How to Sell Digital Products from your Website

Does choosing a shopping cart to sell digital products on your website have you throwing your hands up at the array of options?  Are you wondering how others create store pages or have links to sell products in their blog posts?

The shopping cart options for your website are numerous and can be dizzying, but you don’t have to spend an eternity sorting out the differences.  Making a great selection that meets your needs at the right price is attainable.  I’m here to help and have done some of the hard work for you.

In my recent post, I reviewed four popular options (GumRoad, e-Junkie, DPD and Easy Digital Downloads), including their key features and pricing structure.  Be sure to read this article to get a broad understanding of how these shopping carts work, and their unique features and benefits.  In a nutshell, they allow you sell products from your website and facilitate both payment and delivery of the digital product to the customer.  They are often referred to as third-party hosting options as your digital products are hosted on a site other than your own.

Most articles you read tell you about a product, but the author may or may not have experience or insight into the product or service as an actual user.  My prior article provides details but little insight into actual experience using these shopping cart options.   I did speak to my personal experience using Easy Digital Downloads, and yes, I’m a raving fan (see my full review of EDD here), but didn’t have firsthand experience using the other shopping cart options I featured.

This article is a firsthand account from RDNs that are real users of popular options and explores how and why they made their choice, and their experience using the program.  You might be surprised at what you read and find yourself motivated and ready to select a great fit for you!

Meet the Experts:

Chrissy Carroll, MPH, RDN, ACSM-cPT (http://snackinginsneakers.com) utilizes E-Junkie to sell and deliver her digital products.  Check out her store page featuring a 28-day Nutrition Challenge, here.

Lindsay Livingston, RDN (http://theleangreenbean.com) utilizes GumRoad to sell and deliver her digital products.  Check out her Ultimate Food Prep Guide, here.

Betsy Ramirez, M.Ed, RDN (http://betsyramirez.com) utilizes DPD to sell and deliver her digital products.  Check out her store page featuring a food video planner, here.

The Shopping Cart Comparison Interview Questions:

Is your website built on Worpress.org, SquareSpace, Wix or something else?

Chrissy (E-Junkie), Lindsay (GumRoad) and Betsy (DPD): WordPress.org

What additional option(s) did you consider before choosing the shopping cart you decided on?

Chrissy (E-Junkie): I heard about E-Junkie from a Facebook Group I was in and saw that it was inexpensive and would serve the purpose I needed.  I sometimes struggle with “analysis paralysis” mode, so I decided to instead just go with the first thing that I knew would work for me (and figured I could always change later if needed!).

Lindsay (GumRoad):  I used E-Junkie for a while and found it to be not very user-friendly, very clunky and outdated and not easy to use.

Betsy (DPD): Ease of use and set up were my biggest considerations. Price per month was my last consideration.

What was the most important aspect of the shopping cart option you choose (i.e. cost, ease of installation, flexibility/functionality)?

Chrissy (E-Junkie): The most important aspect was the ability to do automatic digital delivery at an inexpensive cost.  When I first signed up for E-Junkie, I didn’t have nearly as much web traffic as I do now, so I didn’t want to spend tons of money on a service when I wasn’t sure how many sales I’d have.  Since E-Junkie was only $5/month, it was a great low cost investment – I knew I wouldn’t feel anxious about losing money each month if I didn’t have as many sales as I anticipated.

Lindsay (GumRoad): Something simple that even a non-techie person that could set up, an easy way to add discount codes and and easy way to collect emails and be notified when people purchase.

Betsy (DPD): Ease of installation

Did you set up the shopping cart on your website yourself or hire/use web expert?

Chrissy (E-Junkie): I set it up myself.  E-Junkie makes it easy by providing a code for the shopping cart that integrates right in with PayPal for payment.  It’s as easy as copying and pasting it in your website HTML.  There are no fancy bells & whistles like perhaps you get in some other customized cart solutions, but I find it works just fine!

Lindsay (GumRoad):  I did the initial setup myself. After a while, I started working with a tech person and she built me an improved page to sell my ebooks but it wasn’t necessary…just an improvement.

Betsy (DPD): I did it myself. That was why I chose it.

How many digital products do you sell?  What type of products?

Chrissy (E-Junkie): Using E-Junkie, I currently sell my 30-day nutrition challenge e-book, as well as my PinSmart course (a Pinterest course for fellow RDs).  When someone purchases either, they get an email with the product (the pdf of the e-book, or the login info for my course) and I get notification of purchase/payment.

Lindsay (GumRoad): Ebooks. I have 3 available right now.

Betsy (DPD): I have 5 products for sale on my site. They are all nutrition education and 1 on food video.

What is one thing you wish you had known before selecting the option you choose to sell your digital products?

Chrissy (E-Junkie): not applicable (just went for it)

Lindsay (GumRoad): Nothing! I’ve been quite happy with it.

Betsy (DPD): I wish I would have been more knowledgeable about the affiliate program.

What types of reports, sales statistics are available and how do you use them?

Chrissy (E-Junkie): You can view transaction logs that are able to be sorted by product type as well as custom date ranges.

Lindsay (GumRoad): Honestly, I rarely look at statistics, but there are lots available, you can see how many of each ebook is sold during different time ranges, specific days, separate email lists based on who purchased what, etc.

Betsy (DPD): I get a monthly sales report to my inbox. I am also notified for each sale I make. I will have to use the sales reports to report income on my taxes.

Is there anything else you would like to share about your experience with the shopping cart service you selected?

Chrissy (E-Junkie): (1) It’s really easy to create discount codes in E-Junkie if you wish to run a special on a product.  For example, on Black Friday I ran a special for 50% off my PinSmart course.  You can set things like expiration dates, max number of uses, a flat rate or a percentage rate discount, etc.   (2) The platform allows you to set up an affiliate program for your products!  I have an affiliate program for my course, and E-Junkie tracks all the affiliate sales.  Each month I just run a report that tells me how much to pay my affiliates.  You do have to manually pay out everything, but for $5/month, a built-in affiliate option is amazing regardless.

Lindsay (GumRoad): Definitely worth it if you’re looking to sell something. The website is nice and modern, clean, user-friendly and they have great support if you have issues.  Also, you can easily create discount codes for individual products and you can also set people up as affliiates and set the % commission they make!

Betsy (DPD): There are several options available. I would make sure you also check the affiliate programs within the platforms. You also must balance the ease of use and set up. If it’s not easy enough to set up yourself, it may not be worth it.

Take the Next Step with Confidence!

If you are considering selling digital products, adding a shopping cart to your website that will allow doesn’t have to be complicated.   E-Junkie, GumRoad and DPD are options you should consider, as they are easy to set-up.  In addition to selling from your website, consider getting your products in front of a broader audience and selling on a marketplace site.  RD2RD is a marketplace site exclusively for RDNs and NDTRs to buy / sell / share original content to each other, health professionals and the public.  Check out my article on the differences between selling direct vs. a marketplace site and if RD2RD is a good choice for you.

Be sure to grab a copy of my FREE e-book, “Leveraging Digital Goods: More Money, More Business” with a BONUS getting started checklist.  Click here or enter your email, below!



sell digital products

4 “Smart Choice” Options to Sell Digital Products from Your Website

Choosing the best option for selling your digital products can feel like an overwhelming task.  There are many options and it can be difficult to determine which is the best fit for the products you wish to sell.  If you are looking to sell digital products from your website, this list is for you.  It breaks down a number of popular options guiding you to a “smart choice” for your digital products.

Gumroad

This option hosts and delivers your digital item to the customer and handles payment as well.  It is extremely simple to use and within 15 minutes, you can be set-up selling digital products.  For each product, you create a landing page (which does allow video) and customers leave your website to complete the purchase.

While the simplicity is an excellent choice for those that want a solution that is easy to set-up, some may find the inflexibility to be a downside.  The pricing for the free version is 8.5% + $0.30 per transaction.  Additional premium membership with lower fees is available. This is an excellent option if you do not want to add a shopping cart functionality to your website or have a very small number of items to sell.

Gumroad also offers the capability to sell subscriptions and offer an affiliate program.  If you are looking to get started right now, have only a few products or expect low revenue, Gumroad may be a great option.  As your sales increase, adding a shopping cart to your website to reduce the fees would be practical.  If you like the idea of a 3rd party hosting the files as well as taking care of the payment, also look at SendOwl.

E-Junkie

If you are looking to add a shopping cart to your website and want a more flexible process for designing your sales pages, E-junkie may be the best option for you.  It is a hosted shopping cart solution that allows you to create “Add to Cart” and “Buy Now” buttons and place them anywhere you want on your website using html code.

Similar to Gumroad, it hosts your files, but to accept payment, you need to set it up to use a payment processor or payment gateway (i.e. Stripe/Paypal).  If you are fairly savvy at managing your website and want the flexibility to create pages and add links to purchase products, this could be the best fit for you.  The checkout experience feels integrated with your website.

The pricing for e-Junkie depends on the number of products you wish to have and the size of the files. In addition to the monthly fee charged by e-Junkie, you will also pay the fees from your payment processor/gateway.  If you have a large number of products or files that are very large (videos, photos), this will require a larger monthly fee.  E-junkie does not offer recurring payments if you are looking to sell a subscription service.

E-junkie is an excellent choice if you want a low cost option, have just a few products and want to be able to have a lot of flexibility with how you design your site as you can place the purchase buttons nearly anywhere on your site.   E-junkie offers a 7 day free trial.

DPD (Digital Product Delivery)

This digital product delivery option combines many of the best features of the first two into one shopping cart solution.  DPD’s pricing is a flat monthly fee and the lowest pricing tier of $10/month gives you 1GB of storage and 20 products.  The pricing is a flat fee with no additional per-sale fees.  DPD hosts your files and allows you to connect the payment processors of your choice.

While this option is not as budget-friendly as e-Junkie, it is very comprehensive and offers many of the features that would only be available with a shopping cart installed on your website including an affiliate program.  One of the most important aspects of DPD is that they strive to create an easy-to-use shopping cart solution.  Their tools and resources are incredibly easy-to-understand, even if you are not a technology wizard.

DPD allows you to create custom “Add to Cart” and “Buy Now” buttons as well as sell bundles of products as well as services and physical products.  For books, the pdf stamper allows you stamp with the buyer’s details and encrypt them to prevent copying text.  If you are considering selling e-books or want to be able to create bundled products that include services along with digital goods, this is a choice you should consider. DPD offers a free, 30-day trial.

Easy Digital Downloads

Easy Digital Downloads is a free shopping cart plugin for WordPress.  If you are familiar with using the backend of a WordPress site, this can be very convenient as you can easily manage all aspects of you sales from the same place.  EDD is free which means that there are no monthly fees to use the plugin.  The only fees you pay are transaction fees associated with payment processing.  However, the plugin does offer many premium extension and you will likely end up purchasing a few to add additional functionality.   For example, if you want to sell subscriptions, you need the recurring payment extension which comes at a cost of $199/year (30% renewal discount).  With EDD, you host your own files and integrate with payment processors directly.  This means that your website must have an SSL certificate and you are responsible for all payment related aspects.  EDD offers the most flexibility and if you are looking to have a number of products, very large files (videos) or want to have complete control over all aspects of the shopping cart, EDD is your best choice.

Make the “Smart Choice” for Your Website:

Choosing the best e-commerce solution to sell digital downloads on your website can feel like a challenging task.  Taking into consideration the number of products, storage needed, your skills with website design and maintenance will help you to make the “smart choice.”

Check out the second article in this series about selling digital products from your website, which features an interview with RDNs that currently use the digital product delivery services described above.  They break down their experience using each and decision making proces..

Be sure to grab a copy of my FREE e-book, “Leveraging Digital Goods: More Money, More Business” with a BONUS getting started checklist.  Click here or enter your email, below!



How to know if selling on a marketplace site is right for you?

There are two main ways to sell your digital downloads.  You can sell direct to your customers via your website or you can sell your items on a marketplace site.  Or, you can do both!

What are the advantages of selling direct?  The most obvious advantage is that you earn more or avoid fees associated with a marketplace site.   However, a direct sales approach requires that you market your product and create a process for payment and delivery of the purchased product to your customers.  Driving traffic to your website or product can be difficult, and for this reason, many sellers choose to list their products on a marketplace site.  To demonstrate the business rationale for choosing a marketplace site, consider that Amazon’s Kindle store has 80% of the e-book market.  If you choose not to place your e-book for sale in the Kindle store, your book will get far less exposure.  Taking time to consider the potential increase in your sales, compared with the fees charged, will help you to decide whether to sell your e-book on Kindle.

Marketplace websites are popular with customers because they offer an easy way to shop from more than one seller.  Shoppers looking for a particular item can visit one site and easily compare prices, features and read reviews.  Customers expect to be able to shop from multiple sellers simultaneously, and marketplace sites are widely available to meet this need.  For example, when you shop popular travel websites to book a hotel or flight, most of these sites feature options from many different sellers.   A marketplace website offers the convenience of a comprehensive selling platform in return for fees charged to sellers.  The structure for each marketplace site, as well as how/what fees are charged vary, so looking carefully at the cost will make sure you select the best fit for your product.

The most common reason for listing your items on a marketplace site is to broaden the exposure of your product and increase sales.  An example of a highly successful and popular marketplace site is Etsy.  Sellers on Etsy have their own store and can directly message customers to coordinate custom orders.  There are detailed reviews available about listed products as well as a convenient dashboard for sellers to manage their store.   These features offer convenience for the seller and eliminate the need to invest time and money into building in a stand-alone website for a direct sales approach.  Sellers can focus on developing new products or inventory of the products they have for sale.  Etsy is an excellent example of a highly successful marketplace that offers convenience for both buyers and sellers.

A marketplace example which is highly relevant to RDNs, is the digital goods marketplace site, teacherspayteachers.com.  It allows teacher authors to sell their original materials.  What stands out about this marketplace is that it was developed primarily as a peer-to-peer marketplace.   In their regular work, teachers develop a considerable number of resources. This marketplace has provided a way to monetize their wisdom and benefit their colleagues as well.  It is a remarkable example of a sharing community that provides benefit beyond the generation of income for sellers.

In addition to exposing your product to a broader audience and increasing sales, marketplace sites typically conduct advertising and provide comprehensive strategies to convert sales including following up on abandoned carts and email marketing to customers. These sites also eliminate costs you incur to develop and manage a website if you do not chose to sell your products direct.  The services provided by a marketplace are paid for by the fees charged to sellers.  Etsy for example, charges a listing fee for each item and then when you sell an item, a transaction fee and processing fee are assessed.

Generating passive income from your digital products is best achieved by getting your product out to a broad audience of potential buyers.  A marketplace site achieves this and offers convenience, as well.  The fees associated with selling on a marketplace site should be considered along with the potential for increase in sales.  Selling direct as well as leveraging a marketplace site may be your best option.



Make Your Digital Product Stand Out

As a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist (RDN), your expertise is valuable, but nearly as important as the content in your digital product, is the presentation.   Design, a persuasive product description, and the experience of your customers when interacting with your product is not to be overlooked.  While we tend to think about these topics primarily for physical goods, they are relevant for digital products as well.

Think about a recent purchase of a digital item.  Perhaps it was an e-book, new music or an e-course.  Think about your decision to purchase the item.  What was the key factor that lead you to click the buy button?  Was the title and cover art compelling?  Did you read the overview on the book flap or review testimonials?  Did you read a few online reviews before purchasing?  It is likely that you did some, if not all of these in your purchase process.  Your customers are taking a similar approach. Let’s dive into the aspects of graphic design, product description and the customer experience in more detail.

  1. Graphic Design

Creating visually appealing graphics for your digital products doesn’t have to be difficult or expensive.  There are a number of tools that are easy-to-use, inexpensive and produce professional quality results.  Hiring a design firm or a freelancer to assist can be a good investment but, depending on your inclination and willingness to learn new skills, you can complete this task on your own.

One excellent design tool that is popular with RDs is Canva (www.canva.com).  This design program allows you to create images with easy drag-and-drop tools for a multitude of purposes including social media, printed flyers and business cards as well as graphics for your digital goods or website.   Canva offers a free version that allows you to create images, save the design for easy future access and revision, and download the image to your computer.  What makes it easy to learn and quick to use are the free templates that you can easily edit with our own text or image.

While the free version may be enough to meet your needs, the paid version, called Canva for Business is affordable ($12.95 monthly or $9.95 paid annually), and allows you to create a library of colors and fonts for your brand.  It also gives you access to a stock image library and expanded selections of templates and fonts and the ability to upload your own fonts.  The paid version of Canva allows you to easily save your designs in folders for more streamlined access.

For an in-depth review of Canva’s features, watch the December 2017 “Share Your Wisdom, Grow Your Business” learning series interview with Whitney Catalano, RDN where she describes DIY graphic design and explains the advantages of Canva for Business.  Additional details are also shared in her course, “Fast Track to Pretty Graphics” which features a free, preview lesson.

While the benefits of Canva are compelling, there is no reason to make the decision and purchase the paid version immediately, feel free to give the free version a test drive and compare with other options.  Another similar option with a drag-and-drop design experience is PicMonkey.  For those that need more advanced tools, Adobe Illustrator or InDesign are professional level programs that provide all the features you will need, but do come with a heftier price tag.

If design isn’t something you want to take on or would prefer to hire a professional, you can find freelancers on sites such as Upwork, Fiverr and Elance.  Freelancers are a budget friendly alternative to hiring a design firm.  Some freelance sites allow you to post your design job with a price or you can shop for a service offered by a freelancer at an established price.  Whatever your approach to design, make sure that your final product is appealing and connects with your target audience.

2. Persuasive Digital Product Descriptions

It might seem natural to make your product description focused on your product.  However, this approach isn’t going to get you over the finish line with sales.  It might work with a clientele that is familiar with your services or expertise but, to really drive sales, your product description must focus on your buyer.  You must know the exact persona of your customer.

In order to create a digital product description that is targeted at your ideal client, you need to spend time understanding your imaginary customer.  This means that you need to spend a great deal of time planning your product description.  It isn’t going to be a quick, one-draft document.   A well-written description should involve about 50% of the time in planning, an initial draft and then a few rounds of revisions.

Your focus should not be on listing the many features of your digital product.  It should be on describing the benefits for your customer.  For example, “contains over 100 recipes is a feature.”  A benefit would be “reduce time spent meal planning with more than 100 recipes included.”  You must clearly connect the dots for your target audience.  The features of your product don’t compel them to purchase.  A clear understanding of how the product will benefit them will drive a purchase.

There are a number of excellent examples of well-written product descriptions on RD2RD.  Here is are two examples to get your creative juices flowing. (1) Fitness Myths and Training Truths and (2) The Grocery Store Tour Toolkit.

3. Customer Experience

Consider the experience of your customer during the purchase process and how they receive the digital product.  Does your process require numerous clicks? Do the steps in the process provide clear direction and address any hesitation that the buyer may feel when getting close to purchasing the item?  Think about a recent online purchase process.  How easy did the online retailer make the purchase process?  Think closely about aspects of the purchase such as a special discount pop-up if you hesitated during the checkout process.

Most robust e-commerce sites have a process in place to follow up with customers that abandon their cart or purchase.  The reason for is compelling because statistics show that re-marketing can have a 30% conversion rate.  Do you ever receive emails that read something like “Are you still interested in XX?”  Have you ever accessed a saved shopping cart and purchased the product?  Basic sales strategies can mean the difference between thriving sales with your digital goods and results that are less than you expected.   After the customer purchases your product, does your digital delivery mechanism continue to create a positive experience that fosters future sales.  Do you have a standard “Here is the product you purchased” email or do you have customized messages that demonstrate your brand tone and message?  Each and every experience with a customer is a chance to build your brand and your business.

Making sure your digital product stands out from the crowd will take some effort and perhaps some new skills.  However, spending time on design, a persuasive product description, and the experience of your customers will maximize your product’s sales potential.

Be sure to grab a copy of my FREE e-book, “Leveraging Digital Goods: More Money, More Business” with a BONUS getting started checklist.  Click here or enter your email, below!



RDs Selling Digital Goods: Passion and Practicality

As a Registered Dietitian, additional revenue streams can create income stability as well as increase our overall earnings.  There are many options for income streams including active routes such as consulting and public speaking or more passive routes such as affiliate programs and advertising revenue.   Finding the right side hustle should bring together both passion and practicality.  Creating and selling digital goods is an excellent option for creatives and those that enjoy sharing ideas and resources with others.

Selling digital goods is also an excellent way to monetize your expertise, especially if you have a great depth of knowledge in a clinical specialty, software program or business practice .  For example, perhaps you are an expert in pediatric diabetes and you have library of high quality education materials that you have created for your clients.  Selling these materials can bring you additional revenue, as well as grow your both your credibility and influence in your area of specialization.  While monetizing your clinical expertise might be the most obvious option, there are countless other opportunities to share your wisdom.  Perhaps you are an expert on utilizing a design program, creating food videos, monetizing a blog, building a website or utilizing a nutrient analysis software program.  Translating this knowledge into digital resources such as ebooks, video tutorials, printed resources, ecourses and more is a way to both share your wisdom and grow your business.

The options for digital goods are not limited to those I’ve presented, a turn key resource for events such as grocery store tours, farmer’s market booths or cooking demonstrations are all valuable tools that you can sell.  These ideas may have you motivated to take action as you see the value of the tools you already have or created some excitement about taking on some new gigs that would build your portfolio of digital goods.

RD2RD.com is a marketplace and a resource for RDs and DTRs that sell digital goods.  The site is scheduled launch to users in January of 2018.  To stay up-to-date, join our mailing list.



What is RD2RD?

RD2RD is a powerful e-commerce platform for the nutrition professional and a destination for colleagues and the public to purchase digital goods. RD2RD is the first online marketplace designed exclusively for Registered Dietitians to buy and sell their original work via digital downloads and a custom store.

RD2RD was founded by Megan Boitano, a private practice RD.  After finding it difficult and time-consuming to find and purchase resources from colleagues and spending hours creating practice-related tools, Megan decided to launch RD2RD to provide an e-commerce solution for RDs.  In addition to promoting the sale and purchase of RD-created materials, RD2RD aims to broaden the reach and visibility of RDs and their expertise.  Watch the video below for a test drive of RD2RD’s marketplace features.

What if you could find that perfect presentation or handout in just a few clicks, purchase and instantly download?  Do you spend your valuable time searching the internet for the perfect client education tool or presentation?  Do you scour listservs or social media group archives for a colleague that might have a resource to share?  Those days are over.  Meet RD2RD.  With just a few clicks you can search and purchase essential resources created by your peers.  Emails are automatically sent to purchasers with a link to download the item, and to provide a detailed review of the item. Reviews are publicly displayed on the site.  Prior purchases can be accessed from customer dashboard.

Do you have presentations and handouts sitting in your file storage that could be earning you money? RD2RD allows you to put your work to work.  Signing up to be a vendor is free (basic membership) and you get a store with a custom URL to showcase your digital items.  Create a product with a simple submission form and it is automatically added it to your store.  Sales are processed securely and you receive earnings payments to your Paypal account.  Vendors do not pay transaction fees, but each sale is subject to payment of a service fee.  Basic members earn 65% of each sale and premium members earn 80%.  A premium membership is $5/month or $49/year.  All sales details and earnings are clearly shown in the vendor dashboard.  Service fees include credit card processing related expenses charged by payment processors, fund advertising of materials and cover costs associated with maintaining the marketplace website.

Selling and sharing digital resources doesn’t have to be difficult or complex.  RD2RD is an innovative sharing community and puts dietitian-created content at the front of the line when purchasing digital goods.



Passive Income Opportunity for RDs with Digital Information Products

Creating multiple revenue streams is a solid business approach for Registered Dietitians in private practice.  Creating digital information products allows you to monetize your expertise and provide value for your clients.  This is a powerful tool to gather referrals and to build a client base that may not be able/ready to spend money on a more costly service that you offer.  By offering an information product at a lower cost and providing them with a great deal of value, you can increase the likelihood of a future purchase of a bigger ticket item or service.

Let’s start by talking about exactly what an information product is.  An information product is an instructional video, ebook or user guide.  If you are an expert in a specific niche or have in-depth knowledge, you can create a user guide or tool that provides value for your clients.  For example, if you are an expert in meal planning and creating customized meal plans for complex diets, you could create a guide that reviews the process and provides detailed instruction on how to use a specific meal planning tool or process.  It can serve as a resource for you to refer prospective clients to, while they are researching your services.  Additionally, many people want DIY tools and resources and may not want to pay for customized counseling or coaching.  Your information product meets the needs of these clients and is an added revenue stream for your business.

We tend to focus on information product for our clients, but there is great opportunity for Registered Dietitians to build information products targeted at their peers.  For example, if you have expertise in developing websites or email marketing, you could create an instructional video or guide. Finding digital information products that are written through the lens of an RD is not easy.  Many such resources are included as part of expensive coaching or comprehensive business mentoring services.  Cost conscience RDs looking for low-cost DIY tools as they start out in practice, are an ideal market for digital information products.  You may question your expertise and think that you aren’t “expert” enough to create an information product.  This IS NOT TRUE!  Through the course of creating your private practice, you have developed expertise in niches beyond just clinical or nutrition-related aspects of your practice.  Digital information products are one way to monetize your expertise!

So how do you choose a topic for your digital information product?  Start by thinking of the most common questions you are asked or questions that are frequently posed on Facebook groups or listservs you belong to.  Instead of answering them over and over in long, repetitive messages, create a resource that covers these frequently asked questions. When you see the question asked, you can conveniently respond with a link to purchase your digital information product.  Alternatively, you could make it a free, promotional item and build you email list.

So now that you have a few ideas running through your head, how do you create a digital information product?  Instructional videos can be created with inexpensive tools like Screen-O-Matic ($15/yr) or Filmora Scrn ($19.99/yr).  You can upload the finished product to a password-protected Vimeo video or an unlisted YouTube video.  You can create an audio recording with Audacity and there are a number of great tools for creating an appealing ebook.  Consider putting your content into multiple formats.  You can put them together in a .zip file.  A more comprehensive product could bring a higher price tag for your information product.

How do you go about selling the digital information product you’ve created?  There are many options for selling digital goods online.  If you want to create a robust ecommerce solution and sell from your own website, consider easy digital downloads.  This post is full of details on this approach.  Other options include using a site that for a monthly fee and/or a percentage of the sales price, you can upload and sell your products.  Examples include eJunkie, Gumroad and SendOwl.  While these sites make selling easy, they do not target Registered Dietitians and may not be the best location to get your product in front of your peers.  Consider the marketplace site, RD2RD.com, exclusively for Registered Dietitians featuring digital downloads.  This site offers a free, basic membership and allows RDs to create their own shop to feature their digital products.  All of the items sold on the site are tools and resources for RDs, including client education materials, presentations, business tools, and of course, digital information products.  Read here for more and sign-up for email list for more information.

Creating multiple revenue streams is a good business practice, generating passive income selling digital information products is a great opportunity to monetize your expertise.




 

Easy Digital Downloads – Selling Made Easy

Making money selling digital goods online.  It is an idea that has you excited, but also overwhelmed when you start to consider the options.  If the work necessary to create an ecommerce website to sell your digital goods has you putting the idea on the back burner, you need to read this!  You may just be surprised how easy it is, and how inexpensive it is to get started.  Selling digital downloads is one of the fastest growing and profitable online sales markets.  Dietitians are prime to capitalize on this business opportunity both to grow their business and ensure that quality, nutrition information is available.

There are an overwhelming array of options for selling digital downloads including subscription sites like eJunkie, SendOwl and Gumroad.  These sites take care of the shopping cart, hosting of files and provide an easy way to sell a few items.  However, the monthly cost ranges from $5 for a bare bones option with 10 or fewer products up to more than $60 for more than 250 products and large file storage capacity.  These sites provide a service and are an option if you are looking to sell digital goods, but what if I told you, for not much more than the cost of a bare bones plan, you could create your very own WordPress site with a full-featured storefront to sell your digital goods.  This is where we meet Easy Digital Downloads.

Easy Digital Downloads or often called EDD for short, is a complete ecommerce solution for selling digital products on WordPress.  It has a full shopping cart system, unlimited file downloads, download tracking and comprehensive reports for easy bookkeeping and sales statistics.  All you need is a domain (~$10/yr) and hosting for a WordPress site (~$5-10/mo).  You probably already have these!  EDD is a FREE plugin and even includes basic payment gateways (PayPal Standard and Amazon Payments) in the core plugin.  The free EDD plugin provides powerful ecommerce functionality, but you will need a WordPress theme to give your website a professional look and feel.  Many themes are designed just for use with EDD and create a beautiful shop with almost no design work needed by the store owner.  There are many FREE themes including Vendd and Themedd.  These themes all feature blogs pages, so you can easily start to monetize your blog posts with links to digital download products for sale on you site.

Beyond the FREE plugin and themes offered by Easy Digital Downloads, they offer an incredible number of extensions at reasonable costs.  You can create a robust subscription site by combining the Recurring Payments extension with Content Restriction.  EDD also offers extensions for email marketing services such as ConvertKit and Mailchimp.  This means for each product in your store, you can choose which email list to subscribe a purchaser to.  You can also offer free downloads which is a great way to use your ecommerce site to deliver your lead magnets.

Easy Digital downloads is an incredibly powerful ecommerce solution and one that Registered Dietitians should consider using.  If you are interested in seeing EDD in action, sign up for my email list below and you will be the first to know when my new marketplace site for Registered Dietitians is launched.  I used Easy Digital Downloads and a number of premium extensions to build it.



Put your work to work! RD2RD marketplace for digital goods

What if you could find that perfect presentation or handout in just a few clicks, purchase and instantly download?  Do you spend your valuable time searching the internet for the perfect client education tool or presentation?  Do you scour listservs or social media group archives for a colleague that might have a resource to share?  Those days are over.  Meet RD2RD.  With just a few clicks you can search and purchase essential resources created by your peers.

Do you have presentations and handouts sitting in your file storage that could be earning you money?  RD2RD allows you to put your work to work.  Signing up to be a vendor is free and you get a store with a custom URL to showcase your digital items.  Create a product with a simple submission form and it is automatically added it to your store.  Sales are processed securely and you receive payments to your Paypal account.

Selling and sharing digital resources doesn’t have to be difficult or complex.  RD2RD is an innovative sharing community and puts dietitian-created content at the front of the line when purchasing digital goods.

Join our mailing list today and keep up-to-date on all the details, freebie products and backstage pass tours!  Get ready to put your work to work!



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