Design all starts with a vision of what you want to create. Once you have that idea, you can begin turning that into a high quality model for people to download.
If you’re looking to contribute your design to the community for free, great! Many online designs are free, but if you’re looking to sell yours – it has to be something people are willing to pay for. Here are the designs with the most downloads on Pinshape:
Top 5 Free Designs on Pinshape in 2015
Top 5 Paid Designs on Pinshape in 2015
You’ll notice that many of the top 10 most downloaded files have a few things in common. Here are some tips before you start thinking about what you want to design:
4 Key Ingredients to Creating a Hot Design
1) Create something fun or useful!
The most popular designs on Pinshape are from 2 categories: Toys + Games and Home Living. Why? Toys and games are fun, and items like vases and pen holders are practical. Your design should be one or the other if you want it to be a hot seller. Additionally, look for well known products you might be able to piggy-back off of to connect with passionate owners. Products like cell phones, camera and quadcopters all have dedicated followings and owners looking for cool accessories for their new favorites gadgets. If you can create something unique and useful, you’ll be in great shape!
2) Know Your Audience
Just as with any product or service, you need to make sure your offering matches the demographics you are most likely to reach. The products that tend to currently be most successful on digital 3D printing marketplaces are catered toward young (20-35), tech-savvy males, with a healthy dose of pop culture references. Additionally, the market for educational prints that can be used by students and teachers alike is growing rapidly. While there are certainly exceptions to this, these target demographics are the most prevalent at this point in the hobbyist 3D printing world.
3) Easy to print
Makers are more likely to download your print if they already know the settings for an optimal print. That means you’re more likely to sell the design if you’ve actually printed it yourself and publish the settings you use. You should also create your design with optimal printing ease in mind. See our chapter on design principles for 3D printing for more detail on this point. Everyone wants to have successful prints with minimal failures, so be sure to pay attention to this and your followers will grow quickly!
4) Make it Unique
Once you start designing, you’ll want to come up with your own unique style that will set you apart from everyone else. Keep in mind, just because something is unique doesn’t mean it needs to be complicated. 3DKitbash does a great job of creating simple yet eye catching and unique designs.