How to Optimize Your Design for Selling

JAN 11, 2017 updated Dec 20, 2021
12 Days of Design header. Small work and play related blue drawings, like pen nibs, painting palette, scissors, pencils and more appear on a white background. The text "12 Days of Design" is orange, along with the Spoonflower logo, appears in the middle.
A laptop computer sits next to a white mouse on a desk with a jade plant and white sand hour glass on the screen is a dialogue box titled "marketing & selling" with written information about how to tag your designs.
Text box with a light blue background that reads "Day 11: Add tags, titles, a description & organize into collections"
A screenshot of dialogue box titled "marketing & selling" with written information about how to tag your designs and options for design colors and thumbnails.

1. Add your design to a collection

Already have designs in your library that are similar in theme or color to what you just uploaded? Add it to a collection using this drop down menu. New to collections on Spoonflower? Learn more here.

2. Give your design a descriptive name.

One of the most important parts of your design is the name. To ensure you’re found in the Marketplace, use descriptive keywords in your title that include colors, patterns and themes related to your design.

(Pro Tip: keep your title under 150 characters to ensure it’s visible in Google search results.)

A great example is Unicorns Pastel and Gray with Bunnies and Bubbles by Mainsail_Studio. If someone is searching for pastel or gray colors, bunnies, unicorns or bubbles this design has a better chance of being found.

3. Write a robust description

The description should be information about your design. You should continue to include keywords (pattern, color, theme) pertaining to your design, but you can create a more robust description. Don’t be afraid to add a little whimsy and be creative!

Dorkydoodles has the right idea with Valentine Sharks. This description is punny (take a bite out of love, get it?!) and informative “Blue sharks holding pink hearts on a red background). Even though the name isn’t overly descriptive, the description information still plays a key role in the Marketplace search function.

4. Add more in the Additional Details section

You can also add more to the description on the Additional Details section. This is a great place to give information about how to get in touch with you if a buyer is interested in changing the scale for colors of your design or if they have permissions to sell items made with their fabric designs.

5. Selection thumbnails that will wow

The thumbnail will be the small image that customers will be able to see initially of your design before clicking on it to be wowed by your creation. Make sure you select the best of the three images that you see there.

6. Use tags as keywords

You can use tags as keywords. You may choose up to 7 short phrases that describe your design and Spoonflower will rate your tag for its strength; the stronger, the better! If you find that your tags have low tag strength, we’ll suggest related keywords. You can also add up to four colors from the suggested color options which match to your designs.

Penguinhouse’s Unicorn Magic tags all have great tag strength relevant to their design.

A screenshot of green bars showing strength of each tag

7. Select up to 4 color tags

Lastly, don’t forget to select up to 4 color tags.The colors are the small colored squares that you will see under your design. They will help people find your design among other designs with the same color scheme. Be sure to check what colors were selected automatically and if you feel that something should be different, edit the color blocks to update your design!

8. Make your design available for sale!

You may want to update how you’d like to sell or display your design. When you upload a design to Spoonflower, it defaults to being private—only you can see or purchase it. You have the option to make it public, meaning others can view your work, but can not purchase it. Or you can make it for sale.

After you have completed all the changes, you can order a swatch of the fabric (the cost of a swatch is only $5!). Once you receive it, you will be able to “proof” it. This means that you will have the design in hand to ensure the colors and quality are what you expected. If they are, then you can make your design available for sale on all the products you would like. If you need to do some more tweaking, you can go back to our instructions and make all the necessary changes!

All of these optimizations work retroactively, so make sure to update your existing designs, as well as new designs you’ve just uploaded. You’ve put a lot of work into designing, now make sure you’re get noticed and reaching more shoppers.

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  • Thank you so much..my tags are messed up need to go in and re tag and re name a lot of designs..:O Thank you..this was informative!!

  • I have the same problem. I would like to have the oprion to manually enter hex codes instead of having all of the colors be chosen automatically.

  • So I have a question about the color blocks….they drive me crazy because sometimes the selection I’m given doesn’t match my design AT ALL, or it’s missing a couple of key colors. For example, if I have a blue and yellow design, it’ll give me a bunch of blues, and maybe green and white (because random colors?), with no yellow whatsoever. Unless I’m missing something there’s no way to change the eight selected for me by the website. Help!