How To Make Printables to Sell on Etsy

black laptop surrounded by pens and printed calendars

Anyone can learn how to make printables to sell on Etsy. It's an easy way to start selling a creative product without ever needing to worry about shipping things around the world.

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Learn How to Make Printables to Sell on Etsy

While it was once a place for only handmade, physical products (I might be showing my age!), Etsy is now packed full of digital art and printable crafts. Worksheets, planners, wall art, and more can be found on Etsy. 

At first glance, Printables may seem like a saturated market, but I can promise you that there is money to be made on Etsy without ever going to post office.

Printables sell. And the best part about them is that you only need to make a printable one time, and you can sell it over and over again. Any income you make from printables on Etsy is completely passive.

Passive Income From Selling Printables on Etsy

Passive income is where it’s at when it comes to building wealth, or just creating a side hustle that won’t overwhelm your life. You can put in a few hours of work creating printables to sell on Etsy, upload them, and walk away. Those printables might still sell years from now! 

Now, selling printables isn’t completely passive. You will still need to be adding new items to your shop and adjusting your Etsy SEO practices to stay relevant and show up in search. 

As far as crafty businesses go, a printables shop on Etsy might be the easiest type to start. 

What Type of Printables Sell Well on Etsy?

There are hundreds of different printable types, and all of them can be profitable. Here are a few to get your imagination moving: 

  • Calendars – In the beginning of the year, when the school year starts, at the end of school year, and at all other times in between, people will be looking to get themselves organized. Printable calendars of all sorts can be sold on Etsy. (Digital calendars too, but I’ll save that for another post) 
  • Worksheets – Many parents have made the decision to homeschool over the last two years, and others are looking for things to supplement their child’s learning. Educational worksheets for preschool through high school sell on Etsy.
  • Coloring Sheets – Adult coloring is very popular! While coloring books are nice, getting unique coloring pages on Etsy is also a very popular thing.
  • Gift Tags – Tags for Christmas gifts, teacher gifts, or thank you gifts are always needed.
  • Bookmarks – Well designed bookmarks with quotes or beautiful imagery sell.
  • Wall Art – This doesn’t need to be “art” per se. Some words on a page that a person can download, print and slap in a frame is an easy and convenient home decor trick.
a computer with graphic design software and clutter

OK, But How Do I Make Printables to Sell?

A small bit of graphic design knowledge and a computer is all that you need to start creating printables. I currently design all of my printables using This is a web based program that allows you to manipulate images, text and shapes to create beautiful printables, and it’s fairly easy to understand and use. 

I’ve been using canva for years, so to me it’s pretty intuitive, but if you’ve never done any designing, you might have questions, and that’s ok. 

The best thing? Canva can be totally free! They have a free version that has enough features to get you started. You will likely eventually want to upgrade to a paid Canva plan though. 

A canva pro account costs $119.99 per year, and up to 5 people can have access to the account (great if your kids or spouse is helping you). I suggest starting with a monthly subscription, just to be sure that Canva is totally right for you. Then upgrade to the yearly to save some money when you're sure.

Other Programs to Use to Design Printables

If you are opposed to using Canva, you do have other options. Many people use Adobe products (photoshop, InDesign). if you have access to those and understand how to use them, go for it! Personally, while I enjoy using parts of these programs, I am not a fan of Adobe's pricing system. I was paying $40+ a month for Creative Cloud! I pay about $10 a month for Canva and have way less headaches because it's simplified system.

text based image, states, Canva printables to sell

Learn How to Use Canva to Make Printables


Canva has tutorials on their site that will help you get up and running with the product. These tutorials are really great for teaching you how to use Canva for different things, but there isn’t anything there that’s going to show you how to make Printables that will sell on Etsy. 

I know a place where you can get that information though! 

A few months ago I signed up for an amazing, simple, and straightforward course that taught me how to make and market printables on Etsy. 

It’s called Build Your Digital Etsy Empire, and it’s created by the fabulous Sadie Smiley, knower of all things side hustle. (this is an affiliate link. I have personally taken this course and I believe in it!)

Sadie has quite possibly been the person who got me started making money on line. 8 years ago or so I took a course she offered on learning to be a Virtual Assistant, and that's where it all started for me. She knows her stuff, and runs a number of profitable blogs, Etsy shops, and programs. 

Here's What You'll Learn:

  • First, she'll teach you how to get set up so that you have all of the resources you need to start creating digital Etsy products.
  • Then, she'll walk you through creating 9 different products that you'll be able to immediately turn around and sell.
  • Finally, she'll show you how to list those items on Etsy, get them to show up in search, and attract buyers.

There are tons of bonuses too, including an interactive FB group where you can ask questions and network with like minded creatives. I love this group and I hang out in there regularly. There are some really inspiring women in there, killing it with printables on Etsy.

So, check it out. what are you waiting for?

How to Get the Deal on Canva Pro

Don't pay full price for Canva if you don't have to!

Want to See Some Printable Shops in Action?

I choose these shops based on things I saw while browsing for Printables. I don’t know any of these sellers personally. If one of them is you, please reach out! 


girlmore girls themed printable

This etsy store is almost completely comprised of one-page printables, priced at $3.49 each. The majority of them are black and white. She has over 300 different items, and has had over 2000 sales. 

I particularly enjoy this Gilmore Girls reference!

In the grand scheme of things that might not seem like much money, but when I consider that at this point this seller has to do literally nothing to keep the shop running, I’d say it’s very successful. 

Once you have a printable shop filled and rolling, you can move on to another money making project! 


holiday gift labels

This etsy shop is BIG! The seller has digital products in a number of categories, including product labels, thank you cards, planner pages, and templates. This shop has had over 12,000 sales. 


Another great printables shop, selling primarily one-page printables for wall art. She does well, with over 5,000 sales. 

My own Etsy shop includes printables, but I’m currently in the process of building my shop so that it’s large enough to bring in buyers. I’m not yet a success story in this particular category, and it's really only because I haven't put in the initial work needed to create a successful printables shop.

I know that you can be a successful printable seller if you decide to be. What are you waiting for? If you haven't already, sign up for your free trial of Canva, and start playing around with it!

Leave a comment if you have any questions.

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