Make Money Online Selling Vector Illustrations – Tips & Tricks for Success

Ever dream of turning your graphic design hobby into a business?

I know the feeling.

I’m always on the lookout for ways to use my creativity to make extra money.  

The good news?

There are plenty of ways to make money online as a graphic designer!

One method that has consistently helped me build up a passive income stream has been creating and selling digital assets on stock media marketplaces.

Let’s talk about how to make money online selling vector illustrations.

can you make money online selling vector illustrations

Can you make money online selling vector illustrations?

Yes, you absolutely can.

As a professional video editor and motion designer, I can tell you first hand how often I purchase digital assets from stock sites for client work.  I’m a regular purchaser of stock vector illustrations, stock music, sound effects, photos, footage, and motion graphics templates for client work.

In fact, that’s what made me start creating and selling digital assets in the first place. 

I figured, if I was buying it this consistently — I’m sure others are too.  

selling stock vector illustrations

However, it should be noted that selling vector art online isn’t a get-rich-quick scheme.  You’ll need to build up your library of creative assets before you start seeing any substantial income.

It’s best to think of each element you create as an asset that you own, and can benefit from for years to come. 

If you have a specific style of artwork – stick to your style, and you’ll do well.

Where should I sell my vector illustrations?

There are loads of stock media marketplaces out there… with more popping up every day.

Most of these sites offer non-exclusive agreements, meaning you can upload the same artwork to multiple markets.  

Personally, I’ve had the most success with sales on these marketplaces:

sell vector illustrations on shutterstock
selling vector illustrations on adobe stock
sell vector images on graphic river
selling vector illustrations on creative market

Click on any of the links above to learn more about becoming a contributor to one of these stock media sites.

Making Money Online from Selling Vector Art

In the following video, Martin Perhiniak of Yes, I’m a Designer walks us through why graphic designers should be creating vector illustrations specifically for sale on stock media marketplaces… He also offers tips and tricks for success, and technical advice.

He also shares his views on the pros and cons of being a stock contributor.

Making Money Online from Selling Stock Illustrations

Lessons We Learned from This Video

In his extensive research, Martin provides tons of useful information for graphic designers aspiring to sell vector art online.  Below, you’ll find some tips for success, as well as extremely useful technical advice. 

Selling Vector Illustrations – Tips for Success:

  • Sets of illustrations sell particularly well
  • Research current design trends
  • Upload holiday artwork 3 months in advance
  • Always try to provoke emotions with your illustrations
  • Don’t copy or steal from other artists 

Selling Vector Illustrations – Technical Advice:

  • Keep your files tidy
  • Avoid text in most situations
  • Lines should always be strokes
  • Patterns need to be seamless
  • Avoid auto-tracing photos & scans
  • Avoid raster effects
  • Pay attention to your anchor point count
  • Close paths on filled shapes
  • Delete any stray points
  • Submit release forms (if needed)
learn adobe illustrator online courses tutorials linkedin learning free trial

How about you?

Do you have any tips for success in selling vector artwork online?  What genre’s or styles have worked best for you?  

What’s your favorite stock media site to upload to, and why?  


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  • Wonderful information, thanks a lot for sharing kind of content with us. Your blog gives the best and the most interesting information. I wonder if we can gather such practical information about make money online selling vector illustrations. Great one!!

  • Hey, thanks for the article.
    I have question, should i build my portfolio in one niche and category ?, ex : bacground and all about background. Or can i combine and mix all of niche and category in one portfolio?. Which is selling well?
    And what vector do people actually need, was it an alement design or ready to use design?

    I’ve been contribute for ss rn.
    Thanks bro.

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