How to increase your chances of making money with your artworks and drawings

PS.: Click here to see the portuguese version of this article

There are several ways to make money with your artworks and drawings over the internet. Several websites describe briefly on each of these alternatives but it is still very generic and without much detail as they focus on showing all existing possibilities.

In this post we will pick one of them and explain in depth, from beginning to end, how to do it very well so that you are more likely to actually get some money with your artworks. The option we chose was to sell them in physical products around the world.

Just follow this checklist:

  1. Choose the platform
  2. Select themes that will be trending soon
  3. Create your artworks
  4. List them
  5. Share
  6. Repeat this process since the step 2.

Below we detail more of these points and add some observations.

The platform

As we described earlier, there are several ways to earn money with your arts: selling them individually, freelancing, creating a blog, youtube channel or printing them on products and earning for each sale.

In this last option the artist focuses on building a good portfolio of products and gradually start to earn fame and generate revenue from them. There are several platforms that offer this kind of service, where you put your art and it becomes available for sale on various products, one of these platforms is ArtishUp that offers the Studio ArtishUp, allowing the artist to earn money by selling physical products with his artwork.

Why do we think ArtishUp today is the best platform for this?

  • They are an American startup, so you get paid in dollars.
  • Because they are just starting out, there are few artists participating so competition is low, you are more likely to have your art publicized by them. Unlike other platforms with thousands of artists where your products end up being 1 in the middle of millions...
  • Products are sold not only on the website but also on the largest marketplaces in the world (Amazon, eBay, Etsy ...). Unlike others who sell only on their website.
  • Higher profit margin, they offer a good commission for each sale.

These are some of the reasons, in addition the purpose of the founders is to help the artist community, so they are always in touch with the artists with exceptional service, caring, asking for feedback, how to improve the studio and etc...

In this link they talk a little bit more about the idea and explain how to sign up.

The website of the studio is: https://studio.artishup.com

Choosing the correct themes

If you already have some artworks ready that's great, take the ones you think would be cool as product prints and skip to the listing step so you save time and your portfolio is gaining visibility as you create new ones.

When you are going to create new arts, it is interesting that you focus on topics that will be trending in the coming weeks, meaning that a lot of people will be looking for those subjects at exactly this time.

How to find out what will be trending?

Google has a tool called Google Trends where it shows us which terms are being searched the most, over there you can apply filters and better nail your search to get rich results. It's worth exploring. 

In our case, we will be looking for topics that will have a high search volume on the next weeks but then you ask us "how will we know what people will be looking for in the future?" the answer is simple, using as a base the history of search terms of previous years.

Here's the walkthrough of how to do it.:

  1. Access this page. It's the link to Google Trends with some filters already set, e.g. Location as United States since most of the sales of ArtishUp are from there and filtering by Images since the results are closer of the topics that can be printed in products.

  2. In the field where the search period is selected, click on "Custom time range" and choose a period starting from the day / month you are in but from last year until about 4 or 5 weeks ahead.
    Ex. The day we wrote this article is May 18th, 2019. So the period we will choose will be from May 18th, 2018 to June 30th, 2018, ie same day / month of the previous year until a few weeks ahead


    We do this in order to look at topics that were trending the past year and analyze which ones are likely to be repeated this year.

  3. With that done, note that we will have two boxes, one with Search Topics and one with Search queries. Each with about 10 pages. Explore the results that appear there, see what you know will be repeated this year. Some of these topics shown you may not be aware of, if you prefer to copy the term and search Google to get an idea of what it is usually about.



    In our example we can see that, at this time when we researched, Father's Day is a good subject, the World Cup had been but we know that happens every 4 years, summer and marriage were also good topics that came up.

  4. Finally, you can play more with Google Trends and specifically search for the terms you've selected to see their frequency and search volume. Just add the terms in the text field on the same page, choose the maximum available period (2008 until now) and then you will be able to see since 2008 how these topics become relevant..



    You can also switch categories, see top subjects or stand out. There are several filters to explore..

    Best of all is that when creating arts with these cyclically biased terms, that is, they repeat from time to time. Every year your arts will end up being featured in that period.
    The products you list with nice artworks for Father's Day on ArtishUp will end up trending every year as this holiday recurs. World Cup arts will get more demand every 4 years and so on ...

    Just remember to take care of copyrights, don't list movie arts, tv shows etc that you have no license for, even if they look great for artworks. Learn more about copyright in this other post we wrote

Creating the artworks

Now that you've selected which occasion and themes to use, it's time to get your hands dirty and create the arts. The important thing is not only create 1 art of each theme but several and as different as possible from each other.

When we say as different as possible from each other, it means different ideas, don't just make one art and list 100 products just by changing its background color. Think that when people see your store, see your art, they're looking for something that catches your eye, and if you do a lot of arts that are very similar to each other, they just can't see everything so will end up getting bored and leaving.

Here are some style ideas you can follow:

  • Quotes: Use your creativity and create funny or emotional phrases, play with typography, elements and shapes. See some examples:




  • Patterns: A small repeating element creating a pattern may be a good choice when stamping phone cases, note:



  • Central element: Usually an art with a large central element that may or may not mix the above styles


     

So try to diversify one art from another, imagine that the end customer wants to see a lot of different ideas and the more different options you can show, the better.

Also, be aware of the specifications of each product, remember that the camera of a particular phone can cover some important part of your art. So faithfully follow the Design Guide that ArtishUp provides.

Listing the products

When listing your products, think carefully about how to fill in each field correctly. Remember that Title and Tags refer to art, meaning do not mention anything related to the product but to the theme of your art.

Most marketplaces and search engines will use the words of your title and tags to compare with what the customer is looking for and then display or not your product, so when choosing tags try to think as many words or terms as possible. that alone are already well related to your art. One way to come up with some ideas may be to ask yourself:

"What word or term should a user search on google to find my art?"

Don't put too generic words that don't make sense to your art just to try to fill as many tags as possible.

For the phone case art shown above, it makes a lot of sense to use the words japanese, food, ebi, sake, maguro, sushi ... because if a user is looking for products with Japanese food prints, their art is directly related to these terms.

Sharing

It is very important that you share your work, share your store link with friends, facebook, groups, forums, blogs and etc..

When people come to your store and visit your products, marketplaces know that this particular page is getting an off-site visit from them, which is great because when it happens often they help boost visibility, prioritizing your products in search and site categories.

Also when you share your links, all people who visit the store are potential customers, they can buy some of your products. So get the most out of your work, especially where your target audience is present.

IMPORTANT TIP: Focus on English as ArtishUp is an American company, most of its sales are in the United States or English speaking countries.

Want an example? You list several wedding themed products, who might be a potential customer? Brides, grooms, friends and family ... Look for Facebook groups about weddings, discussion forums on the subject, promote your products there. Remember to read the rules of each group and don't spam.

Another way to advertise is on sites like Quora where users post questions about anything, including "Where to find good souvenirs for brides?" and anyone can respond, including you with your store link.

Repeating the proccess

In the long run, after about 20 or 30 times doing this cycle (selecting themes, creating the arts, listing and publicizing) you will have at least 100 different quality arts and therefore with many chances to sell more often. Obviously it is not easy and not fast (if it were so everyone would be rich right?) Only those who are persistent get the best results.

This is all a compound effect, if you continue it just tends to increase and generate more and more money, so it is very important to keep repeating it. If you stop doing this cycle, little by little everything will be decreasing until you sell nothing more because the sites realize that there is no more interaction of the artist and start not giving so much priority as he abandoned his arts. Of course not yet sold but the frequency is decreasing.

The key to success in growing marketplaces is quantity and quality, the more arts you have, the more views you start gaining, and there are a number of marketplaces' own mechanisms that help leverage your visibility..

Some examples:

  • Related Products: Your gear starts to connect with similar art, so the customer who came to your product page and didn't buy it may find that you have Y art as it is displayed below, liking and buying it.

  • Trends: As we said earlier, if marketplaces realize that the products you listed are getting more and more visits, it's probably because they're interesting, so they start showing your products in front of others (look at the importance of advertising).

  • Cross Selling: Sometimes a customer buys a random product, which is not their own, but yours serves very well as an add-on so they recommend it to the customer. Ex: Someone bought a new phone, they recommend a phone case (which could be yours) because they are related.

  • Behavior pattern: If a customer always buys products with the same theme and you have a product with the same theme, start advertising with your product because the chances of the customer liking and buying are high.

  • Remarketing: When a customer visits your product, they may even add to the cart but for some reason they don't buy, so marketplaces also start showing ads in various places to remind the customer of your product and eventually buy.

Did you see how many different mechanisms marketplaces use to try to boost sales? These are just some of them, there are thousands of different ways.

Now just imagine the visibility and chances of selling you have when you repeat the steps in this article over and over again, it's a snowball effect, the more arts and more products listed, the greater your reach and the likelihood of earning money increases.

Remember that we are not just talking about quantity. Quality is a crucial factor for success so create each art with calm, lots of love and dedication as you grow little by little.