Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Opening A Teacher Store Tips & Tutorials - Part 1

A few weeks back, I was asking how I go about opening a teacher's store. I had tons of questions, but struggled to find the answers! I had some really great advice from a few people {thank you - you guys are awesome!} but honestly not a whole lot of people were forthcoming with wanting to share information. I then had a lot of people requesting I do a follow up with what I found since they wanted to know too....so here it is. I have so much info to share that I'm having to split it up in parts. And I am by no means an EXPERT...this is just what I have found through asking around & trial and error. Please, please, please correct me if I'm wrong about anything!

Choosing A Site to Sell Your Products
First steps first, you have to decide which site to use. I looked into the two main teaching sites: Teachers Notebook and Teachers Pay Teachers {There may be more but these are the two I am most familiar with} . Here is what I found, along with which one I ended up going with.

Teachers Notebook - You pay an up front fee of 19.95. After this you keep 100% of everything you sell {minus paypal fees} You don't have to pay listing fees or membership fees. Paypal has a few option plans that determine your rate, but I have found that it's around .30-.50 for each transaction. They accept the following file types: PDF, Excel, Powerpoint, Smartboard, Word and Zip {*Although you have to be careful with the terms of your clipart- I'll cover this more in part 2} It is highly recommended to use pdf or zip files for 1) easy & quick to download 2) not everyone has excel/ppt/word. One really great things is that the $ is in you paypal account {minus fees} immediately after someone purchases something. Here is their FAQ page.

Teachers Pay Teachers - To open an account with TpT is FREE for the basic acct, however there are fees that you will be accessed. The are 2 types of accounts - Basic which is free to sign up, but TpT keeps 40% of your sale + .30 fee for each sale. The premium account is 59.95 a year, but TpT only takes 15% and there are no other fees to pay. They give an example of a $5.00 transaction- Basic you  take home 2.70 and Premium 4.25. TpT offers a much wider range of file types including movies, music & photos. Once you upload your file, you have the option to upload a preview file {which is really nice} I have heard that uploading files is a little tricky {I don't know this first hand though, just what I've heard}. Also, their website makes it appear that you get your $ quarterly. Between the two, I feel that TpT has more of a driving force and is more widely known of the two. Here is their FAQ page.

What I chose:
I ended up going with Teachers Notebook. I was hesitant at first paying the 20$ up front, but after having my store for just a week, I've already made that back! I have found it super easy to upload files. While I can't upload a preview file, I can upload 4 images, which has been perfect! Even though TpT seems to be the more popular site, I'm not having that much trouble getting people to see my site. I highly suggest having multiple source outlets to advertise your files {twitter, pinterest, facebook, blog, etc} The only thing I wish was that TN had better categories, and that it allowed me to assign more to my files {but it does allow you to create your own categories} The paypal fees have ranged between .30 -.50...not bad except when you only sell 1$ item {but this is much more take home than going with the other site} To the right is a screen shot of the breakdown for what I've sold and what I get to take home after fees {hopefully will give you a better idea!} 

I hope this gives you an idea and helps you make a better decision for which one to go with. I tried to be as fair as I could...but like I said, I am pretty new to this and I'm only speaking on what I was able to find out. Now go check out my store....and let me know what you think! And watch out for part 2 of my tips & tricks of opening a store!


  1. Thanks so much for sharing this!!! I am thinking of starting a store. It was good to read a break down of the differences b/t the two. I'm looking forward to part 2!


  2. Thanks for sharing! I have a TpT store with nothing in it...I'm too chicken, hahaha.

    I might have to check out Teacher's Notebook though because I wasn't really loving the amount of money going to TpT.

    Thanks again,
    Teach on a Limb

  3. I have a TpT store but I'm with you -- the amount of money THEY keep is unreal. And the yearly charge is unreal as well.

    I think once TN gets itself going with a better interface it will be huge competition for TpT!

  4. Thank you for sharing, I think I might have to open a TN store.


  5. Thank you so much for your tips! I've been wrestling with opening up a TN store along with my TPT store & I think that I might do it. :)
    Learning Is Something to Treasure

  6. I'm so glad this info was helpful for ya'll! I'm working on Part 2 and will be posting tomorrow!

  7. I love your idea of the "TIME" acronym for math centers! I am new to the blogging world and just started my own blog. I am focusing on getting started on Daily 5 for ELA this year but could use some new ideas for math centers. Thank you for the inspiration!
    Fourth Grade Flipper

  8. Thank you for all of that great feedback. I am also in the process of looking to sell some of my things!


  9. Hey there! I'm giving you the versatile blogger award! Head on over to my website to check it out!

    Thank you so much for all of the information about opening a store! You answered so many questions that I had!


  10. As a future teacher, this post is incredibly helpful! I appreciate you taking the time to differentiate between the two.

  11. Such great information- thank you! :)

    Always A Lesson

  12. Thanks for sharing all the great info! I've been going back and forth as to starting a store but didn't know where to start.

    WILD About First Grade!

  13. Thank you so much for the valuable information as I have been contemplating starting a store.

  14. Thank you so much for all the info on the 2 stores. I am new to the blogging world and eventually want to do this. You answered many of my questions. I am your newest follower!! Come check out my new blog!!

  15. Nice to hear everyone's opinion. I have TpT and now TN. We will see how they go.

  16. Anonymous2/09/2013

    I've been wanting to start a store for so long, but just couldn't figure out how. Thank you for your willingness to share. Now, here's my question...I often wonder how teachers find the TIME to do this? I work a full day at school and several hours after school doing prep, grading, etc. and planning on weekends. That leaves very little time to create and/or manage a store. I guess I'll have to wait until summer break to do this!!