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Turbosquid Selling Tips

We’re often asked what’s the secret to selling models successfully on a 3Dstock site such as Turbosquid. While there is no magic formula to success, there are a set of best practices which will help you maximize your income. Here’s what we’ve learned in over 16 years of selling 3D stock online.

1.) Quality Over Quantity

Turbosquid in particular is incredibly competitive these days. There are 42k sellers and 500k models available. The quality threshold for making any sales is increasing all the time. Your goal should always be to be ‘best of breed’ for one particular category of model. If you’re not, lowering prices will not get you very far.

3D Model ES3DStudios

2.) Pricing

One of the hardest things for newcomers to get right. Undervaluing your models in the hope of getting bulk sales is not a recipe for success. Turbosquid is not a ‘volume market’. Even superstar models will never sell more than a couple a month. Most assets do well to sell a couple a year. The majority of models on Turbosquid have never sold and never will. With this in mind, it’s not really worth uploading anything for less than $50. There will always be a better use of your time than publishing at the low end of the market. ‘Quality’ beats ‘cheap’ every time. Also, many customers sort by price as a quick way of sorting by ‘quality’.

3.) Formats

Publish in as many 3D formats as possible to maximize your market. 3DSMax is a must. Maya and C4D are both highly recommended. Interchange formats are arguably the most important of all, as almost everyone can import OBJ, 3DS and FBX files. But keep in-mind that interchange formats will often lose app specific information, such as procedural materials or character rigging.

3D Model Ships

4.) Research

Even if you have a model already made for another project, but especially if you’re intending to create in order to publish on Turbosquid, take the time to search existing models in that field. What is the quality like? What are the prices? What is the volume? Do you feel you can compete with what’s already out there? It’s rarely worth building from scratch just to publish on Turbosquid. Keep in mind that some brands, such as BMW, Ford, Boeing and FIFA either place restrictions on how you can publish their IP on Turbosquid (Editorial Licesnse), or block you at all.

5.) Presentation

Your customers are professional artists in a hurry (largely). Image quality is what they’re looking for. Most often they have a client or boss they’re trying to impress. If you can’t impress them, through the quality of your presentation images, then you’re not going to get the sale. Don’t skimp on render quality. Produce plenty of clear, bright presentation images of the model, and plenty of wireframes. If you include elements in the renders that are not included in your download, make sure you point this out in the text. Don’t try to sell half-finished models.

3D Model City

6.) Description Text and Meta Data

Give your asset a completely thorough description. This builds confidence in the buyer that you understand the subject matter and the technical details of the model you’re presenting. Ensure the poly and vertex count are filled, and that the other meta data fields are filled accurately. Don’t spam keywords, this works against you.

7.) Exclusive or Non-Exclusive

Turbosquid offers artists a higher royalty % if you agree to publish only with them (40% for non-exclusive, rising to 60% if you’re in ‘The Guild’ ). If you’re new to 3DStock publishing, with little data to go on, this is a hard decision to make. Turbosquid’s main competitor – CGTrader – is growing all the time, and offers some great incentives. Since different sites can suit different artists and model collections, we’d suggest trying a few at first. It’s easy enough to go exclusive with the one you prefer at a later date.

8.) Be Patient

If you’ve uploaded a handful of models, don’t expect instant sales. Best for forget about them for 3 months, then check back to see how they’re doing. Most models published to Turbosquid have never sold, and never will. Stock 3D is not a high volume business. Don’t expect instant success. Don’t stress about filling the banking or tax forms until you’re getting your first sales.

Turbosquid Stock 3D Models


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William Osler on :

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