Gumroad Creatorpedia - All the Answers in One Place
What is Gumroad?
Gumroad is an online platform that allows you to sell your products directly to your customers, without the hassles, high fees, and low conversion rates of a marketplace model. Gumroad provides you with a payment form you can share all over the internet or through your website, as well as insights into who your customers how, how they're finding you, and how to keep them coming back for more.
In a nutshell:
You create a product on Gumroad, share the link to that product with your fans, and they buy the product from you at that link. We deliver the files to your customers in exchange for their money (or not, if the product is free), and take our fee per sale before paying you.
If you have a digital or physical good that you want to sell directly on your website, or to your audience on social media, Gumroad is your homebase for:
- Creating and selling products
- Interacting with your customers
- Gaining insight into how you are making sales
- Building an audience
How does Gumroad "work"?
You mean how does the code work? Well, you got me there. I just write the Help Center articles.
But in case you were more unclear as to how you use Gumroad, the basic flow of using Gumroad to make money as a digital creator is, as follows:
- You create an account and set up your payout information
- You create a product and upload all relevant files to it
- You publish your product and share the link with your the world via social media, your website, a newsletter, telephone poles, bathroom walls, etc. etc.
- Your audience/fans/family/friends/enemies go to that link, enter their payment information, and receive their download link.
- Every Friday, we pay you the net amount of your sales (your sales minus our fee)
If you were selling physical goods, we would simply be processing payments on your behalf, and you would be in charge of shipping the products to your customers.
Discover works by recommending your products to buyers of related work after they’ve made a sale. Products by creators with Discover enabled will be recommended on receipts and download pages, and will also be searchable at gumroad.com/discover.
Products purchased via Discover are subject to an additional 10% fee to your existing fee.
This additional fee will only be applied to purchases made by customers who haven’t purchased from you before. The fee for products sold by you directly to your audience or otherwise outside of the Discover feature will remain at our standard fee.
What can I sell?
You can sell just about anything on Gumroad, as long as your customers are receiving a tangible good in exchange for their money. The most common items sold on Gumroad are ebooks, films, music, software, tutorials, and the like. You can sell subscriptions, pre-orders, and one-time purchase products, both digital and physical.
Before you get up and running, please make sure that the products you intend to sell on Gumroad are, in fact, allowed to be sold on Gumroad. You may want to brush up on the following:
Setting up your account
Before you can start selling on Gumroad, you need to create a Gumroad account at the Gumroad login screen.
You'll then receive a confirmation email from Gumroad. Make sure to confirm your account. If you haven't received this email, please check your spam box, or set up an email filter to accept all emails from the Gumroad.com domain. Good? Still with us? Let's get cracking.
Free or Paid?
You have to option to select a Premium Gumroad account or use our services for free.
A Premium account on Gumroad costs $10 USD per month, and affords you more advanced features as well as lowering our fee to 3.5% + $0.30 (USD) per sale that you make.
If you use the free version of Gumroad, you will have access to less features, and our fee per sale will be 8.5% + $0.30 (USD).
Your profile page
To start, visit gumroad.com/profile to set up your presence on Gumroad. All you need to move forward is a username (which you can change any time you like, as long as it isn't already taken by another user).
Click Connections to link up your Facebook and/or Twitter profiles. You can pull in information from these accounts to style your profile page.
To edit your bio or name simply click on the text (it'll turn yellow as you hover over it with your cursor), then start typing. Click Save changes to update anything you've done.
Your profile could be for an individual or a brand, whichever is most appropriate. Profile pictures should be a headshot or an easy to read logo.
Your Full Name is what will show up on your customers’ credit card statements, so make sure it’s recognizable and connected to your product. Your Full Name, thus, does not have to be your actual Full Name - it just needs to be part of your brand - not something like "asfdasfd," which would cause alarm when seen on a credit card statement.
Effective bios are less than 200 characters but give a clear picture of what you do.
For a more detailed run-down on how to create a stellar profile page, check out this Help Center article.
The Settings menu
Go to your Settings menu to start filling out the back-end information of your account, in order to:
- Get paid
- Set your account's language and default currency
- Change your password
- Enter or remove your payment information for future purchases on Gumroad
This help center article explains each facet of the Settings menu. Read it! Love it!
If you are based in the United States, we will have to get some more information from you due to the financial laws of our dear Uncle Sam. For more on that see this Help Center article.
A note on privacy...
When building your account, please be aware that the only information your customers will ever have access to of yours is what you enter in the fields marked:
- Full Name
- Support Email
- Any links you have set up to your Facebook or Twitter accounts
So if you are concerned about protecting your privacy, make sure to keep your personal and professional lives separate via these channels.
Build an audience
If you don't have a product ready, or even if you do, it's important to build and maintain an audience. An audience provides you with a ready-made customer base, and can help promote your products via word-of-mouth, boosting your sales and online presence.
The most successful creators on Gumroad, no matter what kinds of products they sell, all have one thing in common - an audience that they are constantly interacting with, soliciting feedback from, and sending offers.
Gumroad can help you amass your clamoring horde of fans and new best friends through the Audience feature, which combines analytics and a snazzy landing page for you to state your case to the world. Learn all about it over here.
More in-depth resources
The 30 Day Challenge: If you're still having doubts about whether or not selling online is for you, we encourage you to check out the 30 Day Challenge. If you like the word 'bootcamp,' think of it as a month-long bootcamp that shows you how to grow your audience, offering daily inspiration and insights into starting a business. Very few push-ups, thankfully.
Small Product Lab: The best ways to jump-start your career as a creator are to start small and work with the support of others. We created the Small Product Lab with this in mind. In only 10 days, you can create your first product, build an audience and launch strategy, and start making sales. Seriously! Sign up here!
Creating your products
Adding your first product only takes a few minutes. Just click Add a product, from your products dashboard. Then select the type of product (Product, Subscription, or Pre-order) from the dropdown.
NOTE: If you are selling Physical products, please see this Help Center article for a better and more thorough understanding of the process.
ANOTHER NOTE: We do not format ebooks for you at Gumroad. To learn how to format ebooks and sell them, please refer to this very helpful blog article.
The largest single file you can upload to Gumroad is 16 GB. That said, a single product can contain as many files as you like, and there is no limit to how many files you upload to a Gumroad product.
There is no limit on how many products you create on Gumroad.
Enter a title, price, currency (by clicking the $ sign) and click Choose Files to upload your file (or files). You can upload files from your hard drive or from Dropbox.
After you’ve created your first product, you’ll be able to choose from your existing files to build new products.
Now click the green Next: Customize button. You’ll be taken to the product edit page where you can customize your product.
For all the help you'll ever need on creating products on Gumroad, please refer to these Help Center articles:
- Adding a product
- Variants, Tiers, and Product Groupings
- Preparing your video for streaming
- Creating a bundled product
- Troubleshooting for upload errors
Pay what you want pricing
Enter a “+” sign after the price of your product to set the bare minimum for your customers to pay. By setting your price to $0+, your customers can get the product for free by entering “0” at checkout. More information on good ol' PWYW can be found over here.
Other ways to sell
Creating Bundles: If you’re selling Products A, B, and C, and want to create a bundle of all three for your customers, simply create a new product and add all the relevant files from A, B, and C. You can do this quickly by creating a product with existing files.
Create Tiers: You can also create tiered products using our Variants feature. With this feature, you can upload, say, 10 files to a single product, but create different payment tiers where if someone buys "Version A" of your product, they only receive 3 files, whereas "Version B," which costs $5 more, gets them all 10 files. Learn more about variants here.
Video rentals: If you upload a video file, you’ll be prompted to create a Rental that expires 30 days after purchase, or 72 hours after first being viewed. Learn more about Rentals here.
PDF Stamping: If you are selling PDF files, PDF stamping stamps your customers' email addresses on the file to serve as a disincentive against sharing. Learn more about PDF stamping here.
Editing, styling, and customizing your product
Highlight the text in your product description and a style menu will appear. You can choose to make your text bold, italic, or underlined. Add hyperlinks, change the font, font size, or bullet points. Don’t forget to click Save changes!
When adding a "cover" to your product (think of it as a preview), know that your products can have up to eight cover "images". These can be image files (png, jpeg, gif), video files, audio files, or links from Soundcloud, Vimeo, or Youtube.
This help center article will provide you with all the information you'll ever need about cover images.
Beyond that, some terrific resources for learning how to style your products are:
- Styling your product - Make it all look purrrrty
- Customizing your product - Create offer codes, add variants, license keys, and
- Judging a book (or whatever) by its cover
- The Gumroad cover image makeover
- Making the best product description possible
- Customizing your receipt
The majority style changes will take place on the Preview page of your product. This page can be accessed at any time by clicking Preview while editing, or by clicking the diagonal arrows to the right of your products' names on your products dashboard.
On the preview page, you'll edit your purchase flow - the payment form and receipt, and the color scheme or background image/video of the product page.
Subscriptions, memberships, and recurring billing
On Gumroad, you are not limited to only charging once for a product.
With Subscriptions and Memberships, you can deliver updates or installments to your customers at regular (or sporadic!) intervals, and charge them at regular rates (every 1, 3, 6, or 12 months are our current options). You can create a fixed-length subscription (for example, create a subscription that automatically ends after six months) or let it run forever, and you can offer multiple payment options for your customers.
To learn more about selling physical subscriptions on Gumroad, please read this help center article.
Click Add a product on your products dashboard, click Subscription and choose the option you’d like. There are minor differences between the two options, but you create them in approximately the same way.
When your customers buy a subscription product from you, you can choose for them to receive the latest update you've sent out, or nothing until you actually send out an update. You can also send them automated updates through the Workflows tab.
So, for example, if you are selling a monthly comic subscription, starting in January, and Betty Johnson signs up in September, you decide whether she receives the September edition after her purchase, or has to wait until October to receive a file.
You do not need a file on hand to create a Subscription product.
Memberships work more like a library or archive, and differ in two ways:
1) You have to have an initial file (or files) to create a Membership, and
2) Your customer will have access to all files and updates you have added to the product at their time of purchase.
So, if you are selling a monthly comic membership, starting in January, and Betty Johnson signs up in September, she will immediately have access to the first nine issues.
Please be aware that you cannot offer “temporary” discounts on subscription products. If you give someone a discount code on your subscription, they will pay that discounted amount forever.
So, for example, you can not create a “first month free” offer for customers. If you give someone a subscription for free, it will always be free. At some point in the future, this feature will exist, but it doesn't right now, unfortunately.
Learn how to get started with subscriptions here.
Learn more about memberships here.
Putting the final coats of paint (digital or otherwise) on your nearly-finished masterpiece? Not to worry! You can still make sales!
Create a pre-order product to generate interest before it’s ready! When you create a pre-order, simply set a completion date and price (you can add offer codes and adjust the price later), publish and share your product.
Before the completion date, upload whatever files you have, and Gumroad will automatically charge all customers who have entered payment information on this product, then deliver them their files. You can adjust the date as often as you like.
Offer codes and variants
After your description and cover image are in place, click the Options tab at the top of your edit page to further customize your product. In the Options tab, you can create offer codes (discounts) on your products, and add variants to add additional costs to your product.
For the full run-down on how to create offer codes for any use case, please refer to this help center article.
And learn how to create and share free products using offer codes here.
Variants are typically used on physical goods, to account for individual changes to a product such as its shipping costs, or to differentiate between say, the colors of a t-shirt I’m buying, if my product is a t-shirt. Learn more here.
On digital products, variants are used to create tiered products, where a customer chooses a different version of your product and receives different files in return. For example, if your ebook comes in three different filetypes, your customer can choose to receive a PDF, MOBI, or EPUB at checkout, rather than receiving all files at once.
Variants can also be used to add simple values to a digital good, for example if you are selling software and want your customer to be able to choose between an individual or team license, or if your customer is signing up for a subscription plan with different monthly levels, or if you want to offer your customers the option of receiving a phone call from you.
Test your product
To see (almost) exactly what your customers will experience when they buy from you, simply go to your Preview page by going to your product’s edit page, or the diagonal arrow next to the product’s name on your login screen. Click the buy button, fill out the necessary forms (except the credit card field - we don’t let you accidentally charge yourself), and click Pay.
You will receive both a “test” Sales notification and a “test” email receipt at the email address you entered in the payment form.
This test purchase will not show up in your Customers tab, and your card will not be charged (because we didn’t use your card).
We do not currently display the ability to pay with PayPal on a test card because, well, it’s a test card. So don’t worry! Your customers will be able to pay with PayPal.
Updates and Workflows
In your Updates tab, you have the ability to send immediate or scheduled updates. You can choose to send these out to customers, your followers, both your customers and followers, or customers of specific products.
Add a subject line, message, "call to action" button, and upload as many files as you like to this update. For video files, you can set the video to be streaming-only, and add subtitle files if you have them.
You can choose to send your update now by hitting Send now, or Send Later and schedule this message to be sent at a later time. Spot a typo? Want to fix it up? Don't worry - you can edit or cancel this update before it’s sent out.
If a customer unsubscribes from your updates, you can verify this in your Customers tab, and you can also re-subscribe them (according to their wishes), by clicking or unclicking the box marked Receives updates in the Customer drawer.
With Workflows, you create an automated series of messages that will be sent at specified times after the time of purchase.
For example, if you were creating an online course where learning materials were sent out to customers once a week for six weeks, you would create a single workflow for that class, and your customers would begin receiving those emails as soon as their purchase completed.
Workflows are similar to scheduling updates, except you are adding multiple emails to a single chain of updates. They can be sent to people who buy your product or "follow" you.
Check out this help center article for a nice, thorough run-through of how workflows work, and can work for you.
Finance, Security, & Getting Paid
Depending on what you’re selling and where, you may be subject to taxes. Do your research and talk to a tax professional. Gumroad does not add tax on top of your product price for you - we leave it up to you to build tax into your product price or add it as a variant. Note that Gumroad takes a fee on everything that flows through our system.
EU residents - we automatically charge VAT to your customers and remit the VAT, so you’re all set. You don't have to remit VAT, report it, or think about it. Learn more here.
If you live in the United States and are concerned about sales tax, see our Guide to United States Sales Tax for more information on enabling tax calculation in your settings.
If you’re using Gumroad Overlay or Embed, we strongly recommend (but do not require) getting an SSL Certificate. This gives you a nifty lock icon in your address bar, which boosts buyer confidence and improves conversions. It also protects your site against hackers, which is always nice.
We pay sellers every other Friday for all sales up until the previous Friday. Your balance page will show you the full breakdown of your sales, refunds/chargebacks, fees, and next payout date.
More detailed information on getting paid can be found in this help center article.
Sharing your work
Sharing on your website
Click Publish on your product and it will go “live,” creating a link to your product page for your customers to buy your product from. Share it with your email list, or use our social buttons to post directly to Twitter and Facebook (don’t worry, you can customize your post message before you send it out).
You can also send people directly to your Profile page, where they can all of your products from you at once. You can choose to hide certain products if you like. More information is available here.
Bring the Gumroad profile page checkout experience right to your site just by pasting a short snippet of code. The overlay brings up a payment window from where your customers can pay you and immediately download any files you have uploaded to the product. They can buy a singleproduct from you in two clicks:
Or they can buy multiple products at once:
Learn how to put the overlay into your website through this easy tutorial.
With Embed, you’re able to put your product directly into your website with a short snippet of code.
You can access, customize, and preview these features at any time (Yep, even 2:37 AM!) through the Widgets page of your dashboard. Learn how to use both of these bad boys (or ladies) through our Guide to Widgets.
Data and Reporting
Get live notifications on your phone!
By using the Gumroad dashboard app you can see all the sales you're making in realtime. The app currently is only for iOS devices right now, but we'll be building an Android version out as soon as possible. Learn more about it here!
The analytics dashboard
The sales and analytics dashboard, which greets you when you log in to Gumroad, allows you to easily understand and visualize important your sales data, conversion rates, referrals, and consumption data from your analytics dashboard.
On the Audience tab you can track how many followers you have, and where they're following you from. Click their titles to quickly edit your storefront (profile) and follow pages, and send out a quick email to existing followers.
With Consumption Analytics you can see how exactly your customers are interacting with your work. Learn more about this feature here.
The Sales tab displays the views, sales, and conversion rates on your products and profile page, as well as the referral sources of your customers.
Please provide the following information for all products that should be reported to Soundscan prior to the release date:
- Product URLs (learn how to find those here)
- UPC codes
- Release dates
- Reporting end date
If you have a network of profit-minded pals who would love to help sell your products, receiving a commission in exchange, you can send them affiliate links through our Affiliates page.
Note: They will need to have a Gumroad account set up before they can start making sales for you. If they do not have an account, you will not be able to add them as affiliates.
Learn more about our affiliate program here.
Let Gumroad handle it (sometimes)...
Gumroad provides support to your customers for any questions related to:
- Other questions specific to our service
Your customer's card won't work on a purchase? Send 'em to us! Your customer is having difficulties downloading something? Send 'em to us! Your customer is so enamored with your work that they wants to propose to you? Send 'em-- Er. That's more on your end, actually.
We leave purchase updates (i.e. changes to shipping info), refunds/cancellations (which can be handled through the Customers tab), and other questions specific to your product up to your discretion.
These requests are rare, but it’s important to designate someone on your team to handle them and respond to customers in a timely manner.
On Gumroad, you are in charge of refunding your customers. Decide on a refund policy, and communicate it clearly with your clients in your receipt text, or in the bottom of your product descriptions.
To issue refunds, search for the buyer’s email from your Customers Tab and click on it. Then click Refund from the receipt menu. You cannot issue “partial refunds.”
Refunded purchases appear in your customer CSV with a “1” in the “Refunded” column.
A chargeback happens when someone pays for your product, then disputes that charge with their payment provider (PayPal or a credit card agency). Typically chargebacks are used for fraud, when a card or account is compromised, but they can be issued at other times too.
Chargebacks are an unfortunate (but necessary) side effect of processing payments online. They happen only rarely, and Gumroad is limited by regulatory laws and banking policies in how we can respond, but we always fight to get your money back for you.
Gumroad covers all chargeback fees for you, but chargebacks are deducted automatically from your account just as a refund would be. You do not pay any fees for refunds or chargebacks. To learn more about chargebacks and how you can help avoid them, see this article.