15 successful print on demand stores & what we learn from them


For various reasons, the Print on Demand market is one of the most successful sectors of the eCommerce industry.

Getting your products into people’s hands is a simple process that eliminates the need to invest in inventory or deal with shipping. It also provides a multitude of advantages to both store owners and customers!

As a resource to help you make sense of this rapidly expanding market, we’ve produced a list of 15 successful print-on-demand stores.

Businesses that are poised to thrive in 2021.

But first, let’s take a closer look at what print on demand is all about.

🛍 What is Print on Demand, and how does it work?

A popular method of creating and selling products in the fast-paced world of eCommerce is through Print On Demand (POD).

POD works by having your design work printed on an item such as t-shirts or coffee mugs, which sell on your website through your affiliate program.

Once someone orders one, your supplier will print your design on the item before shipping it out to the customer to complete the transaction. Take a look at the infographic we’ve created below:

This ability to “print your design” is also one of the primary differences between dropshipping and “regular” drop shipment.

What is the most gratifying feature of this process?

It saves you from having to spend more money on things that may or may not sell!

The procedure is also reasonably hands-off, allowing you to concentrate on marketing and design work rather than on the actual constructions.

🛍 15 Print on Demand Store illustrations and what we learn from them

When it comes to running a great business, one of the most effective methods to accomplish it is to study what others have done before you.

Please look at 15 of the most significant print-on-demand firms to see what I am talking over.

As we go over each group in detail, you will understand what distinguishes this retailer from its competitors and ultimately propels it towards success.

And, after reading about these firms’ achievements, from layout selections to marketing strategy, you will have a better understanding of how you might incorporate some (or all) of these concepts into your store in the future!

Are you prepare to be wowed by some inspiration?

If this is the case, let’s get started!

1. Afro Unicorns

Afro Unicorns is a clothing line started by a single African American mother inspired by motherhood and the ladies of her culture to create a sense of belonging through their clothing.

Their success can be attributed to their integrated designs and a compelling message of encouragement for other women in similar situations. One of the most significant edges of the garment industry is the community-driven effect that contributes to the company’s overall objective.

What we learn from them?

Descriptive phrases that are effective

The terms “unique,” “divine,” and “magical” are constantly heard from Afro Unicorn.

They made a connection between their unicorn logo and the uplifting message they wanted to send to women of color.

It makes their target audience feel better about themselves. When you wear clothes, they are more likely to believe in sense magic because it feels like a part of something more significant than they are individual.

You may achieve the same thing by making a list of words that you would like your store to be connected with and using them as much as possible everywhere. The more individuals who view it, the more likely they will associate your store with those terms.

Colors for Branding

The use of color by Afro Unicorns is intense, with browns and blacks dominating the palette. However, you’ll see that they carefully employed reds and blues to make the brighter colors appear more brilliant than the darker ones, which is a nice touch.

You can accomplish this by employing specific colors, such as red, in moderation.

As a result, when anything is significant to communicate in your store, that color will be apparent without the need to use capital letters or any other means of expressing yourself otherwise.

2. Ferris Built

Lindsey founded Ferris Built when she was obliged to reconsider what she wanted to do with her life after waste her event production company due to the COVID-19 outbreak.

Motivated by women’s issues and current events, she embraced her creative side to create her garment line, which she uses POD to help her build a catalog she can feel proud of. She is now a successful businesswoman.

What we learn from them?

Have a compelling reason for doing anything.

Therefore, every firm must have a purpose beyond simply producing a profit to be successful and profitable. Lindsey’s narrative is about grieving and adjusting to a new way of life, much like how COVID-19 altered the lives of everyone who participated.

People enjoy hearing a good narrative about someone who has overcome adversity, and Ferris Built starts with just that.

You may also incorporate your “why” into your store’s “about us” page, which will help your customers understand why they should shop at your store and therefore say, “this store is for me.”

Contributing to a worthwhile cause

People don’t care about supporting a business; they care about helping individuals doing good in the world through their business. It is especially true in the situation of Ferris Built and their support of autism and mental health awareness campaigns.

It is important to note that they will give 25% of their revenues to an Autism Empowerment organization, which is significant in terms of their brand perception and gives you the impression that your money should spend on something good.

You may put this into practice by looking for local NGOs aligned with your store’s objective and give a portion of your profits to them on an ongoing basis. In addition, you can take it one step further by working in partnership with them as well.

3. Black Fathers Exist

Charles, a single father, was the driving force behind the creation of Black Fathers Exist. One of his concerns was hearing clichéd remarks about how African American communities lack father figures due to parental responsibility.

Charles recognized that this was an unjust perspective, and he wishes to demonstrate to the rest of the world that members of his culture can be helpful and responsible adults to the children in their care.

That is why they have apparel designs to demonstrate that they are good fathers and can serve as role models.

What we learn from them?

Have a strong message to convey

Strong emotions accompany every excellent story. Charles was irritated, unhappy, and frustrated by all of the cliches and jokes about forsaking their new family that he was hearing. He is putting that notion to the test by demonstrating it through his community of African American fathers who are there for their children.

You can also send an important message by expressing your dissatisfaction with certain aspects of your sector.

Is it something that others are experiencing as well? You may now serve as an example of what it would look like, increasing the likelihood that your consumers will support your message in the future.

Have a simple method of navigating

To get to the intended consequence of a website, you must go through the site and click on various buttons. Black Father’s Exist makes it very simple to find and purchase their merchandise by keeping their designs simple and structured in their header.

When developing your header, keep in mind that visitors want to get to the most important pages as quickly as possible, and the fewer clicks they have to make to get there, the better. So keep in mind why someone is visiting your website and remove everything that can make that experience more challenging.

4. The Happy Givers

The Happy Givers is a charity POD store for apparel and accessories that benefits The Happy NPO, which assists residents in Puerto Rico build their own homes. All earnings from the store go to the organization.

What we learn from them?

Make use of your store’s relationship with another company.

Their success is because they can build on other NGOs who have the same objective. As a result, when one nonprofit achieves success, the other will inevitably achieve success as well.

If you have another side business, consider how you might incorporate it into your POD business. Your consumers would be delighted to assist you in other ways, making it that much easier for them to do so.

Make use of a reward system for ambassadors.

Rewarding those who have the most invested in your business can be a very effective marketing strategy.

It could be in the form of particular products or deductions that they can use to promote your goods on your behalf.

As a representative, you have complete rules over what they can and cannot do. It is also an excellent way to share your achievement with those who contributed to making it happen.

5. Famous in Real Life

Pop culture is a humorous phenomenon that brings people with similar niche interests and a good laugh. Famous in Real Life (IRL) uses these pop culture-inspired designs to bring out the personality and interests of their customers.

What we learn from them?

A collection of photographs

Photos of your items are essential in determining whether or not it is worthwhile to purchase them. Famous IRL is aware of this, as evidenced by their gallery page, which contains images of their appeals used in a natural setting.

Having your gallery provides an excellent website where you can straightforwardly showcase all of your products.

Have a product that is a mystery

Finding your next shirt might be challenging when there are so many different designs to select. That’s why Famous IRL offers a secret shirt option, in which you can purchase a shirt that will be chosen at random from their collection and shipped to your location.

When you find out what it could be, it’s a thrilling experience that adds a fun element to the mystery.

You, too, can offer a mystery product in which you have complete control over what people receive. It’s all about having a great moment and matching the brand’s sense of humor.

6. GearBunch

For ladies, GearBunch is a well-known brand that specializes in yoga pants and leggings. It all started as a research project to determine which training pant designs were the most effective. As it turns out, figuring out the solution to that question might be pretty rewarding!

Leggings have a large amount of surface area to deal with, which means there is a lot of space for creative expression on them, which is apparent. They’re popular because they put a heavy emphasis on workout pants that also look excellent.

What we learn from them?

The photos of the products

When you look at a legging product, you will see in the photos a range of images that capture the full 360-degree view of how it appears. It is advantageous because it allows you to see it from many perspectives, judging how good it will look.

The majority of the time, when you view a product, it is just a photo of it from the front. With this concept, we can use more angles to reassure ourselves what it will genuinely look like without any shocks in the future.

As a result, when you’re introducing a new product to your store, consider whether or not it requires additional photographs of it.

7. PassionFruit 

PassionFruit‘s simple yet powerful message promotes pride throughout the year by offering clothing and accessories to customers. As part of their task, they give back to the communities that have inspired their designs.

Designed by and for the pride community, their products have a more human and compassionate feel due to their involvement. They also enjoy it when consumers post pictures of their purchases on their Instagram account, which gives them further visibility.

What we learn from them?

Make use of a blog.

Due to their involvement in the pride community, Passionfruit is interested in showcasing the culture around fashion, music, art, and movies to promote it on their site. In this case, it is less about them as a brand and more about the individuals linked with the brand.

These blog articles are compelling because they are about individuals, just as consumers like to purchase from persons rather than faceless corporations.

When possible, they like to lend their support to other firms in the same field since they want everyone to flourish rather than being frightened of competing enterprises!

 

8. The Classic Dad

T-shirts featuring puns, grilling, fatherhood, and being a family man pay respect to the classic Dad style of puns, grilling, and being a family man. Every father who sees a tiny of themselves in these amusing designs will find success. These designs are full of humor and classic words.

A well-thought-out marketing approach Videos are what the Classic Dad prefers to watch.

What we learn from them?

Designing a website in a straightforward manner

POD firms require web design services because their website serves as their only point of contact with customers. It means that doing it well is a significant determining element in whether or not you will be successful. The Classic Dad’s design is successful because it is deceptively simple.

All of the shirts are in clear sight, and the text and navigation are simple. There is no need to make additional clicks or search for what you want. While this isn’t going to win any innovation awards, why fix something that isn’t damaged?

9. Vegan Savage

Vegan Savage began with a commitment to a vegan lifestyle based on health and environmental consciousness.

This POD niche is vital because the vegan culture becomes more potent as more individuals become involved in the movement.

What we learn from them?

Using other social media networks than Facebook

What Vegan Savage does well is promoting itself through content marketing on various channels, including YouTube and Instagram. It broadens the scope of their aim to raise awareness about veganism.

The use of hashtags is becoming more common.

#BEAVEGANSAVAGE is a straightforward yet effective hashtag. In addition to being directly connected with the brand name, it indicates that you want to demonstrate what it means to be a vegan.

Many people interpret this as powerful to combat the widespread belief that vegans are weak since they consume protein.

The act of defying social expectations is an excellent method to express one’s individuality and be heard in one’s local society. Vegans worldwide can be proud of their health choice, knowing that others have demonstrated how beneficial it can be.

10. Jolie Noire 

Two sisters who wished to serve as role models for other women in similar situations found this POD apparel shop. They want to put a slant on the perceptions of the color black. They think it’s beautiful and want the hue to communicate on a cultural level with them.

Jolie Noire uses the color black extensively in their clothing, pairing it with various other colors.

What we learn from them?

The product descriptions should write in plain language.

Jolie Noire is well-versed in the world of fashion and the essential features of a fashionable appearance. Moreover, they understand how and where their clients will put their items to use.

Thanks to the power of words, they can visualize themselves wearing comfortable joggers while lounging on the couch and watching a decent show.

Include a section titled “What’s New.”

With new designs released regularly, having a page dedicated to showcasing them is a fantastic idea.

The word “new” has a lot of force. It gives the impression that there is something extraordinary going on that is worth checking. As a result, if you are constantly creating new designs, it is worthwhile to put in the effort.

11. House of the Chingasos

In Latin culture, House of the Chingasos is a brand that is both entertaining and playable. This group lives and breathes humor, and they are eager to share it with the rest of the world.

What we learn from them?

The ability to laugh at oneself

It would help if you faced an aggressive design that incorporates clever words and large, eye-catching images. There’s plenty of pleasure to be had, and it all contributes to making it unforgettable.

When it comes to humor, it’s all about bringing joy or finding a method to express yourself through current events or cultural references.

Have a well-organized collection of designs.

The House of Chingasos does an excellent job of providing various methods to organize their product offerings.

From Cinco de Mayo to fresh drops to clothing specifically designed for men or ladies, there is something for everyone. It makes everything easy to find, especially helpful when they have many designs to browse through.

12. I Like Maps 

I Like Maps began as a personal passion for maps for the proprietor, who later recognized it could turn into a viable business worldwide map locations.

What we learn from them?

Providing the ability to create bespoke designs

As a result of many sites available worldwide, it can be difficult for I Like Maps to cover them all. That is why they have a service that will go to a particular spot based on your specifications.

Let’s think about how you may allow your consumers to have their unique designs in your POD business and other industries.

Consider the simplest solution.

When you think of designs, the first thing that comes to mind is creating a wow factor for your customers. However, sometimes all it takes is to connect with something they are proud of for them to move.

The maps tell a story in and of itself, and the product concept may use in a wide range of other designs. So don’t be concerned with always looking hip, but rather with what emotions people want to experience.

13. Iconspeak 

Having icon graphics appear everywhere we go is impossible these days. The fact that it is on every device we use is known to Iconspeak. You have them on your shirts, too, because they are so important!

What we learn from them?

Publications as social proof.

The Huffington Post, 9GAG, and National Geographic are just a few outlets that have featured them on their website. It contributes to developing social trust in them as a company that is worthwhile to do business.

A competitive advantage is gained as a result of this as well. Anything you can say or do to distinguish yourself from other POD businesses helps establish a brand name for your business.

Utilization in fashion

They were featured in major publications because they followed trends that were similar to those of the magazines.

This year has seen an increase in the number of icon graphics used and how we can use them creatively.

None of this is novel does not imply that it is innovative because that is how trends work. Using what has already proven successful allows you to avoid creating your validation when it has already been over for you, saving you time and effort.

14. Grafo Map 

The Grafo Map website allows others to design and order fully customized maps and posters.

The company, on the other hand, does not sell any of its designs. It is, instead, possible to create your own through a simple-to-use app that is accessible directly from their website.

What we learn from them?

Customers receive a fully customized experience.

The competitors are offering their designs, Grafo Maps concentrates solely on the aspect of the business that allows for customizability.

The fact that they are fully interactive, on the other hand, means that their advertisements have a distinct identity.

Accept returns in their entirety.

Having a comprehensive return policy can be challenging because you must handle both the returns and the product’s shipping. That’s not even taking into attention the fact that custom designs are complicated to resell.

After all, what’s the point of it? It assures your customer that you will take care of the worst-case scenario in advance. Because Grafo Map has been providing it for such an extended period, they may not find it particularly difficult to deal with the consequences of this policy.

Consider offering one yourself and seeing if it is a hassle. If it is, you can then reevaluate your policy and make changes as necessary.

15. Printstant Replays

Sporting events and video games are the inspiration for Prinstant Replays‘ prints. It’s a fun and exciting way to display a historical game of a sport that allows viewers to see the ball passing around among the participants quickly.

Sports imagery and words are used throughout all designs, demonstrating the owner’s enthusiasm for the sport. It is one of the reasons that his products are so successful.

What we learn from them?

Identify your brand’s tone of voice.

When it comes to their label and personality, Prinstant Replay is all about wordplay. When they say things like “submit a play” and “touchdowns that changed your life,” they’re saying something.

When creating your own brand identity, don’t be afraid to borrow terminology from the industry and make it your own.

Ensure that people new to or unfamiliar with the terminology can easily pick up on it by being aware that it is not difficult to understand.

Gift cards are available.

Gift cards are widely available from various physical retailers; why shouldn’t digital retailers offer the same service? It is, in fact, quite simple to make, just like any other standard item. You can create gift cards that look like theirs using apps and built-in tools with website builders such as Shopify.

Even better, usually accomplished through a straightforward process, such as email or pdf, which allows a rule to enter at the time of buying, similar to a standard coupon or promo code.

In what ways did these POD stores teach us something?

Before we conclude this article, let us quickly review the most important lessons we learned from these great print-on-demand stores today:

  • Make use of solid descriptive language. People are interested in knowing what the product is about, but they are also interested in envisioning what it will be like to use it. Make sure they are aware of this.
  • Make use of the company’s colors. It is likely that when they see those colors, they will immediately associate them with you. Everything that makes you tolerate out will help you stay relevant in the long run.
  • Have a strong message to convey. If you believe in something, it is more likely that others will believe in it as well.
  • Make it simple for people to navigate. It is unlikely that people will purchase anything if they are unable to locate what they desire. As a result, keep navigation as simple as possible.
  • I’m proud to be supporting a worthy cause. People are enthusiastic about supporting businesses that are devoted to making the world a better place. Always try to find ways for everyone to come out on top.
  • Make use of a partnership between your store and another business. Collaborations are incredibly beneficial because you can share like-minded audiences, which benefits everyone involved.
  • Compelling product descriptions are essential. To sound more appealing when describing a product, use words that engage the five senses (feel, fondness, odor, hear, and vision) as well as the intellect.
  • Use social media proof to your advantage. Building trust is one of the most challenging obstacles for a new business to overcome. Using well-known media or people who have previously featured your product or store will be a great way to show that you are a company worth doing business over.
  • Make use of current trends. Trends are influential because they should demonstrate to work. However, they are also concerned with tailoring it to your brand to find a way for your customers to enjoy it.

Isn’t it fascinating how things work?

The following is a breakdown of where you can find more print on demand stores:

What is the best way to find successful Print on Demand stores?

That’s a good question because searching on Google alone will not provide you with the results you are hoping to find.

Exploring other print-on-demand communities is an excellent way to discover other successful print-on-demand businesses. They can be found all over the internet and on social media platforms.

Facebook groups, such as ours, can help people connect with others who share their interests and share what has worked for them.

Many communities are eager to share their successes and support those who are just getting started.

Another option is to look for the most popular items on design marketplaces such as Red Bubble and Society6.

However, once again, the first products you see are usually those created by successful account holders, and you can view their profile and other designs to see what they are doing well in and what they are not.

Finally, and as a result of this article, one excellent method is to browse through the blog of your POD supplier and see what should document the success stories of their users.

They frequently provide real-world advice on what has made them successful, which can apply to your company’s success!

Conclusion

With your newfound knowledge of these 15 successful POD stores, you should be able to determine what exactly made them successful in the first place.

Please keep in mind that not every store offers every feature that should be a highlight in this article. Some people don’t see a need, while others may not be helpful or align with their objectives.

It all comes lower to calculating out what works best for you and what your customers want! Don’t be afraid to experiment; remember that this is a journey rather than a destination.

Have a great moment and a good opportunity on your travels!

Henrik Bruhn

Owner of a danish Print On Demand production facility and writes about the craft, techniques, and trends in the business

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