Hey guys! Today I’d like to share with you my thoughts on what to do when sales are slow in your Print on Demand shops and online stores.
In retail, whether online or brick and mortar, there are sales cycles. This means that sales slow down at certain times of the year and peak during other times, like at Christmas.
It can be frustrating and confusing to go from making several sales in a month to barely any, but that is totally normal and just the reality of retail. It does not mean you’ve failed, so don’t get down!
Think about how you personally shop. What times of the year do you spend the most money and when do you save? You will most likely find this reflected in your sales.
Here you can easily see the cycle peaks and lows during the year from my Redbubble analytics:
You can see my sales peak in November and December and drop down in the spring. Then they steadily climb back up until August when people shop for Back to School.
Now this sales cycle is totally normal and something you will need to get used to and prepare for, especially if your sole income is through online retail shops.
Instead of getting frustrated and throwing in the towel, there are lots of things you can do during these low times to get your shops ready for when the sales start to rise again!
Here is a list of ideas:
Work on your website or blog. Start one if you haven’t yet.
Continue creating and adding new designs to your shops.
Find new ways to promote your shops. Start using Pinterest for example.
Grow your social media followings.
Go through your stores and fix or delete under-performing designs.
Go through your designs and update keywords.
Enable new products you haven’t offered before.
Do a brand overhaul: new logo, banners, etc.
Promote sales. If your sales are slow, so are the websites you sell on and they will often have really good sales during slow times to get people to buy.
Ask others for feedback. You could ask friends or other Print on Demand artists for feedback on your stores and/or designs.
Network. Find and join support groups with like-minded individuals. There are lots of Print on Demand groups on Facebook.
Learn new business and marketing strategies through YouTube or other sources.
Take a break. Sometimes we need some time away to replenish our creativity. Go on a holiday or spend time with friends and family and come back with new ideas.
The SIN number (Line 6) is the same as a U.S. Social Security Number. I am assuming most countries have an equivalent personal identification number for tax purposes.
The ____% rate of withholding (Line 10) may differ depending on the withholding tax rate of your resident country. This is where you will use the list provided at the link above.
I hope this guide will be helpful to those of you who are getting started selling your art through Print on Demand websites and are required to submit this form. Let me know your thoughts or questions be leaving a comment below.
Looking for more information about selling your art through Print on Demand sites?
Below I’ve compiled a list of tips to make it easier for you. I’ve been selling my art through Print on Demand websites for over 4 years now, and I’ve learned a few things in that time. I use Photoshop and Illustrator mainly, but these tips can work with whatever software you use.
So, read on if you need help with designing and optimizing your artwork for sale on Print on Demand sites such asSociety6, Redbubble, Zazzle, Teepublic and others!
Research trends. Use Pinterest or a search engine to see what kind of art is currently trending, then use this for inspiration to create something in your own style.
Start with a large file size (10,000 pixels covers most products).
Keep your designs in layers to easily make changes or re-use elements later on.
Design with the products you want to sell in mind. For example, most Print on Demand sites offer products like t-shirts, throw pillows and cell phone cases. Keep these products in mind while you create your designs.
Keep images crisp (300 DPI), and colours relatively saturated (more saturated colors tend to look better when printed on fabric).
For drawings, use a scanner if possible (rather than photographs) and use the available settings to scan a large, high DPI image file.
Don’t up-size your artwork if possible, this leads to a pixelated fuzzy look on the final product (this is why you start with a large file size in the first place).
Depending on what kind of artwork you make, you may need to adjust the size or medium you use in order for them to look good on the computer. Play around.
Don’t use copyrighted images, text, logos or anything else, or you risk the image being taken down, or even your account being suspended. Some sites allow “fan art” but make sure you follow all the rules.
Now that you have some designs to work with…
Optimizing your Designs for Print on Demand
Each website has it’s own file size and type requirements so make sure to check that before you start uploading.
Curate designs for each platform. Some designs might work better in different stores depending on their audience.
Save layers separately if you sell on Zazzle because you can layer different images and text on that particular POD site.
Create the same design in different colors and variations, especially once you have an idea of which designs are popular with your audience.
Adjust designs for individual product types. For example, use a transparent background for a t-shirt or sticker, use coloured background or make the design into a pattern for tapestries and pillows, remove text for leggings and apparel where it doesn’t work, etc.
Here are some more posts to help you sell your art online: