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Does product photography feel like a hopeless struggle? I’ve been there. Back when I started as an Etsy seller, I had ZERO clue how other shops posted stunningly perfect pictures of their products all the time. I tried hard to replicate it at home and failed miserably. Until I discovered their SECRET: their images were MOCKUPs. Are you ready to take your product photos to the next level too? Then keep reading this guide to discover the best mockup websites for Etsy sellers.

But first, what are mockups?

What are mockups?

In online shop terms, mockups are images digitally manipulated (Photoshopped) or computer-generated to look like your products. 

Ready for a quick example?

Here, I took a stock photo of a frame above a dresser. Then I used Photoshop to put my art print in the frame. Now, it looks like a product photo of my art print. AKA, now it’s a mockup.

What are mockup websites?

Mockup websites specialize in providing mockups. Sometimes that is their primary purpose, or it’s just one of many services they offer. Here, we’ll discuss a few different types of mockup websites.

How can you use mockups as an Etsy seller?

Mockups let you showcase your products in new and beautifully styled ways. 

The number one way you can use mockups is in your product listing images. Using a variety of mockups for each listing helps your buyers envision the possibilities. They can imagine your creation in their life.

Social media and ads also benefit from a good dose of mockups. 

What should you look for in a mockup for your Etsy shop?

Concern 1: Copyright

Concern number one with mockups: COPYRIGHT. You need to make sure that the mockup’s or image’s creator has given you permission to use their images commercially.

Let’s take a second and touch on this: no matter how big or small your business is, you’re a commercial enterprise. Many creative assets (including some fonts) are free to use personally. But as soon as you start trying to monetize your work, now you are commercial and may need to pay for a commercial use license.

Now, this is easier than it sounds. Most websites make it very clear how and when you can use their images. Some images are free to use commercially for everyone. Others require attribution (perhaps linking back to the original creator), or you may have to pay to use the image commercially.

The mockup websites I have listed here make it easy to find out if you can use the images commercially.

For example, here’s a side by side comparison of the free versus premium mockup copyright license and allowed usage on Freepik.com (number four on this list). They show this on all their download screens so you can’t miss it. It clearly states how you can use it and where.

Concern 2: Aesthetic

There are SO many AMAZING mockups! Sometimes, I just want to use them ALL. They’re so cool.

But that’s not the best idea.

Establishing a consistent look and feel for your Etsy shop and your social media ranks high in importance. So make sure that you carefully select mockups that complement your overall vision.

For example, these two mock ups *probably* don’t belong in the same shop or Instagram feed.

Concern 3: Tech Skills

Make sure that you have the software and software skills to use a mockup before investing in it.

Below I’ll break down different mockup websites based on whether they’re easy, medium, or hard to use. Easy websites do the hard work for you and don’t require you to have any other software. While medium and harder mockups require Photoshop and Photoshop skills. 

Of course, learning how to use Photoshop makes running an online business immensely easier. If you don’t already have an Adobe Creative Cloud plan, I would suggest starting with their Photography Plan. Their most affordable plan, the Photography Plan includes Photoshop, Lightroom, and many, many Adobe perks like Spark Post (their version of Canva). You can sign up here.

The Best Free, Freemium and Premium Mockup Websites for Etsy Sellers

Okay, now we’re ready to dive into the websites themselves. Here are some of my favorite mockup websites:

1. Printful’s Mockup Generator at printful.com | Best for print on demand Etsy sellers

Ease of Use Rating: Easy

Cost: Free

If you’re using Printful as your print on demand company, then using their amazing mockup generator simplifies everything. I’ve used several different print-on-demand companies’ mockup software, and none come close to Printful’s streamlined system.

How their mockup generator works:

First: You choose what product you want to place your design on.

Second: You upload your design.

Third: You adjust the placement and color.

Fourth: Select the mockup images you want from simple to lifestyle-based.

Fifth: Either sync the photos directly to your Etsy store by creating a new listing. Or download your new mockups in either JPG or PNG format. 

It’s just that easy. Try out Printful’s free mockup generator today by clicking here.

2. Placeit.net | Best for ease of use and realistic lifestyle photography

Ease of use rating: Easy

Cost: Free to starting at $7.47 month

Placeit’s mockup generator works similar to Printful’s. They have a big selection of different mockup kinds, including a wide variety of lifestyle imagery.

In fact, I think of all the mockup websites on this list, PlaceIt has the most realistic and natural-looking lifestyle photography of them all. Many of their photos look like actual snapshots from average people’s lives. Sometimes, mockups can start looking a little too perfect and pristine. But PlaceIt’s imagery certainly doesn’t.

The vast majority of their images require you to have a monthly or annual subscription to use. But they have a selection of free mockups available for you to try out. Click here to check their free images out.

Also, super cool, they offer VIDEO mockups that bring your products to life. Their video mockups work great for social media stories and new Pinterest video pins.

How Placeit’s mockup generator works:

First: Choose which mockup on their website you wish to customize.

Second: Upload your design.

Three: Adjust the placement and color if required.

Four: Export and save your finished mockup.

Important note: When selecting a mockup, make sure the product in the photo matches closely to what your product looks like in real life. For example, if your shirt design is a v-neck, make sure to choose a v-neck mockup.

3. Pixeden.com | Best mockup website for simple, product focused mockups

Ease of use rating: Medium (Photoshop skills required)

Cost: Free to starting at $6 a month

Pixeden offers free and premium PSD (Photoshop) mockup files you can customize. Basic Photoshop skills are required to tailor their mockups with your designs.

Here’s a quick before and after from when I customized this mock up with my own design. I love the little customizable tags in their mock ups.

How to use Pixeden mockups:

First: Choose and download your selected mockup.

Second: Unzip the file and open the PSD file in Photoshop.

Third: Place your design on the appropriate layer of the photoshop file and adjust.

Fourth: Export your image from Photoshop in JPEG or PNG format.

Pro Tip: Have advanced Photoshop skills? You might enjoy one nice perk of PSD mockups. You can adjust the overall look to your liking. For example, you can recolor furniture or walls to match your aesthetic or branding better.

4. Freepik | Best interiors mockup website and stock photography

East of use rating: Medium (Photoshop skills required)

Cost: Free to starting at $8.25 a month

Freepik offers a wide range of stock photography, illustrator infographics, and yes, mockups. They provide a lot for free (with attribution) and even more paid (no attribution required). They have a plethora of contributors, which results in a variety of different looks and feels available. Their monthly membership includes stock photography and infographics, which can work great for business and blog content. Click here to check out their latest offerings.

Here’s a before and after mockup example from Freepik’s library.

How to use Freepik mockups:

First: Choose and download your selected mockup.

Second: Unzip the file and open the PSD file in Photoshop.

Third: Place your design on the appropriate layer of the Photoshop file and adjust.

Fourth: Export your image from Photoshop in JPEG or PNG format.

Fifth: Make sure to attribute the creator if you’re using the resource on the free plan.

5. Design Cuts | Best for unique designs and supporting creatives

East of use rating: Medium (Photoshop required)

Cost: Per Mockup Bundles. Bundles average $30-40 or less with their 50% off discount (see below).

Design Cuts is more than a mockup website. They’re a fantastic creative resources marketplace. You can shop everything from mockups to Procreate Brushes, and paper textures to vintage logo elements. Their mocks might seem expensive at first, but you get the good vibes of supporting fellow creatives by buying from their shops. You may also find new and unique mockups that better match your shop’s style than on mass sites.

My favorite part of Design Cuts? They offer an AMAZING discount structure. If you buy two or more products at once, you can qualify for between a 20-50% discount off of everything in your order. So if you buy five products at once, you get 50% off all of them. (I may always buy five products…and now I have way too many Procreate brushes.)

I also love their super simple licensing and ability to use what I buy commercially.

Find your next creative resource by clicking here.

How to use Design Cuts mockups:

First: Buy your mockup bundle and download it.

Second: Unzip the file and find the specific mockup you want to personalize. Open it in Photoshop.

Third: Place your design on the appropriate layer of the Photoshop file and adjust.

Fourth: Export your image from Photoshop in JPEG or PNG format.

6. Pexels | Best mockup website for Etsy sellers with advanced Photoshop skills

Ease of use: Hard (Advanced Photoshop skills required)

Cost: Free

If you need free stock photography and videography for your website, blog, or social media, then definitely check out Pexels. They don’t offer traditional mockups per se. But, if you have advanced Photoshop skills, you can turn their photos into your very own Etsy mockups. Again, this requires ADVANCED Photoshop skills.

In this example, I removed the distracting elements and the stripes on her top. Then I shopped in my shirt design.

How to create stock photo mockups:

First: Download your selected stock photo.

Second: Open it in Photoshop.

Third: Place your design on the area of the image you want to turn into your product (the shirt, the mug, etc.). 

Fourth: Play with different blending modes and shadow overlays to make it look realistic.

Fifth: Mask off your design in areas where it would naturally not show according to the image. You may have to warp your design to fit the shape of the object better. 

Sixth: Export your image from Photoshop in JPEG or PNG format.

Note: Did you notice how much work that was compared to using pre-made mockups? That’s because in pre-made mockups, their creators already did steps 3-5 to make your life easier. That’s the difference between a ready to go mockup and a stock image you have to alter yourself. (Thanks mockup creators everywhere!)

7. Unsplash | A great stock photography site

Ease of use: Hard (Advanced Photoshop skills required)

Cost: Free

Similar to Pexels, Unsplash is a free stock photography website. Again, if you have advanced Photoshop skills, this might be a great place to find some mockup bases to customize.

8. Mockup World | A search engine of mockups with varied copyrights

Ease of use: Medium (Photoshop required)

Cost: Free (Sometimes), Attribution Needed (Possibly), Commercial License For Purchase (On some)

Last on this list, Mockup World is not a mockup website itself. Instead, it lists mockups available from other sources. Some of which require attribution or purchase if used commercially. Make sure to check the copyright information on each mockup first to see what you have to do to use the photo on your Etsy shop.

What mockup websites do you use the most?

So, these are my top eight mockup websites I use most in creating great product photos. Do you have any other websites you find helpful with mockups? Please share them in the comments below!

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