses often but the many technical aspects of this project felt overwhelming and I knew a guide would be helpful.

    Dream Studio Course

    Signing up for the course allowed me to customize my setup and work with the items I had while learning how to create a professional studio. I took a cohort based version of the course so when I encountered roadblocks or needed studio feedback I was able to get that each week.

    When I started the class I was filming with my phone and a single ring light. It was acceptable for me and I actually managed to grow a pretty good following and decent YouTube income just using my phone and a ring light tripod.

    Filming Setup Before

    However, I knew I could up my game if I just had the right knowledge and guidance. I was overwhelmed by all the technical aspects of creating an ideal filming studio but the course made it much easier to digest.

    By the end of the class I was filming videos with a much higher quality.

    dream-studio-course-after
    after-shot-for-youtube-studio-makeover
    Filming Setup After

    You can see the difference in quality in the video I shared above along with these before and after video screenshots.

    The main things that helped improve my video quality:

    • learning about lighting and how to position lights to make myself look the best
    • how to create depth and visual interest with your background
    • positioning and angle of the lens and camera
    • camera basics like aperture and ISO

    All of these were things I learned from Kevin in the Dream Studio Course. While I believe just upgrading my camera would have improved the quality aspect, the true change came from creating a studio designed for film.

    • Read more: Dream Studio Course Review

    Filming Setup Before & After

    My office makeover began with some useful items but a pretty basic filming setup.

    I was using an iphone with a ring light tripod to shoot all of my content and wanted to upgrade my filming setup for both quality and practicality.

    I was inspired for this project by this video about setting up a YouTube studio on a desk.

    I didn’t follow his plan exactly and tried to reuse as much gear as I could since I already had a few lights. However, the concept was exactly what I wanted – an easy setup ready to go every time I sat down at my desk.

    Thanks to being enrolled in the Dream Studio course at the same time as this project I was able to ask questions when I wanted to customize something to my situation.

    I ended up creating a modified version of this YouTube Studio setup on one desk. I bought a standing desk that I could add wheels to so mine would be portable.

    YouTube Studio Setup On One Desk For Filming Videos

    I also played around with creative lighting sources since that was something I learned about in the course.

    One of my favorite office additions was the lighting behind my bookcase.

    Colorful Back Lighting For Bookcase

    The colorful lighting and different filming setups made a huge difference in my office.

    I felt more professional and happy any time I walked in to the room. I also had very little setup time required and was able to walk in and begin creating immediately.

    This process truly helped create a better filming workflow in addition to creating a beautiful space to create YouTube videos.

    A faster workflow along with better YouTube video planning has led to ever increasing YouTube income.

    YouTube Studio Office Gear

    Naturally when I film now I get questions about what I’m using. In an effort to make it easy for someone else to copy this setup or quickly buy any of the cool stuff in my functional and fun office, I’ve created a list of all the items used.

    Standing Desk Filming Setup For YouTube Videos

    YouTube Studio Setup On One Desk Gear List

    Here’s the list of everything used to set up my filming studio on a desk:

    Full Office Setup For Filming YouTube Videos & Blogging

    Office Gear List:

    Here’s a list of everything else in my office!

    Hopefully this list of items used in my office will help you create your own unique set up!

    Read More

  • How To Get Reviews On Etsy

    Do you want to know how to get reviews on Etsy? Are you a new seller struggling to get sales and reviews? You’re not alone. 

    Reviews for your products on Etsy are essential for success because people like to buy from proven shops. The more 5 star reviews an Etsy shop has the more comfortable buyers are when shopping there the first time. 

    It’s also a huge part of the new Star Seller program Etsy introduced in 2021. This Star Seller badge gives customers an indication that you provide great service consistently. One of the ways you can earn the Star Seller badge is by having at least 95% of your reviews be positive.

    For these reasons and many others, it will great benefit you to get more positive 5 start reviews on Etsy.

    How To Get Reviews On Etsy

    Shop credibility is built through reviews but getting reviews on Etsy can be a challenge at the best of times. It is even harder when you are a new shop without any momentum. However, you should not give up hope because there are ways to generate more reviews on Etsy.

    In this post I will share a few strategies you can try for getting Etsy reviews. 

    Provide Amazing Products & Service

    The foundation of getting reviews on Etsy is providing an amazing product with outstanding customer service. This will naturally garner you multiple 5 star reviews over time as you go above and beyond your competition on Etsy.

    Ways To Provide Great Service

    Here are a few ways to provide amazing service on Etsy:

    • Ship orders on time or earlier than the customer expects
    • Provide the best product possible and make sure there are no mistakes
    • Include a bonus or something extra

    When you go above and beyond in the product you offer and how you interact with customers you will see positive reviews roll in naturally.

    Ask Customers For Reviews On Etsy

    Getting reviews for amazing products can be a slow process. Another strategy on how to get reviews on Etsy?

    Just ask for them! You can encourage people to leave you reviews by asking them to do so in various points of contact.

    Places to Ask For Reviews

    Here are some of the ways you can ask people for reviews when they make a purchase from your Etsy shop:

    • Ask for reviews in your order confirmation email
    • Request an Etsy review in an order follow up email
    • Send a thank you discount for future orders and also ask for a review

    Asking for reviews should be a standard part of your process when contacting a customer. It doesn’t have to be the main part of your message and you don’t have to include it each time. Choose one follow up message to include your review request in and allow that to be the way you ask customers for reviews.

    Send Insert Cards Asking For Reviews

    This method does not apply if you sell digital products on Etsy, but for physical products it is the best way to get reviews on Etsy. 

    Most sellers include some kind of insert card in the product packaging when orders ship. (If you don’t do this currently then you should!) 

    Insert cards are a great opportunity to thank your customer for the purchase and also ask them to leave a review. There are many different printable thank you cards that you can purchase on Etsy that make this process super easy. 

    Here are a few examples of ways you can get reviews on Etsy by asking with insert cards included in your orders:

    From TrendyFoxStudio on Etsy
    From AWildBloomPrintables on Etsy
    From Angelic Art Shop on Etsy

    How To Ask For Reviews

    If you’ve never encouraged buyers to leave a review it can be awkward at first to nail down the messaging. It works best when you are using your shop’s unique voice to ask for reviews, but a template can get you started.

    How To Phrase Your Review Request

    Here are a few ways to phrase it when you are trying to get reviews on Etsy: 

    • We would be thrilled to hear your feedback. Leave us a review!
    • If you are happy with everything we will be very grateful for your review!
    • Love your purchase? Let us know!
    • Thank you for your order! If you loved what you bought, we would appreciate it if you left a review.

    Those are just a few different ways you can ask for reviews from your customers. If you have a specific style and voice you should definitely use that when you ask for reviews. It doesn’t have to be super formal and something fun may even encourage more reviews.  

    Building Etsy Reviews Over Time

    Hopefully this has helped you understand how to get reviews on Etsy in several different ways.

    You will naturally build more reviews over time as the number of sales you have increases. This is especially true if you consistently provide a good product and outstanding customer service.

    Because Etsy has sends automated emails to customers for a review you will naturally gain reviews over time. If you are asking your customers for feedback via reviews you will increase the velocity of this process.

    Once you have a good amount of reviews you won’t have to worry as much about increasing the number because they will continue to flow in naturally.

    Read More

  • How to Create Printables In Canva

    Creating an Etsy shop where you sell printables and other digital products passively can be a life-changing decision.

    You can develop an income stream of hundreds or thousands of dollars per month by making printables to sell passively. That passive income from printables is enough money to pay bills, pay off debt, or allow you to work from home instead of a 9-5 job.

    The best news? It’s easier than ever to create, market, and sell printables!

    Using Canva To Create Printables

    If you have no design experience it might feel overwhelming to think about creating printables.

    Luckily technology has made a variety of tools that make design work super easy. My go to for creating beautiful printables is Canva.

    Why Canva Is Great For Creating Printables

    Canva works great for most designs and the software is easy to use even for beginners. It’s one of the best design tools out there and has many benefits:

    • It is easy to use even as a beginner.
    • It’s free for the basic version with lots of features.
    • Canva has many advanced tools and functions included.
    • There are many pre-made templates, graphics, and font combos to inspire your own creations.
    • The pro version is low cost – half the price compared to Adobe Creative.
    • It allows you to make products fast with easy duplications and resizing.
    • It is web based so you can access it anywhere.
    • There are many Canva tutorials out there making it easy to learn.
    • It has desktop and mobile applications.

    Obviously I love Canva and it is the leading online design tool used by millions for a reason.

    I use Canva Pro to create all of my printables and social media graphics as well. It’s a fantastic all in one design tool for any business and the best investment someone can make in starting an Etsy printable business.

    How To Create Printables In Canva

    In the following tutorial I walk through how to create printables using Canva. I cover how to create a printable chore chart for kids.

    The options are endless for the types printables you make to sell and this is just one niche example!

    How To Make Printables In Canva To Sell

    In this Canva video tutorial I walk through how to create a printable chore chart that you can sell on Etsy.

    Open Your Canva Account

    If you don’t have a Canva account yet, feel free to use my affiliate link to start your new account.

    You can open up a free account or a Canva Pro account that’s just a little bit over $12 per month. I use a Canva Pro account and feel that it’s worth it for many of the features but you can get started with a free account. 

    Create A New Design

    To start making a printable in Canva you need to choose the size you want. Canva has many options for sizing when you create a new design and you can easily just select one.

    When logged in to your account to create a new design you will click the “Create a design” button in  the top right corner. 

    Here you can select from the most popular sized, type in a desired type, or click the + sign to create a custom size.

    For most printables I like to start out with a common size like 8.5” x 11” which is the standard US letter size that most printer paper comes in. 

    However, it’s best to do a bit of research for the type of printable you are creating. Keep these sizing considerations in mind and research your niche:

    • What are the standard sizes people use?
    • What sizes are other listings of this product selling?
    • Do other listings include multiple product sizes?

    You can choose this size or another common one based on your product research. You can always resize your design with Canva with the Magic Resize tool when you have a pro account. 

    Designing Your Printable

    The actual design of your printable will depend on what type of printable you are creating. In the video above I walk through the steps on how to create a printable chore chart for kids.  

    When designing your printable in Canva you can use many of the different design elements Canva offers. You can’t use their premade templates so make sure you always start from scratch with a blank canvas and build your own design.

    Savings & Testing Your Printable

    After you have finished your design you are ready to save the file. 

    Here’s how to save the file from Canva:

    • Click the “Download” button in the top right
    • Change the file type (In Canva for the best resolution choose PDF Print)
    • Click “crop marks and bleed” button to get a perfect cut on your design when people print and cut at home
    • Click the “Download” button in the pop up menu

    That’s all you have to do to save your file from Canva! 

    Next you’ll want to test your printable. Find the file you downloaded and open it to make sure it opens correctly on your computer and looks accurate with no changes.

    Then you will want to print your design at home. This is critical to your printable business success so you know that the printables are printing correctly.

    Using Clip Art In Printables 

    The best thing about designing printables to sell for passive income is that you don’t have to be an artist.

    You can use other people’s art to create your printables!

    If you want to include art in your printables without designing it you can buy clip art from other sellers that give you a commercial license.

    Buying a commercial license lets you use clip art, graphic elements, fonts, and other items in your printables. 

    A commercial license means that you can use their product in your design that you plan to sell. You won’t be able to resell the graphic item itself but you can use it within your new design that you will then sell. If you see graphics you want to use that don’t have a commercial license and say “for personal use only” then you should not use those for your products. Always read the terms of the license when you buy something to use. 

    Where To Buy Graphics & Fonts For Printables 

    There are a number of really useful websites where you can buy commercial use items to use in your printables.

    How To Buy Commercial Use Elements For Digital Products On Creative Market

    Here are my favorite sources for buying commercial use fonts, graphics, and more:

    Creative Market – This is my personal favorite for designs since it has the highest quality of any of the sites I’ve found. Creative Market also gives you free goods every single week with a personal license so you can try them out for free before deciding if you want to buy a commercial license. It’s a great way to get started!

    Etsy – You can also find commercial use design elements on Etsy from other sellers! This is one of my favorite options since I love supporting fellow Etsy sellers and can often find great deals since many shops offer value bundles for their designs.

    Font Squirrel – This is a great option for finding fonts to use since they scour the internet for free commercial use fonts. While Canva includes many fonts you can use for commercial use this is a great addition if you want to stand out and make your designs look a little bit better.

    Types Of Printables Can You Make

    There are many different types of printables you can create to sell on Etsy and other websites.

    Here are some printables you can make:

    • wall art printables
    • printable planners
    • nursery art printables
    • wedding printables
    • party printables
    • printable signs

    If you want more ideas, check out this list of digital product ideas with many types of printables included.

    Printable Best Sellers

    There are clearly many options to create printables in Canva and then sell them on either your own website or a marketplace website like Etsy.

    But what printables sell best on Etsy?

    I like to use Etsy as an example of where to do research for printable ideas because you can actually see the number of sales, reviews, and more information about printable shops.

    Certain types of printables do well on Etsy and are often given the best-seller tag:

    • printable thank you cards
    • planner inserts printables
    • printable goal trackers
    • invitations printables

    There are many other niches and categories of printables that do well but these are often categories that are full of best-seller ideas. There is also enough room in these categories to still put your own spin on things and create something new!

    Want to keep learning?

    Here are some posts about selling digital products that may help you:

    Read More

  • Best Affiliate Marketing Networks To Join

    Want to earn money with affiliate marketing but not sure where to start? This master list shares the best affiliate marketing networks you can join.

    ShareASale: Affiliate Marketing Network

    This easy-to-use platform allows content creators to monetize platforms by partnering with brands. Earn money from your content by promoting products to your audience.


    Pennies Not Perfection earns a commission if you join, at no additional cost to you.
    Awin: Affiliate Marketing Network

    Partner with the world's leading brands to promote relevant products and earn more from your content.

    Pennies Not Perfection earns a commission if you join, at no additional cost to you.
    Flex Offers: Affiliate Marketing Network

    FlexOffers is an affiliate marketing network where you can join programs to earn money promoting products in your content. FlexOffers access to over 12k affiliate programs.

    Pennies Not Perfection earns a commission if join, at no additional cost to you.

    Affiliate Marketing Tips & Tutorials

    Affiliate Marketing Networks Tutorials

    Want to learn more about affiliate marketing? Check out these useful tutorials on Pennies Not Perfection:

    Affiliate Marketing 101

    Affiliate Marketing Tutorials

    Check out more affiliate marketing tutorials or request a new tutorial by reaching out on Instagram!

    If you want to say thank you, you can Buy Me A Coffee.

    Affiliate Marketing Resources

    Here are some resources that can help you grow your affiliate marketing income:

    The All-In-One Affiliate Marketing Plugin for WordPress | Lasso

    Increase affiliate revenue by 30% with Lasso. Fix broken links, find new affiliate opportunities, and create product displays that convert to commissions.

    I earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
    ShareASale: Affiliate Marketing Network

    This easy-to-use platform allows content creators to monetize platforms by partnering with brands. Earn money from your content by promoting products to your audience.


    Pennies Not Perfection earns a commission if you join, at no additional cost to you.
    Awin: Affiliate Marketing Network

    Partner with the world's leading brands to promote relevant products and earn more from your content.

    Pennies Not Perfection earns a commission if you join, at no additional cost to you.
    Flex Offers: Affiliate Marketing Network

    FlexOffers is an affiliate marketing network where you can join programs to earn money promoting products in your content. FlexOffers access to over 12k affiliate programs.

    Pennies Not Perfection earns a commission if join, at no additional cost to you.
    Lasso Brag

    Frequently Asked Questions

    Affiliate marketing is one of my favorite ways to earn money online but it can be confusing for beginners. Here are some of the most frequently asked questions I get about affiliate marketing networks and more.

    What is affiliate marketing?

    Affiliate marketing is a method of monetizing content by promoting products or services from other companies to your audience.

    You earn a commission whenever someone clicks your link and then makes a purchase. It does not cost anything for your audience and your commission is paid out of the profit the company would have made.

    What is an affiliate program?

    An affiliate program is the arrangement where a company signs up affiliate partners to promote their products. They then pay out an agreed upon commission for any sales that have been referred.

    Affiliate programs can be managed in house by the company or run by a third party affiliate network company.

    What is an affiliate network?

    An affiliate marketing network is a company that runs multiple affiliate programs.

    All of the affiliate marketing networks on this page are company that have multiple different affiliate programs on their site. When you sign up for an affiliate network you are able to join multiple programs.

    Affiliate marketing networks are very effective for both the companies and the partners. The most popular affiliate networks allow you to join and manage mange partnerships in one place.

    Whats the best affiliate network for my niche?

    Most affiliate marketing networks are not niche specific like individual programs are. You can be successful with most affiliate networks in any niche.

    However, sometimes in a niche you’ll find that the majority of your desired programs are with one affiliate network like the personal finance affiliate programs at FlexOffers. If this is the case then you’ll want to join that network and focus your efforts.

    Who is this list of affiliate networks for?

    It’s for all content creators! You can successfully use affiliate marketing as a YouTuber, blogger, TikToker, etc. The platform matters less than how you are connecting with your audience to recommend products.

    You can also use affiliate marketing as a business owner to supplement your earnings. I helped setup affiliate marketing for a wedding planner friend and she now has a nice stream of income from it!

    How can I find affiliate programs on my own?

    This list is designed to give people a starting point for affiliate marketing. When you already have a business or platform as an influencer joining an affiliate network is a quick way to get started. You can join multiple programs instead of hunting them down.

    But what if you want to find affiliate programs on your own? You can!

    The best way to do this is to get niche specific. Search google for “affiliate programs for” your niche. So if you create beauty content you might search for “affiliate programs for makeup” as an example.

    What should I know about these affiliate programs?

    The most important thing to know is what rules programs have. This information is vital as a creator using affiliate programs to earn money.

    You should be aware of commission rates, payment thresholds, rules, regulations, affiliate disclaimers and more. Anything the affiliate program sends you should be read and noted on your end. The best rule of thumb? Pay attention!

    Best Affiliate Marketing Networks To Join For Content Creators And Youtubers

    Read More

  • How To Make Transparent Backgrounds In Canva

    I use Canva as one of the many digital product creation resources in my toolbox and love it for the ease of use and powerful design functions like creating transparent backgrounds in seconds.

    In this Canva tutorial I show you how to make transparent backgrounds for your design work.

    What Is A Transparent Background?

    When you hear the phrase “transparent background” in regards to an image, logo, or other design file it means there is no background at all. Instead of a background there is nothing visible.

    The file type that supports transparency in backgrounds in PNG, aka Portable Network Graphics, a raster-graphics file format that supports lossless data compression. This file type supports:

    • palette-based images
    • grayscale images
    • transparent backgrounds
    • full-color non-palette-based RGB or RGBA images

    PNG files with transparent backgrounds are useful in a variety of design functions.

    You can see examples of these images easily by searching “transparent PNG” with your favorite brand’s name. When you see an image surrounded by a white-and-grey checkered pattern in the search results that is an indicator that the background does not exist. When you use that image in a design the checkered pattern will not show up – no background will be visible.

    Why Do You Need Transparent Backgrounds?

    Professional designs are built upon the concept of layers. Designers use layers of photos, text, graphic elements, backgrounds to built a full cohesive design made from all the layers together.

    Layering elements only works in a design if you are able to layer items with transparent backgrounds. If each item had a regular background you would not be able to achieve a beautiful and professional design, which is why transparent backgrounds are so important.

    If you are creating graphics or designing digital products or adding a watermark to photos/videos you will need to be able to create images with transparent backgrounds.

    How Can You Find Or Create Transparent Backgrounds?

    You don’t need to be a professional designer to create transparent backgrounds for your photos, logos, or design elements.

    It’s easy to make a transparent background in Canva with their pro plan.

    You can also make transparent backgrounds in other programs both for free and paid but I’ve found the simplicity and ease of Canva makes it my go to for this particular function since I pay for their affordable pro plan.

    If you are trying to find certain elements to use online or via a site like Creative Market, you can find these transparent backgrounds with a few key search terms. When looking for things with transparent backgrounds, use these terms:

    • PNG
    • transparent PNG
    • transparent logo
    • transparent image
    • transparent background

    How to Make a Transparent Background in Canva

    The video tutorial below shows how to create transparent backgrounds as well as how to then use those images in Canva.

    Creating a transparent background for your design is super easy in Canva:

    1. Open Canva and start a new design project
    2. Create your design – remember that any elements you add will be visible in the final project because there is nowhere to hide with a transparent background
    3. When you are happen with your design, it’s time to download
    4. Click the “Download” button in the top right corner
    5. Select “PNG” in the File type dropdown
    6. Select the checkbox next to “Transparent background”
    7. Hit the purple “Download” button

    When your png file downloads it will have a transparent background.

    If you do not see the box to select next to “Transparent background” option then you are in the Canva’s Free Forever plan and will need to upgrade your account to a paid version. There are options to pay monthly as a subscription or save some money and pay yearly.

    Transparent Background & White Background Differences

    If you haven’t used transparent backgrounds for images before then you might not be aware of the differences. Sometimes these can appear the same on a computer based on the application so what are the differences?

    An image on a white background may look the same as one with a transparent background in various applications, but in other applications the difference will be obvious. The transparent background image will be able to be laid over another image without a background.

    In this example the transparent background image on the left side shows up with a greyed out screen in Preview. On the right you can see the image with a white background that is not transparent.

    Next let’s look at how you would use an image with a transparent background.

    How to Use Transparent Background Images

    After you have created your image with a transparent background you are ready to start using it to create layers in your design work.

    In the image below we’ve added the transparent background png on top of another image.

    As you can see there is no background around the text because of the transparent background.

    You can compare that to the picture below where we added the file with the white background that was not transparent.

    Without the transparent background you are stuck with a white box that detracts from the design and does not allow proper layering.

    To layer your transparent background image in your work you just upload your image back into Canva and then you can easily click and place it on top of other designs.

    This technique is easy to use and can be done with any number of elements, text, logos, or more.

    Once you know how to use transparent backgrounds you are ready to make more digital products, social media content or anything you need. The possibilities are endless!

    What Is Canva?

    Canva is an amazing web-based design tool with free and paid plans that allow users to create a variety of design work.

    Canva is one the most useful tools I personally pay for in order to earn a living online. It’s the lowest subscription cost in my business expenses yet it produces the most revenue!

    I’ve used it to create social media posts, YouTube thumbnails, media kits, digital products, invoices, and more.

    The paid plan at Canva costs just $12.99 per month in 2022.

    Canva Pro includes:

    • 100+ million stock photos, videos, audio and graphics to use
    • unlimited features, folders, and premium content
    • 600,000+ templates with more added daily
    • brand kits for storing logos, colors, fonts, and more
    • tools like Background Remover, Magic Resize, Social Media Scheduling
    • 1 TB of cloud storage
    • and 24/7 customer support
    Canva - An Online Graphic Design Tool

    Canva makes it easy to create professional designs quickly. They include tons of free templates, photos and fonts to make your design perfect.

    I earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

    More Canva Tips & Tutorials

    Canva-Tutorials-penniesnotperfection.com

    Here are a few useful Canva tutorials on Pennies Not Perfection:

    You can find more tutorials on the Canva Design Tutorial listing page.

    Enjoy creating with Canva!

    Read More

  • How To Make Curved Text In Canva Tutorial

    Curved text can add visual interest to your designs especially when creating digital products to sell for passive income. In this tutorial for curved text in Canva we cover how to curve your text and various ways to treat it.

    If you are creating your digital products or social media designs in Canva then it is very easy to create curved text within your design.

    Create Curved Text In Canva

    In this easy step-by-step two minute tutorial I walk you through the basics of how to create curved text for your designs.

    This video shows how to create curved text in Canva​ when you are creating digital products and social media content in Canva.

    How to create curved text in Canva step by step:

    • Add text to the design
    • With the text box selected, click Effects in the top menu
    • A side bar will pop up on the left with text effect
    • Select Curve in the bottom right corner
    • Use the slider at the bottom of the sidebar to adjust the curve
    • You can slide to create a positive or negative curve in either direction
    • Use the Canva guidelines to adjust the text to fit your design

    That’s how to create curved text in Canva, which is a super easy technique but can really increase the visual interest within your design. It’s a great way to make your designs stand out and look different.

    What Is Canva?

    Canva is an amazing web-based design tool with free and paid plans that allow users to create a variety of design work.

    Canva is the easiest software I’ve used to create digital products. It’s intuitive and simple to use yet has enough features to make it powerful enough to compete with Adobe programs.

    Canva is one the most useful tools I personally pay for in order to earn a living online. It’s the lowest subscription cost in my business expenses yet it produces the most revenue!

    I’ve used it to create social media posts, YouTube thumbnails, media kits, digital products, invoices, and more.

    The paid plan at Canva costs just $12.99 per month in 2022.

    Canva Pro includes:

    • 100+ million stock photos, videos, audio and graphics to use
    • unlimited features, folders, and premium content
    • 600,000+ templates with more added daily
    • brand kits for storing logos, colors, fonts, and more
    • tools like Background Remover, Magic Resize, Social Media Scheduling
    • 1 TB of cloud storage
    • and 24/7 customer support
    Canva - An Online Graphic Design Tool

    Canva makes it easy to create professional designs quickly. They include tons of free templates, photos and fonts to make your design perfect.

    I earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

    Canva For Digital Products

    I use Canva for making several digital products and curved text is one of the newer features they added in 2020 that has really helped a lot with making designs. I’m not a designer at all so having such an easy way to make curved text is really helpful. It’s been very useful for creating digital stickers, art printables, and more.

    If you want to create digital products then Canva is a great place to start. There is a free version that you can use to start and you can get a free trial of the Pro version that offers many additional features.

    Below are a few video tutorials for how to create digital products in Canva:

    Video: how to create printable art to sell on Etsy

    Video: how to create printables in Canva to sell on Etsy

    I originally started creating digital products to help better monetize my YouTube channel but fell in love when it increased both my income and reach beyond YouTube.

    It’s truly revolutionized my business and I’m always creating new digital products now because I love the creativity of thinking up how to best create something new.

    More Canva Tips & Tutorials

    Canva-Tutorials-penniesnotperfection.com

    Here are a few useful Canva tutorials on Pennies Not Perfection:

    You can find more tutorials on the Canva Design Tutorial listing page.

    Enjoy creating with Canva!

    Read More

  • How To Get A Custom YouTube Channel URL

    The process for changing your YouTube channel URL changed recently so this tutorial shows you how to change your YouTube channel URL in 2021.

    Having a custom URL for your channel helps with branding your channel and makes it easy to remember and share with potential viewers.

    In this video and tutorial post I show you how to:

    • set up your custom YouTube channel URL
    • delete your custom channel URL and pick a new one
    • options for choosing your custom URL for YouTube
    • how to change your custom YouTube channel URL
    • custom YouTube URL requirements

    With this process for selecting and changing your channel URL you’ll be able to quickly and easily pick the channel URL you want!

    Custom URL for Your YouTube Channel Step By Step

    How to get your custom YouTube channel URL step by step:

    1. Sign in to YouTube Studio for your account
    2. From the left menu, select Customization 
    3. From the top menu, select the Basic info tab
    4. Under the Channel URL sections, click Set a custom URL for your channel
    5. In the box, you’ll see your current URL and your potential custom URL. You can add extra letters or numbers to make your custom URL unique to your channel.
    6. Click the blue Publish button in the top right of the page.
    7. Click Confirm on the popup screen to confirm your custom URL.

    YouTube Channel Custom URLs Details

    Why would you want a custom URL for your channel? Creating a custom URL is an easy to remember URL that you can share with your audience. It’s easier to remember, better for branding, and customizes your channel.

    Instead of have a channel that is youtube.com/ceJWE8732fjKEWNF# you will instead be able to have a channel URL that is youtube.com/penniesnotperfection for example. It’s much cleaner and easier to remember or share.

    You get to choose your URL but there are some things you can base it on:

    • Display name
    • YouTube username
    • Current vanity URLs
    • Linked website name

    You can also choose the capitalization options so that you can make words stand out of not. For example you can choose either of the following:

    • youtube.com/c/yourcustomname
    • youtube.com/c/YourCustomName

    This gives you even more flexibility to use the custom URL feature for your channel to reinforce your branding.

    Custom URL Eligibility

    Who is eligible to get a custom channel URL? There are some requirements you need to hit before you are able to set up your custom URL.

    To create a custom URL for your channel, your YouTube account needs to:

    • Have 100 or more subscribers
    • Be at least 30 days old
    • Have an uploaded profile picture
    • Have uploaded banner image

    That’s it!

    The great thing about custom URLs is that it is one of the first things you get to do on YouTube while building your audience. Most features won’t unlock until 1,000 or even 10,000 subscribers, but at 100 subscribers you get a custom URL!

    It’s important to note that a custom URL can be changed or removed by YouTube at any time. This could include things like copyright infringement or when an account is deleted.

    Growing Your YouTube Channel

    Once you’ve got 100 subscribers and have selected your custom URL, then it’s time to keep growing until you hit 1,000 subscribers and more!

    If you want to grow and actually make money from your Youtube channel then the following tips should help.

    Get Useful Growth Tools

    Use a free tool like TubeBuddy to evaluate your competition, research keywords, and make better videos.

    TubeBuddy has a free version as well as a couple paid plans. You can get a lot out of the free version as a newbie and when you are ready you can go to the next level.

    I love TubeBuddy for the SEO help but also the bulk management tools, canned comment responses, A/B testing, end screen templates and more.

    Here are the SEO tools you have access to inside TubeBuddy:

    • view and copy video tags from another channel
    • tag rankings so you can track where you rank
    • suggested tags for your videos
    • keyword explorer
    • search rankings
    • best practices audit

    All of those tools help you get your video ranked on YouTube so you get more views. TubeBuddy helps improve your SEO and increase search traffic that will double your views over time.

    Make Good Videos

    Seriously, making good videos is how you grow on YouTube. There are a lot of additional factors but you won’t grow if you make bad videos.

    Here are a few of the best tips from successful creators I’ve followed about making good videos:

    • Get to the point in your videos. Don’t ramble on for a long period at the beginning where people will fall off. Study your old videos too see where people drop off.
    • Make your videos provide value. If your videos are educational then make them very educational. If they are entertainment based then they should provide value by making your viewer feel something. Think of each video and consider what value it is providing someone.
    • Audio quality matters the most even over video quality. You can have top notch video but if your audio is bad people will stop watching.
    • Focus on your presentation and story telling skills. When you first start making videos you probably won’t be very good at this but it’s something that makes the best YouTubers connect with their audience.
    • Every video on your channel is providing some type of value. That value might be education or entertainment or just a feeling like someone belongs. You need to recognize what value you are providing and then put your own unique spin on it.

    Remember that these are all things that you can work on and you can’t compare yourself to other creators. You should work hard to improve your skills and tune out the distractions of others.

    Build Community

    Having a community around your channel and your videos is another great way to guarantee successful video launches and continued success. Building community can be done in a few ways:

    • commenting on other youtube channels
    • responding to all of your comments
    • referencing viewers and comments in your videos
    • giving shoutouts to people in your community
    • giving your viewers a nickname and expected phrases

    Those are just a few ways I’ve found to build my community but you can find what works for you! The most successful YouTube channels have an element of community around them.

    Those are just some of the ways I’ve learned how to grow my channel and consistently doubled my channel size each year I’ve been on Youtube while still keeping consistent and engaged subscribers.

    Learn From YouTube Experts

    Another great way to grow on YouTube (and save a ton of time) is to learn from experts who have already done it.

    You can book one on one time or take a course like my friend Erika’s course Mastering YouTube for the Busy Professional (affiliate link).

    She went from 0 subscribers to over 70,000 and $100,000 earned from YouTube in just one year. I’ve learned a lot from her about both getting views from trending topics and outsourcing to grow faster.

    Taking a course like this or from any big YouTuber will help you learn faster and grow faster because you will make less mistakes.

    More YouTube Channel Resources

    Here are some resources that you can use to create videos and grow your channel on YouTube.

    Outsourcing Video Work

    These sites help you find freelancers and virtual assistants to create your YouTube content and run your cash cow channel.

    Fiverr – Hire freelancers to help edit your videos, create voiceovers, film footage, and more. You can create an entire channel using Fiverr freelancers and several specialize in creating these types of faceless, voiceless channels.

    Online Jobs PH

    Hire the best virtual assistants and employees from the Philippines to help grow your online business.

    I earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

    OnlineJobs PH – Hire freelancers in The Philippines to help you run your channel. You can find professional video creators and editors looking for work at very reasonable prices. I personally use video editors that I found on this site and it has been an amazing working relationship.

    YouTube Tools

    These tools help you create content that will actually reach an audience on YouTube, from finding the right topics to creating thumbnails that capture attention.

    TubeBuddy: YouTube Channel Growth Toolkit

    Easily manage, optimize, edit, and GROW your YouTube channel with TubeBuddy's tools. Want to grow on YouTube? You need TubeBuddy. Try now for FREE.


    I earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

    TubeBuddy – TubeBuddy is an all around tool helpful especially for SEO research and creating optimized videos that rank in search. It’s the ideal tool to use for video channels that will be faceless and not rely on a personality to build them.

    Epidemic Sound

    Get music for your YouTube videos and other content without worrying about copyright issues.

    I earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

    Epidemic Sound – Get music for your videos without worrying about future copyright issues. You can try to get “copyright free” or “royalty free” music from other sites but those can come back to claim. your ad revenue years down the road (I speak from experience). Avoid issues and pay for access to music you can use legally.

    Canva - An Online Graphic Design Tool

    Canva makes it easy to create professional designs quickly. They include tons of free templates, photos and fonts to make your design perfect.

    I earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

    Canva – If you need to make thumbnails for YouTube videos then you need to use Canva. It’s a fantastic design tool that makes creating thumbnails quick and easy. It’s also super easy to manage a team of freelancers who might be helping you generate thumbnails. At only $12 per month it’s essential.

    YouTube Channel Organization

    These resources will help you plan and organize your ideas for your cash cow YouTube channel.

    YouTube Success Planner

    Get organized and succeed on YouTube! Streamline your processes and hit your goals by getting organized with this YouTube planner with multiple sections on content planning, channel analytics, monetization, and more.


    YouTube Success Planner – This YouTube planner includes everything in the video planner and goes more in depth on how to grow your channel, how to monetize your videos, and how to track your success.

    All of these things will help you grow faster after you’ve hit your first 100 subscribers. Best wishes on growing your channel to a huge success!

    Read More

  • How To Run A Sale On Etsy

    Using Etsy sales and coupons can help you make more sales and earn more money on Etsy. Learning how to run a sale on Etsy could increase your shop profits instantly.

    In this tutorial I’m going over all the things you need to know about sales and coupons on Etsy so you can start running sales and make more money with your Etsy shop.

    This video tutorial will definitely help you use these sales and coupon features in order to increase your sales. It covers:

    • the different sales and coupons you can create on Etsy
    • the targeted offers you can use to make more sales on Etsy
    • how to create a coupon code for more sales on Etsy

    In my Etsy shop for digital products I’ve made more money by running percentage off sales each month and think it’s an exceptional way to make more sales especially for digital products.

    How To Run A Sale On Etsy

    Setting up a sale on Etsy is simple and it can definitely increase your shop sales and income.

    When you run a sale on Etsy you can offer free shipping or take a percentage off the total or listing price. Shoppers see your items on sale in searches and in your shop.

    Here’s how to run a sale on Etsy:

    1. Sign in to Etsy and click the Your Account icon.
    2. Click Shop Manager and go to your shop backend.
    3. Click the Marketing link in the left side menu.
    4. Select the Sales and Coupons link that pops up in the secondary menu.
    5. Click the Run Sale button in the pop up screen.
    6. In the new screen you’ll select all your Discount Details.
    7. Choose a discount – for free shipping you can select to only offer free domestic shipping.
    8. Choose a discount – you can offer anywhere from 10% to 70% off the price of items in your shop.
    9. Select where it’s valid – you can select whether the sale is available in all countries or just one specific country.
    10. Choose minimum order to qualify – select whether there is a minimum number of items to buy (quantity), a minimum amount to spend (order total) or no minimum to qualify for the sale.
    11. Choose duration – you can select the duration of the sale beginning with the start date and the end date up to 30 days later.
    12. Write your terms and conditions – in this optional step you can inform your shoppers or any restrictions, limitations or others. terms that apply to the sale you are running.
    13. Name your sale – you can create a unique name for the sale that shoppers won’t see but will allow you to track sales performance.

    If you do not set a minimum order to qualify for a. sale then you will be able to select specific listings for your sale. In this situation you can edit the sale to include new listings later.

    If you do select a minimum order to qualify, then your sale will include your entire shop and you can not select items to exclude. If you have items you don’t want to go on sale then you should not select this option.

    How To Run Etsy Sales With Coupon Codes

    Creating an Etsy coupon code also follows a similar method. When you create a coupon for your Etsy shop you can share it with specific shoppers or with your email list or social media accounts to drive sales.

    Here’s how to set up an Etsy coupon code:

    1. Sign in to Etsy and click the Your Account icon.
    2. Click Shop Manager and go to your shop backend.
    3. Click the Marketing link in the left side menu.
    4. Select the Sales and Coupons link that pops up in the secondary menu.
    5. Click the Create coupon button in the pop up screen.
    6. Select the coupon type you’d like to offer shoppers: free standard shipping, percentage off, or fixed amount off.
    7. For percentage off you can offer any percentage off the price of items in your shop.
    8. To do a fixed amount off you can offer a fixed dollar amount off the price of items in your shop.
    9. For free standard shipping, you can offer free shipping so the buyer won’t pay a shipping fee. This type of coupon is shop wide automatically but you can choose to offer it only on domestic orders.
    10. Choose minimum order to qualify – select whether there is a minimum number of items to buy (quantity), a minimum amount to spend (order total) or no minimum to qualify for the sale.
    11. Select whether the coupon will be sent as a thank you to existing buyers or not once orders are complete.
    12. Choose duration – you can select the duration of the coupon code beginning with the start date and this type of sale does not require an end date.
    13. Customize your coupon code – give your coupon code a name that shoppers can use to enter to get the discount. You’ll also get a URL with this code name included that you can share to automatically apply the discount.

    How to Create Targeted Offers On Etsy

    You can also created targeted offers that will send discounts to very specific Etsy users who have taken an action. These offers go out to interested shoppers who have either added your item to their cart but have not purchased or who have favorited an item from your shop.

    Here’s how to run a sale on Etsy with a targeted offer:

    1. Sign in to Etsy and click the Your Account icon.
    2. Click Shop Manager and go to your shop backend.
    3. Click the Marketing link in the left side menu.
    4. Choose the Sales and Coupons link that pops up in the secondary menu.
    5. Click the Set up offer button in the pop up screen.
    6. Select who you would like to send the offer to:
      Abandoned cart shoppers —people who‘ve left items from your shop in their cart
      Recently favorited shoppers —people who‘ve favorited something from your shop
    7. Choose coupon type – select the type of discount from percentage off the price of items in your shop, fixed amount off the price of items in your shop, or free standard shipping.
    8. Choose a coupon code – enter a coupon code that will be sent to customers that they can enter at checkout to get the discount. This code will also be used to generate a URL for customers to use.

    Targeted offers on Etsy used to cost $0.10 to send to each individual but they removed that fee and they are now free to use. It’s highly recommended you use these types of sales to reach out to already interested buyers.

    How Sales Can Create More Etsy Income

    Creating your Etsy sales and coupons is the first step of increasing your Etsy sales. Once you have your sales and coupons running you need to monitor their success and then adjust as necessary.

    You can track the performance and success of your sales offers in the Sales and Coupons sections of your Shop Manager.

    In this area yoou will be able to see:

    • how long your sales and offers have been running
    • number of orders per offer
    • items sold per offer
    • average order value per offer
    • revenue per offer

    Seeing these numbers for each offer will allow you to determine whether or not your offer is effective. If you are growing sales then stick with it but it. nothing is happening then play around with the offers you put out there until things start working.

    How To Start An Etsy Shop

    If you’re not on Etsy yet, it’s a great platform to start on and learn how to sell digital products.

    If you want to start an Etsy shop in order to earn part time or full time income then this tutorial for beginners will help you get started! I know a lot of people who have never sold online before can feel intimidated which is why I created this tutorial on how to set up an Etsy shop step by step. It is very easy and seeing someone else do it makes it feel much easier!

    You can start your shop with this link for 40 free listings to jumpstart your shop without having to waste money on those first listings.

    Additionally, here are some posts about starting and growing an Etsy shop that may help you:

    How To Get More Sales On Etsy

    If you have tried out sales or don’t want to sacrifice any profits, you can do other things to get more sales on Etsy.

    This video shares many lessons about getting more sales on Etsy that can help you grow your sales especially as a new seller.

    For more posts about growing your sales on Etsy try out these posts:

    Read More

  • How To Make Money On YouTube (From A Six Figure YouTuber)

    Every month I make $8,000 – $10,000 per month from my YouTube videos. It has changed my life which is why I freely share info on how to make money with a YouTube channel.

    The money I make on YouTube helped me to pay off my debt, build an emergency fund, and QUIT my 9-5 job. Making money from YouTube changed my life and I want to share what I’ve learned to help others do the same.

    How do you make money on YouTube? How do you grow a channel so that it’s sustainable and able to earn you enough money to pay for bills or even support you full time?

    Make money on YouTube: how to do it from a six figure YouTuber

    In this post I’m going over:

    • how to make money on YouTube
    • different money making strategies
    • tips on how to earn with different methods
    • resources to help you earn more on YouTube

    This post will cover everything from how you can make money with ads to how to diversify your income and make more.

    I’m giving you insight into what it takes to actually make money on YouTube after three years of learning how to do it on my own and hitting a six figure income (without a huge channel).

    I hope these tips on how to grow your channel so it is large enough to make a difference in your life financially.

    How do YouTube channels make money?

    If you are a YouTuber or want to make videos on YouTube then you probably want to know how you can make money from doing.

    There are people who make a full time income from just YouTube – but how do they manage it?

    There are 5 main ways most YouTubers make money:

    1. Ad revenue
    2. Affiliate marketing
    3. Brand deals: Sponsored videos & Partnerships
    4. Community: Channel Memberships & Patreon
    5. Sales: Product sales & merch

    I’m will focus a lot on ad revenue and affiliate marketing because that is how I make the majority of my money from Youtube! They are my favorite ways to earn money because they can be very passive and they are great for new YouTubers.

    A new YouTube channel can’t make much money doing brand deals and sponsored videos, but they can promote products and make money through affiliate marketing.

    How to Make Money On YouTube

    I’m a small YouTuber but this is my favorite side hustle to earn money because even though it has taken a ton of work upfront, I can do it while being around my baby and family.

    I started YouTube just to share videos of my family’s Alaska vacation with friends but it sparked a creative passion that I never expected to find.

    One reason why I love YouTube is because I don’t have to leave to sell more of my time for money. I can make a video once and then it continues to earn and grow as time goes on and new people find it. There are millions and billions of people out there potentially waiting to see my videos. It’s an endless opportunity!

    Another reason why I like YouTube is because I can keep side hustling and earning money online to get to freedom while also supporting others! It’s another platform to share my message of financial encouragement and motivation. There is a huge community on YouTube encouraging and supporting each other as we pay off debt, build businesses, and change our lives financially.

    Luckily I have been earning money from both of my Youtube channels for a while now. While I’m not YouTube rich or quitting my job any time soon, I do make enough money that it is helping us pay off debt and improve our lives financially.

    If you’ve been curious about how people make money off YouTube, keep reading as I share all my income sources!

    The income sources for my channel include (affiliate links to each):

    You can see an example of my income here: Online Income Report (An Average Month)

    Other creators also do more intricate brand deals, channel sponsorships, create membership sites or sell merchandise. There are a lot of different ways to make money surrounding a YouTube channel.

    Make Money On YouTube With Ad Revenue

    YouTube ad revenue can be very lucrative in certain niches and there are many YouTube creators out there currently living on the ad revenue from their channels.

    I’ve had a lot of my YouTube subscribers ask questions about how YouTube ads work and hopefully this sheds a little bit of light on how YouTubers generate income with ads on their videos.

    I’m sharing how much YouTube paid me for two million video views and how exactly YouTube advertising works.

    This is a video about a lower paying niche but it shows what can be possible with ad revenue. In some of my recent online income updates I’ve shared that I’m making over $3,000 most months from just YouTube ad revenue.

    I also want you to know that it is possible to earn money on this platform through ad revenue even if you aren’t a big channel. Neither of my channels is over 20k subs but I’m still earning a good amount of money via ads because I’ve focused on getting views over getting subscribers.

    It is 100% possible to make money on YouTube. It is not easy to do, but it is possible.

    How YouTube Ads Work

    I wanted to clear up some things about ad rates and how ads on Youtube work. There are many different factors that go into different ad rates for channels and this determines how much YouTube creators make for each video on their channel.

    YouTube pays creators a split of the ad revenue on each video. YouTube take a chunk for supplying the platform and tools for creators and channel creators take a chunk for supplying their content to YouTube’s hungry audience.

    Ad revenue on videos is determined by factors like:

    • audience location
    • audience interaction with the ad
    • audience demographics
    • CPM
    • number of ads in a video

    Clearly there are a lot of factors you can’t control and depend entirely on your audience. You have even less control when a video goes viral and hits different audiences. YouTube makes sure ads are served up that benefit both the viewer. As a creator the main things that you can control is making good content and making sure you turn on a couple ads per video.

    There are many, many factors to determining the ad earnings for a video and I didn’t even cover some in the video like number of ads you include in your video!

    Growing Your YouTube Ad Revenue

    In order to make more on YouTube from ads you need to get more people to watch more ads. It’s really that simple. But there are many different tips for accomplishing this so here are a few of my favorites:

    • Add more ads to your videos including before the video, after the video and mid-roll ads. More ads increases your CPM because more people watch more ads during each viewing.
    • Create longer videos so you can get to the 10 minute mark which enables mid-roll ads. Of course if your content needs to be shorter, then don’t stretch it out. The important thing is to keep viewers ENGAGED for the whole video.
    • Make your content binge worthy so the viewer goes from one video to the next. You can do this with series, playlists, and calling out specific videos to watch next at the end of a video. This guides the viewer to watch another video which makes your channel grow and increases your ad revenue.
    • Create evergreen content that people will be able to watch again and again or find useful any time they find it in the future. This gives your video a longer earning period.
    • Make videos on popular or trending topics to ride waves of interest and large viewership increases. An example of this is the many channels who made videos about the stimulus program. Some channels were able to gain millions of views within a month which made them a lot of money in ad revenue!
    • Great good videos that people want to watch and share! This will definitely help your ad revenue grow because the more your videos are watched and shared the more money you can make.

    Those are a few of the best tips for growing your ad revenue on YouTube!

    Make Money With Sponsorships

    Most successful, well-paid YouTubers earn the majority of their income from brand sponsorships. For many niches it’s is the most lucrative way to monetize your content.

    Sponsorships are when a company pays a creator to promote their brand or product in a piece of content.

    Brand sponsorships on YouTube come in a variety of forms:

    • fully dedicated videos
    • 30-60 second integrated sponsor messages in videos
    • Community posts
    • Long term brand partnerships over multiple videos

    Sponsored content often has a much higher rate than ads or other monetization forms. Brands want to get in front of specific, engaged audiences and YouTube creators can be compensated well for this.

    Make Money With Affiliate Marketing

    Affiliate marketing is where you promote products to your audience and then earn a commission when someone makes a purchase through your unique affiliate link. 

    You earn money by selling other people’s products.

    The commissions for those sales can range from 4% to 70% of the product sales price.

    As you can see, you can earn major amounts of money when you are earning 50% or more of a product price without having to create the product.

    Affiliate marketing works in the same way as many old school referral programs and allows people to earn money through their blog or social media platforms by talking about things they love. It actually works well for all parties involved because you are only paid when you make a sale, it does not increase consumer cost, and the company providing the product does not have to pay upfront in case you don’t provide sales. 

    There are affiliate programs for all types of products and in every industry. There are affiliate programs where you can earn money promoting clothing, makeup, crafts, credit cards, bank accounts, ebooks, online courses and more. Regardless of what you plan to talk about online there will be an affiliate marketing program that will fit into your niche.

    Affiliate programs will pay commissions in three different ways:

    1. Pay per sale – You will earn a commission only when someone makes a purchase through your affiliate link.
    2. Pay per lead – You will earn a commission if someone signs up for a free trial or creates a free account or somehow otherwise gives a company their email address as a lead.
    3. Pay per click – This style of program is where you are paid money whenever someone clicks through one of your links.  

    There are many types of affiliate marketing programs but the most common one is pay per sale. That is what I will be referring to and giving tips to since it is what I use the most.

    Best Affiliate Marketing Programs For Youtube Channels

    There are several affiliate networks with multiple affiliate programs I’ve used very successfully that I want to share for any channels looking to monetize.

    An affiliate network is simply a company that runs multiple affiliate programs for different companies. It’s a great way for YouTubers to get access to multiple companies in one place. I highly recommend joining each network listed below and then finding individual companies that match your content within each network.

    ShareASale

    ShareASale – ShareASale is an affiliate network which means it is a platform where you can sign up for multiple affiliate programs within it.

    There are a couple great programs within ShareASale and this is one of the few networks that also offers the ability to earn recurring revenue through two-tier programs.

    To start earning affiliate income with ShareASale, go sign up and look through the programs available. ShareASale was acquired by Awin so they actually have even more options now than before!

    Awin

    Awin – This is another affiliate network where you can sign up for multiple programs in one place. There are many good programs here and Awin consistently earns me hundreds of dollars monthly, but mainly from one program: Etsy.

    That’s right, Etsy has an affiliate marketing program! They offer their affiliates 4% of anything someone purchases through an affiliate link. While 4% isn’t much, it can really add up if people are buying budget sets monthly and more.

    I highly recommend you use the Etsy affiliate program to link to your favorite shops on Etsy. You get a small 4% kickback but it doesn’t cost the shop or the customer anything extra. It comes from Etsy’s fees and is a great way for you to earn money by promoting small businesses on Etsy.

    To promote Etsy shops or any Awin affiliate partner you should go start an account with Awin

    FlexOffers

    FlexOffers is an affiliate network that is geared toward many financial affiliate programs so it’s a great option if you have a channel about budgeting or any financial topic.

    Within FlexOffers there are a number of financial programs on multiple topics about money:

    • banking
    • credit repair & reporting
    • debt services
    • home loans
    • investment services
    • tax services

    Clearly FlexOffers is the place to be if you are running a channel about personal finances and want to find affiliate programs to promote!

    To promote these financial products you should go start an account at FlexOffers and search for any of the programs in the network.

    Impact Radius

    Impact Radius is another affiliate marketing network that works very well for YouTube creators.

    On this network you can find a lot of companies that you’ve probably seen other promote like Canva, Harry’s, FuboTV and more.

    To make money with this network you can sign up for Impact Radius here.

    Affiliate Marketing Tips For YouTubers

    If you are a YouTuber with a budgeting related channel and want to start use affiliate marketing to earn money then here are some of my favorite tips:

    • Mention your links in the video and direct your audience to your description box.
    • Include an affiliate disclaimer link in your description box that is clear you will make a commission.
    • Link to specific products you use instead of the general page. The less steps between a buyer and the purchase the better. Specific links convert better than generic ones.
    • Use products in the programs that you are promoting as an affiliate. If you have a choice to use products in the program or not, use the ones you can promote as an affiliate. People always want to know where you got things.
    • Leave a link to what you used in the video in a pinned comment.
    • Respond to any questions where people ask where you got something and give them the affiliate link. (This is just polite practice as well that builds trust with your audience.)

    Those are just a few of my best tips for how I’ve managed to share products I love like my favorite budget stickers shops and cash envelope makers while also earning income for doing it!

    Make Money On YouTube With Products & Merch

    Another way many YouTubers make money is by creating and selling merchandise or various types of products.

    Many of the most financially successful creators have created product lines and real businesses surrounding their channels. Here I’m going to focus on the more common options: print on demand merchandise and digital products.

    Sell Merch With Print On Demand

    Thanks to the concept of Print On Demand companies it is very easy for YouTubers to make money selling merchandise.

    Instead of creating huge amounts of inventory you instead can use these companies to make items for you only when you make sales from your audience.

    All you have to do is make the designs and upload them to these sites. These print on demand companies then create the product whenever you make a sale.

    Sites you can use to sell merch:

    If you have a great brand and catchy phrases you can successfully create merch that your audience will buy.

    Sell Related Digital Products

    Digital products are a great way to monetize your YouTube audience. Many YouTubers do this through creating and selling courses through sites like Teachable or selling printables on Etsy.

    Creating digital products like courses is a wonderful way to monetize because you do the work upfront but then can be paid over and over again. Digital products are a great passive income source model for YouTubers.

    Other digital products I’ve seen YouTube creators sell successfully include:

    • Ebooks
    • Guides and workbooks
    • Cheatsheets
    • Plans & Instructions for projects
    • Planners
    • Printable sticker kits
    • Spreadsheets

    I’ve done this personally by creating digital products related to my channel that I sell through Etsy and other websites.

    If you want to learn about earning income from selling products?

    Check out these helpful posts:

    These posts will give you ideas of products you can make and sell for your channel as well as how to do it.

    Make Money On YouTube With Community Support

    Another way to make money on YouTube is by allowing your community to support you financially.

    There are a couple ways to do this. The most popular options include:

    • Patreon
    • BuyMeACoffee
    • YouTube Memberships
    • YouTube Superchats & Applause

    Patreon allows you to build community support with a membership style monthly billing process. You can offer extra goodies to your patrons or just allow them to show their support.

    You can also do this through YouTube for a more seamless process though you lose more of the revenue to YouTube’s cut.

    Personally I’ve been experimenting with both of these revenue streams since I post a lot of content for free. Both have had signups though neither one has been a huge financial success. I’m still so grateful for the support people are giving me to create content.

    How Much Money Small YouTube Creators Make

    In the video above, I’m sharing what I made from YouTube ads since I’ve been monetized with my main channel and giving you a look at my analytics of my best performing videos. This video helped answer the questions I got often about what I made as a small creator.

    I started my channel without any expectations of making money on YouTube. I made small amounts less than $20 a month when I started and then when my channel was demonetized for being too small, I really couldn’t imagine getting to this point of earning money. It seemed so far out of reach.

    Yet with my channel’s growth and my connections to larger YouTube channel creators, I now see that I’m still just at the beginning of what is possible with YouTube income!

    I’ve always loved seeing real numbers from other creators which is why I wanted to share my own experiences and numbers with making money on YouTube. I’m not a videographer or a technical person so I wanted to share what a regular person earning income from this hobby could potentially make.

    Growing Your YouTube Channel

    If you want to make more from your small Youtube channel then the best way to do it is to grow your channel. The more people that find you the more money you will make.

    Here are the ways I’ve learned to grow on YouTube.

    Get Useful YouTube Growth Tools

    I resisted using a paid tool like TubeBuddy for a while because I thought I was smart enough to do it on my own but when I finally caved and bought a subscription I kicked myself for not doing it sooner.

    TubeBuddy: YouTube Channel Growth Toolkit

    Easily manage, optimize, edit, and GROW your YouTube channel with TubeBuddy's tools. Want to grow on YouTube? You need TubeBuddy. Try now for FREE.


    I earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

    With TubeBuddy you can see EXACTLY what other channels are using for their tags and video data and compare their channels to yours. You can learn how to do a lot of title and tag work for SEO with TubeBuddy.

    Some of my other favorite tools I’ve used inside TubeBuddy while growing my channel:

    • canned responses to reply to comments faster
    • comment filters
    • upload checklist
    • card templates
    • end screen templates
    • video topic planner

    Those are a few of my favorite tools within my account to grow. TubeBuddy has a free version with limited tools listed here and paid accounts when you really want to grow (which are amazing for the price).

    Learn About YouTube SEO

    There are tons of videos on Youtube about how to use SEO on the platform. Watch some. Learn about what keywords are and how to use them. For many channels, search is the key way they are found and earn money.

    To shorten your journey in learning and implementing SEO, I again recommend TubeBuddy because it’s like an all in one solution for YouTubers.

    Here are the SEO tools you have access to inside TubeBuddy:

    • view and copy video tags from another channel
    • tag rankings so you can track where you rank
    • suggested tags for your videos
    • keyword explorer
    • search rankings
    • best practices audit

    And even more! All of those tools help you get your video ranked on YouTube so you get more views. It seriously has more tools than I’ve even had time to use yet but what I have used above has helped take my videos to the next level.

    Since I’ve been using TubeBuddy my SEO has improved and my search traffic has doubled. Seriously, it doubled! TubeBuddy has been an incredibly helpful and the first month I used it I actually doubled the views on my channel going from 45,000 views in a month to 110,000 in a month.

    Make Good YouTube Videos

    Seriously, making good videos is how you grow on YouTube. There are a lot of additional factors but you won’t grow if you make bad videos.

    You should be making videos that you know are good. If they make you cringe when you are rewatching to edit, how do you expect anyone else to enjoy them?

    Here are a few of the best tips from successful creators I’ve followed about making good videos:

    • Get to the point in your videos. Don’t ramble on for a long period at the beginning where people will fall off. Study your old videos too see where people drop off.
    • Make your videos provide value. If your videos are educational then make them very educational. If they are entertainment based then they should provide value by making your viewer feel something. Think of each video and consider what value it is providing someone.
    • Audio quality matters the most even over video quality. You can have top notch video but if your audio is bad people will stop watching.
    • Focus on your presentation and story telling skills. When you first start making videos you probably won’t be very good at this but it’s something that makes the best YouTubers connect with their audience.
    • Every video on your channel is providing some type of value. That value might be education or entertainment or just a feeling like someone belongs. You need to recognize what value you are providing and then put your own unique spin on it.

    Remember that these are all things that you can work on and you can’t compare yourself to other creators. You should work hard to improve your skills and tune out the distractions of others.

    Build Community Around Your YouTube Channel

    Having a community around your channel and your videos is another great way to guarantee successful video launches and continued success. Building community can be done in a few ways:

    • commenting on other youtube channels
    • responding to all of your comments
    • referencing viewers and comments in your videos
    • giving shoutouts to people in your community
    • giving your viewers a nickname and expected phrases

    Those are just a few ways I’ve found to build my community but you can find what works for you! The most successful YouTube channels have an element of community around them.

    Those are just some of the ways I’ve learned how to grow my channel and consistently doubled my channel size each year I’ve been on Youtube while still keeping consistent and engaged subscribers.

    Learn From YouTube Experts

    Another great way to grow on YouTube (and save a ton of time) is to learn from experts who have already done it.

    You can book one on one time or take a course like my friend Erika’s course Mastering YouTube for the Busy Professional (affiliate link).

    Make money on YouTube with Erika's YouTube course

    She went from 0 subscribers to over 70,000 and $100,000 earned from YouTube in just one year. I’ve learned a lot from her about both getting views from trending topics and outsourcing to grow faster.

    Taking a course like this or from any big YouTuber will help you learn faster and grow faster because you will make less mistakes.

    All of these things will help you grow faster after you’ve hit your first 100 subscribers. Best wishes on growing your channel to a huge success!

    The REAL Truth About Making Money On YouTube

    Making money on YouTube is not a fast process.

    In fact, even after consistently making videos for two years I was a small YouTuber only making $400ish a month on ads. I was nowhere near a fulltime income from YouTube even after putting in hours and hours of work.

    That isn’t to discourage anyone trying to make money on YouTube.

    I did eventually grow my income to a six figure number, but it took years of work.

    Be aware that it isn’t fast and it does involve a lot of work! The honest truth about YouTube is that it’s hard to make money.

    For every channel that succeeds and earns a massive amount of money, there are thousands who toil away unnoticed and eventually give up.

    If you want to be successful on YouTube you need to go one of two ways: 1) do it for the creative outlet and not for money 2) be very strategic and have a business plan from the beginning.

    Either way, you have to take into consideration the types of videos you make on YouTube and the types of advertisers that might want to advertise to your audience. If you are in a niche that doesn’t have high paying advertisements then you will need a lot more views to make the same amount of money as someone in another niche.

    Knowing a bit about how YouTube ads work can help you create your own plan for your channel’s success. Hopefully this look into my analytics and more information about how to make money on YouTube has been helpful for you!

    More YouTube Tips & Tutorials

    YouTube Tutorials

    Here are a few useful YouTube tutorials on Pennies Not Perfection:

    YouTube Tutorials

    Faceless YouTube Videos

    Youtube Tips & Tricks

    Check out more YouTube tutorials or request a new tutorial by reaching out on Instagram!

    If you want to say thank you, you can Buy Me A Coffee.

    YouTube Resources

    Here are some YouTube resources that can help you start, run, and grow your YouTube channel:

    YouTube Success Planner

    Get organized and succeed on YouTube! Streamline your processes and hit your goals by getting organized with this YouTube planner with multiple sections on content planning, channel analytics, monetization, and more.


    TubeBuddy: YouTube Channel Growth Toolkit

    Easily manage, optimize, edit, and GROW your YouTube channel with TubeBuddy's tools. Want to grow on YouTube? You need TubeBuddy. Try now for FREE.


    I earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
    Adobe Creative Cloud

    Adobe Creative Cloud gives you the world’s best creative apps and services so you can make anything you can imagine, wherever you’re inspired.

    I earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
    Canva - An Online Graphic Design Tool

    Canva makes it easy to create professional designs quickly. They include tons of free templates, photos and fonts to make your design perfect.

    I earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
    ConvertKit: Email Marketing For Income Creators

    Grow, nurture, and monetize your audience on ConvertKit.

    I earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
    Online Jobs PH

    Hire the best virtual assistants and employees from the Philippines to help grow your online business.

    I earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
    Epidemic Sound

    Get music for your YouTube videos and other content without worrying about copyright issues.

    I earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
    vidIQ: Grow Your YouTube Channel

    Free tool that gives you insights and guidance to grow your YouTube channel. Use vidIQ to audit performance, research topics, and grow your views.

    I earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
    Mastering YouTube For The Busy Professional Course

    Learn how to grow a profitable YouTube channel while still working full-time. This course from lawyer Erika Kullberg teaches you everything you need to know.


    I earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.
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