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Five Reasons to Start Selling Posters Online

19 min read

Do you remember the first poster you bought? Maybe it was an image of your favorite band, your celebrity crush, or a place you dreamed of visiting. Maybe you loved the look of the design or the image it conveyed. Posters add color to a room, offer inspiration, and represent the personality of their owner. They can be cheap decorations for dorm-room walls, or they can be refined prints that are hung and framed like art. The versatility of posters is what makes them an exciting and profitable market; a market we want to help you succeed in. If you’ve ever considered selling posters online, keep reading, and we’ll give you five reasons to start selling posters today!

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1. Everyone Wants a Poster

People most often associate posters with college dorm rooms or dark basements, but the truth is that the market for posters reaches well beyond those (grungy) walls. If you visit sites like Etsy or Amazon, you’ll find poster categories ranging from minimalist, to art posters, to vintage, to inspirational, to animal prints, and more. Posters hang in classrooms, in waiting rooms, in bars, in office buildings, in living rooms both chic and shabby, and yes, in dorm rooms too. Basically, anyone with a wall to spare could become one of your customers.

The best part of this variety is that it offers incredible flexibility when it comes to designing and selling your posters. You can take a scattershot approach and sell posters to a wide variety of audiences, or you can hone in on one niche and create a specific poster empire. Do you have a great eye for color? Sell bright, bold designs to young people furnishing their first apartments. Would you rather keep your posters simple and text-based? Sell posters with inspirational quotes to adults sprucing up a home office or teenagers in need of a confidence boost. When it comes to selling posters online, the potential to make money truly is limitless.

2. Anyone Can Sell Posters (but not everyone will)

You don’t have to be a graphic designer or a seasoned entrepreneur to succeed at selling posters online. These days, there are countless tools designed to bridge the gap between what you know how to do and what you need to know. When it comes to generating designs for your posters, you can develop your artistic hand with the support of sites like Canva, which offer base templates that you can customize; you can hire a freelance graphic designer to generate posters for you; or you can purchase interesting stock images from sites like Shutterstock. To build your business, you’ll have support from ecommerce sites like Ecwid that can help you establish an online store in minutes, sync your store across various marketplaces and social media sites, and even advertise your posters around the web.

What’s important to remember is that though these tools are easily accessible, not everyone will take advantage of them. Your determination and hard work will set you apart and put you on the path to becoming the poster child of online poster sales.

3. You’ll Get Out What You Put In

Are you looking for a side hustle to help pay off your bar tab on the weekends? Do you want to start putting more money into savings? Are you interested in becoming a full-time entrepreneur? The world of online poster sales has space for everyone!

Let’s say you’re looking for a low-hassle way to make a few extra bucks. It’s easy to set up an account on Etsy, Shopify, or another similar marketplace. You’ll need a poster design or two, but—as we mentioned above—there are plenty of ways to get a great design. Designs in hand, all you’ll need to do is upload poster listings to the marketplace of your choice and wait to get a sale. To get your poster into the hands of your customer, you can use a print-on-demand drop shipper, which is a third-party service that will print and ship your poster for you. This hands-off method will generate a few sales every now and again, and that’s perfectly fine if that’s all you need.

For those looking to generate more revenue, you can expand your business by creating your own online store, by marketing your products with social media profiles, and even by purchasing your own printing equipment. The point is, why not test the waters and start selling posters online? It’s easy to start small and scale your business up, and sites like Ecwid allow you to open a free account and keep it free for as long as you need it—you’ve got nothing to lose!

4. You’ll Learn Valuable Skills

Even if you view selling posters as a hobby or side hustle, you’ll develop skills that can transfer over into the rest of your life and your career. Here are just a few examples of the experiences selling posters can add to your resume:

  • Market research. Assessing the categories of posters that are being sold, the types of designs that do well, and the identities of your potential customers will strengthen your ability to do market research.
  • Graphic design. Whether you design your posters yourself or choose pre-made designs, you’ll be sharpening your eye for detail and taste level.
  • Marketing. You’ll gain experience in shaping compelling pitches and social media content that attracts new customers.
  • Sales. Interacting with customers and ensuring they’re satisfied with their orders is a great way to build skills in sales and customer service.
  • Entrepreneurship. Building an online store, uploading the inventory, finding customers, printing and shipping posters, handling logistics, and managing payments are entrepreneurial skills that will make you an asset to any business.

5. You’ll Be Your Own Boss

When you decide to sell posters online, you’ll be able to set your own schedule, control the creative decisions, and run your business the way you think it should be run. You’ll have complete freedom, and your achievements (and profit) will be yours and yours alone!

Now, when you have five good reasons to start a poster store, here’s a guide on How to Launch a Poster Store Online.

What Types of Posters Will You Sell?

Since there are so many different people looking to purchase posters for a huge variety of environments, you may find it helpful to define who you think your customers will be. Of course, you want to make as many sales as possible, and it’s ultimately up to you to decide the best way to achieve those sales. You may decide to create a large variety of art and wall poster designs to appeal to customers across the spectrum. Alternatively, you could choose a few niches (i.e., motivational posters for office spaces or animal prints for children’s bedrooms) and hone in on selling to customers with those interests. If you’re not sure what specific niches exist in the online poster selling a business, browse marketplaces like Etsy to get a sense of current categories. As you browse, pay attention to opportunities to diversify existing options or create a new type of poster that will fill a hole in the market.

The route you choose might also be decided based on your answer to this next question.

Who Will Design Your Posters?

Will you be creating the designs yourself, or will you hire a freelance designer to develop the images for your prints? Designing posters yourself can be a time-consuming process, especially if you haven’t yet developed skills in graphic design. Alternatively, while hiring a freelancer will save you the time and effort, you’ll end up spending more money upfront. Figuring out whether you’ll be designing each image from scratch, whether you’ll have to pay a professional for each new poster idea, or whether you’ll use stock images from companies like Shutterstock or Dreamstime can go a long way towards helping you set parameters around your poster inventory.

Regardless of the method you choose, there are many great tools and services available to help you get your poster business up and running, which we’ve gone into greater detail about in a previous blog post.

Where Will You Sell Your Posters?

Etsy

Etsy is a great option for selling posters online. The site has a huge customer base, many of whom use it specifically to find home décor. While Etsy’s established base can be a benefit, it also draws competitors—we’ll call them pos(e)ters—who could cut into your sales. Before deciding to sell on Etsy, it’s important to think about what makes your posters stand out. Are they personalized with images or words chosen by the customer? Are they handcrafted? Do you frame or present them in a visually impressive way? If you answered yes to any of these questions, your posters will have a greater chance of standing out in Etsy’s marketplace. If not, you may want to develop a strategy for convincing customers that your posters are the best available option. We’ve broken down the process of establishing yourself on Etsy into a few key steps:

  1. Sign up and name your store. Etsy makes selling simple. To get started, you’ll need to register an email address, provide your name and country, and then answer a question about whether selling will be your full or part-time job. After that, all you need to do is name your store! Try and come up with a name that’s both creative and memorable. Like your wall posters, you want the name to hang in your customer’s mind, making it easy to return to your store and recommend it to others.
  2. Add inventory. When adding images of your posters to your store, you’ll want to be sure that you’re using a file with high resolution. Customers want to see clean, crisp representations of what they’re buying. If you’re able to sell your posters in a variety of sizes, all the better, and you can customize your listings with the available options.
  3. Grow your Customer Base. There are no monthly fees for Etsy’s basic membership, but you can choose to upgrade to Etsy Plus for $10 a month. Etsy Plus comes with a few features that can help your store stand out, so if you use it effectively it should eventually pay for itself. With the upgrade, you’ll be able to customize your shop’s banner, create featured listings, and spotlight new products; you’ll be able to better communicate with shoppers, letting them know when a poster design is back in stock; and, you’ll receive $5 in credit to advertise your items with Etsy Ads each month.
  4. Sell your Posters! Of course, the most exciting part of any method you choose for selling your posters is when your first customer makes a purchase. Etsy requires all sellers to utilize their Etsy Payments system. The benefits of Etsy Payments are that your customers can use any of ten different methods to pay, including Apple Pay, PayPal, and their credit cards. As you collect sales and revenue, Etsy will hold the funds for you and deposit them as a lump sum according to the release schedule you’ve selected. While you’ll get the majority of the sale, Etsy does keep a five percent transaction fee, along with a three percent plus $0.25 processing fee.

Instagram

Instagram is another excellent platform for selling posters online since the site is entirely based on images. While scrolling, people expect to see selfies, stunning vistas, and pictures of pets. You can disrupt their feeds and draw attention to your posters by sharing designs that are surprising and engaging in unique ways. Whatever you post, you want it to have the visual weight to stop a customer mid-scroll and make them want to buy your poster with a tap. Here’s a few key steps to take when selling your art on Instagram:

  1. Write an engaging bio. Remember that every aspect of your page is part of the sales pitch, so keep your bio brief and effective. Let customers know what types of posters they can expect to see on your page, and whether you offer any customizable or unique options. If you design all of your posters yourself, take pride in your work—customers will be interested in purchasing a piece of your vision.
  2. Upload your content. Now you need to show people the posters you’re currently selling. To build engagement, try not to upload all your images in one day and consider mixing up your content with posts that build your brand. For example, you can add a poster for sale and later follow that image with another demonstrating how best to frame or where to hang that particular print.
  3. Start selling. Once you’ve uploaded your posters and drummed up some interest, you’re ready to begin selling. There are a few ways you can do this. While you’re starting out and building a following, you may find it easy to manage your sales via direct message. When a customer is interested in purchasing a poster, you can communicate directly with them to get their shipping information and arrange payment via PayPal or a similar service. If this sounds complicated, or if you begin to make a lot of sales, you might decide to simplify the process by setting up an online store via an ecommerce platform, which we cover in the next section.

For our in-depth guide containing everything, you need to know about selling on Instagram, check out our article here.

If you’re worried about the competition on Etsy or are unsure if you have the social media prowess to tackle Instagram, Ecwid is an ecommerce platform with a simple solution: Create your own online poster store.

Online store

We want to make selling your posters as easy as possible and give you a professional and powerful online storefront. Get started selling on Ecwid with just a few simple steps:

  1. Customize. Ecwid takes the work out of building your store but leaves creative control in your hands. You can customize the appearance, features, and any services connected to your site. If you’re tired of designing so many different posters, choose a pre-made template and make simple tweaks to the colors and layout. Whether you’re selling to businesses or individuals, having a poster store with a pleasing and cohesive image can go a long way towards attracting customers.
  2. Share. After building your poster store, you’ll be able to instantly sync and sell across social media platforms like Instagram and Facebook. When you connect your store to an Instagram account, you’ll have the option to enable Instagram Shopping, which lets anyone purchase from your store directly through the Instagram app. Ecwid can even generate links for TikTok, WhatsApp, and YouTube. No matter who your market consists of, Ecwid can help you reach them. And, if you do decide to sell on Amazon or other marketplaces, Ecwid can help you manage your listings and advertise.
  3. Sell. With Ecwid, you can choose from more than 50 payment options to accept credit card payments quickly and securely. If your posters have international reach, we offer multi-currency support, 40 international payment options, real-time shipping integration, and support for 45 languages. You’ve put in the work to create great designs, and we want to help you get them into the hands of as many customers as possible!

But don’t just take our word for it. We know there are plenty of great ecommerce sites out there to choose from, and we want you to make the best choice for selling your posters. That’s why Ecwid is putting free trials on trial. Create a free account, design a store, and keep the account free for as long as you need it!

Do you want to learn more about selling posters online?

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About the author

Max has been working in the ecommerce industry for the last six years helping brands to establish and level-up content marketing and SEO. Despite that, he has experience with entrepreneurship. He is a fiction writer in his free time.

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