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Let’s talk about how I made my first $1,000 selling digital products on Etsy.
And how you can do the same.
I am going to walk you through exactly how I got here starting from 0.
And I say ‘from 0’ because I started with having no product, no idea what I was doing, and very low confidence.
I didn’t know if anyone was even going to buy anything from me.
But I did manage to make my first $1,000 selling digital products on Etsy, and you can definitely do that too.
The best thing about digital products is that they ensure a completely passive income stream. Once you create a product, you put it on the website for sale and that’s it.
You don’t really have to do anything else, it sells passively.
A physical product needs creating over and over again, but a digital product is created once and sold many many times.
This makes it amazing if you want to have that passive income stream on the side or to turn it into your full-time thing (that’s what I did, I’m now a full-time blogger).
I believe very much in selling those small digital products, whether that’s on Etsy, your website or different platforms (there are so many out there!).
It’s just such an amazing income stream that it would be a shame not to pursue it, especially since you have the opportunity to do so.
Anyone has access to the internet these days and you have so many free tools available to create these digital products.
So why wouldn’t you try and sell some, and make some money from this online business thing?
I’m really excited about this because I know it’s made such a big difference in my life, and I know it can do the same in yours.
Free Masterclass: Selling small digital products: from 0 to $1,000
Before we get into the tips, I just wanted to quickly mention that I have a free masterclass on exactly this topic: How to go from 0 to your first $1,000 selling digital product.
Regardless of the platform on which you decide to sell your product, the process is very much the same.
And your product doesn’t even have to be a huge program or course. You can turn a small digital product into a full-time business and that’s amazing.
So the masterclass is completely free, fill in the form here to access it:
How I made my first $1,000 selling digital products on Etsy
How did I start and how did I get to the place where I am today? Here’s my story.
I didn’t know what to sell
I’ll be completely honest.
When I started, I was basically just a blogger. I was blogging away on my little blog.
While doing so, I started getting this idea that I might be able to sell my own digital product.
I would see others selling pdfs, ebooks, or printables, and I thought maybe I could do that too.
The problem was: I had no idea what I was going to sell.
Who’s even going to buy from me?
The thoughts in my head were along the lines of ‘Is anyone ever going to buy from me?’.
‘Who even am I to be selling these products?’
I think a lot of us have these thoughts in the beginning.
I also had very low confidence.
The thing about confidence is that it never comes from overthinking things.
Confidence comes from doing things, and seeing a bit of a result. Then powering up on top of that and optimising a bit to get to the next level.
And you keep going until this grows into a full-time business.
But it needs to start from that small point of ‘I don’t have confidence, I don’t know who’s going to buy from me’.
And even if you feel that fear, you go and do it anyway.
That is what will get you to that successful business at the end of the day.
Creating my first successful freebie
The first thing that gave me this impulse to create digital products were the people following me on Instagram and asking me how I edit my pictures.
I was using the free Lightroom app for that. This is an app in which you can create presets, save them and you can keep using them to edit all of your photos and keep that consistent aesthetic.
That’s what I was doing on my pictures that I would post on Instagram.
I guess people really liked the aesthetic, or the colours, or the vibe.
So once I started getting all these questions about them, I thought that I might actually share one of my presets with my followers for free so that they can use it as well.
So I exported a preset, saved it as a digital product and I gave it for free on my website.
I did that by putting up a sign-up form, so that those interested would also sign up on my email list.
By that point, I had heard how important email lists are.
Though I had no idea if it was ever gonna come to anything, I decided to give it a go.
The next step I took was to promote this free preset on Pinterest, on YouTube, in a lot of different areas, and of course on my Instagram.
Many people started signing up for the free preset. To this day, there are over 50,000 or 60,000 people who have downloaded that free preset, which was insane to me.
And those are people who have also joined my email list (numbers are approximates because I lost some of the first subscribers when switching mail platforms).
From freebie to selling a digital product
The fact that people were so interested in that free preset made me think I could share some of my other presets too.
But this time by selling some of them.
So I was offering a free one and then if they wanted more options, if they wanted an upgrade, they would be able to buy a whole range of other presets.
I went back and forth on this for months.
It took me so long to make that decision of ‘I’m gonna do this!’ because I had all of those limiting beliefs, like ‘people will think I’m salesy’ or ‘people will think I’m a sellout’.
Many of us have limiting beliefs that hold us back.
The truth is, the only thing that’s holding you back from selling and making money is you. There’s nothing else stopping you from creating a digital product, selling it and making that income.
Once I got over that doubt and those limiting beliefs, I decided to go for it. If no one was to buy, that’s that. At least I would have given it a shot.
So I started selling my presets. I created my Etsy shop and I put the presets there for sale.
And no, I didn’t really have much of a system in place at first.
I just sent some emails to my email list and I promoted them on my Instagram, on Pinterest and on my blog.
I let people know that I have this free preset and then I also have these paid ones, in case they wanted more.
Well people started actually buying them.
In my first month of selling these presets I made £300, which is around $360. It might not seem like a lot, but for me it was the small beginning that I needed to give me confidence.
It made me realise that I can actually do this.
I can actually sell digital products.
And if I sold £300, that means I can sell £1,000, and that means I can sell £2,000 and scale from there.
And that’s exactly what I did.
I kept optimising and testing different things.
Creating a funnel system to sell digital products passively
I also started learning about funnels.
A funnel is a system where you take people from not knowing anything about you, your business, or your products, all the way to them becoming your customers.
It’s like a string of things that happen that converts people into clients.
I started learning so much about these funnels, about how they work, and what I could incorporate in my business.
In fact, setting up that funnel system allowed me to reach that first $1,000.
It was completely passive income at that point, which felt amazing.
I had created this small preset pack, I had put it on my Etsy, and then I kept selling it.
And it’s still selling now, completely passively, I don’t have to do much for those sales to happen.
What I sometimes do is offer customer support.
If someone is having trouble setting the presets up, I help them with that. But that takes a few minutes.
This is the thing with digital products and funnels.
Once you set everything up, the system keeps working by itself. Your products get sold automatically and you make a passive income.
Ever since setting up my first digital product and funnel, I have used this system again and again in my business. Every time I create and want to sell courses, ebooks, or programs in my business, I use this system and it’s amazing.
And it’s quite simple, once you learn how to set it up.
The Simple Passive Plan
This is exactly why I created my new course I launched earlier this year, called the Simple Passive Plan.
You might already know about it, if you are on my mailing list.
I wanted to put all of my experience and knowledge into a course for you, so that you can have easy access to this entire selling system.
It’s a 10-step plan to get you from 0, from starting from scratch, all the way to getting that passive income consistently.
Selling digital products doesn’t have to be that complicated.
I know, if you look out there on the internet, there’s a lot of information that can leave you feeling more overwhelmed than when you started doing any research on digital products and passive income.
So I just wanted to create a simple course that gives you the exact system you need for selling this type of products.
Getting the feedback from my first few students who joined in has been amazing!
People really loved it and I think what they loved most about it is that it’s a clear and simple plan that gets you to that consistent passive income without the overwhelm.
5 Steps to Making your First $1,000 Selling digital products on Etsy
Step 1: Mindset check-in
After my experience, I now know that the first thing to do as you start on this journey is to work on your mindset.
Practice to get over those limiting beliefs.
We all have those thought: ‘I’m not good enough’, ‘Who’s even going to buy my product’, ‘People will think I’m salesy’ and so on.
You might have some of them in your head right now.
When I tell you that you can start selling your product tomorrow, what is the first thing that pops into your head?
That’s most likely going to be a limiting belief that you need to work on.
So do that, work through it, work on your mindset, do journaling, anything that can help you get over it. Keep pushing through.
I know, it is a scary process, putting yourself out there and creating products.
But again, you can feel that fear and do it anyway. Because the reward of having that passive income is really worth it.
Step 2: What product are you going to sell?
The second step in this process is going to be deciding on what product to sell.
The good news is, there are a million things you could sell as digital products, depending on your niche, experience or expertise. For example, you could create and sell:
- pdfs and printables
- mini courses
- full courses or programs
- Canva templates
- Lightroom presets etc.
It’s all about getting creative.
And about doing a bit of research.
Go on Etsy, Shopify, or any other platforms, and have a look at what other products are out there.
Ask yourself, which one of those could you recreate in your own style and experience?
Keep in mind that creating your own digital product isn’t about reinventing the wheel.
Because the truth is, it can be difficult to come up with a product that hasn’t been made before. In this day and age, whatever product you want to create, will likely have already been done. And that’s fine.
Your product will always be different and have something to make it stand out.
You’re not going to do exactly the same thing.
Even if you might use a similar colour scheme or even the same topic, your product will come from YOUR experience, your perspective, your view, and that’s unique.
So your product will be different from the similar ones already on the market.
Step 3: Validate your product idea
After you have chosen a possible product idea, the next step to take is to validate it.
This is something that I teach more in the Simple Passive Plan course.
We talk there about how to do audience research, how to really get to know your people, and know what products you could create that will actually be useful to them.
We go over validating, checking if that product is a good idea, if people will be interested in buying it, if they actually need it.
One thing that you could easily do to take that action right now to validate your idea is to go and check for similar products to your planned one.
If there are a lot of people selling similar products, it could feel discouraging.
But that is actually a good thing.
It’s great if there are already products out there similar to your planned one.
That means there is a need for it and a market for it.
Competition is not a bad thing.
It just means there is a market out there and you can have your spot in the market, because you will be different. Your products will be different.
Imagine if Starbucks had said ‘Well, there are already a lot of coffee shops out there, so we might as well not start this business’.
So no, competition is not a bad thing at all.
Step 4: How much to charge for your digital product
Once you have your validated product, it’s time to figure out how much to charge for it. A lot of people get stuck at this point and we do go into this in the Simple Passive Plan.
You will want to basically decide if you want to be more on the affordable side, medium priced, or if you want to have a high ticket type of product.
To decide on this, you can again do that market research: go on Etsy and other platforms, and check the price range for similar products to yours.
Then decide where you want to be on that scale.
Know that there’s nothing wrong with being affordable, nor with being high-end.
There will be customers for either end of the spectrum.
The important thing is to decide on a price that feels good to you and that reflects the value that your product offers.
Step 5: My ‘secret’ to making this income passively
For this step, I’m going to give you a bit of an insight into my secret behind all of this online income through selling digital products.
The main thing I do is drive traffic to my freebie, for example my free preset.
The traffic can come from Google, Pinterest, Instagram, YouTube, or any other platforms.
When people reach my freebie’s page, most of them sign up for it. By doing that, they are automatically joining my mailing list and they are put through a funnel.
That’s the funnel that sells my other paid products.
There are several steps involved in the funnel, but that’s the gist of it.
The thing is, you want to give people something helpful to them, usually for free. That gives them a taste of what you are like, what value you are offering and what you can help them with.
This makes them much more likely to buy your paid products.
It’s as simple as that.
When people trust you can help them and you offer a valuable product, they will buy.
I hope this post has been helpful to you.
If you are just starting on this journey, looking to sell your own digital product, let me know in the comments below.
I would love to hear what product you would like to create, or what idea you have in mind.
I can’t wait to cheer you on!
P.S. Remember to sign up for the free masterclass if you want to get more details on how this entire process works and how to get to that first $1,000 from selling digital products yourself.