I started exploring the world of selling art and photography prints about a year or so ago. (Maybe two?) This whole quarantine thing has thrown off my sense of time a bit. Within that time I have made sales (so fun) and also started to take the whole concept a lot more seriously.
Once I started uploading my work to a site outside of social media it gave me a whole new perspective on it. I learned that some people would in fact pay money to hang my photography on their wall. And I learned that some of my images were better than others…which was a nice dose of motivation to keep upping the quality and creativity.
These days there are tons of print on demand sites that allow you to sell your photography with very little work on the sales side. It’s easy. Of course there are obvious downsides to selling your work through a print on demand site, such as the margins. I sold a poster this week of one of my photos and only made $1.67. However, besides taking the photo and uploading it to my RedBubble page, I didn’t have to do any do work to make the sale. Or do anything to follow through with it. Easy.
Now if I was selling 100 of that print each week then I might consider moving to a platform where I’d keep more of the profit. Or selling directly off one of my own websites. But I’m not. Yet!
There are many, many different places that you can sell your art and photography online, but below are some of the ones that I am personally more familiar with.
Here are some of the best places to sell your photography online.
As mentioned, I personally have more experience selling on RedBubble than on any other print on demand site, but that’s because I just happened to start there. The platform is relatively easy to use and you can sell your work printed on items from stickers to tote bags.
Yes, they take a big cut. But if you already have some work ready to go, it’s worth seeing which of your photos is going to sell. I’ve ordered some of my own popular prints off the site just to see exactly how they look. I’m very happy with the quality and color. Some of these are currently displayed in the midst of my own living room gallery room. Why not.
When you go to post your work on this site, make sure that you fill out the keyword section. All of these sites offer a spot for you to enter keywords when you post your products. That’s how people are going to find your work if you don’t know you. Ie: “palm tree.” It’s worth doing some research to get keyword ideas if you’re getting stuck and not using these to your full advantage.
Keywords, product descriptions, good titles…all mandatory to get anywhere with your sales.
Society6 has a slightly different vibe than RedBubble. I don’t know how to explain it exactly, but now that I think of it, I have personally purchased other people’s art off Society6 and not off RedBubble. Do with that information what you will.
Society6 offers some different products than RedBubble, like serving trays and side tables. So if you want to step up your offerings, it’s a good spot.
They also make it very easy and obvious to change the profit margins on certain images that you’re selling, rather than having to apply it across the board. So if you have a premium photo or one that’s selling much more quickly than the rest, you can easily increase the price.
And again, be sure to fill out your keywords.
At a certain point in time, Etsy was just used to sell handmade goods and crafts. The items sold there still need to be “unique” but you don’t have to actually make them by hand. This means you can integrate a print on demand service with your Etsy shop and sell prints in a very similar way that you might as the sites mentioned above. You can also sell digital downloads on Etsy…like just the photo file. And then the customer can go do the work of printing it out themselves.
On Etsy, you have more control over every element of your shop, but it’s also a bit more work. Sometimes people move to Etsy if they’re selling a lot or if they want to incorporate other types of items into their shops.
Yes, you can always just sell your photography prints via your own website. You can again, parter with various services to make this is as simple of a process as possible for you. And since it’s your own website you don’t have to compete with other sellers. Any keywording that you do is for you to be found in the midst of the rest of the internet. Which poses its own challenges.
If you already have traffic on your website or sell other photography services, then this could be a good way to go. If you don’t, it can be a slower process getting the eyes that you need on your products.
Again…these are just a few of the many options. There are other print on demand sites that I have not personally explored, that have equally good if not better reviews than some of these. These include Fine Art America, Zazzle, Crated, ArtPal, and Imagekind.
I will keep you updated if I test them out.