5 Best Ways to Sell Digital Downloads On Your Website


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Key Takeaways

  • Embed e-commerce marketplace products:
    • Integrate clickable buttons into your website.
    • Leverage marketplace audience and website branding.
    • Use the provided JavaScript or HTML code.
  • Embed e-commerce platform products:
    • Add products using e-commerce platform embedding.
    • Ensure steady targeted search traffic.
    • Use JavaScript or HTML code for integration.
  • Use Website-building platforms:
    • Employ website builders with built-in e-commerce features.
    • Simplified setup with minimal technical coding.
    • Lacks customization and control.
  • Use WordPress plugins:
    • Enhance WordPress site functionalities with plugins.
    • No coding required.
    • Notable plugins: WooCommerce, Easy Digital Downloads, MemberPress, BigCommerce.
  • Build a custom e-commerce platform
    • A lot of capital is needed.

Embed E-commerce Marketplace Products to Your Website


Embedding digital products to your website involves integrating clickable buttons directly into your site, eliminating customers needing to visit a marketplace to buy your products.

If you use marketplaces like Etsy or Creative Market to sell digital downloads, you can use embedding and embed a piece of code to your own website, and the benefit of doing this is that you are leveraging the marketplace’s built-in audience (organic traffic the marketplace receives through search engines) as well as your website branding to make sales.

Marketplaces usually offer a javascript or an HTML code to paste to your website.

Popular marketplaces that offer embedding a store to your website:

Embed E-commerce Platform Products to Your Website

You can use e-commerce platforms embedding features to add products to your website while keeping the checkout, payment gateway, distribution, fulfillment, and other sales features inside the e-commerce platform.

E-commerce platforms usually offer a javascript or an HTML code to paste to your website.

E-commerce platforms don’t offer organic traffic (customers searching products through Google or through the marketplace’s search function, for example) the same way marketplaces do. While implementing e-commerce embedding, ensure a steady influx of targeted search traffic to your digital products.

Popular e-commerce platforms that offer embedding products to your website:

Check out:

Best free platforms to sell digital products for free

Best platforms to sell digital downloads

Use A Website-Building Platform to Sell Digital Downloads

Website-building platforms like Squarespace offer built-in e-commerce functionalities and features, so you don’t need an external e-commerce platform or a plugin to sell and distribute digital downloads.

The benefit of using a website-building platform is that there’s little to no technical coding or anything involved when setting up a store for your website. The downside is that there are customization limits, and you don’t have 100% control over what happens on your site.

Popular website builders to use for selling digital products on your website:

Use WordPress Plugins

WordPress is the best CMS (content management system) (besides Shopify) platform for selling digital downloads from your site. You need plugins to sell digital downloads with a WordPress site (assuming you have a WordPress site).

WordPress plugins are like apps on your phone. You can download or purchase plugins to improve the functionalities of your WordPress site. You don’t need to write a single line of code using plugins.

Popular WordPress plugins to use for selling digital downloads on your website:

Check out: How to create a website to sell digital products

Build A Custom E-commerce Platform

Building a successful e-commerce platform involves a dynamic blend of technology, user experience, and business strategy.

Steps needed to build an e-commerce platform:

  • Choose a Technology Stack:
    • Decide on the programming languages, frameworks, and tools you’ll use for development.
    • Consider whether to build from scratch or use an e-commerce platform like Magento, Shopify, WooCommerce, etc.
  • Domain Name and Hosting:
    • Choose a relevant and easy-to-remember domain name.
    • Select a reliable web hosting provider that can handle your expected traffic.
  • Design and User Experience:
    • Design an intuitive and visually appealing user interface (UI).
    • Prioritize mobile responsiveness for a seamless experience across devices.
    • Ensure smooth navigation, easy search, and precise product categorization.
  • Product Management:
    • Implement a system to manage product listings, including images, descriptions, and prices.
    • Consider organizing products into categories and implementing filters and sorting options.
  • Shopping Cart and Checkout:
    • Develop a user-friendly shopping cart system that allows users to add, remove, and modify items.
    • Implement a secure and streamlined checkout process with multiple payment options.
    • Integrate with a payment gateway (PayPal, Stripe) to handle transactions securely.
  • User Accounts and Authentication:
    • Create a user registration and login system.
    • Allow users to track their orders, save favorite products, and manage their profiles.
  • Security and Privacy:
    • Implement SSL certificates for secure data transmission (HTTPS).
    • Store sensitive customer information (like passwords and payment details) using strong encryption.
    • Comply with data protection regulations like GDPR or CCPA.
  • Testing and Quality Assurance:
    • Thoroughly test your platform for bugs, usability issues, and security vulnerabilities.
    • Perform various testing types, including functional, performance, and security testing.
  • Maintenance:
    • Regularly update and maintain the platform with new features, security patches, and bug fixes.
    • Provide customer support channels to address user inquiries and issues.

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Digital Artist

I’m a digital artist who is passionate about anime and manga art. My true artist journey pretty much started with CTRL+Z. When I experienced that and the limitless color choices and the number of tools I could use with art software, I was sold. Drawing digital anime art is the thing that makes me happy among eating cheeseburgers in between veggie meals.

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