Bulletproof Guide for Stable Passive Income on Redbubble in 2022 — Part 1

Aron Csatlos
4 min readNov 11, 2021

This is the second part of the Bulletproof Guide for Stable Passive Income, you can read the previous part here: https://acsatlos.medium.com/bulletproof-guide-for-stable-passive-income-on-redbubble-in-2022-part-2-2e668962bcfa

What is passive income? Does it exist?

For the second question, the answer is yes and no. Let’s start with the opposite, the active income. It means that you give your time to someone in exchange for money. It means when you work you are paid but when you don’t, you don’t receive any money.

Passive income on the other hand means that you can separate these two things — time and money. Let’s say you write a book: it takes a lot of time and during that time you don’t get paid for that. Once you release it you don’t worry about that much anymore, maybe you reply to the fans, but basically, every sale of that book brings you money. Even if you are in bed sleeping or playing with your kids in the park. In that case, you separated your time from your income. In theory, it’s that simple.

Of course, there are many types of these passive income sources — you’ll find them in every YouTube video nowadays — but I want to talk about print on demand today.

What is print on demand?

I’m sure you’ve already heard that term and maybe you are familiar with it as well. In case you haven’t let me sum it up.

Print on demand (or POD for short) is a concept for selling goods not printed until the company receives an order. This can be anything that is printed on it: notebooks, mugs, coasters, hats, cards, shirts, etc. The most popular print on demand sites are Redbubble, Merch by Amazon, and TeePublic. In this article, I describe one possible passive income source using Redbubble, and you can use it too, even starting today for free.

Getting started with a real strategy

Making steady and passive income is not easy but it is worth your time, I promise. You can create a Redbubble account, upload random designs and wait for the miracle, but this is not the way you will succeed.

The key to success is consistency and a well-targeted audience. What do I mean? Let’s start with the latter.

A well-targeted audience, a niche audience, is a small group of people with the same interest. I’d emphasize the “small” part. You want to go for the “Wow, that shirt is for me!” moments, and you can achieve it with more personalized messages.

Consistency is also important in the long run. If you can create a habit to upload 1–3–10 designs a day or a week you’ll have great results.

Choose a niche

It’s easier said than done but stick with me. For the first 100 t-shirts create designs in one niche only. Choose your hobby as a starting point and narrow it down. It’s a good indication that a niche is well defined if you search for it on Redbubble and the number of results is just a few hundred. Check this in an example:

Let’s say I like cats and I want to design t-shirts for people who also like cats. I quickly check the results on Redbubble and there are more than 1.6 million designs. This number is way too big, so let’s go further! I also like ice cream, so I put this search term also in. The number of results is more than 6500 — still high but much better than the 1.6 million. What if the cat I want to design is eating the ice cream? Only 300 results — BINGO!

The example above shows a method to narrow your focus to a niche where your works will be found. If you upload 100 designs in that niche, you’ll have 25% of the market while if you upload only in the cat niche, well… 0.00625%. How do you see your chances?

Upload, upload, upload

..but do not spam. Once you create a design, make a few variants of it (different font, different text, different colors) and upload these as well. On Redbubble it’s important to have great keywords for your designs. Start with the niche and write a few more from the top of your head. I usually put around 15–20 keywords on a design. If you need ideas on how to choose tags check out Redbubble’s own post: https://blog.redbubble.com/2015/06/how-to-tag-artwork/.

It’s important to use relevant tags only — don’t use the “dog” tag on your cat design.

In the upcoming part I’ll share how to create designs, what tools to use, but until then, start creating!

Check out part 2 here: https://acsatlos.medium.com/bulletproof-guide-for-stable-passive-income-on-redbubble-in-2022-part-2-2e668962bcfa

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