Hi! My name is Denis Shepovalov, I am UI Designer and Founder of сraftwork.design. We create and sell digital products. And here is what I can tell to those designers who are thinking of doing the same, instead of office work.
- Freedom of creativity. This is an independent work on the project, where you yourself decide what happens. No deadlines, customers, influences from the side.
- Excitement. You never know how your work will be perceived, how well it will sell. This fire inside feeds the whole process.
- Digital nomadism. All you need is a good internet connection and a laptop. Although we first sat in co-working, and then still rented the office.
There are also some disadvantages:
- Unpredictability in sales plays also in the other direction. It’s never clear how much the product will earn.
- The same problems as freelancing. You need to be able to self-organize, control time and motivation.
Good sales depend on a lot of things, but the most important ones are a quality product and a cool presentation. 3 years ago, sales of digital products were only born and there was no competition. Now there are strong players whom you need to try to get around. Also, the market is strongly blurred by weak works and it is more difficult to stand out against their background. I made a list of 10 items that will help you with this.
- Your project should support a maximum of graphic editors. Figma and Sketch is a mast. Photoshop, XD, Studio, desirable, but not necessary.
- Take care that your product solves someone’s problem. Design for the sake of design is not interesting to anyone.
- The product should use all the features of the editor and technologies: symbols, styles, Google fonts, Font Awesome icons, Bootstrap grid. Today, graphics alone are not enough.
- Try to create something new, don’t copy. The more unique the product is, the more attention it will receive.
- Give the presentation as much time and effort as possible. Depending on it people will make a purchase decision. You will also need to prepare cuttings for all the markets where the product will be displayed.
- Be sure to make a live presentation on Tilda or Readymag. So you can promote the product yourself, without the participation of the market. This is important, because almost all sites charge 30% of the sales commission. And who even more, for example Graphic River.
- Promote hard. Use all the channels and sites that you can find. Social Networks, Community Design, Slack Chats, Producthunt, Dribbble, Behance.
- Focus on users from the US, and more precisely, from California. Designers, small studios and owners of startups are your target audience.
- Don’t stop there. Release updates and new products. People come to look at the new, and buy the old.
Well, now about value. If you do everything right and work conscientiously, say for half a year, I think you can get a profit comparable to a good salary in a good design studio. It is impossible to give an exact figure; even a plug is very difficult to determine.
If I had been offered a choice today: get a job in a studio or start everything from scratch, I would have chosen the second one.