Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Your TpT Profile Picture

If at all possible, post a picture of some kind. The default gray icon that will appear if you don't is not at all appealing and will not help your brand or your sales. Most people post a photo of themselves, however, a good percentage of sellers use a cartoon/clip art image. There are advantages to both. A real photo of you puts a face behind your work and people like that. Many buyers like to know that they are buying from a real person. If you choose to go with the photo option:

  • Opt for a professional looking photo if possible. A head shot with a neutral background. Nature or classroom backgrounds are also good.

  • The picture should be of your adult self. I wouldn't worry too much about making sure it is a recent photo, this isn't a dating site and your age is not really relevant.  If you have a great picture from a few years back, go ahead and use it. Do not post a baby or childhood picture. While this is a cute little gimmick, it does not make you look professional.

  • The focus of the picture should be you and you should be the only person in the picture. No kids, no spouse, no dogs, no large monuments in the background. Yes your baby is adorable, but for this venture, you want to look professional and trustworthy. Save the baby pictures for facebook.

  • Smile! For goodness sake, look like you are happy to be selling on TpT!

The clip art/cartoon option is not as popular, but does offer some advantages. If you are choosing to sell under an alias, you will definitely want to use this option. Using clip art is also a great way to brand or to tie in with your store name. I used a photo for awhile, but then switched to my curly-haired icon. I did this because I started putting this icon on the cover of all of my products and I wanted to increase my brand recognition. If you choose to use clip art:

  • Choose something appealing and colorful. Avoid black and white line drawings. Ask for opinions before you post. I recently asked for opinions on my facebook page about a clip art image I thought was adorable. The overwhelming consensus was: scary! What appeals to you  may not appeal to your buyers!

  • If you have words on your icon, such as your store name, make sure they are big enough to be readable.

  • Make sure your image is legal to use. If you are using someone else's clip art, be sure the licensing allows for this kind of use.

  • Consider creating your own. I made mine using a bamboo tablet and Inkscape. Even if you don't want to start from scratch, you can still alter and image, change the background etc. 

Remember, people will associate your products and your store with your profile picture. If you would never dream of posting poor-quality products, then don't post a poor-quality picture. 


  1. Indeed, brand recognition is important. It would be great to use a cute icon or picture with your own logo.

  2. I am your newest follower! Thank you for the tips!


  3. Thanks for coming back online with this blog... I've been needing some guidance and have enjoyed your products, so I appreciate your insight!

  4. I've just finished reading all of your posts. THANK YOU!! I feel ready to start on TPT and my blog!


  5. I am working on a PC and on Teachers Pay Teachers, the profile picture appears as a square image. My daughter is working on an Apple laptop and her profile pictures appear as a circle with a shadow. Do you know why? Debby

  6. I may consider changing my profile picture to a real picture of mines.


Thoughts, questions? Please share!