Have you ever considered selling printables on Etsy or elsewhere online?

Today’s interviewee has done just that. She created a printables business on Etsy that has developed into a profitable side hustle.

Julie Berninger is currently a work-at-home Mom who left her corporate tech job in July because it was too much with the pandemic.

In the last year, she moved 3,000 miles to be closer to family and now runs an online business, Gold City Ventures.

She sells printable products for bachelorette parties (think scavenger hunt PDFs, printable decorations, etc) in an Etsy shop that brings in $1,000+ per month even when she took 6 months off to move.

You can listen to this episode below, or on your fave podcasting app!

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Highlights from this episode:

  • Julie spoke about her background and starting out designing temporary tattoos, having them manufactured and then selling on Etsy or at bachelorette parties. After attending a conference and meeting others with online businesses, Julie switched to selling printables for bachelorette parties and now works from home.
  • The printable process for Julie was discussed with the main focus of the business originally being bachelorette parties, however the Covid-19 pandemic forced a change to include other categories.
  • After a break from her Etsy work, Julie re-emerged in 2021 and used programs such as eRank, Ahrefs, and Ubersuggest to find those niche areas where people are willing to spend up to $10 per design, and without too much competition. This allowed Julie and her Etsy shop to rebound from the pandemic.
  • “That’s what I love about the printables and online business world, especially in the Etsy space. The only work I have to do as it comes along is questions from customers.” {Julie}
  • Julie spoke about pricing and the fact that she is not attached to a price for any particular item because it was not very expensive to make. For example, when she began the printables, a Bachelorette Scavenger Hunt was very popular so she would sell for $7. Now this space is oversaturated and there is more competition, so she sells for $4.
  • To anyone wanting to get into printables, there is still plenty of room for new businesses, especially since the pandemic which has seen more people than ever shopping on Etsy for DIY home decor, party decorations, etc.
  • “In the printables space, if you can put your stuff into a bundle, you can often raise the perceived value to the customer.” {Julie}
  • Other tips were discussed including SEO, making sure you have clear tags, and use of keyword programs such as Ubersuggest.
  • Another strategy that Julie has seen in the printable space is capturing the customer. Etsy doesn’t allow collection of email addresses as they own the customer relationship. However, you can incentivise your customers to sign up to your mailing list. For example, give free access to a customer hub, tutorials etc. and attach an advertisement for this to the printable itself.
  • Julie now runs Gold City Ventures in order to help people start their own online businesses and offered some advice to those already in the printables space. Firstly, you need to be careful when using free clipart as the licensing can be confusing. It may be worthwhile paying $10 to a site such as Design Bundles or Creative Market for images.
  • Canva was discussed as their templates cannot be used as a base for your own work. You can use these to get ideas, but cannot be changed. You are also not allowed to use paid clipart in your printables as Canva has paid for the license. Free Canva clipart is fine to use.
  • The second piece of advice is to make sure to fill out your shop completely, including uploading a video, and the about me section. Julie has seen in practice that this works in terms of returning results, especially the use of video which has become such a popular medium.
  • Jess queried how to make it clear to your customers that they are purchasing a digital file, rather than a physical item to be delivered in the mail. Julie stated that this is becoming less of a problem over time, but you still need to list your products as digital or state that it is not a physical product.
  • Julie spoke about customisable printables. It’s possible to make lots of money with these products, but you don’t know what type of computer the customer has or how much technical knowledge, and this can result in more work for you or a refund to the customer. One solution to this is providing a short video to the customer on how to use your digital product.
  • Being the primary caregiver for her daughter, Julie has developed her business to allow her to have time for her family and lifestyle while still passively earning money. She has Virtual Assistants who complete the required work for her, automation to send emails etc. and also has a business partner which makes a huge difference in sharing the workload.
  • Julie can be found at goldcityventures.com and this includes links to her social media. 
  • Grab your FREE ebook, “The Seasonal Products Secret”. (Affiliate Link)
  • You can also hop on the waitlist for Julie’s course – The E-Printables Side Hustle Course here. (Affiliate Link)

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