Disclosure: I do have some affiliate links throughout this blog. The links provide me with a small percentage of commission but do not cost you anything extra.
Turning your creativity into a career sounds like a pipe dream, but thankfully for us creative types it can be done!
I’m constantly on the look out for solid, legitimate ways for stay at home moms to make money and be successful.
If you are searching for ways to make money from being creative, POD (print on demand sites) are well worth looking into.
POD’s allow you the freedom to create your own artwork at your own pace around your schedule. They deal with the printing, manufacture and shipping of the product. It’s a great way to start building a risk free business with very little or no initial outlay.
Society 6 is one of these sites. It’s free to join, simple to navigate and has wealth of information to help you make the best of your artwork.
Their curator program is much like an affiliate program and you can earn commission promoting the work of others! I’ll get into this later in more detail.
If this has sparked your interest read on. It may be what you are looking for.
Overview and summery
Owners Leaf Group
Who is it suitable for Anyone creative wanting to sell, buy or promote art
website URL https://society6.com
Training – Very good. An excellent range of tutorial articles and blogs
Support – through help desk
Price – free
Overall rating – good
Who is Society 6 for ?
I posted a few days ago about how to make money using Merch by Amazon. If you are only interested in producing t shirt designs this is great. If you want more options Society 6 is the place to go.
It is a site focused on promoting artists and selling their work on a range of products. It suits artists from a wide range of genres and disciplines. The variety of styles on there is massive. Whether your passion is watercolour, acrylics, oil pen and ink or graphics there is a place for you. It cuts out the manufacturing process so it’s ideal if you want to focus solely on the creation of your art and leave the rest to someone else.
There is no need to be a computer whizz as they will give you advice on how to prepare and upload your images in clear steps. I promise you, if I can do it you’re going to be able to do it too!
I was truly impressed by the amount of products you can design for. To give you an idea of the scope you will have, see the list below ;
- Art prints / framed prints / metal prints / limited additions
- Wall tapestries
- t shirts / hoodies / leggings
- curtains / cushions / wall hangings
These are just a few believe me the list is far to extensive for me to post here.
The system allows you to create your own shop in which you reflect your personality and develop your own brand using a header image and tag line. There is a drop down box under the header in which you can place a brief biography. Here you can also include your Facebook, twitter etc. to maximise your visibility and promote your work outside Society 6.
The collections tab within your shop gives you the flexibility to select work and group it together to keep your shop face clean, organised and easy for your customers to navigate.
The shopface can be customised further by photographing your products in situ which helps your customers visualise what they will look like once purchased.
I found the setting up process really simple. When they ask for your URL bear in mind this is what your brand name will be, so have it thought out and ready to go. It can’t be changed later.
It took me a couple of minutes just filling in the boxes with the required information ( which was minimal) and then verifying the account with PayPal. You will be asked to pay $1 to make sure you are for real, and that’s it, you’re in and ready to go.
There are some fantastic blog posts that are really helpful and created by the society 6 team and sellers.
Tools and training
Once you’re in it’s going to take you some time reading through the sellers guide.
It includes all you need to get up and running.It explains everything clearly and in detail. The topics it covers are:
- How to make money through Instagram & Facebook
- Where to Promote Your Artwork
- Turning Social Media Fans into Customers
- Preparing & Uploading Your Art Files
- Pixel Dimension Requirements
- How to Get Found in Search
- How to Price Your Artwork
- Claiming Your Earnings
- Changing the PayPal Associated with Your Account
- How long it will take to receive my earnings
- Trouble with Logging In
- Why new posts are not showing up?
- finding your work on the site?
- Intellectual property concerns
- Contacting Society 6
It’s well worth giving yourself a couple of days to read through everything as there is ALOT to read. It’s all good stuff though and they have put together a comprehensive package to ensure you can make the most of your work. Let’s face it is in their best interest to make sure you promote and sell as much as possible. Their success also depends on your success.
Do I need specialist equipment?
The great thing is you don’t!
You will need to edit some of your work to make it suitable for a range of products. Although Photoshop is great for this it will cost you about $10 per month. This can be an expense you don’t want, especially if you are just starting out and not sure if it is for you.
The option I chose was to download GIMP. It’s free and will do everything you need. There are loads of tutorials on You Tube and you will be able to learn all the skills you need quite quickly.
The only other thing that is useful is a scanner so that you don’t have to keep taking you work out to get it scanned. If you don’t have one though you can get your work scanned and saved for reasonable rates at many stationery stores, art retailers, post offices etc. Just make sure you advise them on the correct size DPI etc to avoid you having to go back.
Society 6’s curator program is similar to an affiliate program.
In your shop you will see the promotions tab. Here you promote the work of other artists.
This may sound counter-productive but actually makes great sense. Just because a customer clicks on your work it doesn’t mean they will buy it. It does however mean they are probably looking for that style.
If you provide them with alternatives they may click through your recommendations. You will then receive a commission if they go on to buy. Remember it works the other way around too. If other artists are promoting your work you will be visible to their followers. The number of potential customers seeing your art will increase therefore increasing your sales potential. It equates to a win win situation and is an effective marketing strategy raising artists profiles to a wider audience.
One final point, the curators commission does not cut into your profit as an artist, you will still get the profit you decided on. The commission is factored into the base cost set at S6.
Marketing – Reach your people
There will be a certain amount of marketing automatically created if you follow the guidelines laid down by Society 6. Each time you publish your work you will need to create a description or tag for it. Make it relevant using appropriate keywords (keywords are the words and phrases that are typed into search engines when looking for something). Google will then be able to link your keywords with what people are searching for.
This alone however will not be enough. Included in the sellers guide are tips on how to engage using Facebook, twitter, Tumblr, Snapchat and Instagram. Getting active on these and linking them to your shop will get your work out there, increase your traffic and give your more selling potential. If your friend doesn’t want to buy they may know someone who is interested, they tag them and before you know it a sale is born
In addition to these I would also recommend using a blog or website to show case the work you are producing. Blogs are a great promotional tool. Blogging enables you to attract an audience, establish you as an authority, build a relationship with your followers, tell your story, discuss your work, validate your expertise and above all can be great fun! If you want to see how I’m doing this check out Wealthy Affiliate.
Payments are made to you via the PayPal account you verified your account with. There is a 30-day grace period from the time of shipment. This allows customers to return products. You are then paid on the first of the following month. There is no minimum payment. Many other POD sites set a threshold. Say the threshold is $50, if you haven’t reached it you don’t get paid and will have to wait until you hit $50! Society 6 pays out each month no matter how small the payment.
Support is offered through a help desk from where you submit your question and receive a reply usually within 8 hours. I personally haven’t had cause to use it yet but read numerous reviews while researching prior to joining. The comments were positive and stated the service was prompt, courteous and kind. I don’t see any reason to doubt this but, as I said, without experiencing it for myself I’m going on the word of other established sellers already using the site.
- Quick and easy to set up
- An excellent range of tools including articles and tips to help you navigate your way around the site and get the best results
- Clean fresh and professional looking site
- High quality products and services
- You retain the rights to your work. This means you can sell the same art on other sites if you want to.
- It’s easy to get lost in the crowd
- Difficult to find answers when initially starting out. I had to type the question into google.
- Pricing structure is not clear until you upload your work and begin pricing. Once you’ve done it once it’s fine.
- Help through a help desk. No phone line for artists.
So is Society 6 a good way to go?
I have no reservations in recommending it as a legitimate way for you to sell your work on line and make money using your creative skills. How successful you are will depend on the quality of work you submit, the popularity of your work and how well you market yourself in and outside S6.
There are certainly artists making a regular income from this. One of the biggest positives for me is that it is totally risk free. If you already have your materials and are producing work you can be set up and ready to sell in a couple of days if not sooner.
Will it make you enough to live on? That will depend on how serious you are about running it as a business. If you set up your shop and decide it is the path you would like to take I would definitely look at other POD sites where you do the same. There is no point limiting yourself to one site. The more places you are selling the more sales you will potentially make.
Be visible and get seen, believe in your work and other will believe in it too.
I wish you every success in whatever you choose to do. If you are already doing this I would love to hear how it’s going for you and any tips you may have. If you have any comments or questions please feel free to drop them in the box below it would be great to hear from you.
Cheers for now