Last Updated on January 25, 2023 by Andrew Shih
Are you looking to start an online store? Between Shopify vs Redbubble, which one is the better one to get started for a beginner?
Before you start your online store, there are a few things to consider. Specifically, which platform should you choose? Shopify and Redbubble both offer excellent options for an e-commerce site. But which one is best for your needs? Each of them offers different options.
Shopify vs Redbubble summary
Here is a quick summary table, if you are in a rush and do not have time to read through the whole article.
What is it
Basic, Standard, Advanced subscription plans
What can you sell
Anything. You can source product, white-lable, print-on-demand, or create your own product line.
Print-on-demand products offered by Redbubble.
Canva: make designs
If you are willing to put in the hard work, build brand, source products, grow traffic, Shopify is the long-term winner.
Redbubble is free and the easiest print-on-demand to get started. If you just want to build an extra income source with little effort, go with Redbubble.
If you want to find out the details, please keep reading to find out!
What is Shopify?
This Canadian multinational e-commerce company enables businesses of all sizes to create an online store and sell their products/services to customers worldwide.
Shopify offers its users a suite of services, including payments, marketing, shipping, and customer engagement tools – all available in one easy-to-use platform. It was founded in 2006.
Shopify has quickly become a leading platform for businesses all over the world. As of May 2021, they reported more than 1,700,000 active business users in approximately 175 countries.
According to BuiltWith, their eCommerce old forms currently run on 1.58 million websites in early 2021 (and counting).
If you’re curious about where Shopify stands among other publicly traded companies: it’s presently within the top 20 largest Canadian companies trading on the stock market by capitalization size. Shopify has been doing well all these years.
What is Redbubble?
Redbubble is an online marketplace where people can submit their artwork to be printed on various products. It was established in 2006, just like Shopify, and has since expanded to locations such as San Francisco and Berlin.
The company’s main traffic source is the Internet, allowing its members to sell their artwork as decoration on various products. Some examples of these items are T-shirts, hoodies, cushions, duvet covers, leggings, stickers, skirts, and scarves.
The best part is that the artists keep all the copyrights to their work! They also get to regulate pricing and product choice.
How to get started on Shopify
In a nutshell, here are the steps to launch a Shopify store.
- Sign up for an account and set up your store
- Add products to your store using the product feed (provided by Shopify) or uploading them manually
- Add content to your store, including images, text descriptions, and videos
- Set up your payment settings
- Add fulfillment options
If you want to start a dropshipping business model on Shopify, you can use Oberlo, which connects to Aliexpress to source the product and integrates with your online store.
If you are looking to start a print-on-demand service, Printify is a popular choice for selling over 750 print design products such as t-shirts, mugs, bags, and much more.
How to get started on Redbubble
Getting started on Redbubble is very easy, and you can create an account and publish your first design for purchase in less than 30 minutes. (Assuming you have the designs made already).
- Create an account on Redbubble.
- Design & Upload your artwork to Redbubble.
- Choose a product type, such as T-shirt or mug, and select the size and color of the product you want to create.
- Add a title, description, and price for your product and click “Save Work.”
Canva is the most popular online tool for people with no graphic design background to create beautiful designs. Canva has a free forever plan available, although the pro version offers more tools and millions of premium images.
That’s it. Once it’s published, your design will appear on the Redbubble store, ready for purchase.
Benefits of Shopify
Sell anything you want
With the Shopify store, you can integrate your store with 3rd party system and sell anything you want. You can sell products from different channels, such as dropshipping, print-on-demand, and white-lable products, carry and sell your inventories, and make your own digital or physical products for sale.
Easy to use for ECommerce store
Shopify is easy to use. Shopify provides payment processing, integration to shipping/fulfillment, print-on-demand service, reporting, and other apps and tools get the help you get started.
You can set up your store in minutes and start selling products immediately. So if you are in a hurry, this is the right choice for you!
Most reputable eCommerce solution
Shopify is a reliable leader in eCommerce solution providers. Shopify is here to stay. Your store will be up and running 24/7, so you can sell products anytime, anywhere. You can rest assured that your online store is safe and secure.
Shopify is affordable.
You can try Shopify for three days for free. If you are still unsure after the free trial period, you can start with a basic plan for as low as $1/month for the first month. Once you are ready, you can upgrade to the standard Shopify plan at $79/month or the Advanced plan at $299/month when you are ready. If you pay annually, you get an incredible 50% discount.
You can choose from a variety of pricing plans that fit your budget and business needs. So you don’t have to worry about your budget.
Supports online and in-person sales
In addition to selling online, Shopify provides all the tools to support in-personal sales. The app can be helpful if you have a physical retail store. You can use the Shopify Point of Sale App (POS) to sell the product in person.
The app allows you to process orders, accept payments, produce receipts, and control everything from a mobile device.
Another good reason is that it is global. You can sell your products to customers worldwide using their sophisticated built-in tools for marketing and shipping.
Shopify is growing rapidly. The company constantly expands its features and services to help businesses succeed online. If you’re looking for a powerful, reliable, affordable eCommerce platform, then Shopify is a perfect choice!
Thriving community and support
Shopify has a large and supportive community that will help you when you are confused with the features of this platform. If you have any questions or problems, there is an active Shopify Help Center too!
Benefits of Redbubble
Easy to get started
Redbubble is the easiest print-on-demand platform for artists who want to sell their work online.
It is super easy to use and get started. You can create your account and start uploading artwork in minutes. Once you hit that publish button, your design will typically be ready for purchase within 15 minutes.
Many merchandises option
You can apply and reuse your design on dozens of products, including t-shirts, dresses, Chiffon tops, stickers, mobile phone cases, desk mats, mouse pads, pillows, shower curtains, posters, laptop skins, mugs, bowls, mats, blankets, bags, and more.
You can drastically reduce the amount of work and increase sales chances by reusing the design.
Another benefit is that there is no limit to the total number of the artwork you can have in the account, although the daily upload limit is 60 designs. Unlike Amazon Merch, you are not limited by tier level. You can publish as many designs as humanly can.
It is entirely free to set up an account and upload artwork on Redbubble. You decide the profit margin and how much you want to sell the products. Once a customer buys your product design, you will make a profit, and Redbubble will take care of the rest.
Immediate access to millions of customers
You can immediately access millions of customers on Redbubble once you publish the design. Obviously, you will want to optimize your keyword so customers can find your product and make your design better than others. You already have the customer and traffic on Redbubble, and you need to make your design beautiful and easily searchable.
Launching an eCommerce site on Shopify will require you to gain organic traffic or buy ads to bring traffic to your eCommerce or website. It can be costly and take a long time to gain traffic.
Once the buyer makes a purchase, Redbubble will take care of everything from printing the merchandise to shipping, delivery, and all customer service. You also don’t have to worry about dealing with returns and angry customers, although you should ensure the design shows up properly on the product.
All you have to do is to make and publish your original designs and collect money.
You are not limited to a region or country; you can also sell globally. In addition to English, you can write your description in Deutsch, French, and Spanish to increase international sales.
Drawbacks of Shopify
While launching an online eCommerce store can be an exciting journey, it may not be easy.
Branding is not easy
The biggest drawback of Shopify is that it can be difficult to build a brand on the platform. Many eCommerce stores source similar products from China.
How do you distinguish your brand from all other competitors in your space? It can be hard for your brand to stand out and gain traction.
Is your branding strategy to try and dominate a niche first before you expand? Or do you want to focus on selling different trendy products?
Growing organic traffic can be difficult
Another drawback of Shopify is that it can be difficult to grow organic traffic on the platform. You will have to spend money on ads, or other paid marketing services in order to drive traffic from outside sources like social media, SEO, etc.
Drawbacks of RedBubble
Not easy to stand out and make money
Redbubble is a platform that enables artists to upload designs and sell them on their platforms. It’s easy to start, but it takes a lot of creativity and hard work to stand out.
Redbubble has a low entry barrier, so there is a lot of competition for the same design ideas. The problem here is that you will be competing with other artists doing the same thing as you. It can be difficult to stand out and make money with so many other artists.
Intellectual property concerns
To make this worse, many people don’t put in the creative work needed because they can upload whatever they want and see how it goes. The result is that there are now many unoriginal designs on Redbubble, as well as Intellectual Property issues.
Shopify vs Redbubble: Which Platform Should You Choose?
Between Shopify vs Redbubble, where should I start? It sounds cliche, but It depends on your needs!
If you are willing to put in the hard work of sourcing/researching the products to sell, build a brand, and grow organic traffic to your eCommerce site, Shopify is the way to go.
If you have no budget, no time, and want to tap into a new side hustle with an extra revenue stream at leisure, Redbubble is a great place to get started with no risk.
What can you sell through an e-commerce store?
A lot! You can sell physical items such as clothing, jewelry, and accessories. You can also sell digital products such as ebooks, music, and artwork. And don’t forget about your services, like consultations or coaching sessions.
Online sales have become a new invention of the 21st century. Numerous websites and platforms are available to set up e-commerce stores, including Shopify and Redbubble. Both platforms offer a range of features and benefits to help you get your business up and running quickly.