In this post, we will discuss the wild world of buying and selling prompts to use in generative AI tools like ChatGPT, Midjourney, and Stable Diffusion.
What Are AI Prompts?
So what exactly is a prompt?
Think of a prompt as a set of directions.
We are literally telling the AI what to do.
The more specific we are with your prompt, the better output we will receive from the AI.
Why Pay For An AI Prompt?
So why would anyone pay for a prompt?
The short answer is to save time.
Sure, we can tinker with ChatGPT or Midjourney for hours on end – and it’s actually kind of fun.
But if we want to get real work done and we don’t have the time to mess around, then buying a pre-made prompt is a great way to get started.
How to Buy AI Prompts?
We want a prompt now and do not mind paying a little upfront to save ourselves hours.
Today, there is really only one major player when it comes to buying and selling prompts.
PromptBase has the largest selection of ready-to-use prompts for various categories, from simple 3d graphic assets to email text generators.
Here are some of the top options for paid prompt marketplaces:
Where to find free AI prompts
We believe that AI prompt marketplaces will ultimately fulfill specific niche use cases, while free open-source solutions will fill in the blanks.
Free Alternatives to PromptBase:
One example of a free prompt resource for images is Lexica.art.
On this site, users can search existing AI-generated images.
Each image shows the exact prompts and configuration used to achieve the end result.
This method is a bit more hands-on.
You will also need a clearer vision of the subject and style ahead of time.
How To Sell AI Prompts?
Now that we know more about prompts and why someone might buy one, you might be thinking about ways to get in on this AI gold rush.
The good news is it’s relatively easy to list a prompt for sale on one of the existing marketplaces.
Let’s walk through the selling process on PromptBase.
First, we need to describe the prompt we want to sell. A great description would include a precise explanation of the intended output.
We also want to include a brief overview of the prompt’s instructions.
For example, what are the inputs that the user needs to provide, such as [topic] or [idea]?
Next, we need to propose an estimated price.
There is no right answer here, but these are some factors you should take into consideration when setting a price for your prompt:
- How long did it take for you to create the prompt?
- How much did it cost in API credits or tokens to develop the prompt?
- What is the value of the prompt to the end user?
- How unique is your prompt compared to other options?
After we answer these questions, we can then settle on a final price for our prompt.
If this is one of your first prompt submissions, we recommend starting at the lowest price point ($1.99) to get a sense of demand for your work.
Once you have some sales under your belt, then it’s time to think about raising your price.
Particularly, if the prompt serves a unique use case or potentially saves the buyer a significant amount of time.
Then, we need to upload the technical version of our prompt.
This JSON file format includes information about the engine, temperature, and max tokens.
To access this JSON version of your Playground prompt, click “view code” at the top right of the Playground screen.
Lastly, we specify which engine the prompt runs on and what the input and outputs will look like.
The current default is “text-davinci-003”.
For the input and output, simply run a sample version of your prompt and copy/paste the results.
Alternatives to Selling Prompts on PromptBase
In another post, we go into more detail about how to sell AI art that you produced using Midjourney or Stable Diffusion.
These platforms are perfect if you already have an audience or customer in mind.
Otherwise, it might be difficult to drive a significant amount of sales through this method.
However, selling prompts is a fantastic supplementary income for someone who sells something like info products or design services.
These are some of the more interesting examples of prompts that we have come across so far:
- Icons (for use in apps, websites, or presentations)
- Game assets
- Twitter thread generator
- Article outlines
What to consider when selling a prompt
When purchasing a prompt, the end product may appear incredibly simple.
It could be only a few lines of text that lead to a desired output.
As you can imagine, with a low barrier to entry, the market will quickly become flooded with prompt listings.
Anyone can spin up a few lines of text, so we need to be smart about structuring our prompts.
First, our prompt should be versatile. When someone purchases a prompt, they want to get more than one use out of it.
If you can sell a “style,” then the customer can use the prompt several times, get lots of value, and maybe even leave a positive review.
Even better are niche prompts. These are prompts that are aimed at mimicking a certain artistic style or design in the case of images or fulfilling a specific user intent in the case of something like fiction writing or brainstorming.
Some examples of prompt styles or structures that can create lasting value include:
- Image generation prompt for a Pixar-style or your favorite TV series
- Text prompt for generating viral tweet hook
- Text prompt for generating questions about a given topic (great for research or general brainstorming)
Future of AI Prompt Marketplaces
The current platforms for buying and selling AI prompts are still quite new.
In fact, there is an entirely new skillset focused on AI prompt engineering.
While the number of people using generative AI tools is growing at an exponential rate, the absolute number of users is still small.
It remains to be seen if there is a sustainable demand for AI prompts.
Another challenge to the success of AI prompt marketplaces is the release of new AI models.
All the AI tools we use today are based on underlying models that are trained with massive amounts of data.
As these models improve, we may be able to achieve our desired results with less-specific prompts.
We do not know how far off in the future these improved models are.
In the meantime, generative AI is here to stay and people want to achieve results now.
In the future, we see AI prompt marketplaces becoming more specialized.
For example, there may be a marketplace for portraits and landscapes, and another for product images.
Each of these marketplaces would be filled with high-quality content that is specific to the niche.
We also see a future where AI prompt marketplaces are used to sell other types of content, such as 3D models, video, and audio.
The possibilities are endless!
How much does an AI prompt cost?
On PromptBase, the price of each prompt ranges from $1.99 to $9.99, and PromptBase takes 20% of the revenue from each sale.
What is the best website to buy AI prompts on?
Currently, PromptBase is the first and biggest prompt marketplace.
If demand for pre-crafted prompts continues to increase, we expect several more players to launch products in this space.
Where can I learn more about crafting prompts?
Text prompts: ✔ OpenAI provides some great examples ✔ OpenAI's Prompt Assistance forum
Image prompts: ✔ DALL·E 2 prompt book
Read more about this in our guide to prompt engineering.
What are the most popular tools for creating prompts?
The simplest way to get started is to sign up for an account on OpenAI and start using the Playground feature.
There are also a number of platforms that help to organize the prompt creation process:
What are some of the risks of buying an AI prompt?
The prompt’s output does not align with what you had in mind
- Be sure to carefully review the sample outputs in the prompt’s listing page
- If the example images are all very similar, there may be a risk that your output cannot be tweaked to the extent you had in mind
The prompt is too simple
- This is not always a problem. If you are on PromptBase, be sure to check the prompt word count and if the prompt is tested and includes tips.