What is print on demand and why it is the perfect choice for your business?

Nowadays, Print on demand plays an important role in revolutionizing the eCommerce industry. So, what is print on demand? Print on demand is a printing technology and business process where you work with suppliers to customize a variety of products such as T-shirts, Mugs, Hats, Phone cases, etc, and sell them under your brand. You don’t have to pay for the cost of the product until you’ve actually sold it. So, it’s clear that print on demand is very suitable for any size business as a low investment and risk approach. So, before going to How to start a print on demand business for beginner, let's check out the benefits of starting POD business.

Is Print on Demand Still Profitable in 2022

Is Print on Demand Still Profitable in 2022

Are you wondering “is print on demand still profitable in 2022?” The answer would be “Yes”. This approach is definitely profitable and worth trying in 2022. Many people say that if you started doing print-on-demand years ago, you might gain first-mover advantages. It’s obvious that when fewer people offer the same products, it took less effort to build a profitable print-on-demand business. 

However, the good news is for the print demand industry, the statistics have shown a growth of up to 12% from 2016 to 2022 and it’s expected to reach more in the future. So, if you grab this chance, you still can make a fortune out of print on demand. Starting print on demand business has many benefits, but, the question is “How to start a print-on-demand business?”. No matter you are a creator who wants to create and sell your customized merchandise, or you want to start an online store and sell a variety of printed products on eCommerce, let’s take a look at the complete guide on How to start a print on demand business for beginners.

Benefits of selling print on demand products

Benefits of selling print on demand products

Easy for customers to design products

As a seller, all you have to do is upload your products to your own website or another marketplace like Etsy, Amazon, etc and offer them for customers to choose from. If customers want to change something to a product, you can ask your POD provider to do that for you. However, this process might take time to communicate with the stakeholder and everyone related. So, this is where integrating an effective online design tool is the best choice. You can visit here to see how it works and its benefits.

No required investment in your own inventory

Yes, another benefit of selling print-on-demand products is that it doesn’t require an investment in your own inventory. Gone are the days you have to store your products in your inventory, those responsibilities now belong to POD platforms.

No need to invest your time and money in inventory to help you reduce the burden of managing and tracking inventory, especially when you are a startup with a tight budget.

Leave the responsibility of fulfillment and shipment to POD platforms

As the seller, your responsibilities are attracting prospects to come to visit your website and place orders, and grow your brand. You can leave the responsibility of fulfillment and shipment to your POD platforms. That’s a reason why you have to find a reliable POD provider who can deliver fast results and make customers happy.

And because you no need to worry about fulfillment and shipping, you have time to focus on your core business functions while still nurturing stronger relationships with prospects and customers. A recent study conducted by American Express found that 86% of customers are willing to pay more for a better experience. In addition, according to Forbes, consumers are happy to pay 17% more for products from businesses with outstanding service.

How to start a print on demand business 

How to start a print on demand business

Decide on a niche 

Choosing a niche means that you are choosing to serve a specific group of people who are passionate about it and more likely to buy your products. And if you choose a small group that not many sellers are targeting, it also means that the competition is lower and you have more opportunities to earn more profits.

But how? You can do research to discover who they are, where they’ve been, what they want, etc. You can visit How to find best niche for more information.

After understanding their behaviors and interests, you can design your products to suit their needs. For example, if you want to target those who love car racing, you can create designs around them such as racing flags. Instead of creating a traditional chequered flag, you can create these flags with quotes such as Racing vibes, Race For Life, Just call me pretty and take me racing, etc. What’s more? You can also create canvas, T-shirt, tumbler, decal, cap, ornament with car racing, chequered, number, wheel marks on the road, girls, etc. 

And if you have any other ideas and just wondering whether your idea could work, you just ask yourself a couple of questions below:

  • What kind of products can I provide first?

  • What kind of products can I provide better?

  • What kind of products can I provide differently than any other products in the market?

Maybe you want to read: Print on demand niche: How to find the best niche for print on demand

Top Print On Demand Products Ideas To Sell - Updated

Setting up your online store

When it comes to starting running a print on demand business, there are 2 options for you to choose from: you can sell on a marketplace such as Etsy, Teespring, Amazon, or sell on your own website with best eCommerce platforms such as WordPress, Magento, Shopify, etc.

Below are the pros and cons of each option. Let’s take a look:

Selling your print on demand products on the marketplace


  • It’s easy to get started on these types of the marketplace because it only takes you a couple of minutes to create an account on these websites. From then, you can start selling.

  • Each marketplace has its own high volume of traffic, which means that merchants on marketplaces can take advantage of prospects and current customers who enjoy placing orders on these marketplaces. According to Statista, the average monthly traffic of Amazon reached 3.68 billion traffic in 2020, followed by eBay with 1.01 billion traffic.

  • You no need to worry about other technical tasks such as maintenance, updates, security, etc as well as shipping, inventory, and payment issues.


  • You have to follow its rules

  • You have to pay fees like monthly subscriptions and transaction fees. While Etsy charges its sellers 3,5%, the other big players eBay and Amazon charge their sellers around 10%.

  • When every merchant comes to the most popular marketplace, which means that the competition is fierce and it might not be easy to stand out among your competition. 

  • Another disadvantage of selling on marketplaces is the lack of personal branding. Customers just simply visit marketplaces and buy something that meet their needs and budget without caring about your brand. So, if you want to grow and expand your business outside those marketplaces and have a strong customer base, it’s time for creating your own website.

  • You can get banned easily due to its changing algorithm.

Selling your print on demand products on your website


  • You can create your own sleek and professional website as you want 

  • You have 100% control of your website, customer data and brand. You can use analytic tools to find out exactly what your customers are, from then conduct more marketing campaigns to attract them.

  • You can bring a seamless experience to customers

  • You can intervene in any of the buyer phases, stay connect with them and enhance relationship with customers.

  • You can leverage digital marketing strategies to increase brand awareness, and make repeat purchases through email marketing.

  • What’s more? You don’t have to share your profit with anyone.


  • It seems like building your own website is something complicated, especially for those who don’t have much knowledge of technology. Since you start from scratch, you have to attract your prospects all by myself, by implementing a lot of marketing strategies to promote your website and it might require a big investment at first. 

So, no matter which option you choose, make sure that you are clear of your goal and your budget in order to make the right decision.

Create an online store

Step 1: Choose the perfect domain name

Domain Name can be known as your website address, your customer can search for your business by using it. A domain name can represent your business, it should be short and relative to your brand, which take your customer easy to remember. You can visit some websites to get your domain name such as domain.com, nameboy.com,...

Step 2: Get web hosting 

Hosting providers offer the service that you can store your database. Most providers offer different hosting options to customers, some hosting types are quite expensive so you should choose a type that is affordable for your budget.

Step 3: Choose the best website platform

There are many platforms for you to choose from such as Shopify, Woocommerce, WordPress, Magento, Prestashop, etc. These platforms also provide free and premium templates so you can set up a store in just a blink of an eye without any hassles. You will have to create some of the essential business pages such as Homepage, Contact Page, Service Pages, Blog, Payment, and Shipping (if it’s necessary)

However, if you have experience with websites, don’t be afraid to go ahead. If you don’t have much experience, just leave them to a reliable eCommerce website development like us. We are happy to help you.

Step 4: Integrate an online design tool into your website

You don’t want your customers to go to other platforms just for creating designs, right? That’s one of the reasons why you should have one on your website. It’ll streamline your workflow and create a seamless customer experience.

And, we are pleased to introduce to you one of the best-selling online design tools of all time for print on demand business – NB Designer, which was developed by our professional and skilled developers. This online design tool comes with a lot of features to help you and your customers create beautiful designs. Moreover, it offers you as well as your customers the freedom to design and customize printable products. Try the DEMO here for a better experience.

Step 5: Integrate a print on demand service supplier into your store

Finding a trusted print on demand service supplier is crucial for your business’s success. When you are looking for a reliable and good supplier, make sure you are considering these factors:

  • Reviews of suppliers

  • A company’s experience

  • Quality of products

  • Communication

  • Shipping costs

Some famous print on demand providers: Printful, Printify,… 

Step 6: Create a Product

After you’ve with your design, products, POD service supplier, and platform, it’s time to upload them to your website. Besides, you have the ability to allow your customers to create new designs or edit existing products as they want by using the online design tool.

After your customer place an order, the order is automatically assigned to your POD service supplier, where the design is printed. They will also pack the order and send it to your customer. The order tracking number is available in your POD supplier’s account. In case your website is not integrated with any POD service supplier, you can find a POD supplier outside and send the customer’s printed files. When it’s done, you’ll pack the order and send it to your customers all by yourself. This way might take you a lot of time and effort.

Step 7: Promote your products

Experiment with many marketing strategies to see what works best for your business. You should leverage SEO (search engine optimization), which can help your store appear on the first page of SERP (search engine results page). Besides, using social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, Youtube, Linkedin, etc to promote your business and connect with your target audience. 

Visit our CMSMART CLUB to experience outstanding and affordable marketing services. 

Start setting up your Print On Demand business with CMSMART

The POD’s success hinges on your decisions, from choosing the right products for your customers to the POD service supplier (which will affect to the quality and the price of the products). And it also depends on how do you implement and execute your marketing strategies. 

Hopefully, the article How to start print on demand business guide you to the right path. If you have any questions to ask, feel free to contact us. Our dedicated consultants will get back to you in 24 hours.

See more: How to promote print on demand business

Thanks for reading!