Just added a new video to my channel which is hopefully both motivating and useful. It’s a short story explaining how I made over £3,500 ($5,000+) in passive income on Redbubble by creating a simple design in less than 5 minutes.
Etsy is another avenue which I’m going to try out this year to generate extra passive income. My passive income success thus far has been hands off in the sense that the Print On Demand websites manage everything for me.
The POD sites I’m accustomed to using all offer to print, package, ship, and most importantly: handle customer service. It’s something which I elaborate on in my first YouTube video when describing how Redbubble works – check it out if you want to know more about the process:
It’s easy with these websites to have a ‘set it and forget it‘ mentality. It’s for that reason why Etsy is a bit scary. It involves doing more work yourself, and therefore accepting more risk, which can easily be taken for granted because POD websites take care of that for you.
However, the extra work provides opportunity for huge profit. Costs are kept down, which means it’s possible to make a hell of a lot more passive income for what is essentially the same product, even if you allow the customer to pay less. Here’s an example:
Redbubble T-Shirt (20% markup)
Customer pays $19.05 – your profit is $2.72
Etsy T-Shirt via fulfillment company
Customer pays $19.05 – your profit is $7.10
You can see that even if you price competitively with Redbubble, you’ll be making a lot more money, so you can afford to lower the price. This is just one example. The t-shirt I selected was one of the cheapest available by one of the most expensive companies, but there are loads of fulfillment companies with various products and prices.
The idea is that you create a listing on Etsy, and then either set the listing to automatically be fulfilled by a dropshipping company, or manually fulfill the order yourself. There are many options available to you.
I’ve gone for the most passive option, which involves using a fulfillment company to automatically collect orders from my Etsy and send them out to the customer as/when I make a sale. This isn’t the cheapest route. There are much cheaper alternatives, but for this project, I value my time more than saving an few extra dollars.
I’ve been on Etsy 3 weeks now and have already made sales amounting to $134.65 revenue (£95.99). Now remember, this is revenue, not profit.
I’ve definitely made a profit, but I don’t know the final figures yet as I’ve got to pay:
- Product fees
- Shipping fees
- Etsy listing fees
- Manufacturer fees
- Product advertising fees
- Currency conversion fees
- Possibly other things which I’m not even aware of
I also have no idea whether the product that I’m selling is any good because I’ve never used the fulfillment company before, so this could blow up in my face and I may end up having to give out refunds to customers.
I’m fortunate enough to be in a position where I can handle that, so please bear with me while I test the waters. I will be giving a more detailed breakdown of how I did this and how you can replicate the success, but first I need time to make sure it’s a good course of action. What I don’t want to do is recommend something and influence people to give it a go if it’s no good. Things are looking promising, though. A full report will follow.
In the meantime, I urge you to focus on Redbubble or a similar POD websites which are free (list available in the description of this video) so the worst case scenario is that you don’t make a sale rather than actually losing money. Check out my YouTube channel or the FB group so you can set yourself up for success, and when you’ve got designs which you know will sell, you’ll be able to see in my follow up post(s) whether doing this would be a good idea for you too.
Redbubble is amazing. There are 440,000 artists on there with 1.6 million customers. I’m making most of my passive income from the website.
Merch by Amazon, however, is reportedly next level. There are 310 million customers and many people are making a small fortune from uploading designs to Merch.
The problem is that I’m late to the party. I’ve heard reports saying that the golden age of Merch is over and it’s no longer the place to be. Many people have been complaining about Amazon ‘turning their sales off’ at will or ‘freezing’ their designs. People with 1000’s of designs up not making many sales anymore! Regardless, I decided to give it a go for myself and see, but it seemed rather difficult to get in.
I applied in late 2017 and waited 3 months to get the rejection email pictured below:
Some people were complaining about waiting 9 months only to get the same message. I re-applied and got declined a second time. However, third time lucky, I got accepted:
Amazon is a very different beast to other Print On Demand websites. New users are limited to 10 uploads – commonly referred to as Tier 10 or T10. You’re only allowed to upload 1 product per day, and if you don’t sell a particular design within 90 days, it’s automatically removed. You have to sell 10 products in order to be considered for an upgrade to Tier 25 where – you guessed it – you can list 25 designs. There is no formal section to place tags like on pretty much every other POD site ever, and the upload process is a bit archaic to say the least.
However, I know there’s huge potential, so I got uploading my designs – one every day due to the limit. After uploading 7 products, I got my first sale, which was worth approx $5 profit (£3.56) – woo!
It’s now 2 weeks later and my progress report is as follows:
- 10/10 possible designs uploaded
- 13 sales which equates to $67 profit (£47.76)
- 8 designs have failed to sell at all (at time of writing)
Overall, I feel lucky to be averaging almost 1 sale per day at this early stage, but a bit disappointed that only 2 of my designs have actually sold, with 12 sales coming from 1 particular design. I wish there was more variety so all my eggs weren’t in one basket, but still, a good start nonetheless and certainly better than nothing. My goal was to make 10 sales ASAP, so I’m satisfied.
I’ve now got to wait for Amazon to do their next round of upgrading and hopefully I’ll get bumped up to T25 with the ability to upload more designs. There’s no indication of when that will be and apparently it’s not even guaranteed that you’ll be upgraded – it’s at the discretion of the Amazon Gods, so I’ve got no choice but to wait. Meanwhile, I’ll allow another week or so and rotate the designs that aren’t selling to try something else.
I’ll update again later, but in the meantime consider joining the FB group as there are many people in there who have recently been accepted to Merch and we’ll be helping each other.
Hello there! My name is Craig and it used to be my ultimate goal to achieve $1000 per month (roughly £700) in passive income. After achieving that in 2017, I decided to help others do the same.
It started last month, in January 2018. I made 2 popular Q&A style posts on Reddit explaining how I make my money, and that I believe anyone can do it, which can be found here:
- Almost making enough on Redbubble to quit my job on /r/passive_income
- Accidentally made $5 and developed from there to over $1000 last month – anyone can do it – AMA on /r/beermoney
At the same time, I decided to create a YouTube channel and a Facebook community with a view to helping others become successful with passive income. Both of these have exceeded my expectations. I set myself a goal of getting 10 YouTube subscribers, but here I am with 145 subscribers only a month later. Similarly with the Facebook group, there are currently 137 members and it’s becoming a great resource to share information and help each other achieve success.
After I realised the demand for such a project, I set myself a goal of making a helpful YouTube video at least once a week, which so far I’ve achieved, having being on YouTube for 6 weeks so far with 8 videos uploaded.
I also set myself a goal of helping at least 100 people go from nothing to generating their own passive income. So far I’ve had feedback from 20 people who got stated after seeing my posts and have been successful already, which is a really amazing feeling for both myself and them. Here’s an example of one person earning $254.46 in her first month alone.
I’ve got some big goals for 2018, which I’m going to use this blog to document – not only to keep me accountable, but as a case study for others to learn from.
I’m a Redbubble expert and I make most of my money from that website, but I’ve got a goal of doubling the amount of passive income I earn in 2018 so I’ll be branching out and documenting that process here. I want to achieve at least 1000 subscribers on YouTube which I plan on doing by creating good quality content and uploading a new video every week. And finally, I want to help at least 100 people start generating passive income. We’re only one month into this project and there are 20 success stories already!
What’s the catch? There isn’t one. Get on the FB group and see for yourself. Almost every successful person is on there. You can see success stories in real time. I try to personally answer everyone that posts there and there’s a wonderful community atmosphere, so let’s get passive!