December 13, 2016

Giving Thanks & Tips to my {100} Followers!

Wow! I am blown away by how dramatically Teachers Pay Teachers has impacted my life in such a short amount of time. I began this journey in January 2016 and have loved every minute of it since!

As a way to say thank you to everyone who has supported me throughout this process, I have a new, free product available in my store! I'll give a little more detail on this later on.

Teachers Pay Teachers has been such a wonderful outlet for me over the past year. I've always thought I wasn't a creative person or that artistic things weren't for me and TpT has showed me how wrong I was! This journey hasn't just been about selling products, although that has certainly been an added benefit. Becoming a TpT seller has made me a better teacher in my classroom! If I'm teaching a lesson I think to myself, if I made this lesson would someone want to buy it? If the answer is yes, woo hoo! If the answer is no, then why am I teaching this way? Is it benefiting my students? Is is keeping them engaged? How can I make this better for them? It truly makes me think about how I am delivering content and to challenge the status quo!

My department has noticed these changes, as has my administration! My co-workers will even come to me with ideas they've done in their own classrooms and say, "You should make this for your store!" I'll go to them and say I've made a new resource and I want to try it out with our classes before posting it for sale and they always say yes. I could not be more blessed to have so much support for what I'm doing.

With all of this being said, I wanted to share some tips and tricks I've learned from so many amazing sellers along the way for any educators who are interested in becoming a TpT seller or who are just getting started.

  1. Become a Premium Seller - Immediately: I read this everywhere and thankfully listened! I purchased my membership on January 16, 2016 and it was scary. I hadn't sold a single product, but everyone was advising that it would pay for itself in the first month. They were right! In my first real month of sales (February 2016) I sold $122 worth of products and took home $103.39 in earned income. If I had still been a basic seller, I would have earned $61. Going premium is worth every penny!

  2. Get on the Forums: The TpT Forums are without a doubt the best thing that ever happened to me as a new seller! There is so much information here to read up on. You can ask your own questions, introduce yourself, connect with other sellers, and so much more! Be sure to read through before asking a question though, there is a very good chance the information is already there!

  3. Invest in Versatile Clip Art: Another tip I received was to pay for quality clip art. There is a lot of clip art that you can get for free, but having the improved quality for a small selection when you first get started is incredibly helpful! I invested in sports themed clip art and have used it in so many of my resources since then. Find what clip art you think you'll use the most and make the purchase. I have many sellers who I revisit because I love their work so much!

  4. Invest in Font Options: There are a tone of sellers who makes fonts, but let me save you some time and money. Kimberly Geswein is the only font store you will ever need. She was everything. When you see a font other sellers are using an you think to yourself, where did they get that!? I will bet you 9.9 out of 10 times, it's from Kimberly Geswein. You can download all of her fonts for free for personal use only. She then offers font licenses to purchase for $5 which allows you to use her font in your TpT products. Now, this is the good part. She offers a lifetime all fonts license for $299. Don't have $299 sitting around? If you purchase 60 single font license for $5, contact her so she can verify your purchases, and she will give you her all fonts license. Basically, she's offering you a payment plan!  She offers a free font pairing guide to help show you how to pair fonts for a good visual aesthetic. She is awesome!

    Note: I'm working on my payment plan as we speak {slowly, but surely}... I can't wait to have unlimited use of her fonts! In order to use this method effectively (or if you've already purchased single font licenses) you'll need to purchase additional single font licenses. Do not purchase the $299 all font license at one time if you've already purchased a single font license, because you'll essentially be losing what you've already paid for. For example, I personally have purchased six single use font licenses. I would want to pay for 54 more individual licenses and contact Kimberly instead of buying the $299 license because I would be losing $30 I've already paid.

  5. Hold Off on Social Media: Everyone I spoke to advised me to hold off on social media and I didn't listen. I tried to pin, tweet and blog immediately after becoming a seller and it was a mistake. I was overwhelmed trying to keep up with everything and I believe that my sales and product line suffered because of it. I am a just shy of a year in now and I've just started utilizing social media to the fullest! My blog is updated weekly, I tweet and post to Instagram what my classes are doing daily, and I can Pinterest like a pro! I would recommend having 10-15 solid resources in your store before you start utilizing Pinterest, 30-40 solid products before using twitter, and waiting until you feel comfortable utilizing your products in your classroom before moving on to Instagram and Facebook.

  6. Understand Copyright Laws: I did a lot of research on copyright and trademark laws before creating my products. There is a ton of information out there and it is important to the integrity of your work, as well as the integrity of Teachers Pay Teachers. It's also very frustrating for those of us who know what the laws say to scroll through TpT and see blatant violations everywhere. If there is something popular with kids that is produced or manufactured by a major company, it's likely copyrighted or trademarked. Just because you see someone else selling it on TpT, doesn't mean it's okay or legal. Teachers Pay Teachers offers help directly from their site here.

  7. Make Good Covers & Brand Yourself: This is important on TpT for many resources! When potential buyers are scrolling through a long search for a product you want to be able to catch their eye! Colorful, easy to read covers are an excellent way to entice buyers to view your product. Be consistent with your covers so buyers know, "Oh, that's a {insert seller} product!"

  8. Find Your Niche: Find what you are passionate about when thinking of products for your store! If you try to make products about things you're not knowledgeable or experienced in, it will show in the product. Don't try to fit into the crowd, make resources you can make well regardless of what category that places you in!

  9. Purchase a Seller's Kit or Binder: Let's be honest here, if you're new to TpT or thinking about becoming a seller, you likely have no clue what you're doing. I certainly didn't! There is nothing wrong with being new and purchasing a sellers kit or binder is so helpful! I purchased mine here and it has kept me so organized! I can track my sales by month, quarter, and year round. I can track what I've purchased, what I want to blog, I can plan out resources and units, and so much more.

  10. Understand TpT Etiquette & Common Decency: You're going to log in and see so many great ideas! Maybe you've been a buyer and you've decided to create your own store or maybe you're scrolling through the search for inspiration. Whatever you're doing it's important to ensure you're not just re-making other sellers resources and selling them as your own! All of your products should be your own unique creation that add to what the rest of the community has already created, not a copycat that hurts other sellers.

  11. Read the Terms of Service Agreements: Every seller should have a terms of service (TOS) agreement within their downloads. Read them. Clip art especially has specific conditions for using that source in other products you create. Read them carefully and follow their instructions so you are not violating their TOS.

  12. Make a Terms of Service Agreement: Protect your work and include a TOS agreement with every product download. This allows you to back up a claim made against another seller if you ever need to. Not only that, it helps buyers understand what your rules are so they can use your resources appropriately. 

There are many more tips I can provide, but I believe this is a good base for anyone just getting started. I have learned so much along this journey and if you're considering selling on TpT I highly recommend it! If you ever want to ask me specific questions, please feel free to e-mail me at

As a thank you to my followers, check out my latest freebie here. I hope you enjoy utilizing these frames in your future TpT creations!

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