If you’re a content creator looking to create new revenue streams for your business, creating digital products is a great way to do it.
Today, whether they realize it or not, practically everyone partakes in purchasing digital products in some shape or form. Online courses, paid memberships and subscriptions, and eBooks, just to name a few, are all of the digital products you could consume— or create.
Ahead, we’re going to break down further what digital products are all about and how to create digital products for your own business.
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In this article...
What is a digital product?
A digital product is a virtual asset, item, or experience that is sold and distributed online (usually) in a nonfinite format. So, a major benefit of creating digital products is they are not limited in quantity in the ways that a physical product might be due to production costs.
We utilize digital products every day whether it’s the videos we watch, the music we listen to on our computer or phone, eBooks we read, or online courses we partake in. Whatever the use case may be, if it’s something intangible that you purchase online, then you can probably count it as a digital product.
Many entrepreneurs have found immense success in creating digital products either as the main form of revenue generation or as a supplement to an existing business.
Why should you create digital products?
Creating digital products for your business has many benefits. It may seem a bit daunting to jump into the world of marketing and selling your digital products if you’re not much of a tech person. But the short learning curve can end up paying dividends in the end.
Let’s explore some of the key reasons for creating digital products.
Small investment, large gains
When you create digital products, your overhead costs are much lower. In fact, if you’re just starting out you really only need time, motivation, and a willingness to learn. In terms of costs you might come across, there could be fairly inexpensive subscription fees if you need to use a platform to design graphics or host your digital product whether it’s on Shopify, Mighty Networks, or somewhere else.
Creating digital products instead of physical ones also takes out some of the most costly elements of production, including property costs (whether renting or buying land) and inventory space. With this low level of investment and the near-infinite availability of your digital products, there’s a huge opportunity for large revenue gains.
Another added benefit to creating digital products is that you can automate the process much more than your physical counterparts. Instead of having to fulfill orders yourself or hire someone else to, you simply need to find a website to host your digital products and their backend will handle the rest. Additionally, there will be little to no wait time for your customers which is a major benefit.
Digital products are much more flexible than physical products as well. When you produce a physical product you’re more or less stuck with whatever you get. When you create a digital product you can update instantaneously, troubleshoot if issues arise, and more importantly, have a plethora of different options for how you’ll monetize your product from the get-go.
Futureproof your business
It’s no secret that we’re living in an increasingly digital age. Of course, physical products will never go away, but more and more each year the creation of digital products is what is unlocking new growth potential for businesses. There’s never been a better time to jump into the arena and start getting a lay of the land.
Ok, we’ve talked about some key reasons for creating digital products, so now let’s talk about a few great products to consider building.
Three digital product ideas to sell online
Now that you know how great digital products can be for your business, you might be wondering what examples of some might be. Let’s take a look at a few options that could be great.
Online learning has soared in recent years as the ways in which people obtain information and seek out new skills have shifted. Additionally, thanks to online course platforms it’s never been easier for creators to transform their knowledge and expertise into awesome online courses that anyone in the world can take and learn from.
Plus, unlike more traditional schooling environments that follow standardized rules, expectations, and topics, your online course can be about practically anything. From learning how to program to better organizational skills, if you have an interesting perspective on the topic then you can create an online course.
Another lucrative avenue to explore in the digital products industry is creating a paid membership site. Online communities are a great way to grow your business because you’re bringing together a group of enthusiastic people around your brand who will continue the conversation around your content.
Paid membership sites are also great because you can couple them with other digital products you’re creating. For instance, you could offer an online course and then connect it with an online community. After your students have completed your course content, they could transition into being paid members of your brand’s community.
eBooks, guides, and white papers
Many people today are used to engaging with digital guides and resources through their computers, phones, and tablets. Creating digital products in the form of eBooks, guides, and white papers is a great way to bolster your email list for future marketing, grow awareness of your brand, and gain new customers for your business.
There are many paths you can take to creating digital products, but these three are not only great places to start but are easily tied together for a cohesive experience for your customers.
Now, let’s talk about how you can get started creating digital products.
How to create digital products in 4 steps
We’ve gone through a lot of information today, but none of it will matter if you don’t know the steps for how to create digital products. We’ve broken them down into a few simple steps, so you can hit the ground running.
1. Take time to plan and research
If you’re thinking about how to create digital products to sell online, then you should take the time to do your research and plan your attack. While it’s easy to get up and running creating digital products, that doesn’t mean that it’s not a highly competitive industry.
A great way to start is to look at some other brands and creators that you think are building awesome things in your industry, what are they doing well? What are they doing poorly? How could your unique perspective edge them out or carve your own niche within the space? Once you can answer these questions, you’ll be well on your way to creating digital products for your business.
2. Pinpoint your audience
One of the most important aspects for any person interested in creating digital products is to have a clear understanding of who your product is for. While it’s admirable to want your content to appeal to everyone, that simply isn’t a realistic expectation. In fact, tailoring your digital products to the tastes and desires of a certain group of people will actually help you sell more of your work.
Are you wondering how you might figure out who your audience is? A simple solution: Talk to people! Consider conducting short interviews with people that you think might be interesting in the digital products you’re creating. You don’t need to spend your days guessing what people want, in fact, simply asking will save you many headaches.
3. Choose a platform to use
Choosing where you’ll be hosting and most likely creating your digital products is incredibly important. There are many platforms available on the market from Shopify, Facebook, Mighty Networks, or somewhere else. We think that choosing a SaaS platform that provides an all-in-one solution is the best option because it cuts down on juggling multiple services and integrations, and allows you to create digital products that exist cohesively in one place all within your brand and business.
A SaaS platform like Mighty Networks will provide you with powerful pre-built tools and features to create your digital products, so you won’t have to pay people to develop ways for you to offer them to your customers. This is especially beneficial if you’re trying to offer products such as paid memberships and subscriptions, online courses, virtual events, or something similar.
4. Tell the world
Once you’ve chosen the platform it’s time to finally tell everyone about what you’ve created.
You don’t need to have a huge network of people from the start to get your first supporters. In fact, it’s actually going to be more effective to start with the folks you know. Tell your family, friends, and co-workers about what you’ve been building. These people will be much more supportive of what you’re doing and most likely will tell other people about it. As your digital business grows and you continue to create digital products more and more people will tell the world about the amazing things you’re offering them.
Start creating digital products on Mighty Networks
We’ve talked at length about how to create digital products to sell online and the best place to do that is a Mighty Network.
Mighty Networks is a cultural software platform that brings together content, courses, community, and commerce. Plus, Mighty's flexible Spaces let you add courses, live streaming, events, forums, messaging, and more. And you can monetize your entire community or specific spaces in 135 different currencies or with token-gating.
Additionally, our platform is available across web, iOS, and Android devices with the option to create your own white-label app available in the Apple App Store and Google Play Store.
So how about you let us help you create the awesome products and services you’ve been dreaming up?