How to sell digital products online? Read all the information you need to start your business and grow your online brand.
Digital products have turned out to be an essential part of our lives, and you can keep them on your mobile device or PC.
A common example of digital products is an online course created on a specific topic. All you need to sell digital products is a PC or laptop, complete market research, and an online platform.
Creating your eCommerce website is quite easy nowadays and doesn’t require coding skills like before. You can start selling digital products online using third-party platforms or create your own e-commerce website just by clicking on a few buttons.
To get your attention, it is worth noting that entrepreneurs tend to start an online business aiming at selling digital products since these intangible products can be money-making and cost-efficient in many cases.
Something that makes it profitable to sell digital products is actually the large number of mobile devices whose users would like to have digital resources on their smartphones or tablets. But what should you sell and how to create them are the 2 fundamental questions we will answer in this article.
What you will read in this article:
- 5 Steps to Selling Digital Products Online
- What Are Digital Products?
- What Are the Downsides of Physical Products Compared to Selling Digital Products?
- Why is Selling Digital Products a Wise Decision?
- What Are the Restrictions Related to Selling Digital Products?
- 10 Best Digital Products to Sell Online
- How to Create a Digital Product?
- The Best Apps for Selling Digital Products
- 5 Ways to Market and Sell Digital Products
- Bring Attention to These Marketing Tips to Sell Digital Products Online
- 6 Best eCommerce Platforms
- Creating the Best Digital Products According to Your Business Goals
- Find or create a digital product: Set your goals at the first step and find all products you can and love to sell online. So, you don’t need to reinvent the wheel and kill time: Just do perfect market research to understand which products are in-demand. The most profitable products include podcasts, music tracks, graphic arts, courses, and ebooks.
- Create an online store: Remember that you want an online store to present and sell digital products. You must create one from scratch or sign up for the most popular eCommerce platforms.
- Offer easy delivery options: As a business owner, you can offer many options to your customers to make the process easier and faster. So, you can provide a mobile application that improves customer experience, builds a stronger brand, and creates an easy process to deliver services and sell digital products.
- Have a unique marketing strategy: Marketing is a priority for selling digital products and software programs. You can define a good marketing plan and use several channels, such as social media, video, and mobile marketing.
Digital products are intangible assets, but you can keep them on your digital device and smartphone. They are not in physical form, so we can take them everywhere.
Like a PDF file consisting of hundreds of pages, it needs only a few seconds to copy to your memory card and start reading anywhere. Digital products have become popular since the arrival of smartphones. So, as an entrepreneur, you have a chance to start the ball rolling and make up your personal brand to sell digital products.
From a higher viewpoint, physical products have much more overhead costs. Currently, physical products make up the bulk of eCommerce, but there is a rising demand for digital products on eCommerce websites.
Even though there is a great demand for buying physical products, you need to make much effort to start a business in this case. There are shipping and handling fees. Delivery time and additional costs must also be considered.
Furthermore, physical products require more storage space, more staff to manage workflow, and more time to get to success. More importantly, scaling up or down your business is hard to deal with if you want to start such a business.
Selling digital products online has proved beneficial due to many reasons:
- Low overhead costs: Storing, selling, and shipping physical products cost much more than digital products. You can significantly save these overhead costs while creating an online business.
- High-profit margins: By starting to sell digital products, you don’t need inventory management and can avoid unnecessary costs. So, there is a potential to gain high-profit margins.
- Flexibility: Managing a digital product selling business can be interesting due to the chance to change, modify, or upgrade products at any time. Think of your software product so you can add more features and pricing plans whenever you want.
- Scalability: Scaling up is as easy as ABC when running a digital product selling business. You can deliver 10 digital products daily or up to thousands of software programs. So, there isn’t much effort to scale up your business.
- Automation: You can automate business workflows to sell digital products online and focus on your business growth and product quality.
- Time efficiency: Here is a great opportunity to save time with the help of automation in an online business. The chance to sell digital products online helps you eliminate management efforts leading to time-efficient workflows.
- High demand: As digital transformation takes root, there are more users who would like to buy and consume digital products. Simply put, the market demand for digital products is experiencing a significant rise and is expected to rise soon. The global E-learning market size will reach $374.3bn by 2026.
There are a few restrictions and challenges you may face when trying to sell digital products online:
- Free content: Creating unique content that makes sense is an essential fact. Free content resources are available throughout the internet, and you must be innovative to offer users high-quality and in-demand content or digital products.
- Licenses: Licenses are of the essence in protecting your product. There might be some copyright infringement risks, so you must take a few steps to protect your products.
- Competition: Online businesses have many competitors, which is inevitable. As a digital product selling business, you can overcome competitors by offering a better user experience, competitive prices, and high-quality products.
Note that all of these challenges have solutions, and you can solve them over time.
Fortunately, you have a wide range of digital products to sell that can become a fruitful business opportunity for you. Here are the most successful product types you can focus on:
ebooks come in different formats, and they can be in audiobook format too. Clearly speaking, consumers like to spend their money buying books that are available in digital format.
According to Statista, there are more than 75 million ebook readers in the US, and the market size reached $1.1 billion in 2020.
You don’t have to be a professional writer to make up an ebook that sells. It needs your effort and good information on a specific field. Educational category and entertainment are 2 lucrative types of ebooks and digital audiobooks that can be profitable.
Furthermore, explaining a physical product, writing how-to guides, or meal prep plans are good ideas and can be the starting point of your digital business.
2. Online courses
There are many online platforms that focus on creating and offering high-quality online courses. As an instructor, you can sign up for these platforms and create your unique courses on a specific subject.
If you want to establish your own platform, there is high demand in that field. However, to be an exclusive online course platform, you can cover online resources that generally haven’t been covered by other platforms.
People are always learning new skills for particular reasons such as a salary rise or a better job. Online platforms offer time-efficient and resultful courses delivered through desktop, mobile devices, and laptops. Fitness, cooking, and business entrepreneurship courses are in demand now and sell well.
3. Digital arts
Graphic arts is a profitable skill, and graphic designers can monetize those skills by starting to sell digital products online.
Do you find yourself an artist and graphic designer? If so, there is an affordable option for you to start selling digital products. Just for you to know, all companies and new startups need graphic designers to create their logos, 3D artwork, etc.
All you need to do is sign up for several artwork-sharing platforms, such as ArtStation, Behance, or Freepik. Currently, there is a high demand for buying interesting background images, logos, and other graphic arts from consumers. This is one of the cost-effective businesses you can start only using a PC or Laptop and some knowledge.
4. Subscriptions and Membership
Starting a website and working as a blogger is another pathway to selling digital products online. This way, your product will be the content you provide for users to sell subscriptions and premium accounts.
Platforms like Medium or Forbes could be the best examples of such businesses. This type of business needs some effort, and you need to take about 1 or 2 years to establish a great website.
5. Video content
Most internet users these days like to get information through video content, and they are willing to pay for it. Video content creation is one of the most profitable job opportunities, and you can own your business by signing up for platforms like YouTube.
If you’re interested in providing video content in your expertise, don’t hesitate to sign up for YouTube, as it offers unique options for content producers to earn money and grow.
Bear in mind that a 30-minute part of video content can make you thousands of dollars on such platforms, and it depends on view numbers and content quality.
Templates are a super easy technique to make money online. Fancy yourself as a professional designer or computer user? Let’s design a CV template that makes sense and sell it online.
By searching online, you will see a lot of template websites that provide users with resumes, CVs, and PowerPoint templates. Templates aren’t just limited to CVs and PowerPoint files, but you can work on many sectors, including social media posts, business cards, etc.
One template-sharing website can make more than $100k a year, depending on the number of subscribers and registered users on the platform.
We cannot close our list without mentioning software programs. Software tools are the most profitable products you can offer consumers, and they have a high-demand market now.
Of course, there are so many types of software programs. As a developer, you can work in different fields, including Software as a Service, mobile applications, or desktop programs.
Note that it might be more complex than other digital products, and you need to spend time on delivering the best product that sells.
There are now powerful software tools designed to create fonts and offer you all toolsets to enter the market. Fonts are classified as the best digital products to sell online, and starting this business doesn’t need much time and money.
You can create fonts to be placed on online platforms, or there is an option to create them for businesses that order them.
To get started with this type of business, you can create your own website or sign up for the most popular platforms.
Selling music and music-related products online is another way to sell digital products. If you’re a professional musician or want to enter the industry, there is good news for you. Thousands of opportunities are available for music producers as we see rising market demand among users and filmmakers.
Streaming services provide unique platforms to present and sell your digital products. Another way of monetizing with your expertise could be providing music lessons and learning courses.
Talented photographers or photography enthusiasts can also start selling digital products online and offer their interesting digital arts as a service. This type of business needs a professional camera, and you may need to take part in a course to start your work.
Currently, photography is a high-demand job position as there is a necessity for businesses and companies to access unique and high-quality image content.
How to Create a Digital Product?
It’s easy to get started with selling digital products online, but you have to spend time making up an idea and creating your exclusive digital product. There is a clear path to take if you want to come up with a brilliant, marketable idea.
- Brainstorming: Brainstorming is a group of techniques that help you develop great ideas. Note that you don’t want error-free and perfect digital products to start your work. You can optimize your ideas as time passes and add more options to your digital products in the future.
- Research: Market research is a critical stage of your success, and you have a wide range of options for market research. Digital product selling platforms such as Amazon can be the best way of doing market research to find out what products are in-demand. You can also refer to Facebook groups, social media platforms, or tech reviews to create your plan and start making a digital product.
- Google Trends: Google offers a wide range of marketing tools to entrepreneurs to do market research and develop a reliable plan. Google Trends is free, so you can use it to ensure your idea is in-demand at the moment.
- Create your digital product: Digital products include a wide range of entertainment, educational, or software tools. As a result, you must take a few steps to create your product according to the best practices.
- Register for licenses: Registering your digital products and getting reliable patents can help your business succeed. This will prevent copyright infringement and piracy and protect your software program, PDF books, or music tracks.
- Present your digital products: The last stage involves offering products online or on a personal website. You can create your online store using Shopify or speak to other eCommerce platforms to put your products on their website.
You can integrate many marketing tools into your website and do your business based on them. It depends on the digital products that you offer, and here is a list of the best apps available on Shopify:
- Shopify Digital Downloads app: This app allows you to manage everything and access a seamless eCommerce website. There are automation options, and Digital Downloads offer you the best user experience to sell digital products online.
- Single Music: Single Music is a free-to-install tool, and business owners can sell their music files, video content, and NFTs on a trustworthy platform. Don’t worry about live streams; Single Music provides streaming and video-on-demand features.
- SendOwl: SendOwl is here to offer you a bunch of read-to-use features, and it’s a comprehensive software tool to sell digital products online. Everything is available, ranging from videos, ebooks, photos, and audiobooks to software programs and podcasts.
- Shopify Courses app: This tool lets you create online courses, tutorials, and video content in any field. With the Courses app, users can create their own portal and offer their digital products to students.
- Shopify FetchApp: FetchApp is another useful tool that offers an easy management procedure for customer orders. There are no commission fees, and the application allows you to attach multiple files to a single product and manage them all in one place.
- Shopify Sky Pilot: This app gives you highly customized options, and it supports any digital product, including PDFs, music files, video content, and graphic arts. Sky Pilot lets you use the free plan or subscribe to the paid plan to access more extended features.
When it comes to marketing digital products, there are more than enough tools available for all types of businesses. With unprecedented internet traffic and the remarkable increase in using mobile devices, you can make the most of digital marketing practices that offer you efficiency and productivity to market and sell digital products online.
Marketing is so important, especially for digital products. Your potential customers live on social networks, and you could simply bring their attention to your unique and stylish digital products.
Keep in mind these marketing approaches that help you replicate your business outcomes.
- Introduce clearly: The first step to marketing and selling digital products is to provide relevant content that introduces your products. You need to focus on the competitive benefits you offer compared to other brands. Note that people buy a digital product if there is a unique option or feature.
- SEO: Search Engine Optimization is about optimizing your platform and content to rank better on the first page of search engines. This is the number 1 priority for branding that drives organic traffic to your website where potential buyers can see your products and services. SEO is one of the cost-effective and resultful techniques for branding used for all types of businesses.
- PPC: Pay-per-click strategy is classified under paid advertising category, which can significantly increase your website’s traffic within a small period of time. You can set particular ad campaigns for each digital product and run the campaign during a specific time. If users search for a digital product, your ads will be displayed at the right time.
- Social media: Social media networks give you free-to-use options where many users are waiting for special offers. You can start with free plans to advertise and introduce your digital products on social media platforms and use paid plans if needed. There are several social networks, including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and YouTube, and the most successful startups start their business with the help of these trustworthy platforms.
- Email marketing: Email marketing can be a surefire for business growth since an increased number of users use email platforms for communicating with each other. Small businesses leverage email marketing practices to introduce and sell digital products, get more customers, and improve brand loyalty.
Bring Attention to These Marketing Tips to Sell Digital Products Online
Digital marketing practices facilitate your progress, and you can fine-tune your digital products through the feedback coming from marketing channels.
An effective digital marketing plan brings the best approaches into play, and it’s the stepping stone to leveling up your online business. So, keep the following facts in mind to always be ahead of the competition:
- Understand your customers: Social media channels provide the best ways to discover the latest trends. Entrepreneurs have access to several tools in social media networks to monitor customers’ needs and understand their desires.
- Add value: Creating a product that adds value to your customers’ results in a best-selling online business. That being said, there are so many digital products in all sectors, but you have to offer a unique product that is optimized and affordable and has new solutions to customers’ problems.
- Offer your free plan: In the first steps, there is a need to offer a free plan to customers to motivate them to use your digital product. Free plans are the best way to gain customers and retain the current alongside your brand.
- Use different marketing channels: You can perform your marketing plan through different channels, including website marketing, social media marketing, and video marketing. It’s up to you to choose the most effective marketing medium that works best, and it depends on your strategy. Social media marketing is an effective and affordable way of introducing and selling digital products online.
- Focus on affiliate marketing: Affiliates help your brand grow significantly in a few months, and you can use their marketing power to fire up your brand. So, try to define trusted affiliate programs with fair commission fees for better marketing.
- Offer a money-back guarantee: Offering a money-back guarantee ensures the digital products are the best in quality and there is no concern in buying your products. In general, a money-back guarantee tells your customers they’re on track and don’t waste their money by buying your digital products.
- Create a good customer relationship channel: Customer relationship management is a proven practice to increase brand loyalty. It helps retain current customers and build a robust connection between you and potential customers.
6 Best eCommerce Platforms
There are several eCommerce platforms, and finding the best one can point you in the right direction and abruptly leads you to success. Here is a list of the best eCommerce platforms to sell digital products online:
Everyone likes to have a dedicated online store to sell digital products and integrate everything in one place. You can create a website at low prices and start an online store within 2 or 3 weeks. Here is our guide on how to make a WordPress website.
Amazon is a leading eCommerce platform aiming to deliver the best user experience and high-quality products. On top of that, Amazon provides sellers with professional seller plans at affordable prices.
Additionally, entrepreneurs can choose from marketing plans on the platform to promote and sell digital products with peace of mind.
Shopify is an eCommerce platform that offers free plans to kick off your business. There are trial plans for online selling applications. Compared to others, the main advantage of this platform is associated with seamless integrations with POS apps and online payment systems.
Etsy is a global marketplace where entrepreneurs and customers come together to do business. This website is a powerful marketplace for selling digital products, and the platform allows you to design unique web pages for each digital product.
E-junkie is providing a full website to sell digital products online, delivering the best user experience to customers. This website has focused on selling digital products, and all entrepreneurs, including authors, musicians, developers, and photographers, can benefit from its exclusive features.
Furthermore, E-junkie has advanced integrations with eCommerce tools and the most trusted payment systems. You can integrate the shopping cart with social media networks such as Facebook and Twitter.
Want to start your store in 10 minutes? Sellfy offers more. Sellfy gives you an all-in-one website, and you can sell digital products of all types, from ebooks and video content to graphic arts and PSD files.
One exceptional feature on Sellfy is the subscription plans you can define for premium users offered weekly, monthly, or yearly.
Creating the Best Digital Products According to Your Business Goals
Creating the best-selling digital products is a matter of time, and you need to be consistent to get to success. First, you should choose which sector you want to focus on, and you need good market research to create your digital product according to market demand.
There are numerous chances in front of you if you have chosen to innovate and sell digital products. With little creativity, you have long-term benefits to establish your profitable business.
Can you mention some examples of digital products?
- Online courses and webinars
- Ebooks and PDFs
- Audiobooks and podcasts
- Software programs
- Mobile applications and games
- PowerPoint templates
- Kindle books
- Web design resources and themes
How can I start selling digital products online?
- Find or create a digital product
- Think about licenses for your digital products
- Build an online platform or find one
- Prepare a mobile application to make online commerce easy
- Market your products
- Check the results and improve user experience
Is selling digital products online a profitable business?
Yes, absolutely. Selling digital products can be profitable if you are well prepared and provide the most in-demand products. Offering customers what they want and doing good marketing for digital products can provide you with a lucrative business.
What are the most in-demand digital products to start selling?
- Educational products such as online courses or ebooks
- Software programs, mobile apps, and entertainment products
- Graphics and digital arts
- Music and audio content
- Video content, especially educational content or entertainment
How do I sell digital products online without creating a website?
There are many platforms where you can offer your products and sell digital products online, such as Shopify, Sellfy, SendOwl, and Gumroad. Additionally,