If you got some design skills and a brain for catchy phrases, CafePress is a great place to make a few extra bucks. Now, odds are you’re not going to get rich, because their cut of the profits are gigantic, but you can definitely add a little bit of padding to your wallet. For me, it’s a labor of love, and the money earned is an added bonus. If you’re really prolific, you do have the potential to make some serious cash, despite the small percentage of each sale you get…by simply increasing your volume of sales by offering more options.
My original intent was to sell make funny / offensive shirts, such as you see these guys getting rich off of. The problem here, though, is that is exactly what EVERY dude out there wants to do on CafePress, so the competition for simply getting found is ridiculous. Even if your funny / offensive ideas are better than 99% of shit on CafePress, you still have to compete with 99% of shit just to get found. Never-the-less, I did sell a few very quickly…and still do sell some of these. The first one I ever sold was this Infinity Plus One t-shirt.
I ultimately decided to focus my efforts on a niche, so I started designing “Texas Pride” t-shirts. Once I decided to focus on a niche, my sales became much more steady. While trying to compete with all the other funny / offensive douchebags on CafePress, I only made 1 or 2 sales per month. But with just a small handful of Texas themed designs, I regularly make 20 sales a month…sometimes 30 or more. This Texas / Not Texas design is my bestselling. Because the percentage I get from each sale is so small, though, I still don’t get a check every month…but I do get a check every or two months or so, and it’s always a nice surprise to discover a $150 – $200 CafePress check in the mail when I least expect it!