How To Start a Green Design Business on Zazzle

A Zazzle shop can be a great green business opportunity for artists and designers, and an opportunity for non-profits and social enterprises to promote their cause while earning extra money. is a online print-on-demand service that allows users to upload images to the site in order to create any of hundreds of different products, such as t-shirts, coffee mugs, mousepads, refrigerator magnets, and even iPhone cases! (Zazzle’s selection of products includes eco-friendly organic cotton tees.) Print-on-demand services such as Zazzle help reduce the environmental impact of your design business because your designs are printed only when someone actually orders them, saving both money and resources.

Zazzle shops are free to open and you can carry an unlimited number of designs in each shop. This makes starting a business on Zazzle extremely low cost. It is also a great free marketing opportunity for green businesses and social enterprises. Just upload your logo, slogans, or other promotional designs and turn the public into walking billboards for your business or cause!

Eco-themed custom postage on Zazzle

Tips For A Successful Zazzle Shop

  1. Take advantages of descriptions and tags. Good SEO practices are just as important on a website like Zazzle as they are on a green business blog or niche website, since many of Zazzle’s customers find the site through search engines. Write keyword-rich product descriptions and tag accurately but generously in order to help potential customers find your products.
  2. Offer a range of products. The more different designs you offer, and the more different products per design, the more sales you are likely to make. If somebody happens to be shopping for a mousepad, but your design is only available on greeting cards, then you have potentially lost a sale. Of course, you must be careful to put designs on appropriate products. “Eco Mom” may be a great slogan for a coffee mug or a woman’s tee, but it would look a little odd on a tie!
  3. Promote, promote, promote. The most successful Zazzle shop owners promote their shops tirelessly. If you already have a website or blog, you’re one step ahead of the pack. Simply add a Zazzle widget and watch the sales start rolling in! Zazzle also has tools to help you promote effectively on Facebook, Twitter, and other popular social networks. Another popular place to promote Zazzle shops is Squidoo, which allows Zazzle shop keepers to create “lenses” promoting their shops.
  4. Be professional. It is certainly possible to slap up a few designs and make a steady passive income on Zazzle, and if you’re a busy entrepreneur hoping to use Zazzle for free publicity while focusing on your main business, that may be all you have time to do. If you hope to make your living on Zazzle, however, you must be prepared to treat it like a real job, and budget your time to ensure that you spread out your efforts among different tasks, such as creating designs and products, handling SEO and shop organization, and promoting your shop.

Three Zazzle Shops For Earth-Friendly Design

Green Neighbor has dozens of beautiful designs focusing on environmental issues such as wildlife conservation, organic gardening, solar energy, and recycling.

Ina Mar Activist Gifts and Apparel offers a variety of designs designed to raise awareness of issues such as green living, fair trade, disability rights, and genocide.

The Elephant Sanctuary Shop is a shop run by the Elephant Sanctuary, a non-profit located in Hohenwald, Tennessee that provides a safe home for endangered African and Asian elephants. As part of their marketing efforts, they offer specialty postage, Christmas ornaments, cloth shopping bags, and more featuring the organization’s logo and photographs of the magnificent residents of the sanctuary.

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