When it comes to Shopify print on demand, there’s a whole world of untapped markets.
In fact, unlike AliExpress dropshipping, print-on-demand gives you complete control over the design of your product. This is especially good for those who are looking to build a solid brand.
To help you get started we have done a mini-interview with the founder of OurCoordinates, a popular jewelry store. After that, there will be a list of handpicked apps that you can use to build your business in a few clicks.
What is the Shopify Print on Demand model?
Shopify is a complete eCommerce solution that has everything in one place. It has a dedicated app store to help you find and integrate print-on-demand companies without breaking a sweat.
The print-on-demand apps provide you with a mockup generator to help you customize your product. You can design the products and list them on your Shopify store in a few clicks.
When a customer places an order, the Shopify print-on-demand app will create an alert, and the company will ship the product for you. Here’s why it’s getting popular:-
- Gives you the ability to customize and create any design you want
- Sell tees, mugs, and many other products with beautiful print designs
- Create a store to sell your products globally for a higher profit margin
To do this, you don’t necessarily have to store the products in an inventory. Your print-on-demand service will drop ship the product for you.
Once you sign up on the Shopify Store for a 14-day free trial, all you need to do is select a print-on-demand Shopify app for designing + importing products to your storefront and get your store up and running.
Important Questions to help you get started on Pod Business
|Name – Michael Heckert|
Role – Founder of OurCoordinates
Store type – Semi-dropshipping (We purchase an inventory of our best sellers to keep on hand for fast shipping
1. Give us a quick intro about you and your brand.
A little bit about me, I’m Michael I live in Florida and love building websites that produce profits!
I started OurCoordinates back at the end of 2019 right before COVID.
OurCoordinates is a Jewelry store built on Shopify specializing in made-to-order custom coordinates jewelry!
We have a user-friendly map to help customers locate their desired latitude and longitude Coordinates that we engrave onto their preferred style of jewelry. (bracelets, necklaces, or rings)
2. What made you launch OurCoordinates?
The journey with OurCoordinates has been overall very good.
I would credit that to the many lessons I learned from several prior failed attempts at creating Shopify stores. I found the inspiration to start this store after I had just traveled to Santorini Greece & wanted something different to remember the beautiful island.
I saw many similar items but they were very high priced and limited on the customizations.
I saw an opportunity in their shortcomings to offer a more affordable, highly customizable collection of jewelry inspired by beautiful destinations.
I made the Shopify store that night & have been building ever since!
If I could share anything from my experience it would be; When an idea comes naturally & you are genuinely excited about it, go for it!
If you wait, you will be purchasing your idea from another person who took action.
3. What were the initial challenges you shared in the beginning?
Initially, the most challenging part was locking down a reliable print-on-demand partner to do the jewelry engravings, as I could not afford a high-quality machine.
I had to experience a lot of partners that were not great, to say the least.
When looking for a dropshipping supplier, you MUST order the product yourself as if you were one of your customers.
Try challenging your supplier with unique requests and challenges that your customers could present to you.
Thinking ahead and verifying your supplier can handle them will save you ALOT of MONEY & TIME!
4. What marketing strategies would you like to recommend to entrepreneurs?
With OurCoordinates, we tried the standard paid ads approach through Adwords & FB Ads, these do well when you have an audience that can be highly targeted & remarketed to.
Starting out, however, with little to no data, we quickly realized that was an incredibly expensive route.
We have primarily relied on Organic Traffic through Search Engine Optimization & Being Consistantly Active On Social Media Channels.
I recommend anyone starting with a small budget to become an EXPERT at E-commerce SEO & Social Media and focus on it as their primary strategy.
It is slower but affordable, plus the efforts compound & growth will be constant.
5. What would you like to say to new entrepreneurs for succeeding in Shopify stores?
With Shopify, I believe anyone with a proven product can be massively successful due to the user-friendliness & quick setup.
If you have an idea you really believe in, that has demand (ask your friends, co-workers, community & family to purchase it at the price you would need to sell it for & see how many are willing).
You should start putting your idea into motion.
Start that free trial, open a tab & pull up YouTube, study other successful stores & copy anything that multiple successful stores are doing.
If 2-3 stores are crushing it & you notice they all use testimonials or video etc.. that usually means it works very well.
6. What’s the highest revenue you made in 1 month?
The highest revenue from one channel was the month of December 2020 – Jan 1, 2021, our first year to experience the holiday shopping craze! We sold $10,500.00 On Shopify Alone In Just Those 30 Days.
7. Additional comments or a special strategy you’d want to share with our readers?
My best piece of advice would be to ignore anyone that tries convincing you this business plan is “Passive Income”.
The amount of work to be successful in the crowded world of E-commerce is enormous. A solid team, working capital & the ability to hold yourself accountable for the results is essential.
Everything in life takes work, you decide who you want to work for at the end of the day.
God Bless & May The Winds Forever Be At Your Backs!
7 Best Free Shopify Print-on-Demand Apps
Printful is one of the best-rated print-on-demand dropshipping apps on Shopify. This app enables you to create, customize, and sell products under your brand. While their products are a little pricier than other POD apps, the quality of the products is really good (which is the ultimate pillar of drop shipping). They also offer a 30% bulk discount and a 20% sample discount.
They also offer warehousing and fulfillment service, so if you are supplying from somewhere else, you can store your products in warehouse centers near your target customers, and when the order arrives they will fulfill it for you.
Printful has its fulfillment centers distributed globally for fast shipment – California, North Carolina, Latvia, Birmingham, Mexico, and Spain, plus they have partner facilities in Japan and Australia for storing print-on-demand items. And average order time is 2 to 14 days including production and shipment.
|Best Feature – High quality custom products with fast shipping |
Worst feature – Slightly lower profit margin
Price – Free
Spocket is a dropshipping platform featuring original, high-quality suppliers from USA and Europe. They also offer print-on-demand dropshipping suppliers that you can use for adding additional products to your Shopify store. They offer everything from automated order fulfillment to branded invoicing (with your logo).
|Best Feature – USA & Europe-based products with 30% to 40% profit |
Worst feature – Some products don’t dropship worldwide
Price – $24.99 per month
If you are interested in a print-on-demand model and looking for unique products for dropshipping, this app is for you. Dripshipper offers on-demand coffee dropshipping – coffee blend creation, custom bag printing, and order fulfillment. You will get a Shopify customizer for designing your custom coffee bags.
|Best Feature – On-demand printed coffee|
Worst feature – Expensive international shipping
Price – $29 per month
PrintCommerce is not a print-on-demand app, but an eCommerce product designer for selling personalized products on the Shopify platform. You can use the product customizer to equip your customers to design personalized products including T-shirts, hoodies, caps, mugs, mobile cases, bags, banners, business cards, flyers, greetings, photo books, and more.
The best part is, that this Shopify product designer app offers error-free, print-ready output files using Web-to-Print software. Plus features like a powerful admin panel, dropship from multiple vendors, and live 3D preview make it good for print-on-demand business.
|Best Feature – Customize any products with pre-built templates|
Worst feature – No free plan available
Price – Not disclosed
Printify is one of the best Shopify print-on-demand apps with a unique model. Unlike most of the PODs, they work with multiple print providers from around the globe. This gives you multiple variants for each product providing different printing options, pricing, and supplier’s location. They have over 250+ products, so you can extend your product catalog with some unique items.
Printify has print providers across the world, and they can easily ship to North America, Europe, Africa, Asia, South America, and Oceania. However, they do not ship to Belarus, Burundi, the Central African Republic, Cuba, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, and Zimbabwe.
Talking about shipment, they claim to deliver nearly all products within 2 to 7 days, but there is no transparency or specific updates for shipments.
|Best Feature – Premium subscription for 20% discount on all products|
Worst feature – Inconsistent print quality (since there are multiple print providers)
Price – Free
Next on my list of handpicked Shopify print-on-demand apps is SPOD by Spreadshirt. For those who may not be familiar, Spreadshirt is an old (and popular) print-on-demand company.
If you want to offer a product customizer (so your customers can create their products easily) then you should try SPOD. Their customizer comes in handy with other Shopify print-on-demand apps.
SPOD makes its products at two U.S.-based and three Europe-based print facilities. With cutting-edge print technology, they claim to have a fast printing process, producing 2,304 prints a day.
On average, SPOD takes around two to 7 days to deliver a product. However, for some regions like India, dropshipping would take 25 days.
|Best Feature – Product customizer|
Worst feature – Limited product categories
Price – Free
What makes teelaunch a good fit for Shopify print-on-demand is the huge product range. You will find a lot of products to customize and sell in your store. It also swiftly integrates with Shopify and even Etsy.
With years of industry knowledge, they offer fast and reliable custom print solutions. Should you want to start a drop-shipping store, Teelaunch is the option for you.
Production usually takes 3 to 6 business days, after which orders are ready to ship from facilities in the US, Canada, or the UK print-on-demand. Many store owners claim to have their product delivered with Teelaunch in 2-3 days for some regions.
|Best Feature – Excessive number of POD products|
Worst feature – teelaunch doesn’t offer a good refund policy
Price – Free
Options I removed from my list and why
- Printy6 – shipment and support issues
- Jetprint – Shipping and size chart issues
How to select products for Shopify print on demand?
If you want to start a Shopify Print on Demand store that rocks, you’d have to find the products/designs with a demand and supply space. Here are a few ways to find awesome Print on demand products:
Use Google for trend analysis
Another way to find out if the products might be a fit for your new print-on-demand store is using Google Trends. This free tool lets you compare the products that are performing well. Once you know the products you are going to sell, you can start looking for the designs.
Checkout best selling designs on Etsy
One of the best ways to find product designs that would sell more is by looking over other sites like Etsy, Teespring, and print-on-demand marketplaces. Look for the products that are performing well and find out the type of products and designs that are likely to succeed. Alternatively, search your future competitors for the selected products for inspiration. You can use tools like Semrush or KwFinder to find out your competitors’ keywords and the exact print products they are selling.