Anyone with a creative flair can create digital downloads to sell on Etsy. In this article, you’ll learn how to make digital products to sell on Etsy and how to create digital downloads on Canva.
You’ll also learn about the best file types to use for Etsy digital downloads and how to copyright your work. Finally, you’ll find out how much you can make selling digital downloads on Etsy.
Basically, everything you need to know about how to make digital downloads for Etsy.
What is a Digital Download?
A digital download is a file that can be downloaded and used digitally.
This could be an image, audio clip, or even a piece of software.
For example, Etsy sellers often create digital downloads of their artwork or photography to sell to buyers.
I personally have an Etsy shop that sells printables. These digital downloads continually earn me a couple hundred dollars every month.
Etsy Digital Download File Types
These are the common digital file types supported by Etsy:
You can make and sell digital items in any of these file types.
What is the Best File Type for Etsy Digital Downloads?
The best file type for Etsy digital downloads depends on the product you are selling.
For images, JPG is common. This file type is small enough to be downloaded quickly but still maintains a high-quality image. However, if you are selling clip art you may need to use PNG or for SVGs you will obviously need the SVG file.
Many sellers of art use multiple file types and let their customer decide which they need.
For other files, PDF is the standard. This file type works best for things like printables and e-books.
Creating Digital Downloads for Etsy
To create digital downloads for Etsy, you’ll need to sign up for an Etsy account. Once you’ve created an account, you can start selling your digital products.
When selling a digital product on Etsy, you can choose to sell your item as “Instant Download” or Made to Order.”
If you offer a product for instant download, that means when you create the listing, you upload the file, and when a consumer makes a purchase, they instantly receive it.
When you sell a product as “Made to Order,” the customer will receive an email confirming the order but won’t receive the product immediately. However, as you work on the customization, the order will appear as an open order on your Orders & Shipping page so that you can keep track of it.
For completely “passive” sales you will want to create instant download type products. Without the need to customize products for customers you will allow Etsy to fully handle the sale and delivery of product.
Making Digital Downloads
All of this information sounds good, but sometimes you need to see it in action.
How do you actually create the products? What software do you use? How do you find or create the content inside the products?
Making digital products is the same whether you sell those products on Etsy, alternative marketplaces, or your own site using Shopify.
The following videos walk through creating a couple different kinds of digital products.
After watching these tutorials you can create your own products to sell on Etsy by using variations.
Cheap or Affordable Software
If you want to create digital prints to sell on Etsy, you probably will use Canva.
Canva is a free online design platform that’s easy to use and doesn’t require any design experience.
With Canva, you can create professional-looking designs for your digital products. You can also use Canva to make digital downloads for other sites like Zazzle and Society6.
Canva has a wide range of elements and useful design functions you can use when you start from scratch and create your own design. Once you’re happy with your design, you can download it as a number of different file types like PDF, JPG, PNG, or more.
Canva has grown in popularity over the years and many of use Canva to create digital products. There are many Canva tutorials available so even beginners can use this easy software to create amazing products like printables or Canva templates.
The great thing about Canva is that you can use it for other design functions too, from creating social media graphics to making money in other ways too!
If you’re looking for other affordable software options for creating digital downloads, you can also try GIMP or Inkscape.
Pricing Your Digital Downloads
When pricing your digital downloads, you’ll need to consider the cost of your software, time spent creating the files, Etsy seller fees and any additional fees.
It also helps to price your digital products based on what similar items sell for on Etsy.
To find out what other sellers are charging for digital downloads, search for items similar to yours and see what the average price is. You can also use an Etsy pricing calculator to help you determine a fair price for your product.
I personally use SaleSamurai for this when researching other products and shops. I like to gather as much information as possible to figure out why other shops are making sales and Sale Samurai pulls this data together.
Protecting Your Work
Unfortunately, theft is common on Etsy. Many sellers will steal your work and sell it in their own shops. This is a sad reality and you need to try to protect yourself.
You can copyright your work by adding a watermark to your images. This will make it harder for people to steal your work and sell it as their own.
To add a watermark, open your image in Canva and click the “Text” button. Then, type in your copyright information. You can also add a watermark by using Photoshop or another image editing software.
You can also look into legal actions like getting a trademark for your brand or any unique item you sell.
If you have a seller that is stealing your work, you can file a copyright infringement report on Etsy to get them taken down.
Types of Digital Downloads
There are endless possibilities for the types of digital products you can sell on Etsy. Some popular items include:
- Printable wall art
- Printable planners
- Digital scrapbooking kits
- Fonts and graphics
- Stickers (physical and digital)
- Project patterns (sewing, knitting, crochet, etc.)
- SVG files for Cricut and Silhouette machines
Not sure what to make? Check out these posts for ideas:
- 15 Digital Products to Sell Online For Passive Income
- 6 Most Profitable Digital Products To Sell Online
- 17 Popular Digital Product Ideas To Sell On Etsy
Let’s look at some of the more common Etsy digital downloads in depth with tips on how to create the best possible product.
If you want to sell digital prints on Etsy, you’ll need to create high-quality JPG or PNG files of your artwork. Once your files are ready, you can upload them to your Etsy shop and start selling.
To ensure your prints look their best, it’s important to use high-resolution images. You can increase the resolution of an image by using editing software like Photoshop or Lightroom.
When creating digital prints, you’ll also need to decide on the size and orientation of your artwork. Most art prints are either horizontal or vertical, but you can also offer square or panoramic prints.
Once you’ve decided on the size and orientation of your print, you may need to create a border around the image. This is called a bleed. A bleed is an extra 1/8 inch of space around the edge of your print that allows for slight variations in trimming.
If you don’t include a bleed, your prints may have white edges if they’re trimmed even slightly off-center. To avoid this, make sure to add a bleed when creating digital prints for Etsy.
Digital Clip Art
Digital clip art is a popular type of digital product that can be used for various purposes. For example, clip art can be used to create invitations, logos, website graphics, and much more.
When creating digital clip art, it’s important to use high-quality images and graphics. Once you have your clip art files ready, you can upload them to your Etsy shop and start selling.
SVGs or Cut Files
SVGs or cut files are digital files that can be used with cutting machines like the Cricut or Silhouette. These files can be used to create custom products like t-shirts, mugs, and more.
If you want to sell SVGs on Etsy, you’ll need to create high-quality vector files. You can use free software like Inkscape or Illustrator to create your SVGs.
Planner printables are a popular type of digital product that can be used to organize and decorate planners. These files can be used to create custom pages for any kind of planner.
High-quality photos and graphics should be used while making planner printables. Once your files are prepared, you can post them to your Etsy store and begin taking orders.
Checklists, Calendars, and Worksheets
Another popular type of digital product is checklists, calendars, and worksheets. These files can be used for various purposes like keeping track of goals, staying organized, etc.
PDFs are the best file types for checklists, calendars, and worksheets. This will ensure that your customers can easily print and use your files.
Spreadsheets and Templates
You can also sell spreadsheets and templates on Etsy. Spreadsheets are digital files that can be used to track data, create budgets, and more.
You’ll need to create high-quality Excel or Google Sheets files to sell spreadsheets on Etsy. These files should be well-designed and easy to use.
Another type of digital product you can sell on Etsy is templates. Templates can be used for various purposes like creating invitations, marketing materials, and more. When creating templates, it’s important to use high-quality images and graphics.
If you want to sell eBooks on Etsy, you’ll need to create high-quality PDF files. You can use free software like Adobe InDesign or Microsoft Word to create your eBook. You may also want to use an editor to ensure your work is error-free.
Once your eBook is complete, you can upload it to your Etsy shop and start selling. Be sure to include a description of your book and what customers can expect to learn from it.
Digital Download FAQs
Got a question about selling digital products on Etsy? Here we answer some of the common ones we are asked on our content!
Do Digital Downloads Sell Well on Etsy?
Digital downloads are a popular type of product on Etsy and can be very profitable.
However, it’s essential to create high-quality products that will appeal to buyers. Be sure to use quality images and graphics, and offer a variety of file types (such as PDFs, JPEGs, and PNGs).
It’s also important to make sure you are creating products with popular appeal. Are other shops making sales with similar products? Is it trendy right now? Do some research before creating your products.
How Much Can You Make With Digital Downloads on Etsy?
The amount of money you make from selling digital downloads on Etsy will depend on the price you charge for your products multiplied by the sales you make.
If you sell a lot of digital downloads, you can make a decent income from your sales.
Consider offering bundles or discounts on multiple digital download purchases to maximize your earnings. You can also run promotions and offer coupon codes for your Etsy shop to encourage buyers to purchase your products.
How Can I Get More Sales?
Obviously more sales of your digital products lead to more income. Everyone wants more sales!
There are many ways to increase your sales. You can improve your Etsy SEO, grow a social media following, have influencers promote your shop, and more.
If you need some ideas on increasing sales, check out these articles:
- How To Get Sales On Etsy As A Beginner
- Best Ways To Increase Sales On Etsy
- 5 Best Etsy Keyword Tools For More Sales
Start Selling Today!
Now that you know everything there is to know about digital downloads for Etsy, it’s time to start selling!
With a bit of time and effort, you can start earning money from your digital products. I know many digital Etsy sellers making a full time income from their shop.
Creating digital products is a great way to make money on Etsy. You can earn a decent income from your sales if you put in the time to create high-quality products.
So what are you waiting for? Start making and selling today!
Once you’ve decided to sell on Etsy, check out some of the useful Etsy seller tutorials and resources we have on the site. You can also request a new tutorial by reaching out on Instagram!
If you want to say thank you, you can Buy Me A Coffee.
If you want to learn more about digital downloads and how to sell them on Etsy, there are plenty of online resources that can help you.
The Etsy Seller Handbook is a great place to start. This guide covers everything from setting up your shop to marketing your products.
You can also join the Etsy community and connect with other sellers. There are several Facebook groups for Etsy sellers where you can ask questions and get advice from experienced sellers.
Etsy Sales Resources
Here are some helpful Etsy seller resources that can help you start and grow your digital Etsy shop:
Sale Samurai's powerful AI driven keyword tools help you find and implement long tail keywords that bring in Etsy traffic and generate more sales.
For a 20% discount on Sale Samurai use my code penniesnotperfection.
Mary is the founder of Pennies Not Perfection where she shares her journey to build wealth through online income. She quit her day job in 2021 after she paid off her debt and doubled her 9-5 salary.
Mary's favorite free financial tool is Personal Capital. She uses their free tools to track net worth and work toward to financial freedom.