How To Make Money Selling Printables On Etsy (make $5,000+)

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Today’s guest post is by Julie. Julie or “J” is a 30-something tech professional pursuing financial independence through side hustles in Seattle, Washington. She is the creator of the Etsy Printables course, host of the financial independence podcast, Fire Drill, and personal finance blogger at Millennial Boss.

Bachelorette parties are the new avocado toast and could be standing in the way of homeownership according to Today.

I believe it and I’m not ashamed to say I profit from it too. My side hustle is selling accessories to women headed to bachelorette parties and it’s profitable.

I sell gold foil temporary tattoos on Etsy with funny sayings such as “Bride Tribe” and “Wolf Pack.” They cost me very little to have made and the markup is insane since there is so much pressure on bridesmaids to create the perfect night out. They are willing to pay more for throwaway items like these tattoos and other party favors.

I sell the tattoos for $2.50 each and orders come in for over a dozen at once since girls attend bachelorette parties in large groups. Every time I drop an order off in the mail, I’m typically making between $15-20 per order.

As much as I love this side hustle, it’s not the most passive.

I work full-time and have to remember to check my Etsy sellers app every day for orders. I also need to package and ship the product which Etsy makes really easy but it’s another thing I have to remember to do.

In late 2017 I learned about the concept of selling printables on Etsy after interviewing someone about her six-figure Etsy printables business for my podcast and a lightbulb went off. I can stay in the highly profitable bachelorette niche but sell a more passive product.

I’m very intrigued by the concept of passive income so this side hustle sounded perfect for me.

What are Etsy printables?

Printables are digital files, such as PDFs, that people buy, download, and print out on their home printers. I had no idea people would pay money for printables before but they do!

Examples are jar labels for your spice rack, planner pages, grocery store checklists, printable wall art, clip-art illustrations, and what I sell – bachelorette party printable games.

My post popular printable is a bachelorette party scavenger hunt that the party can take with them on a bar crawl and cross off funny tasks such as “find and take a picture of someone with the groom’s name” and “request the song Single Ladies from the DJ.”

I sell that printable for $7.00 and I do absolutely nothing when an order comes in. The customer downloads the file and prints it at home themselves with no action required from me. Hundreds of customers can download that same file which is amazing.

And I made the printable over a year ago! So for just a few hours work, I’ve made thousands of dollars.

I’m not a graphic designer but I found the process of creating the printable easier than I expected and kind of therapeutic. It’s fun and a little creative outlet for me to make these printables.

You can learn more about creating Etsy printables for passive income here.

How much money can you make on Etsy?

So far my Etsy shop has made me almost $5,500 and I’ve done very little work on it. In fact, until last month, I hadn’t put up new product listings in over a year!

I host a podcast and blog too and do these side hustles on top of my full-time job in tech. And I’m expecting my first baby any day now.

I don’t have the the time for a super time-intensive side hustle so that’s what I love about Etsy.

I could potentially make six figures like some of the sellers I’ve interviewed on my podcast if I invested more time into it and that’s something I’ll consider if I ever wanted to take these side hustles full-time.

For now, I am happy with investing just 1-2 weeks a year making printables that bring me thousands of dollars the rest of the year.

I think this is truly one of the more passive side hustles out there.

Now, there is a definitely a ramping up period with this side hustle where you have to learn how to use the tools to make the printables. The 1-2 weeks per year is the investment for me now that I know how to use the tools and I am on maintenance mode.

This investment fits best with my busy schedule and life.

Are other people successful in selling Etsy printables?

Yes! Check out these students who now sell Etsy Printables from home after taking the Etsy Printables course.

Jen created Edenwood Paperie which is a printable event template that is totally customizable. So pretty! She’s had over 160 sales so far.

Another student created an Etsy shop called Budgeting Tools and has had over 102 sales.

Rachel created Propserous Printables which has over 62 sales. 

Are you wondering how to get started selling Etsy printables? This free guide here has a secret list of best-selling products by month and how to capitalize on seasonal trends to make sales. It’s a free download and SO good!

Why do I side hustle?

The reason that I side hustle is that my husband and I are pursuing financial independence and early retirement. This means that we want to save money (or develop enough passive income streams) to the point that we don’t have to work anymore for money.

The idea is that once we reach financial independence, we can spend more time doing what we love which is being outside, traveling, picking up new hobbies, and spending time with friends and family.

My side hustles all-in made me over $40,000 last year and are making financial independence more and more of a reality for us.

I’m thirty years old now and expect to hit our financial independence number in my mid-thirties.

It doesn’t mean that we will stop working but having the option to not work the rest of our lives sounds pretty freeing.

Saving money is important to us too

My husband and I save all of our side hustle income and invest it. In addition to that, we also cut back where we can.

We’re not the most frugal people but we do cut back on large expenses. For example:

  • We sold our second car and now share a car.
  • We decided to pick a moissanite engagement ring instead of a diamond when we got engaged, spending $300 on a stone instead of thousands.
  • We hacked our wedding costs by choosing a Friday night in the winter and using Fifty Flowers to DIY our wedding flowers, saving thousands by skipping the florist.

We’ve found that cutting back on the bigger expenses is a more manageable path to financial independence for us. Pair that with side hustles and it’s sped up our timeline to financial independence significantly!

We also paid off over $100,000 of debt in 2016 which helped us save faster by eliminating our student loan payments.

What’s next?

My goal is to hit six figures in passive income this upcoming year. This means that I will be dedicating more time to my Etsy shop and blog.

I plan on expanding my bachelorette party printable line to possibly include printables for bridal and baby showers. I also want to create more bundles which are groups of printables that customers buy at once. I’ve noticed that my 4-pack of games sell better than the individual copies which is great because I make more per sale.

In the short-term though, I’ll be focused on motherhood. I’m very excited but also nervous to be a Mom!

This is a whole new adventure for me.

I plan to take my entire 4-month maternity leave off from side hustling (and that’s why I’m so grateful to have low-time investment side hustles like Etsy since they continue to make money for me in the background without me having to work on them).

How can I get started on Etsy?

If you have a little extra time and the desire to pick up a fun creative side hustle then selling printables on Etsy may be right for you.

It’s not easy, and you won’t become a millionaire, but once you get the hang of it, you can make money and have a little fun doing it.

This summer I started teaching others how to start their own Etsy printables shops in my course, Etsy Printables.

If you want to do this side hustle but don’t have any ideas of what to sell, I recommend searching Pinterest which is a hotspot for printables inspiration. If you still can’t think of what to sell, we give you over 55 different ideas for printables in the course.

We also teach you how to make them and market them since marketing them is the most important party.

Over 250 people have taken the course so far and we’re having a blast creating printables together. 

So much can change in 1 year. Ask yourself: what difference can 1 year make? 

Are you wondering how to get started selling Etsy printables? This free guide here has a secret list of best-selling products by month and how to capitalize on seasonal trends to make sales. It’s a free download and SO good!

Are you ready to get started selling Etsy printables? Do you have any questions?

Pin this for later!

About Julie: Julie or “J” is a 30-something tech professional pursuing financial independence through side hustles in Seattle, Washington. She is the creator of the Etsy Printables course through Gold City Ventures, host of the financial independence podcast, Fire Drill, and personal finance blogger at Millennial Boss.

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