How to Sell Digital Art Online

Artists who aspire to make a living from selling their artwork are discovering unprecedented opportunities on the internet.

Artists who aspire to make a living from selling their artwork are discovering unprecedented opportunities on the internet. Figuring out how to sell digital art online, however, can be challenging – especially for artists who do not work in the digital medium. But innovative online art markets are flourishing, opening up new ways for artists of every background to digitize their art and advance their careers.

What Is Digital Art?

Artists create digital art by using computer software as their medium. A spectrum of increasingly available programs are opening up an expansive world of creative possibilities in photo editing, illustration, and digital painting.

Traditional artists should be excited that physical media can be digitized with ease. A variety of cameras and scanners can transform any piece of artwork into a digital image file. Any 2D medium – from pastels and graphite to watercolors, acrylics, and oils – can be easily digitized.

Artists no longer have to depend on exclusive galleries picking them up and selling original pieces one by one. With digital platforms and marketplaces, artists now have many options, like selling digital copies of art that buyers can print themselves. Online art marketplaces can bring a massive audience to an artist’s work at low cost.
Selling digital art online allows artists to increase their passive income or earn a real living from following their passions. Harnessing the selling utility of the internet and leveraging the abundant resources of digital platforms is creating a new generation of business-minded artists across the world.

How to Sell Digital Art Online

With digitized art, artists can sell unlimited quantities of the same image.

For artists, gaining access to galleries and exhibition spaces is a considerable challenge and does not guarantee sales. The internet provides an alternative marketing venue that circumvents the traditional route of displaying and telling the story of your artwork.

A physical piece in a gallery might sell for a higher price than a digital copy, but with digitized art, artists can sell unlimited quantities of the same image. You do not have to deal with the frustration of managing prints the old-fashioned way. Online venues allow artists to skip the frustration of paying for and printing a stockpile of prints ahead of time, hoping they sell, then packaging and mailing them out to customers.

The Mechanics of Digitizing Art

Maybe you create digital art or edit photography on a computer. Perhaps your art lives on canvas or paper. If the art is not already a digital file, use a DSLR or SLR camera or hire a professional to take high-quality photos of your work. A scanner may do the job – but use the type that allows you to place artwork face-down for scanning rather than pulling paper through the machine.

You will probably end up with a digital print in the form of a .jpg, .tiff, PSD, or .pdf. These files work well for printing.

Keep sizing and image quality in mind.

With a scanner, make sure it produces a file with a high enough dpi (dots per inch) for photo-quality images. Pieces with dimensions larger than 8.5×11’’ will present better as high-quality pictures. Consider using a local printing shop for professional scanning where you should be able to print your art at larger sizes without sacrificing image quality.

The Basics of Selling Digital Prints

The most direct way to profit from selling your art is marketing to a pre-existing online following that is already familiar with your story as an artist and your artwork.

When someone purchases a digital print, they receive a file to download and print for personal use. Depending on the selling platform, you may dictate how many copies the buyer can print. Grant the customer express permission that legally allows them to obtain professional prints at their printing shop. Do not panic over creative ownership. Selling digital prints this way is not the same as selling the commercial license to your work – which gives the buyer the rights to sell your art for their personal profit.

After learning the basics of selling digital art online, choose a platform. There are a variety of options such as independently selling your artwork on social media, via your own website, or through a third-party site. The most direct way to profit from selling your art is marketing to a pre-existing online following that is already familiar with your story as an artist and your artwork. Artists whose work has garnered the attention of an online fanbase can receive payments through PayPal then send digital print files to buyers via email.

There are a diversity of online shops to consider when deciding the best way to sell your digital art prints online. Take notice of each online art marketplace’s pros and cons. What artists, styles, and clientele do they attract? Think outside the digital prints box and ponder the idea of selling digital art on fun products like phone cases, clothes, or household products. Decide which marketplace works best for how you want to sell your digital art.

Where to Sell Digital Art Online

For every promising artist who wonders “Where can I sell digital art?” – there is a marketplace that makes an excellent match. Do you want to sell physical goods other than prints to display your digital art? How do you want to handle payment and shipping? What environment fits your talent, style, and level of recognition? Are you willing to pay for features, services, and customization?


Etsy is by far the most mainstream platform for selling art. Its solid foundation takes care of the logistical processes. Listing items is affordable, and Etsy only takes 5% commission. Artists can focus more time on creating. This site processes accounts, payments, and forwards the digital files to customers.

Etsy features built-in marketing tools for individual sellers. They email your buyers, encouraging them to visit your store again. Millions of people sell their art and products on Etsy, so figure out how to differentiate your art business from the crowd to be competitive.

Creative Market

Enjoy exposure to over 5 million site members. Many designers prefer Creative Market for selling prints, photos, graphics, fonts, 3D pieces, and other designs. Creative Market lets you adjust prices and keep 70% of total sales. Some online art shops do not let you post your work on other sites. But with Creative Market, use any other platforms you want.

Art Web

Without taking commission, Art Web connects sellers with a global community and customer base. This worldwide e-commerce website allows artists to network and support each other through sharing their work. Art Web’s free plan includes your 15-image online gallery. Opting for their paid plan unlocks a professional site to sell more items.

Big Cartel

Big Cartel is popular for being customizable enough to reflect your unique brand. Pay nothing or up to $19.99 per month. What tools do you need, and how much do you want to list? Sellers can access professional features for logistics, networking and social media marketing, and market research.

Society 6

With their in-house manufacturing and logistics, Society 6 helps artists to deliver t-shirts, phone and laptop cases, and affordable art prints. In exchange for a small percentage of sales, artists can spare themselves time and effort. Leave the production, management, and shipping to the site.

Artist Shops by Threadless

Artists can develop a custom storefront on Artist Shops. Let the site take care of hosting and transaction processing. There is no minimum order size for selling digital art on a range of products.


Sellers have the power to select their profit margin and product types with RedBubble’s transparent pricing system. The free-to-join community of artist groups concocts challenges to spark each other’s creativity.


Designs can take shape on almost any product for free with a Zazzle store. Creators let their imaginations and sales run wild by selling digital artwork on clothes and accessories, mugs, stationery, calendars, and posters.


Shopify enables artists to establish a store or sell from a website. Shopify’s tools help manage inventory. Artists choose custom URLs and website themes. This site differs from marketplaces like Etsy. Sellers are responsible for customer service, marketing, and promotion. Shopify does not automatically direct shoppers to you or communicate with them for you. Expect to invest more time and effort into a store through Shopify.

This is a Limited Edition (formerly Click for Art)

Getting into This is a Limited Edition is a selective invite-only application process for top artists. They mainly concentrate on art and canvas prints. The site joins trade shows and exhibitions, orchestrating limited-edition releases of mugs, laptop cases, and household decor.

Not on the High Street

Another selective and coveted art selling platform is Not on the High Street. Artists who make it through the rigorous application process reap the benefits from the site’s 39 million + individual shoppers annually. That comes out to around 2 million site visitors per month, with a major holiday surge.

Design Cuts

Design cuts is an exclusive community for designers by designers. They hand-pick only the best. So artists need to contact the site directly if they hope to partner with them in fonts, brushes, patterns, backgrounds, and graphics.

More Ways to Sell Your Digital Art Online

Instagram can be an effective platform for self-promotion and cultivating a community or fandom around your art.

Amazon also has its own space for artists to set up shop online.

Patreon is another community site. It is subscription-based and allows the creator to release exclusive items to certain followers based on tiered levels of membership.

Explore more platforms like INPRNT, Design by Humans, Artmajeur, MyFonts, Caseable, ArtFinder, TurboSquid, Vango Art, Tappan Collective, and Saatchi Art.

The Future of Digital Art for Artists

NFTs, for example, are becoming the future of locking down intellectual property rights and long-term royalties.

However and wherever you decide to sell your digital art online, always read the fine print. The online art industry is constantly evolving. NFTs, for example, are becoming the future of locking down intellectual property rights and long-term royalties. But remember: when selling art online, artists should know their rights and fully understand their chosen platform’s policies. Beware of anyone asking to buy the commercial license to sell and redistribute your work for themselves.

Through online art marketplaces, artists have the power to control how they profit from their hard work. Creative license now extends to how creators market themselves, building iconic brands and passionate customer bases online. The future of digital art, and the ways artists can use online platforms and marketplaces to reach their fans and customers, is almost limitless.

Dot Red and the Future of Art

Dot Red believes the future of art is a powerful relationship between in-person exhibitions and virtual experiences. Dot Red digitizes the visual and social art experience for a post-pandemic world where people increasingly live and interact with art and artists, online. Learn how you can feature your art on our platform to be shared at museums, galleries, and fairs.