You’ve probably heard about print-on-demand (POD) services. What you may not know, however, is what it entails as well as its benefits. But not to worry. In this article, we shall tell you what POD is and why it is the go-to option for many individuals and entrepreneurs alike.
What is print-on-demand?
POD is a process where one works with a supplier to customize blank items (like tote bags, t-shirts, leggings, wall arts or baseball hats) with a design to sell them on an “order” basis under a brand. These products are often entirely blank, with no identifying markings on them that customers or merchants can print their designs on.
For customers, this means they can create one-off products they might not be able to get in a shop, and for merchants, it means they can create their distinct items on what would otherwise be a blank product. Print-on-demand services are ideal for testing a business idea, creating original products for a niche, monetizing an audience that one has built and easily printing one-off items.
The advantages of print-on-demand
Since it is typically operated in dropshipping, POD negates the high costs and time-consuming activities like buying and managing inventory, delivering the items and fulfilling orders. The supplier takes care of all the merchant’s responsibilities, from printing to shipping and everything in between. This way, the merchant is left with more time to focus on other aspects of running their business, like developing designs to print on the items, marketing, and responding to client queries.
Rapid change over printed materials
As with any services, mistakes are bound to happen with printed materials. When they arise, one will need a flexible process that takes care of timely changes while reducing expense. Although large runs of printed materials cut down on costs, they can attract expensive “destruction costs”. An excellent POD service minimizes expenses and virtually removes waste.
Quick turnaround time
A huge digital capacity allows printing services to produce most items on demand for immediate distribution, and that means a faster turnaround for you. POD also speeds up the delivery process for businesses that need a steady supply of printed materials shipped to different locations. And with the same or next day shipping capability, backorders are almost non-existent.
Low investment, lower risk
Since the merchant isn’t holding any inventory physically, it’s easier to add or remove items, pivot approach or even test ideas.