Creative Market connects designers of digital works, ranging from custom fonts to icons, art and patterns, with customers looking for downloadable designs.
Expected pay: You set it
Commissions & fees: 50% – 70%
Requirements: Custom artwork or designs that you’re legally able to license for sale.
Creative Market review:
Creative Market urges designers to sign up and create a shop, where they can sell licenses to publish their digital designs — custom fonts, icons, or art for everything from Christmas cards to an Instagram page or a commercial project.
In theory, designers set their own rates for different types of licenses. An artist might set the price for a “personal use license,” for instance, at $30 but charge $1,000 to someone who wanted to use the same design for commercial purposes. However, among the many red flags in Creative Market’s terms is a disclaimer gives the site the right to discount the artists’ rates. At any time. At Creative Market’s sole discretion.
When freelancers have the ability to set their own rates, we normally overlook high site fees figuring that you can adjust your prices to account for them. However, Creative Market eliminates this possibility. As mentioned above, it gives itself the contractual right to change your prices. Secondly, it specifies in its terms that you cannot sell something on Creative Market for more than the lowest price that same design is listed for sale elsewhere.
In other words, if you sell a design on your website for $10, you cannot sell it on Creative Market for $15 to compensate yourself for Creative Market’s fees.
Consequently, the site’s outrageously high fees — ranging from 50% to 70% of the sales price — are one of the top reasons why we consider this an abysmal site for artists and designers trying to make a buck.
BTW, the terms also say that the terms can change. And the site doesn’t need to tell you if they do. If you continue to list your wares on this platform, you’ve tacitly agreed to the ever-evolving new “contract.”
The last time the site’s terms were revised was October 2022 — as of November 2022. How are you supposed to know whether the terms have changed? The site suggests that you remain ever vigilant — much like Mad-Eye Moody in the Harry Potter books — checking the terms regularly for new gotchas.
No one has the time to be reading and re-reading legal documents every time they make a sale. Even Facebook, which is no paragon of consumer rights, lets you know when it changes terms.
Stay away from Creative Market. If you have design skills, you can market your work on Awesomic, Spoonflower, Etsy, Creatively, and dozens of other platforms. (See our design category for snapshots of all of options)
What their users say (from TrustPilot)
The changes Creative Market imposed this year have destroyed a once thriving creative marketplace. They take a huge commission (at least half of every sale), which has driven prices up and forced many creators away from the platform. They also removed the forums entirely, so that no one can publicly discuss all the negative changes they’ve made. I’ve spent hundreds of dollars on Creative Market, but I will no longer support a corrupt bloated company that preys on the very creatives who made it a success in the first place.
Making a sale on Creative Market is one of the least exciting things for me because I make a measly 20% from a product I created. They are so unfair to sellers. I always feel like crying whenever I make a sale. I mean, how do I make $7 for a $35 product? It’s so unfair. There are not enough options for me as Etsy isn’t available in my country.
It used to be a great place for selling and buying but, step by step, they just killed the whole idea. By raising commissions from 20 to 50% and then unexpected taxes were added to every sale. And the last drop – they eliminated Forum where people can share their opinion. Because they don’t need artists’ opinion anymore. They only need money from your every sale. I’m moving my shop away to another websites. It’s just humiliating.
Scam, if you still have money there, after a certain amount of time you will be deducted an inactivity fee. After all, 5 dollars. This would not be legal in Germany and is certainly punishable in the USA.
I’m a seller there. 0 selling, since 2019 and I have about $10 in my account. Today I’m bit in shock knowing that my balance is just $4.52 left LOL. So, I check my purchase history and I found out they charged $3.99 inactivity fees in September and October. They are scam!
I’m a shop owner. Today one of the customers purchased one of my products for $25. I checked my balance and it was $5. lol!! They cut $7.5 dollars for taxes. Bro, what taxes? You already cut 50% of the sale so what are these five dollars? a tip?