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The Truth About Profit: Making Money on Redbubble vs. Contrado

making money on redbubble

We all know how difficult it is to make money as an artist. From getting inspiration to mastering your craft, it’s a hard-knock life for creatives out there. Luckily, in the age of print-on-demand services and ecommerce, monetizing your art has never been easier. Because of this, everyone is wondering how making money on Redbubble (and other print-on-demand services) works.

With the slew of different services out there, it seems like every company’s got its pros and cons. What is the difference between print-on-demand services? Is there even a difference at all?

We answer that question by putting two under the microscope. Learn how making money on Redbubble and Contrado really works.

What is Redbubble?

making money on redbubble

Redbubble is a popular print-on-demand service born out of Melbourne, Australia. They offer a print-on-demand service for independent artists to design and sell products. Artists can design on their range of 60+ products, including t-shirts, mugs, and coasters.

Artists can print onto the rectangular space provided on the front and back of their shirts. Some products allow you to control the scale, background color, and repeat of the design. In addition, Redbubble has partnered with various popular brands like Rick and Morty, Adventure Time, and others so you can design and sell fan art!


Once you get your first customer, Redbubble sends the order to one of their third-party printers and gets started. The manufacturer chosen is based on your customer’s location: the order is received by the closest facility to them.

Redbubble Reviews

Artists enjoy Redbubble for its easy store set-up and access to their existing customer base. Redbubble works as a retail experience, meaning that your product gets integrated with thousands of others for the customer to browse through.

Redbubble seller reviews tell us it’s a good service if you don’t have much time, and don’t want to deal with the technical side of eCommerce. Similarly, it’s a good platform for those looking to make fan art. But let’s look a bit deeper into selling on Redbubble.

Designing on Redbubble

making money on redbubble

You can choose from over 60 different products to design at Redbubble. After you’ve set up your store, you can upload your first design. Redbubble accepts JPEG, PNG and GIF files in the sRGB color space. This will generate all 60 products with your design, and allow you to enable or disable each one.

For clothing, Redbubble provides a rectangular parameter in the center of the garment that can be designed. In addition, choose the fabric color and size of the design within the parameters. You can opt to make a repeating design that fills the parameters as well. However, not all products have this feature.

Making Money on Redbubble

making money on redbubble

You can set up an online store through the Redbubble website. Your products get posted on your store and within the product’s category, alongside thousands of other artist’s products. After that, if your product gets chosen to buy, the order is sent to one of Redbubble’s global network of 3rd party printers. Because of this, the order can ‘sometimes come in different packages and arrive on different days,’ according to their website.

Redbubble’s Profit Model

Artists making money on Redbubble earn an average margin of 17% of the retail price, but above all, artists can earn anywhere between 10-30% depending on what they set as their markup. Redbubble gives this model for pricing:

profit model

Base Price

The base price covers Redbubble’s service fee and the cost of manufacturing. This varies based on the delivery address, taking into account local production, material costs, and taxes relative to various artists’, production, and delivery countries. In other words, the total price is dependant on the delivery address.

Artist Margin

Next, there’s the artist margin. This shows how much you make off of a sale. The markup is the percentage of the base price, and the margin is the actual dollar amount. This defaults to 20%. However, as their website states, artists make an average margin of 17%. Redbubble gives this model for the artist’s margin:

making money on redbubble

Retail Price

After that, the retail price: the sum of the base price & artist margin. They give this example to understand how making money on Redbubble works:

Large framed art prints going to the US have a base price of US$125.00.

You set a 20% markup for large framed art prints. 20% of the $125 base prices means you get an artist margin of $25.00.

$125 base price + $25 artist margin makes for $150 retail price.

Getting paid

making money on redbubble

Redbubble has a pay cycle that begins on the 15th of each month. In other words, you get paid your total earnings on that day. In addition to this, they have a payment threshold. It’s a bit complicated, so here is Redbubble’s explanation:

‘As of May 2019, we are paying artists whose earnings have reached $20, €20, or £20 on the 15th of every month. If your earnings have not reached $20, they will accumulate until reaching $20 and you will be paid on the following payment cycle. If your earnings don’t reach $20 you will be paid once per year in January, as long as you reach at least $2, €2, or £2.’

Making money on Redbubble sounds good, but is there another option? Enter: Contrado.

What is Contrado?


Contrado is a print-on-demand service and online marketplace serving artists and customers worldwide. Like Redbubble, we offer a service for independent artists to design and sell products. However, we’re a bit different.

Our Range

We’ve got over 450 products, including leggings, yoga mats, leather, lampshades, toothbrush holders, and anything else you could imagine. We’ve also got over 90 fabrics to print on if you’re into that.

We start all our fabric-based products by printing the fabric. After that, we cut it to size and sew it together. This allows us to offer all clothing from XXS-XXL and create an all-over print of any item. In addition, you can customize in ways you never thought possible: choose the thread color, the fabric, and even add your brand’s label. Seriously.

What makes us different?

making money on redbubble

At Contrado, we’re all about the process. That’s why we make everything by hand in one facility. We cut down massively on our carbon footprint because nothing is sent from one place to another. And we know who makes your clothes. Personally. Get the full scoop on our sustainable practices here.

Making things from scratch allows a lot more imagination. In other words, when you’re looking at a blank piece of fabric instead of a pre-made t-shirt, the possibilities are truly endless. Print a hoodie dress, a flouncy skirt, or even a onesie at Contrado. Wouldn’t you want high-quality, fashionable products to match your stellar designs?

Designing at Contrado

designing at contrado

Let’s dive deeper into the design process. You’ve got over 450 options to choose from. Complete design control. All-over prints. However, what can you do with your design? How can you actually ensure that it’ll come out the way you’ve envisioned?

We contemplated this while coming up with our online design tool. You can choose every aspect of your product, from the type of zipper to the material and everything in between. In addition, there’s space for the bleed area to ensure the best print possible. Tools like autofit, size, rotation, colors, and pattern allow for complete customization. Above all, your creativity doesn’t need to end once the design is done.

Selling at Contrado


We offer you 3 different options for selling at Contrado:

1. Open an online store

You can easily open an online store and start selling from there. Our online storefront allows you to customize the banner, profile picture, and biography of your store. Even sort your products in collections or by type.

2. Buy wholesale

Looking to sell things in person? You can! We’ve got fantastic wholesale discounts for anyone looking to buy bulk and sell physically. Let your customers really feel the quality of your products and watch their adoration for your designs in person! It’s a win-win. Click here for more.

3. Drop-shipping

Or perhaps you’re looking to integrate products into your Shopify store. Well, you can do that too, and it’s super easy. Check out our dropshipping page for more information, or watch our tutorial here.

Making Money with Contrado

Making money on Contrado is super straightforward. For instance, let’s say you open a Contrado store, design a framed art print, and want to list it for sale. We pay artists based on commission, and you can make anywhere from 20-60% of the product’s base price, including your markup. In the pricing tab of your product options, we have a sliding scale tool that automatically calculated your profit based on the price set:

making money with contrado

In the example above, you would make 43% of the products retail price, resulting in a $30 commission in your pocket – nice!

How does Contrado pay you?


If you opt for an online store, here’s how the payments go. We pay our artists via PayPal. You get paid within two weeks of every successful delivery to your customer. In other words, once your customer gets their masterpiece, your commission is on the way.

In addition, with a turnaround time of 2 days MAX for most products, along with speedy delivery times? You’ll have cash in your pocket in no time. No waiting, no thresholds, no funny business.

What’s the verdict?

Well, both Contrado and Redbubble are great printing services with different specialties. Above all, if you’re a digital designer looking to build your brand and start a successful online store, Contrado is the perfect place to launch.

What are you waiting for? Apply to be a #ContradoCreative today!


  • Just to give anyone who reads this a heads up….red bubble will steal your designs in case they blow up and continue selling them. I have 4 years of experience with Red bubble. And everytime my design started selling,it was a sign I will soon get fake DMCA copyright claim and my design “deleted”. Although any of my designs weren’t violating anyones copyright.
    First time it happened,then second time,third time….fourth time……and even more than2 years after the design was deleted,I was still getting “likes” on deleted designs showing in my dashboard. They just block you somehow from seeing the design,but they keep selling it,and some traces connected with my profile still remain and that’s why I’m getting likes on designs that were deleted more than 2 years ago, some before 3 months etc…
    There was similar “review” that I read before I even got on Red Bubble. Some guy was warning people about the same thing.
    This is real people. My last deleted design was uploaded on my profile for more than 6 months, with not a lot of buys. And soon as it made 100 dolalrs in one month they decided to “delete” it…and now months after deletion I am getting likes on the same design in my dashboard feed. This is real people. That company is just lousy ,thrashy stealing ….I am so MAD.
    ALSO they delete my original designs with fake copyright claims BUT at the same time they have hundreds of fake Santa Cruz,Gucci,Thrasher, etc brands that they keep selling,and when I ask them why are they deleting my original designs and at the same time actually selling knock-offs …..they just ignore the mails you sent them and won’t answer a simple question.

    • Wow. Thanks for the heads up. That sucks because it stops you from making all the money you potentially can. Is the legal?

  • do you accept all public domain material including mark 1.0 material and what is your monthly fee, for having a free worker?

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