11 Easy Ways to Make Money With Glowforge: Complete Buying and Creating Guide

Unlock the full potential of your Glowforge with our comprehensive guide! Discover the best ways to make money with Glowforge fast, choose the perfect model for your needs, and explore the endless creative possibilities. From trending products to local partnerships, turn your passion into profit today. 🚀

*This post contains affiliate links, meaning if you make a purchase from these links, I receive a small commission at no extra cost to you. Thanks for your support!

Woodworking to make money with Glowforge

Are you a creative enthusiast looking to turn your passion into a lucrative venture? If so, you're in the right place! In this comprehensive guide, we'll explore the endless possibilities of the Glowforge laser printer and how it can be your ticket to making a steady income. Whether you're a seasoned crafter or a newcomer to the world of laser cutting, this post will provide valuable insights, answer frequently asked questions, and serve as a buying guide to help you make an informed decision.


Glowforge: The Best Money-Making Craft Machine

I. What is the Glowforge?

The Glowforge is a revolutionary laser cutter and engraver designed for creators of all levels. It uses a laser beam to cut and engrave a variety of materials, from wood and acrylic to leather and fabric, with unparalleled precision. Its user-friendly interface and cloud-based software make it easy for anyone to bring their ideas to life.

You simply upload a design in SVG format (easily done through design softwares like Adobe Illustrator or even Canva), use their very user-friendly interface to make sure the settings are right, and push the button to let the magic begin!

Pro tip: You don't even have to make the designs yourself; purchase SVG files on Etsy for a few dollars or invest in Glowforge Premium to access their library of fonts and designs (all for free with a membership).

Glowforge Premium catalog
Access endless designs through Glowforge premium. Simply choose a design and follow the instructions to complete; it automatically arranges the settings for you when you upload a premium design.

II. Make Money with Glowforge Creating Customized Products:

Most people buying a Glowforge are doing so for more than simply the occasional craft. Glowforgers are in it to make money selling their creations, and next we'll dive into ways you can do that.

Whether on Etsy, Shopify, at local craft fairs, or to your social media audience, there are countless customer bases you can access to sell an infinite array of unique products so you can make money with Glowforge. So what can you make?

  • Personalized Gifts: People LOVE buying custom gifts. They will pay a premium for them. Glowforge allows you to create one-of-a-kind gifts for special occasions, such as weddings, birthdays, and anniversaries. From engraved photo frames to custom-designed jewelry, the possibilities are endless.
  • Home Decor: Offer unique and personalized home decor items, such as custom wall art, engraved wooden signs, or intricately designed lampshades.
  • Board Games
  • Puzzles
  • Jewelry
  • Jewelry boxes
  • Phone/tablet stands
  • Model cars/airplanes
Geometric wood earrings made with glow forge
Here are some earrings I make with my Glowforge! I sell these earrings on Etsy.

I could really go on and on about all of the things that you can make, but check out Glowforge's design catalog for some inspiration.

III. Launch a Glowforge Business:

I mentioned it in my post about making money while homeschooling your kids, but when I first got my Glowforge and started making a couple easy projects, I posted a few on my Facebook and got over $300 in orders that day. Then a week later I brought some of my things to a local craft fair (a very small one) and did $400 in sales.

And that was just starting out, before I really even knew how to do much at all with the printer!

Here's my advice to you to do NOW to start to make money with Glowforge:

  1. Open an Etsy Shop: This is one way that has a low barrier to entry. Sell customized products and showcase your unique designs, attracting a broad audience interested in handmade and personalized items.
  2. Sign up for Local Craft Fairs: Participate in local craft fairs and markets to showcase your Glowforge creations. This provides an excellent opportunity to connect with your community and build a local customer base.

IV. Expanding Your Services:

Here are a few other avenues you can look into for fast ways to make money with Glowforge:

  1. Engraving Services: Position yourself as an engraving expert by offering services for personalized items like plaques, awards, and promotional products. Businesses and individuals often seek these services for special events and corporate gifts.
  2. Custom Signage: Tap into the growing market for custom signage. Design and produce personalized business signs, event banners, and directional signs for local businesses and events. Marketing your items toward businesses is a means of making sales that has far less competition on places like Etsy.
Like a good neighbor stay over there
I have a family member who owns a State Farm. A great custom and laughable gift for her!

V. Collaborate with Other Creatives:

  1. Graphic Designers: Partner with graphic designers to bring their digital designs to life. The Glowforge can transform digital artwork into stunning physical creations, providing a unique collaboration opportunity.
  2. Event Planners: Collaborate with event planners to create custom decor elements for weddings, parties, and corporate events. The ability to offer personalized event branding sets you apart in the competitive event planning industry.

VI. Get Started and Make Money with Glowforge

  1. Setting Up Your Glowforge: If you're concerned about the learning curve with a piece of high-end machinery like this, FEAR NOT. Glowforge is known for their easy-to-get started process, which takes less than 30 minutes from unboxing to getting your first project completed.
  2. Choosing the Right Materials: Glowforge does a variety of materials, from metal to iron-on to wood, acrylic, paper, and even food grade items. I'll give a brief overview of the materials compatible with Glowforge and tips on selecting the right ones for your projects.

Metal: Glowforge does not cut through metal, but it can score and engrave it.

Wood: Glowforge can engrave, cut, and score wood (the depth/thickness it will do depends on the model so see below for model comparisons).

Acrylic: Cut through or engrave acrylic (Aura does not do this well) to make keychains, signs, and lights. I wish I had known this when I bought my Aura, as I've wasted lots of acrylic sheets wondering why I can't engrave anything legible on them!

VII.) Choosing the Right Glowforge Model for You: Aura vs. Pro vs. Plus

Now that we've explored all that you can do to make money with Glowforge, let's delve into the available models—Aura, Pro, and Plus—and help you determine which one aligns best with your needs and aspirations.

1. Glowforge Aura: Entry-Level Brilliance

Ideal for: Beginners and Casual Creators

The Glowforge Aura is the perfect entry point for those taking their first steps into the world of laser cutting and engraving. Packed with features that cater to beginners, the Aura strikes a balance between affordability and functionality.

Glowforge Aura sales page

Key Features:

  • Ease of Use: The Aura maintains the user-friendly design that Glowforge is known for, making it a breeze for newcomers to get started.
  • Compact Size: The Aura is 22.5 inches wide and long. If space is a consideration, the Aura's compact design ensures it won't dominate your workspace. Mine sits on my dining room buffet, which is where I operate it from!
  • Versatile Materials: While it may not have all the advanced features of its siblings, the Aura can still cut and engrave a variety of materials, making it a versatile tool for creative projects.

Who should choose the Aura?

  • Hobbyists: If you're exploring laser cutting as a hobby or creative outlet, the Aura provides all the essential features without overwhelming complexity.
  • Budget-Conscious Individuals: The Aura is a cost-effective option for those on a tighter budget who still want to experience the magic of Glowforge.

What can the Aura NOT do?

The Aura really seems to have trouble engraving on acrylic. It can't cut through wood more than 1/4 inch thick, and I honestly can't get it to cut through some plywoods that are even thinner than that (likely due to the glue and chemicals in them), though it does great when cutting through specially designed Proofgrade Materials, which are Glowforge's line of quality, guaranteed materials.

SIZE is also a consideration. Really you can't do anything greater than 12×12 inches or 3/4″ tall.

Remember, use my link and you can get a $50 gift card when purchasing the Aura. On Black Friday they've been offering $200 off this model!

2. Glowforge Pro: Power and Precision

Ideal for: Small Businesses and Ambitious Creators

Stepping up to the Glowforge Pro brings a significant boost in capabilities, making it an attractive choice for small businesses and individuals aiming to turn their creative endeavors into a full-fledged enterprise.

Glowforge pro sales page

Key Features:

  • Enhanced Power: The Pro model boasts increased laser power, enabling it to cut through thicker materials with ease.
  • Larger Workspace: With a larger bed size, the Pro accommodates more extensive projects, allowing for the creation of bigger and more intricate designs. You can feed objects through that are up to 20″ wide and 3/4″ tall for infinite lengths.
  • Professional Finish: The Pro is designed to meet the demands of small businesses, delivering a professional finish that elevates the quality of your creations.

Who should choose the Pro?

  • Small Business Owners: If you're considering turning your passion into a business, the Pro's advanced features and capabilities make it a wise investment.
  • Serious Creators: For those committed to pushing the boundaries of their creativity, the Pro provides the tools needed to tackle ambitious projects.

REMEMBER: Buy through my link and get $500 off this model! Also, at Black Friday they have been offering $1000 off the Pro!

3. Glowforge Plus: The Perfect Middle Ground

Ideal for: Creative Entrepreneurs and Collaborators

The Glowforge Plus strikes a balance between the accessibility of the Aura and the power of the Pro. It's an excellent choice for creative entrepreneurs and collaborators who want versatility without compromising on performance.

Glowforge plus sales page

Key Features:

  • Mid-Range Power: With a balance of laser power, the Plus handles a wide range of materials, offering versatility in your creative pursuits.
  • Sizing: the Plus and Pro are the same size, coming in at 38″ wide.
  • Moderate Workspace: The Plus model provides a workspace that accommodates most projects without requiring the extensive space of the Pro.
  • Affordable Performance: Offering a robust set of features at a more accessible price point than the Pro, the Plus is perfect for those seeking a middle ground.

A brief note on materials:

Compatible materials will vary based on model.

Engrave and cut these materials with the Plus
Engrave and cut these materials with the Plus.

Some materials you can engrave on but not cut through.

List of materials compatible with glow forge plus
Engrave these materials with the Plus.

SOMETHING I WISH I KNEW: Apparently you cannot cut out vinyl in your Glowforge (like for t-shirt iron-ons) because vinyl has PVC in it. Burning PVC emits gases that harm your machine. However, Glowforge offers its own line of “Eco Iron-On” material that functions in the same way. Just know up front that you can't use the Cricut brand vinyls and that you won't have access to that same vast array of choices.

Eco iron on materials for glowforge
These are Glowforge's offerings for iron-on material as of right now. Not nearly as vast as the Cricut cutter line, but you have some options for iron-on projects with Glowforge.

Check out the complete list of materials and their compatibility on the Glowforge website.

Who should choose the Plus?

  • Entrepreneurs: For individuals looking to start a creative business, the Plus provides a solid foundation without the higher cost of the Pro.
  • Collaborators: If you plan on collaborating with other creators or businesses, the Plus's versatility makes it a valuable tool for various projects.

REMEMBER: Buy through my link and get $250 off this model! For Black Friday, they have been offering $500 off the Plus!

Choosing the right Glowforge model ultimately depends on your specific needs and aspirations. Whether you're a hobbyist exploring the world of laser cutting, a small business owner aiming for professional-grade creations, or a creative entrepreneur seeking a versatile tool, there's a Glowforge model tailored to your requirements.

VIII. ) Fast Cash: Best Ways to Quickly Monetize Your Glowforge Creations

Now that we've outlined all the ins and outs of Glowforge, let's talk about ways you can quickly make money with Glowforge. First things first, you want to pay that thing off!

If you're looking to turn your Glowforge investment into quick returns, there are several lucrative avenues you can explore. From identifying hot-selling products to strategic marketing, here are the best ways to make money fast with your Glowforge.

1. Trending Products: Ride the Wave

Strategy: Identify and Capitalize on Trends

In the world of crafting and personalized goods, staying on top of trends can be a game-changer. Monitor popular social media platforms, Etsy, and other online marketplaces to identify emerging trends. Whether it's custom pet accessories, unique plant holders, or personalized tech gadgets, aligning your creations with what's currently in demand can lead to quick sales.

Tip: Leverage seasonal trends for timely and relevant products, ensuring your creations are always on the radar of eager buyers.

Bonus Tip: If you are getting into e-commerce and selling on sites like Etsy, check out this site for insight on Etsy SEO and getting your products seen so you can make money with Glowforge.

2. Bundle and Upsell: Maximize Every Sale

Strategy: Create Irresistible Packages

Encourage customers to spend more by bundling complementary items or offering discounted packages. For example, if you're selling engraved glassware, consider bundling it with matching coasters or packaging it as a gift set. Upselling not only increases the value of each sale but also enhances the overall customer experience.

Tip: Use your Glowforge to create personalized packaging that adds a special touch to each purchase, enhancing the perceived value of your products.

3. Local Events and Markets: Get Noticed Locally

Strategy: Participate in Community Events

Take advantage of local craft fairs, markets, and community events to showcase your Glowforge creations. The immediacy of face-to-face interactions can lead to on-the-spot sales. Bring a variety of products that cater to different tastes and preferences, and be prepared to offer special event discounts to entice buyers.

Framed leather artwork made with glowforge
One of my leather Glowforge creations for a local craft fair.

Shortly after purchasing my Glowforge, I signed up for a local craft fair and brought in just under $400 in one day! That was a third of my machine cost, so I was pretty thrilled with that outcome for just a few hours of setting up shop!

Tip: Consider themed collections for specific events (e.g., holiday-themed items for a seasonal market) to attract a targeted audience.

4. Quick Turnaround Services: Cater to Urgent Needs

Strategy: Offer Same-Day or Next-Day Services

Position yourself as the go-to source for last-minute personalized gifts or event decor. Promote quick turnaround times for specific products, emphasizing your ability to meet urgent needs. This can be especially appealing for customers who may have procrastinated on gift shopping or event planning.

Tip: Clearly communicate your expedited service options on your online store and social media platforms to attract customers seeking fast solutions.

5. Limited Editions: Create FOMO (Fear of Missing Out)

Strategy: Introduce Exclusive and Limited-Run Items

Generate excitement and urgency by creating limited-edition products. Whether it's a unique design, a special color variant, or a numbered series, limited editions can drive quick sales from customers who don't want to miss out on a one-of-a-kind item.

Tip: Use scarcity in your marketing messages to create a sense of urgency, prompting potential buyers to make quick decisions. For example, “Get them before they're gone!” and so on.

6. Local Partnerships: Collaborate for Success

Strategy: Partner with Local Businesses

Forge partnerships with local businesses that could benefit from your Glowforge creations. Offer to create branded promotional products, signage, or unique merchandise. This not only expands your customer base but also establishes your Glowforge as a valuable asset for local entrepreneurs.

Tip: Explore mutually beneficial arrangements, such as revenue-sharing or cross-promotions, to maximize the impact of your collaborations.

Decide Now and Make Money with Glowforge!

Finding fast ways to make money with Glowforge is not just about the machine—it's about strategic thinking and timely execution. By identifying trends, bundling products, participating in local events, offering quick services, creating limited editions, and establishing local partnerships, you can unlock the full potential of your Glowforge and turn your creative endeavors into a profitable venture in no time. Remember, with the right approach and by choosing the right model to suit your goals and needs, your Glowforge can be a powerful tool for both creativity and financial success.

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