- How to make Money as a Graphic Designer
- 1. Creative Marketplaces
- 2. Teachable
- 3. Freelancer Websites
- 4. Start a Blog
- 5. Guest Posts
- 6. Start Your Own T Shirt Store
- Shopify Ecommerce Stores
- 7. Sell Your Own Prints
- 8. Become a Youtube Partner
How to make Money as a Graphic Designer
Lets make money with graphic design. Freelancing as a designer these days is increasingly difficult, there’s a lot of competition around and a lot of freeloaders who want something for nothing, so how the heck can we as designer’s make money in this type of environment? Well the key is to be proactive and look for multiple avenues of revenue that other designers are failing to capitalise on.
For example, in this new era of generative ai art, you can make money with midjourney by selling artwork or with adobe’s new generative ai tool, or you can create viral clips with opus clip and create a youtube shorts channel. There are a lot of ways to make money with ai from 2023 and beyond.
This article will illustrate 10 solid ways for Freelance Designers to earn money from doing what they love.
Sit back, take a sip of that coffee on your desk and read through these pointers as they could be your lifeline when you eventually go Freelance, or if you have already taken the plunge, they could very well add some supplemental income to your monthly salary, and who doesn’t want more money right?
So onto the list, this is by no means a conclusive roundup of how to make money as a graphic designer, but it is certainly a solid list of things that have worked for me as a freelancer, and i hope that you can use this article in a positive way to help you make money with graphic design
1. Creative Marketplaces
Ever since the launch of Flashden in 2006 by founders Collis Ta’eed, Cyan Ta’eed & Jun Rung, the notion of the “creative marketplace” has exploded, with a multitude of websites aimed at allowing creative workers to upload their custom work for others to enjoy on their own personal or commercial projects.
Another relatively new creative marketplace is Creative Market, they have came on to the seen within the last year and provide a similar service with new resources added daily. This is a fantastic resource and one of the many ways to make money with graphic design
The Hungry JPG
The Hungry JPG is a relatively newer marketplace, but it’s recent expansion has made it one of the most approachable and popular Creative Marketplaces for 2016/17, with a huge selection of Font and regular design deals, it’s one of our own personal favourites here at Layerform.com
Template Monster Marketplace
Continuing the Marketplace theme here, TemplateMonster have a fantastic offering over at their Online Marketplace, and allow designers & programmers to sell their themes & graphics.
TemplateMonster Marketplace is a well-known resource where people can find thousands of digital items for their needs. It allows selling your work and getting up to 70% commission for each sale.
It accepts 31 types of products, including different graphic elements, of course. To start selling the desired items, one needs to fill the author’s application. After getting in touch with a manager who describes the necessary details, you can start earning money for your products. Another fantastic marketplace when considering how to make money as a graphic designer
Redbubble is technically a “creative marketplace” where you can upload your own designs in bulk, everything from iphone cases to mugs, to duvets and of course t shirts. The advantage with Redbubble is that you can upload one design and apply it to 100’s of different products, which saves time, effort and of course money from creating all these products individually.
So how much can you make from Redbubble?
Of course this depends on the amount of effort that you put into it, the amount of designs, marketing and of course things like ad spend or sending these designs to your email lists or communities. There are many blogs out there in which people document their earnings from Redbubble and there are plenty of case studies of people making $1000+ per month, even some people who are in the upper echelons and making $5-10,000 dollars per month. So its definitely worth checking out and uploading your designs, especially if you’re considering how to make money as a graphic designer.
When thinking of how to make money as a graphic designer, one of the oldest, and most tried and tested methods is creating a digital course. Teachable is a website similar to the likes of Udemy and other online course websites where if you have a skill, you can make money!
For example, if you’re a Graphic Designer, you could make a significant income from creating digital courses with videos on how to become a graphic designer on teachable, or how to do typography or create Fonts.
There are three different levels of subscription for you to be able to sell your plans:
Basic $29 – For this price you get unlimited students, but there is a 5% transaction fee and a few other holdups.
Professional $79 For this you get everything in basic plus a few extras like graded quizzes.
Business $399 For this you should really be making some good income from your digital courses on Teachable, otherwise this is quite a big cost. However, it has the most features, and if you’re making some good money on Teachable then this is the choice for you!
3. Freelancer Websites
It seems like the most obvious one right? Get your presence out there on freelance websites, even if you have a steady stream of income from your regular clients, try out a freelancing website such as:
4. Start a Blog
One of the easiest ways you can earn some extra money during your time as a freelancer is by starting a blog. This can either be personal or commercial, but it obviously needs to be related to the field of design.
Create blog posts about your recent design work, or if you have any big name clients coming up. The key thing here is to provide “value”, and something which people will want to share a million times over.
Create posts which people in the design community would love to read, whether it be about a cool new Photoshop action pack or a book review. Examples of some great design blogs are below:
5. Guest Posts
Guest posting is one of the best ways when considering how to make money as aGraphic Designer, and you get paid well per guest post typically!,/p>
A good example would be if you had a new technique to show people regarding CSSS3 & jQuery effects or perhaps a new photoshop effect that you want to write a tutorial about.
These are perfect topics to write about and send in to a website such as Codrops, Nettuts and the plethora of design blogs out there willing to pay people for their work.
If you are passionate about your craft and feel like you could add value to a blog by providing them with content of your own, then that is a perfect opportunity for you to make some money.
You get paid per post, and think about it this way. If you get £250 ($403) for a blog post, and you simply do one guest blog post per month, thats your phone bill paid for, your TV subscriptions, hosting & domain costs and even then there’s still some money left over for you to play with.
So think about it that way, write some quality content and send it out to blogs, if you know what you’re talking about and you display this with passionate writing, you can earn some good money.
6. Start Your Own T Shirt Store
We live in an era where starting your own online business couldn’t be easier due to the amazing development in Ecommerce technology. One of the leaders in the field is Shopify
So if its T Shirts you’re selling then go ahead and search for T Shirt templates, and you will find plenty that match your description.
Once this is done just use the great functionality that Shopify provides to upload your products, and edit your payment gateways (typically Paypal), and voila! You’re ready to start making some money. Click the image below to get started on your T Shirt Store!
7. Sell Your Own Prints
Its a classic way to make money in the design industry, but it can be a great one. If you’re a keen illustrator then why not sell prints of your work? Especially if you specialise in Wallpaper Patterns or Pure Illustrated Work that can be applied to multiple different things such as canvas prints, cups & mugs, stationary etc. Some of the websites below allow you to upload your own designs and start selling straight away & apply your designs to products.
8. Become a Youtube Partner
It might not seem like the most obvious one but it could be one of the most profitable if done correctly. Simply create videos for your craft, whether that be Photoshop/Digital Art, Photography, Arts&Crafts, Leather Making or Web Design, and give them titles that people would be interested in. Youtube generates a lot of traffic and if you have the slightest bit of personality, you can make money by signing up to become a Youtube Partner
This is not the main way i would go about making money as a designer, but it is a viable option for those who have high traffic blogs. Simply put an icon on your homepage or pages that get high amounts of traffic and label it “Send me a Donation”, if you regularly pump out great content, videos and resources, and have a loyal fanbase, then you will get regular donations. Try it out and see what works for you.
Many design blogs use BuySellAds to receive traffic to their own websites and generally its a successful method. If you have your own blog then simply sign up (if you meet their requirements of course) and allow your site to be listed in their network where thousands of potential advertisers can look you up and buy ads on your site.