In this article, I’ll go over my top recommended tools for creating and selling digital products and how I use them in my business.
If you’d like to grab my free Product Creators QuickStart Kit, just click here and I’ll send it right over! Inside you’ll find a checklist, cheatsheet, and Canva product template to help you plan, design, and launch your first (or next) digital product!
There are so many tools for creating and selling digital products!
This is a question I get asked a lot! There are so many tools out there, it can be so overwhelming. Sometimes things we thought would be game-changing end up being disappointing (and a huge waste of money).
This happens all the time and I honestly feel like I’ve tried every tool under the sun to make my sales process efficient (without overcomplicating it)!
A common mistake I made in the beginning was that I just didn’t want to spend the money. I didn’t have much and that really paralyzed me. I quickly learned that not only was there a way to sell product inexpensively but I also learned that you DO have to invest in your business if you want to grow.
Not only will the right tools save you time (because you won’t be dealing with so many customer service issues) but it’s also really important for user experience. If your customers are frustrated or get confused during the checkout or post-purchase experience it can greatly affect whether the purchase is repeated or if the customer will come back again.
Again, this doesn’t have to cost a ton and there are a lot of easy to use tools out there that don’t require a massive learning curve or investment. I’ll go over my favorite ones and give you some alternative options as well!
Side note: if you’re curious about how all of this comes together in your actual sales funnel check out this article >> The Ultimate Guide To Designing a Sales Funnel That Converts
Email Service Provider: Convertkit
I’d like to start with talking about email service providers as an important product selling tool. The reason being is that your LIST is who you will sell to.
And even more than that, they will help you actually create your product idea and your email list will also fuel consistent sales.
With your email service provider you will:
- Set up an email list
- Build and nurture that email list
- Get to know them and how you can help them
- Survey them and use their answers to develop your product idea, the product content, and the product promotional content as well (A process detailed in The Product Creators Ultimate Toolbox)
- You’ll then sell (or “launch”) the product to them via email broadcasts
- Then, you’ll automate future sales with automated email sequences
All of this happens within your email service provider, so you’ll need a good one with excellent deliverability and features. My favorite is Convertkit!
I use and love Convertkit because not only is it easy to use but it helps me tag people based on actions and purchases they make, set up visual automations and funnels, and the deliverability far outweighs other providers I’ve tried in the past (ActiveCampaign and Mailchimp)
If the price tag makes you nervous, an alternative I recommend is Mailerlite. Just remember, your email service provider is going to be one of the best and most important investments you’ll make for your business!
Your Design Platform: Adobe InDesign or Canva
There is a reason that I have two different recommendations here: I strongly believe that the platform you use doesn’t make or break your product.
I’ve never had a problem with “product quality” when using Canva and I’ve created many, many products in Canva including products that have generated six-figures for the client in just months of being launched.
Marketing messages from people teaching certain platforms might make you think you need fancy programs if you want to make sales and if you truly want to learn them then that’s great! But remember, a fancy platform is not required to make money or impact with your digital product.
What IS required is value and great content! If using a platform you already know and are comfortable with will help you get your product out there making an impact with your audience faster than use it!!
Canva is my recommendation for a super-easy-to-use design platform! Like I said, I’ve designed everything from workbooks, planners, course slide deck presentations, and so much more using this platform and it’s FREE!! It does have a paid plan (which is worth it’s weight in gold) but it’s not required to actually get your product designed.
If you’d like to learn more about how to use Canva, please check out my FREE Canva 2.0 QuickStart course!
If you are interested in Adobe products, InDesign is Adobe’s program for creating layout design. Layout design is a graphic design term for things like workbooks, planners, ebooks, magazines, etc (basically, any kind of PDF download or “printable” product).
The Product Creators Ultimate Toolbox includes done for you product design templates for both Canva and Adobe InDesign. Templates are a great way to get your product designed fast and professionally with less time and money. They provide the very best jumping off point for the creative process of designing your product!
Your Page Builder: LeadPages or Elementor
In addition to LeadPages or Elementor, there IS a third recommendation as well– if you’re digital product is a course then I highly recommend Teachable and the page building function on Teachable works wonderfully too.
The thing I want to stress most about using a page builder is that the capability of creating a professional and high converting sales page, opt-in page (or any page in your funnel honestly) is MUCH higher than if you were to create a general page on your blog.
Having a professionally built sales page helps establish trust, authority, and lets your potential buyer know that you have the tools you need to have in order to ensure they have a secure transaction.
While copyrighting and visual elements do play a role in creating a sales page that converts, having the tools to present a professional page is important as well.
LeadPages is my favorite tool and one I use personally for Simplifying DIY Design. I also use Teachable but choose to design my pages using LeadPages and then integrate them. This allows me to do a lot more like tripwire pages, countdown timers, etc than I could with the Teachable platform alone.
Another great option is Elementor which is a free WordPress plugin. This plugin does have a very low cost paid option which is definitely worth it as you’ll get access to features like forms and countdown timers but the free version of Elementor is all that’s necessary to set up a professional landing page. You can even check out my Elementor Templates if you’re looking for a designed-for-you option for building the pages in your funnel.
Your selling platform
This will likely vary depending on the digital product you are selling.
Either option works wonderfully. I like Shopify if you are looking to have a full shop. It’s very easy to use and looks extremely professional. There are also far fewer customer service issues than I experienced when I tried using something like WooCommerce.
As your business grows you’ll notice that the time spent answering customer service issues becomes extremely valuable so you’ll want tools that limit those issues as much as possible!
Sendowl is great if you are using mainly landing pages (instead of an entire shop) so if you only have a couple of products or if you have a email funnel set up and you are sending people to a specific page instead of a shop.
Side note: sending people to a specific page will always convert the best but shop pages are great to send general traffic to from your blog as well.
Shopify does have a “lite” plan that will essentially do the same thing as sendowl- it will process payments and deliver your digital product but you won’t have a full shop. Instead, you’ll generate a checkout url and use that on the buy buttons of your landing page.
As mentioned, the benefit of these platforms is that you can integrate PayPal and a stripe account (both free tools) and the platform will process the payment securely, deliver the digital product to your customer, and deposit the money in your account. It’s all automated, you don’t have to do anything.
You’ll also be able to integrate these things with Convertkit so that you can send your customers a post-purchase email sequence and tag them so you know who your purchasers are.
If you’re selling courses, I highly recommend Teachable
Courses are a bit different than digital products, and Teachable has been my favorite of the platforms I’ve tried. I like that there is a free plan and that you can do things like:
- Duplicate your courses instantly
- Offer free courses (lead magnets)
- Customize your “thank you page” url — meaning you can have a tripwire on free courses or upsell sales pages on paid courses
- Add tracking codes or other information to specific pages in the checkout process
- It’s really easy to use on both the creators end and the customers end
- It can be integrated with LeadPages really easily
Teachable also integrates with stripe and PayPal to process payments and with Convertkit to tag new purchases and send post-purchase email sequences.
There are many tools when it comes to creating and selling digital products easily but these are by far my must-haves!
As with anything, you will try different tools and you will set up your own processes that work for you. Personally, the tools I mentioned above are my must-haves and I wouldn’t be able to do my job nearly as efficiently (or maybe even at all) without them!
Don’t forget to grab my free Product Creators QuickStart Kit, just click here and I’ll send it right over! Inside you’ll find a checklist, cheatsheet, and Canva product template to help you plan, design, and launch your first (or next) digital product!