Sell Digital Products Online in 4 Easy Steps

“To make money, you have to spend money.”

It’s such a common phrase in business that I had to Google who originally said it. It turns out that we can actually trace this quote back to Titus Maccius Plautus, who lived around 200 B.C.

Well, here we are, more than 2000 years later, and it’s still true—to an extent. 

Scaling and growing a business without increasing expenses is a tough puzzle. Thankfully, it’s not impossible. There are ways to do it without making a huge investment. 

One of the best ways for small businesses to scale and grow is through selling digital products.  

Not sure what to sell? Or how to sell digital products? Chances are you have a skill, product, or service that your audience would love — you just need some inspiration. 

Here’s everything you need to know, not just about creating digital products, but also how to sell digital products online—without spending an arm and a leg.

What are digital products?

Digital products are downloads or services that don’t have physical substance. They can be delivered entirely digitally, and the transaction takes place online. 

Think of them as intangible products that hold value—like ebooks, courses, templates, and more.

Digital product example

Of course, some digital products can be printed out, depending on how they’re used and how the buyer wants to use them. 

You may have heard us talk about using ebooks, courses, templates, and other content as lead magnets in the past. And they still can be. It all comes down to your unique business and audience.

For example, if you’re a food blogger, you may want to offer a small 5-recipe guide as a lead magnet to encourage people to opt into your email list. This is a great way to let people try your recipes without them having to commit money just yet. Then, you can sell a recipe ebook with 50 of your top recipes. And you’ll be more likely to sell that book because people know you—all of a sudden that free 5-recipe guide paid for itself.

Pro tip: Offer your email subscribers an exclusive discount on your recipe book. This will make them feel special and valued. 

Delivering digital products saves you the hassle of shipping physical products, storing inventory, and dealing with third-party delivery services. All you need to sell digital products is a reliable email marketing service, an optimized and user-friendly landing page, and a payment processing platform, like Stripe.

The benefits of selling digital products online

Yes, making more money is at the top of this list. But the benefits of selling digital products go so much deeper than that. 

Make more money 

Digital products are a great way to expand your product line and complement your existing products or services. 

Easily scale your business

Finding ways to grow your business is hard—especially if you want to keep costs under control. Creating digital products is an easy way to scale your business without spending too much on advertising, new storefronts, or shipping costs. 

Easily convert followers to customers with a micro-purchase 

Offering a digital download for a small price is a great way to attach value to your product.

A great place to offer a small upsell is on your thank you page. Once someone signs up for your list, send them to a thank you page. Then, mention they may be interested in one of your products or offerings with a small price point. These micro-purchases are a great way for new subscribers to get instant value without committing to a large purchase. 

Reach people worldwide 

Selling physical products has limitations due to shipping and geography. But with digital products, you don’t need to worry about location because you can deliver your products instantly online. 

Best digital products and downloads to sell

The truth is, you can get as creative as you want when selling digital products and downloads. The key is to make sure it’s valuable to your audience. Here are some ideas to inspire your own digital product creations.

Ebooks

Whether you’re a food blogger, fiction author, travel writer, podcaster, or something else entirely, you can create an ebook around your expertise. And ebooks are super profitable—There are some authors out there publishing ebooks on Amazon making $1000+ a month. That’s a statistic sure to get your mind racing.

If people turn to you for guidance in a particular area, then an ebook may be the thing for you to sell. Here are some super popular types of ebooks for you to consider.

  • Recipe books
  • Fiction or Non-fiction books
  • “How to” guides
  • Fitness plans
  • Travel guides
  • Self-help books
  • Workbooks and planners
example of using a landing page to sell an ebook

Courses

Online courses are becoming increasingly popular.  In fact, a report from Allied Market Research suggests that the eLearning market could reach a revenue of $840.11 billion by 2030.

People live busy lives, and learning on your own time is a major benefit of online courses over webinars or in-person learning. Plus, courses are a great way to earn passive income. Here are a few ways you can build and offer courses to your audience:

Podcaster Cathy Hellers sells a 12-week course to her audience, teaching registrants how to turn their passion into a career.

Sell online courses

Templates

Templates are a great way to save your audience time and money by doing the hard work for them.

Templates are especially useful for consultants, web designers, coaches, and anyone else who can offer expert advice and professionally designed templates. Here are some ideas:

  • Business planner
  • Email templates
  • Blog templates
  • Calendar templates
  • Social media scheduling templates
  • Marketing plan templates
  • Creative brief templates
  • Website wireframe templates
  • Financial planning and budgeting templates
  • Presentation templates
  • Fitness planner templates
  • Meal planning templates

Many small business owners or entrepreneurs don’t have professional design skills, so Creative Market capitalizes on its skills to sell pre-designed website templates to this audience. 

Sell digital templates

Audio

The market for selling and licensing audio is growing. If you’re a music producer, or just like creating beats for fun, consider using your landing page to sell audio.

Here are some ideas:

  • Original songs
  • Beats
  • Audiobooks
  • Exclusive podcast audio

Design

Are you a freelance designer? Or, maybe you just have some design skills people would pay money for?

If you have a design eye worth sharing, selling your creations and design services could be incredibly valuable for your audience. Videos, in particular, are in high demand as they are believed to improve organic traffic from SERPs by 157%. YES! If you know how to make great videos at a great price, people will buy them.

But video isn’t the only thing a designer can do if they want to sell digital products. Some things people would be willing to pay for include:

  • Photography 
  • Videos
  • Stock images
  • Logos
  • Icons
  • Fonts
  • Graphics and infographics
  • Themes

Memberships

Sometimes, the greatest upsell is access to a community of people who can share their experiences and learn with you. Remember those recipes we talked about earlier? If you spend time building trust and have something great to offer, such as yummy recipes that can save time, you can get to the point of creating a coveted community—that people will actually pay to join! Now that’s what I’m talking about!

See how The Social Broker empowers real estate professionals with the tools and community they need to build a brand on social media. 

Sell community membership

How to start selling digital products & make your first dollar online

Start selling digital products and downloads in seven easy steps. 

Step 1: Research market demand

If I were to advise you on anything, I would tell you to spend some time here. Start by making a list of the digital products you are interested in (and where you have some knowledge and expertise—if you don’t know how to turn on the burners of your stove, a recipe-related product is probably a no-go). 

Next, go online and into the community to see if there is a demand for that product. For example, if you came up with an idea and can’t find anything else out there on it, it tells you one of two things:

  • There is a need and no one has solved for it yet
  • There is no need so don’t bother

Market research will make sure you spin your wheels in the right places.

Step 2: Create your digital product

Creating your digital product is the first step to making your first dollar online. Whether you’re creating an ebook, course, or something else entirely, you’ll probably need a way to design and brand your product. 

Free tools like Canva are a great option for those who aren’t professional designers.

Step 3: Figure out your price point

Knowing how to price your product can be tough to figure out. You don’t want to set the price too high to the point where people won’t want to spend that much, but you don’t want to undervalue your hard work, either.

A good place to start is by researching what prices other people are offering similar products for. 

You’ll also want to calculate how much you invested in creating the product—in both time and money. Make sure you price your product so you make a profit. Understand, however, that it might take some time before you break even and start to turn a profit.

The exact timing to profitability can depend on several things:

  • Initial investment cost
  • Marketing expenses and how well you market your product (if people don’t know about it, you won’t make any money)
  • Product demand (when determining the right digital product, make sure there is reasonable demand)
  • Competition pricing (you don’t want to be the cheapest or the most expensive)
  • Customer acquisition cost
  • Sales volume
  • Updates and improvements to the product

Step 4: Set up a landing page to sell your product

Next, set up a place to sell your product. If you want to limit costs and avoid the hassle of third-party e-commerce platforms, a landing page that welcomes visitors to check out your product is your best bet. This landing page can be used to direct your customers to your eCommerce page.

A landing page is a standalone web page designed precisely for marketing or advertising a product or service. It’s focused on one clear and compelling call-to-action. In your case, to sell digital products. Unlike a full website with multiple pages and navigation options, a landing page is streamlined and targeted. 

You don’t necessarily need a full website to start selling, but having one can improve your brand’s credibility and provide more information to your customers. A well-designed landing page can work effectively on its own or complement a full website. And if you’re wondering where to sell digital products, your website is a good place to do so.

Step 5: Promote your product

If you are wondering how to sell digital products, you need to know it’s all about promotion (after product and price, of course). Once your product is ready and your landing page is set up, it’s time to promote it. 

Use social media, email marketing, and your existing network to spread the word. Share engaging content that highlights the benefits of your product and encourages people to make a purchase. You might also consider running ads on platforms like Facebook or Google to reach a wider audience.

Remember, promoting your digital product is not a one-and-done activity. This should be an ongoing exercise.

Step 6: Set up a payment system

To make sales, you’ll need a reliable payment system. Services like PayPal, Stripe, or Square can be integrated into your landing page to process transactions securely. Be sure your customers have a secure way to pay for your digital products. The last thing you want is to offer a payment solution that is not protected, exposing your customers to fraud.

Step 7: Collect customer feedback

After making your first few sales, collect feedback from your customers. This will help you understand what they liked and what could be improved. Use this feedback to refine your product and your marketing strategy. 

This could possibly give you insight into your next digital product, too. And how cool would that be—letting your customers choose your next product? Hello demand!

Remember, happy customers are more likely to recommend your product to others and leave positive reviews.

Now, where to begin?

Ideally, you want to find a platform where you can do everything from one easy location. Well, we have good news for you.

AWeber now offers the ability to sell directly from your AWeber landing page. Ready to sell online today? Learn more about making your first online sale with AWeber Ecommerce.

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