Heights Platform Top 10 Online Business Ideas for Designers to Make Money Online

Top 10 Online Business Ideas for Designers to Make Money Online

7 minute read

Do you have a passion for design and you want to monetize it with an online business?

In this blog post, we're about to share our top 10 brilliant business ideas for designers to make money online.

Whether you're into graphic design, web design or any other creative niche, these online business concepts for designers will help you harness your skills, reach a broader audience, and elevate your career. Let's embark on this creative journey!

Top 10 Business Ideas for Designers to Make Money Online

#1: Create and Sell a Design Online Course

Sharing your design expertise with the world is not just rewarding; it's a lucrative business idea.

By creating and selling an online course, you can educate upcoming designers, and connect with fellow design enthusiasts, or anyone eager to explore the world of design.

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Design courses are highly sought after, and you can start this venture with minimal investment.

In our opinion, selling online courses stands out as one of the most flexible and accessible business models out there. It doesn't require a large initial investment, and it enables you to generate income while sharing your passion with others, which is great!

All you need is an online course platform like Heights Platform to get started.

With its easy-to-use interface and comprehensive features, you can seamlessly develop, organize, and deliver your design course to a global audience.

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Not sure where to begin? Check out our in-depth guides on building a successful online course:

Pros of Selling Online Courses

  • Share your passion and expertise with others.
  • Low startup costs.
  • Reach a global audience.
  • Leveraged income potential.

Cons of Selling Online Courses

  • Initial marketing effort.
  • Customer support.

#2: Sell Digital Design Products

Another way to monetize your design passion is to create digital products.

Put your design skills to work by creating and selling digital products such as templates, vector illustrations, website themes, or custom design elements.

Digital products offer the advantage of being easily accessible and shareable, making them ideal for online selling.

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Platforms like Heights Platform enable you to set up your online store, display your digital products, and handle transactions seamlessly.

Our guides on creating and pricing digital products can help you get started:

Pros of Selling Digital Products

  • Leveraged income potential.
  • Creative freedom.
  • Low overhead costs.
  • Reach a wide audience.
  • Easy to scale and generate leveraged income.

Cons of Selling Digital Products

  • High competition market.
  • Low pricing opportunities.
  • Hard marketing effort.

#3: Launch a Membership Site for Design Enthusiasts

Creating a membership site tailored to design enthusiasts is a great way to cultivate a thriving online community while generating recurring revenue.

A membership site provides exclusive content and benefits to its members, and you can charge a monthly or annual fee for access.

You can offer a range of membership tiers, each with unique perks like exclusive design workshops, behind-the-scenes content, or one-on-one design consultations.

Heights Platform makes setting up a membership site tailored to your design niche a breeze.

Learn more about the benefits of membership sites and discover how to choose the right business model for your design venture:

Pros of Selling Membership Sites

  • Recurring scalable income opportunities.
  • You are offering exclusive, valuable content.
  • Community building.
  • Flexible pricing tiers.

Cons of Selling Membership Sites

  • Constant content creation demands.
  • Hard to retain members.
  • Marketing effort.

#4: Build an Online Community of Designers

Online communities are a powerful tool for building connections with your audience and growing your online business by uniting like-minded individuals.

Besides being a learning platform, an online community can also serve as a standalone product that you can sell.

A community is a great asset that can help you become an industry authority, gather valuable feedback from your members, and boost customer trust.

Heights Platform Community

With Heights Platform, you can build and customize a community to facilitate meaningful interactions and engagement among your members.

Inside your online community, you can start discussions, organize virtual design events or workshops, and let your designer community flourish.

All about creating online communities:

Pros of Selling Community Access

  • High engagement for members.
  • Authority building and feedback source.
  • Create community-driven content.
  • Generate recurring scalable income.

Cons of Selling Community Access

  • Need to moderate the community constantly.
  • Can be hard to retain members.

#5: License Your Design Work to Brands

Many brands and companies are perpetually in search of captivating visuals to enhance their products and marketing materials.

As a designer, you possess the ability to create visually stunning artworks that align with a brand's vision or message.

Consider offering licensed design artworks to brands and establish mutually beneficial partnerships.

Just like Cat Coquillette, a renowned artist who built her business by partnering with top brands, you can license your design work to household names and boutique companies alike.

Listen to our podcast, "The Creator's Adventure," where Cat shares her insights on building a profitable brand through art licensing.

How Designers Can Partner with Top Brands: the Story of Cat Coquillette - The Creator's Adventure#54

Pros of Licencing Designs to Brands

  • Industry exposure and portfolio enhancement.
  • Brand collaborations.
  • Authority building.
  • Recurring scalable income.

Cons of Licencing Designs to Brands

  • Hard to find new opportunities.
  • Negotiation skills.
  • High licensing fees.
  • High competition.

#6: Start a YouTube Channel and Monetize It

YouTube has emerged as a potent platform for designers to showcase their talents, engage with an audience, and monetize their content.

Start your YouTube channel to share your design process, provide tutorials, offer insights, or document your design journey. Consistent video uploads will keep your audience engaged, and you can share your unique design perspective, tips and tricks, or time-lapse videos of your creative process.

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As your channel grows and meets eligibility requirements, you can apply for the YouTube Partner Program, opening doors to monetization through advertisements, sponsorships, and merchandise sales.

Keep in mind that growing a YouTube channel takes time and effort; our blog posts offer insights on making money on YouTube and turning your videos into a paid online course:

Pros of Starting a YouTube Channel

  • Reach a broad and global audience.
  • Great for freedom and creative expression.
  • Different monetization options.
  • Brand collaboration opportunities.

Cons of Starting a YouTube Channel

  • Highly competitive platform.
  • Need to produce new content constantly.
  • Takes time to grow.
  • Low revenue from ads and not guaranteed.

#7: Offer Freelance Design Services

Freelancing as a designer involves offering your design skills and services on a project-by-project basis.

It's a flexible way to make money online, and you can work with clients from all over the world.

Freelance platforms like Upwork, Fiverr, Freelancer, or even platforms specific to design like Behance allow you to connect with clients looking for design services in a fast and easy way.

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Create a profile and showcase your portfolio with details about your expertise, rates, and previous client reviews. Then, browse through job listings or projects posted by clients and proposals that detail how you can meet their design needs, including your approach, timeline, and pricing.

Pros of Offering Freelance Services

  • Flexibility and time management.
  • Diverse clientele.
  • Portfolio growth.

Cons of Offering Freelance Services

  • Hard to acquire new clients.
  • Highly competitive market.
  • Cannot generate scalable income.
  • You are trading your time for money.

#8: Print-on-Demand Merchandise

Print-on-demand (POD) is a business model that allows designers to create custom-designed products without the need for inventory or manufacturing.

If you create unique and appealing designs that you believe your target audience will love, then you can print your designs on various products like T-shirts, hoodies, phone cases, posters, and more.

Platforms like Printful, Printify, or Teespring offer a range of products and handle printing, packing, and shipping for you! All you need to do once you have your designs and POD platform ready is set up an online store and start promoting your business.

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When customers place orders through your online store, the POD platform automatically fulfills the orders. They handle printing the design on the chosen product, packing, and shipping it directly to the customer.

Pros of Starting a Print-on-Demand Business

  • No inventory is needed.
  • Low-risk business.
  • Can generate recurring income.
  • Wide product range.

Cons of Starting a Print-on-Demand Business

  • Low profit margins.
  • Highly competitive market.
  • Print quality control.
  • Platform fees and delivery costs.

#9: Design Templates for Social Media

Another way to make some extra money online as a designer is to design templates for social media.

You can create visually appealing (and customizable) templates for various social media platforms, such as Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. These templates can include post designs, story templates, cover images, and more.

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Then, you can sell your templates through your own website, or by leveraging platforms like Etsy, or design marketplaces.

Pros of Starting a Print-on-Demand Business

  • Create a leveraged income stream.
  • Low risk.
  • Creative freedom.

Cons of Starting a Print-on-Demand Business

  • Low profit margins.
  • Highly competitive market.
  • Copyright issues.
  • Marketing effort.

#10: Start an Online Design Consulting Business

Starting a design consulting business can be a rewarding endeavor for designers. An example of this kind of design business idea is interior designers: where you help clients transform their living spaces.

As a consultant, you'll collaborate closely with clients to understand their design preferences, functional needs, and budget constraints.

Your ability to curate color palettes, furniture layouts, and decorative elements will not only enhance their living environments but also create spaces that resonate with their unique tastes and lifestyles.

Pros of Starting a Consulting Business

  • Personalized service.
  • High earning potential.
  • Portfolio enhancement.
  • Networking.
  • Varied projects.

Cons of Starting a Consulting Business

  • Client acquisition.
  • Consultation time.
  • Competition.
  • Industry knowledge.

Start an Online Course Design Business Today

The world of design is brimming with opportunities to turn your passion into a thriving online business.

Whether you're interested in teaching, creating digital products, building a community, or providing design services, there's a path for you to monetize your skills.

If you're considering sharing your expertise through online courses, membership sites, or building a community, Heights Platform is an excellent platform to help you get started.

With its user-friendly interface and robust features, Heights Platform can assist you in crafting and delivering engaging content to a global audience, all while providing a seamless experience for your students or community members.

The key to success in the online design world is not just about making money; it's about sharing your passion and expertise with others who are eager to learn and be inspired by your creative journey.

So, explore these business ideas, find the one that resonates with you, and take the first step towards building your own business with Heights Platform by your side. Happy designing!

Create Your Online Course Today