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How to Start a Print-on-Demand eCommerce Business in India?


Mayank Nailwal

Content Marketing Specialist @ Shiprocket

February 11, 2020

6 min read

Print-on-Demand is one of the most popular eCommerce ideas. An excellent way for you to step into the business world, Print-on-Demand (POD) is the least demanding and utterly rewarding business. You can set up your business smoothly and start selling in no time. Read on to find out how you can start your online POD store and sell cool-looking customizable products.

Print-on-demand eCommerce Business 2020

What is a Print-on-Demand Business?

It is a simplified process where you sell products without actually keeping an inventory. Even though you can manufacture products and maintain stock, what most sellers do is to collaborate with a supplier who specializes in customizing white-label products and showcase their artistic side and their business ability for generating maximum sales.

As your end customers will order products, your supplier will receive the details of the design and the quantity ordered. Once the design is printed, the supplier will pack, and ship your order to the end customer, which means, you will not be paying anything for a product until the time you have made a sale.

Advantages of Print-on-Demand Business 

Easy to Start

You do not require a web designer to get your store ready. Thousands of free themes and designs are available online for you to choose from. Besides, all the leading web-hosting companies such as GoDaddy and BigRock provide free templates for starting an eCommerce store. 

Low Setup Cost

As Opposed to starting a conventional business, Print-on-Demand does not require a hefty investment. What you really need is an eCommerce store and alluring product designs that your audience will feel compelled to buy. 

Limited Risk

Since you will not be manufacturing and printing the products, there is a minimal investment from your end. Hence, there is more flexibility for you to experiment with your products and take considerable risks, without worrying about losing your money. 

Time Availability

In contrast to managing everything from production to order fulfillment; your work will be limited to increasing sales and producing enticing designs. Hence, the excess availability of time will allow you to focus more on your core areas and develop unique designs and strategies for business promotions.

No Inventory Management

Since your supplier will handle the production and logistics side, you will not need to store an inventory. Instead, you will be able to devote your time to increase sales and keep up with the trends.

How to Start a Print-on-Demand Business in 2021?

Step 1: Find Your Niche

The first thing you need to do is to find your niche. Finding a niche implies identifying the audience you want to target and likewise, the products you will be customized for optimum sales.

In case you lack a bright idea, you can make a list and write all the things you have in mind. Be it selling designer mugs or creating good-looking t-shirts for school or college students; you can make a list of the products you want to sell

You need to ensure that your products have a broad reach. If your prints only resonate with your primary audience, there is less chance of your business expanding in the future.

Select and design the products which fulfill the needs of your target audience but also have the potential to attract a secondary audience. You can stay active on social channels such as Facebook, or Reddit to keep up with the trends and recognize the need of your audience.

Step 2: Get Your Store Ready

Upon deciding your audience and the products, you can start designing them as per the trends. In case you are not a skilled designer, you can use copyright-free designs, to begin with. Or you can share the specifications with a professional designer and get the product designing done.

Once you are done with the designs, you will need an eCommerce store to put the product catalog online. Click here to read our detailed beginner’s guide on creating an eCommerce website from scratch.

Step 3: Find a Reliable Supplier

After getting your store up and running, you will need to team up with a Print-on-Demand supplier to get your designs printed and your products shipped!

While there are plenty of such suppliers who work directly with eCommerce platform providers Shopify, BigCommerce, etc., you can click here to go through our impressive cheat sheet to find the ideal suppliers for your business to provide your customers with an effortless order experience. 

Step 4: Promote Your Store

The final step in getting your business on the wheel is promotion. Since your target audience is active online, you need to promote your business for attaining visibility. You can click here to get essential tips for devising the right eCommerce marketing strategy. 

Nevertheless, there are some indispensable steps you must take to promote your store online:

Be Active on Social Channels

The best way to find and engage your target audience is to be active on all the major social channels. People on Facebook and Instagram are perpetually looking for white-label products. You need to have your business accounts on all primary channels to grow visibility and devote your time and efforts to promoting your business at the right place. 

Do SEO Optimization

SEO remains a robust tool to acquire customers via good-page rankings. You must adhere to the best SEO Practices (keyword research, on-page SEO, off-page SEO, etc.) for optimizing your eCommerce store and gain desired traffic. 

Hire Influencers

An ultra-modish job for social media junkies, you can reach out to influencers to get strong word-of-mouth for your store and endorse your products. Influencers have a considerable following which can help your business get instant recognition.

Join Forum Groups

Though part of SEO, groups and discussion forums have their separate importance, you can join business-related groups on popular sites such as Quora or Reddit to interact with your target audience and cleverly advertise your products.

Use Customer Reviews

While it will take time to get authentic reviews and reactions from your customers, it is a great way to solidify your business reputation. Genuinely positive feedback from your customers will increase your business reliability and enable customers to buy more from your store.


Print-on-Demand (POD) is a great way to do business with minimal monetary requirements and relatively limited risk. You will not need to handle the inventory, nor manage the logistics front. Follow the process as described above, and you will be selling online in no time. 

Can I ship my print-on-demand orders with Shiprocket?

Yes. You can ship your business’s orders with Shiprocket. They must be packaged and labeled correctly.

What are the advantages of shipping orders with Shiprocket as compared to an individual courier partner?

You get multiple courier partners, wider pin code coverage, and lower shipping rates. Furthermore, you get an advanced shipping platform that can help you manage and process shipments faster.

What are some websites where I can list my print-on-demand services?

You can start showcasing your services on social media for starters and further on create a website on channels like Shopify, Woocommerce, etc.

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