How To Sell Stickers On Etsy If You Are On A Budget

If you always want to sell stickers on Etsy but have no clue where to begin, you are in the right place! 

However, like most people, lack of budget is the number cause that stops you from starting your own Etsy sticker shop

But worry not, in this post I have gathered some info that will help you kick-start your Etsy business by selling stickers

*This post contains affiliate links. That means that if you make a purchase after clicking on a link I may earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. Hope you find the information here useful!

HOW TO SELL STICKERS ON ETSY

1. Pick a niche that Makes you stand out among the rest

There are a lot of stickers out there. Can I still make money by selling stickers?

Yes, if you pick the right niche.

Niche is the appeal or specialization to a certain group of people

You can’t sell to everyone at the beginning.

Imagine selling your sticker for only 1 person. That can be your niche

Find something that interests you and makes you excited in the process of creating it

The niche can be a hobby like a motorbike, or maybe for a cause like women’s rights or maybe even an identity like being Asian or Harry Potter fans. It can be anything.

Tips: Look at the best seller or popular now. This is like a clue telling you that these are what people looking for. This is the trend. Look at the font at the element to create something better out of it ( Do not copy exactly other people’s designs!)

If you are not sure where to begin or what stickers you want to create, Start with the one you think you will definitely buy as a customer

For example, if you are into journalling or even bullet journals but dont have time to decorate it but you love aesthetic-looking journals, you can start with that. Create stickers to decorate your empty journals.

Or if you are a mom and sick of the cluttered mess in your pantry, maybe it’s time to organize and print a label for each spice and container. And of course, you need label stickers.

Or if you have some of your art or doodle you have created in Procreate for fun, add the outline and turn it into stickers.

Try to sell for one person first. That is yourself

When you think about it this way, it will lessen the friction of not starting because you are still not sure about your niche or the type of stickers you want for your business

Here are some unique niches that you can target

Unique Sticker Niches to sell on Etsy

  • Seasonal: Thanksgiving, Halloween, Christmas
  • For the small business owners: Product label
  • Label items: Organization label, Personal label,  Inspirational quotes

Other than niches, you also have to decide beforehand the type of stickers you are about to create to sell on Etsy

Type of stickers

  • Product stickers
  • Label stickers
  • Clear stickers
  • Die cut stickers
  • Bumper stickers
  • Custom stickers

2. Do Search engine optimization for Etsy (sEO) 

Search engine optimization is key for this sticker business. No matter how pretty your design is, it still needs to appear when people search for it.

As a customer of Etsy, you probably noticed how you search for certain things before purchasing the item, this is called search intent. So play around at the Etsy search bar to find the right keyword or potential stickers idea based on your niches

However, the Etsy search bar is not exactly the best tool for finding the best keyword or identifying the design gap. You might need the keyword research tool that will spit out the information needed on your niches.

Etsy Keyword tools

The key here is to find the sticker design that people search for a lot but there is a limited option. In other words, when you use the keyword tool, find those with high volume and less competition.

So, by doing this step, you can create designs that can stand out among the crowd and create stickers that people actually want to buy!

When using the keyword tool, target for high volume & low competition keywords

If you already know the niches and the keyword that you are about to target, the next step is to find the long-tail keyword

What is the long tail keyword?

The long tail keyword is the longer and more specific phrase that users use when searching for the item when they know exactly what they are looking for. At this point in time, the customer is close to purchasing the item.

So, by targeting this long tail keyword, you can attract the customer with high buying intent. The outcome in this type of customer is almost always purchasing the item.

This is the type of customer that you want. Those who want to buy your stickers. So make their journey easy by providing what they are searching for.

For example, if the keyword you are interested in is the personal label

To make it more specific, find the long tail keyword like the personal label for kid’s stuff

The problem some parents faced is the issue with their kid’s sippy cups or maybe shirts that get exchanged in the kiddy care. You provide the solution by creating cute label stickers for them

  • Keyword: Personal label
  • Long tail keyword: Personal label for kid’s bag

Now, you can try typing the long tail keywords with high volume and less competition SEO below:

3. Create stickers 

There are a few programs or apps you can use to create the stickers. You can try a few to find what you are most comfortable with

If you don’t have the gadget yet, worry not, as you can always draw manually and scan the picture. Of course, the quality is not up to par with those printed stickers. But if you are on a budget, you can kickstart your sticker business with this method

Canva program has the best tool for beginners, as they have templates for sticker creation. If you have no idea how to begin, Canva might be the best place to start.

These are the sticker templates that I created with Canva:

Now you have designed your sticker, the next step is to sell it on Etsy!

4. Create your Etsy sticker store

Creating your Etsy store just takes 15 minutes, top. Let me show you how to do it, step by step

  • Log in to your Etsy business account. If you are new, click here to create your Etsy account
  • The first step is to name your shop. Your shop is your brand. So choose an interesting name that can leave an impression on your customer
  • The next step is to start listing your product. In this case, is the sticker. To create a listing you need to provide: Image, Title, Quantities, Product description, Shipping information and of course the price of the item. If you are unsure how to do this, you can always go to the top seller page and replicate with modification what they have on their page. This step is crucial as it determined whether the customer is able to find your listing and actually purchase the item
  • If you didn’t have any product to list, you can create the ‘dummy listing’ while you working on it.
  • Payment & billing: The listing fee is $ 0.20 and the transaction fee is 6.5% of the total item purchased (as of October 2022) with transaction fees of 3-4.5% depending on the country. To learn more about Etsy fees you click here.

5. Sell your stickers on Etsy

This is probably the most technical part of selling your stickers on Etsy

Based on your budget and existing equipment, there are 4 ways to approach this step

  • Selling digital stickers instead of physical stickers
  • Use print-on-demand service
  • Outsource the sticker printing
  • Print your own stickers

#1 Selling digital stickers instead of physical stickers on Etsy

This is probably the lowest cost of stickers you can start selling on Etsy

Of course, the market is way different compared to selling physical stickers, but this is the best place to start if you have no budget and want to familiarize yourself with stickers business on Etsy

The target market for digital stickers is mainly to cater the digital planner or journal user

Since it is digital stickers, you take some weight off and don’t have to think about the printing, shipping, or storing of the stickers.

The customer will purchase and directly download your stickers so it is really easy for beginners and need minimal to zero cost in creating this digital sticker business on Etsy ( it is not entirely zero cost as you still need to pay for Etsy listing)

Similar to digital download, selling digital stickers on Etsy have its own merit

Related articles:

Advantages of digital stickers vs physical stickers on Etsy

  • zero to low-cost budget
  • don’t have to think about shipping and storing like the physical stickers
  • Create only 1 time and can sell it as long or as much as you want. Suitable for busy people

Disadvantages of digital stickers

  • the profit margin is not as huge as the physical stickers
  • didn’t get the feel of starting a real business as all items are digitalised
  • People can steal your design

#2 Use print-on-demand service (POD)

If you want more of a hands-off approach but still want to sell digital stickers on Etsy, using a print-on-demand service is the answer.

By using POD, you remove the hassle of printing and shipping the stickers, which well suits the beginner with a lack of equipment and resource

There are a few POD services you can use for your sticker business on Etsy

Print-on-demand service for stickers

  • Printify
  • Printful
  • StickersYou
  • VistaPrint
  • StickersandPoster

Printify

Printify is an example of a POD service. So, how does it work?

  • Upload the design in Printify
  • Link the Printify account with your Etsy business account
  • Choose the sticker format that you want
  • Choose the material, shape and function of the stickers you have created
  • Finalize the sticker design and add the listing and pricing details 

So whenever customers choose the design, they will arrange the printing and shipping directly to them, you don’t have to worry at all!!

Here are the sticker mockup examples that I created with Printify:

Advantage of POD for selling stickers on Etsy

  • Hassle-free and the work required mainly on creating the design
  • No minimum order
  • They will ship along with your brand label so you don’t have to worry about the packaging
  • Could work as a trial on which your sticker designs are the crowd favourite so you can print them on your own ( Test the market)
  • You can use the same design for Tshirt, mugs, etc 

Disadvantage of POD

  • The cost is on the higher side so the profit margin might become lower
  • You cant add the personalized touch to your packaging before shipping the stickers

#3 Outsource to a sticker printing partner

Another option for a hands-free approach is by using a sticker printing partner. This is another example if you are not ready to buy the tools for creating stickers on your own

So how does it work?

  • Similar like POD, you outsource the printing part to them
  • They will print based on the bulk order, quality, and materials of the stickers that you want
  • They will ship it right back to you
  • You will do the shipping to your customers

Advantages of using a sticker printing partner

  • You don’t have to buy the expensive tools if you are just about to start
  • The quality of the stickers is great as they use specialized tools and are experienced in printing stickers
  • Same to POD, you can use a sticker printing partner to ‘test the water’; see which design gets higher demand and you can always print it on your own later as you get familiar with the business

Disadvantages of using a sticker printing partner

  • You need some budget upfront as you need to order in bulk
  • The cost is higher compared to printing it on your own

Some Sticker printing partners you can try 

Stickers Printing partners

Sometimes, they will have discounts and promos, so do check and compare the prices before deciding which sticker partner you want to use. But bear in mind, the quality of the stickers varies, so survey and read the review before using their service

Print your own stickers

If you have the budget and are serious about the business, then printing your own stickers is the best bet!

Of course, you don’t have to buy all the tools at the same time. You can buy what is important first and add on other stuff later

So what’s the tool needed to print your own stickers?

#1 Printer

The most important thing is the printer. This determined the quality outcome of your stickers. And you need a printer that is compatible with the type of paper you are going to use

As a start, you can try using whatever printer you have at home to check the quality of the stickers. If you are satisfied with it, you don’t have to purchase a new printer

But, if you want to buy a printer, here are some of the great options used to print the stickers

#2 Sticker cutting machine

If you have little budget, you have to cut the stickers on your own by using a knife or scissors. I know it’s not exactly productive in a long run, but to keep the cost low at the beginning, you have to trade your effort and time.

Once you have some profit, then you can invest in the sticker-cutting machine. The most popular of course the silhouette and the Cricut machine

You can read the review and discussions in Facebook groups or forums to get an idea on how well these machine function.

#3 Sticker sheets

What type of stickers are you going to create? 

Is it vinyl matte, matte or glossy sticker sheets? 

Have an idea of what type of sticker you are about to create and buy the correct sticker sheet

#4 Packaging and shipping stuff

Can you imagine getting excited waiting for the stickers you order and ending up receiving dented, scratched and the colour of stickers ruined by the water?

NOT FUN! And most probably you will not order from the same shop again, right?

Keeping this in mind, packing and shipping your stickers is equally important as creating and printing the stickers

Use a more rigid mailer to prevent dented and maybe keep the stickers in plastic the make them more waterproof. Other things like tissue paper can add extra protection to your creation

#5 Business card

Little something extra as part of your promotion. You can insert a discount card and maybe a loyalty card to keep the customer ordering from your shop.

#6 Shipping label

Another thing to consider in selling stickers on Etsy is the shipping label. This is essential!

The easiest option is to print the shipping label and personally cut and seal it on the envelope one by one. It is do-able for the beginner or when you are just about to start because the order is not much

But when your sticker shop starts hitting it off and you have tonnes of orders, do consider purchasing the thermal printer for a shipping label

Here are the 2 most commonly used shipping label printer

  • Rollo printer
  • Dymo

Tips for Sell Stickers on Etsy

  • If you’re a student and have little budget, maybe you can start with the digital sticker first
  • Once you get the consistency of creating your art and product, you can use the profit to embark on your physical sticker business
  • Be active on Etsy
  • Bundling the listing.
  • Review-Try to answer any query or message within 24hrs. You can even ask them whether they have received the item

How to sell stickers on Etsy