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Mistakes to avoid in your Print on Demand store

Improve your business avoiding these fails.

 

Common mistakes to avoid in your Print on Demand store

 

Selling Print on Demand products is a continuous learning journey. When you open a Print on Demand store, you are in charge of providing digital designs.

If the digital file is not in the right conditions, the final product will have an unfortunate aspect. Also, you must be on your right to use any third-party design you upload.

Today’s post is a checklist with common mistakes that Print on Demand sellers make sometimes. We have included the most common design and copyright issues. Take a look and see what you can do to solve them.

This article is part of our Ultimate Print on Demand Guide. Check this growing collection of articles to learn everything you always wanted to know about POD.

 

On this article:

Using designs in low resolution
Using similar colors in your design
Not removing the background of your files
Zooming your designs
Not sticking to the safe print area
Adding “wrap” elements to all-over prints
Using designs without having a license
Not respecting trademarks
Not respecting exclusivity policies

 

Using designs in low resolution

 

In digital design, the resolution of a file is measured in Dots per Inch (DPI). For Print on Demand purposes, that file must have at least 150 DPI. If you try to use a design with a lower value, the aspect of your print will be blurry.

 

print on demand assets

 

You should also avoid using files with more than 600 DPI. In any case, once the DPI value is higher than 300, you can not appreciate the difference in terms of quality.

 

Using similar colors in your design

 

Print on Demand companies use industrial ink to customize garments and stationary. To be able to appreciate every detail of your design, you should never put similar colors together.

 

print on demand assets

 

You can not know how will the different inks interact until you have the final product in your hands. Sometimes, elements with the same colors melt together. Another tip to make sure all the elements of your design are visible: raise the contrast. The higher the difference, the better you’ll appreciate every single item.

 

Not removing the background of your files

 

It’s essential to check if your potential POD designs have a background or not. If there is a background and you remove it, your Print on Demand provider will print that background in the final products. This way, you could end up having a big white square around your design (look at the image from above).

 

 

If you’d like to avoid white backgrounds, save your image as a PNG file. If the environment is an essential part of your print, make sure to use a JPEG file.

 

Zooming your designs

 

If your design looks way too small once you place in the mockup generator, don’t zoom it! You must avoid zooming all costs. This mechanism is simple, intuitive, and famous, but it will ruin the aspect of your designs. The lack of quality will already be visible in the digital file. If you print zoomed designs in your final products, they will not look professional.

 

print on demand assets

 

The best alternative to zooming is to use scalable designs. Formats like SVG allow you to make your illustration bigger without making them look pixelated. Vectorial formats don’t use pixels to project your images. Therefore, these small squares won’t ruin the aspect of your products. If you’d like to learn how to save vectorial files, here’s a tutorial.

 

Not sticking to the safe print area

 

Mockup generators always show a specific area where you must place your design. That square determines the Safe Printing Area. This area is the place where your Print on Demand provider is going to print your design.

 

print on demand assets

 

To help your provider deliver their best work, try to always stick to the safe printing area. If you do not respect this limit, some parts of your design will be missing in the final product.

 

Adding “wrap” elements to all-over prints

 

In All-over prints, there is no safe print area. The reason why this happens is that the fabric is printed before the clothes are created. That is why your designs should be as seamless as possible. Wrapping elements (e.g.: fake belts) are not a good alternative.

 

 

You can not make sure that your provider will print, cut, and sew your designs in a way these wrap elements come together. If you’d like to learn more about all-over prints, check this article.

 

Using designs without having a license

 

If you are going to use third-party designs, you must have a Print on Demand license. There are two types of Print on Demand licenses: Basic POD and Full POD.

With Basic POD products, you can create POD designs that are vastly different from the original. You have to add distinctive elements to the third-party design. If you make these changes, you will be able to generate sales and ship worldwide.

With a Full POD license, you can upload designs to POD sites without making any modifications. You can just use the original design. To learn more about Print on Demand licenses, check this article. 

 

Not respecting trademarks

 

You can not include registered trademarks in your designs without having permission. If you do not respect these brands’ intellectual property, you can get in serious legal trouble.

 

print on demand assets

 

Some Print on Demand marketplaces, like Redbubble, have partnerships with relevant trademarks. If you can follow the rules of the association, you will be able to include elements from these brands in your designs.

If you’d like to create fan art, these partnerships are perfect for you.

 

Not respecting exclusivity policies

 

Some marketplaces have established exclusivity clauses for the designs that you upload. You can not replicate the content you upload to that marketplace in others.

Our advice is always to read the terms and conditions of the service carefully. This way, you will get to know what you can and can not do with your designs.

If you are searching for Full POD designs to expand your catalog, check our growing library of resources. 

For the product images on this article, we have used Printify’s mockup generator.

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