What’s the best print-on-demand company for dropshipping?
💡 Quick Answer: Printful is considered one of the best print-on-demand companies for dropshipping for several reasons. One of the main reasons is their wide range of products. They offer a variety of products including clothing, accessories, home decor, and more. They also have a wide range of customization options, from simple text and image printing to more complex designs, which allows for more creativity and flexibility for dropshippers. Another important aspect is their automation process, which allows for easy integration with different e-commerce platforms such as Shopify, Etsy and many more, making it easy for dropshippers to manage and track their orders.
Print on-demand companies make it super-easy to start an eCommerce business from home.
But it’s not as simple as choosing the first print-on-demand site that comes up with a Google search.
In a survey of eCommerce sellers, 84% said finding a good supplier was the biggest obstacle to getting their business started.
You need to choose the right partner.
In this guide, we’ll reveal the 25 best print-on-demand companies in 2021.
You’ll also learn what to look for in a partner and the pros and cons of this type of dropshipping.
Let’s dive in.
What is Print on Demand?
Print-on-demand (POD) is an eCommerce business model that allows you to create and sell customized products. Instead of ordering a large number of products to sell, a POD company will produce and ship your customized products on a per-order basis.
You don’t have to pay the supplier until you make a sale and receive payment from your customer. When somebody places an order in your store, the POD company will print your design on the product and ship it.
This type of dropshipping is increasingly popular.
Over the last five years, interest in print-on-demand services has tripled:
It’s a great eCommerce business model for beginners with a low barrier of entry and minimal risk.
What Products Can You Sell Through Print-on-Demand?
T-shirts are probably the first thing you think of, but there are a considerable number of POD products you can sell, including:
- Yoga clothing
- Face masks
- Bedsheets and blankets
- Headphones and speakers
- Engraved jewelry
- Laptop Cases
- Mouse Pads
- Phone covers
- Kitchen accessories
- Garden accessories
If you check out some of the companies listed below, you’ll find even more products to choose from.
All you need to do is create your design, upload it to print on demand company’s website or app, and start advertising.
Types of Print-on-Demand Companies
There are two types of print on demand companies:
POD marketplaces are all-in-one platforms that host your online store on their platform.
For example, Amazon offers print-on-demand services, but you need to sell on the Amazon marketplace alongside all of the competing products they offer.
POD Service Companies
PDO service companies provide production, printing, and shipping services.
You can sell the products on your website, build your brand, and grow your own customer base.
You’re not competing in a big marketplace with thousands of other sellers offering similar products.
We’ve included a few marketplaces on the list below, but print-on-demand service companies make up the majority of our recommended dropshipping partners.
Pros and Cons of Print-on-Demand Dropshipping
POD is one of the easiest ways to get started with eCommerce, but it’s not right for everybody.
It’s important to know the pros and cons before you get started.
1. You Don’t Need Any Inventory
The POD business model is a low-risk way to make money online.
It’s an on-demand service. You only pay for a product when you receive an order.
You don’t have to fill up your garage with stock or invest your savings into printing hundreds of products that may or may not sell.
2. You Don’t Need To Buy or Maintain Equipment
The POD company will handle the manufacturing and printing process.
You don’t need any equipment, space, or technical knowledge.
All you need to do is create a design and advertise your products. The POD company will handle the rest.
3. You Don’t Need To Spend Time Packing and Shipping Products
Just like the printing process, your partner will handle the packing and shipping of your products.
You can concentrate your time and effort on growing your customer base.
4. Experiment With No Risk
If you want to try a new product or design, you can add it to your store with a few clicks.
You can see the demand without investing any of your money.
If a new product or design doesn’t sell, you can remove it from your store without losing anything.
If it takes off, you’ve found a lucrative new product.
5. Allow Your Customers To Personalize Products
Personalization is a big deal in eCommerce. People love to add their names, initials, and other unique elements to products.
According to research by Deloitte, 36% of consumers are interested in purchasing customized products, with 48% of those willing to wait longer to receive a custom product.
Many POD companies offer customization tools that you can integrate into your website for free.
6. Easy To Get Started
You can create a design and add it to your store for customers to purchase in a matter of minutes.
It’s one of the easiest ways to get started with eCommerce dropshipping.
1. High Cost Per Product
POD products generally cost more than other dropshipping products. The supplier needs to print each product individually, and this cost is passed on to you.
To make the business model viable, you need to charge enough per product to cover your expenses and profit margin.
2. Fewer Products
You can find a more extensive range of products available with standard dropshipping. You can choose from thousands of products and suppliers.
With print-on-demand, there are fewer suppliers and products to choose from.
3. You Don’t Control the Quality of the Product
This is an issue for all dropshipping businesses.
You don’t get to see your product before it is shipped to the customer. That’s why it’s so important to choose the right POD company as a partner.
You can also order a product sample to see it for yourself before adding it to your store.
4. Product Availability Can Fluctuate
A POD company may work with thousands of eCommerce stores at the same time. This means that products can quickly sell out.
You don’t have any control over inventory management.
5. It Takes Longer To Fulfill Orders
Because products need to be printed individually, POD orders take longer to fulfill. Some print-on-demand companies are faster than others when it comes to production and shipping.
You need to make it clear to your customer when they can expect to receive the product before they click “buy now.”
If you’re upfront about delivery times, you won’t disappoint your customers.
6. You Need To Align Your Returns Policy With the Supplier
Before you start selling POD products in your store, you need to understand the supplier’s returns policy.
You don’t want to find yourself in a position where a customer returns an item, and the supplier is unwilling to provide a refund.
Make sure you understand the supplier’s terms and match them on your website.
25 Best Print-on-Demand Companies
The following list contains the best print-on-demand companies in 2021. To help you choose the right partner, we’ve also included the Trustpilot rating for each company.
Printiful is one of the biggest names in print-on-demand dropshipping.
The company has been around for years and has locations in the USA, Mexico, and Europe.
Printiful currently offers 200+ products, including clothing, homeware, stationery, artwork, and accessories. You can create custom designs using the intuitive mockup generator.
Products are ready to ship in 2-5 days and can be sent worldwide.
There’s a range of printing options, including sublimation and embroidery. You can also create custom tags and include stickers and inserts in the packaging to increase the branding of your products.
Printiful also provides a free customization tool you can add to your store to let your customers personalize products before purchasing.
Integrations: All major eCommerce platforms, including Shopify, WooCommerce, BigCommerce, and Magento.
Printify is another giant in the POD industry.
The company consists of a network of vendors around the world. This means you can choose the vendor closest to your customer base to speed up shipping and reduce costs.
You can currently choose from 250+ products. There’s a massive range with everything from pet beds and t-shirts to phone cases and clothes hangers.
Like Printify, they also offer an easy-to-use mockup generator and several printing options.
It’s free to join, but there are Premium and Enterprise options that could be beneficial if you’re turning over a high volume of products.
Integrations: You can also integrate Prinitfy with all major eCommerce platforms.
Placeit isn’t a print-on-demand company.
But it’s a website you should check out if you want to create custom designs and sell print-on-demand products.
It makes it super-easy to create designs.
Even if you have zero experience in graphic design, you can use the customizable templates to create a new, unique design in minutes.
Then, when you’re done, you just download the template, upload it to one of the print-on-demand sites on this list, and you’re ready to make a sale.
You can test out the tool using the free trial, but you’ll have to pay for a subscription if you want to download your designs.
Pricing starts at $14.95 per month.
4. Merch by Amazon
Amazon targets a specific type of seller with its print-on-demand service.
Merch by Amazon is really for established brands or influencers with an existing audience they want to monetize.
There’s a much smaller number of products than many companies on this list, with a focus on t-shirts.
All custom products are sold through the Amazon marketplace.
This means you can access the millions of customers that use the platform, but you’ll be competing with thousands of similar products.
You need to apply to join Merch by Amazon. To get accepted, you’ll need to have an established brand identity and audience.
SPOD sets itself apart from other print-on-demand services by providing some of the fastest fulfillment times around.
It claims that 95% of all orders are printed and shipped within 48 hours of being placed.
You won’t find the range of products available on Printiful or Printify, but SPOD does offer an excellent mockup generator and a range of printing options, including laser transfer.
Shipping costs are also simple compared to other print-on-demand companies.
Fees are based on the total order value. This means you can pass on shipping deals to your customers and increase upselling and cross-selling opportunities.
There’s also a customization tool that you can add to your store to allow your customer to personalize products.
Integrations: SPOD provides WooCommerce, Shopify, Magento, and custom API integrations to connect with your store.
CustomCat has one of the largest catalogs of print-on-demand products. You can add your designs to a wide variety of apparel, homeware, and accessories.
The mockup generator is basic, but you can create your designs using a tool like Placeit and upload them here for printing.
There is the usual range of printing options and 3D dye diffusion - a printing technique that embeds the ink into the fabric.
Fulfillment and shipping times depend on where the product is sent but are competitive with other POD companies.
Integrations: CustomCat offers integrations with WooCommerce, Shopify, and other eCommerce platforms.
Don’t be fooled by the name. TeeSpring started as a t-shirt only print-on-demand company, but it has since widened its range to include a range of products.
TeeSpring has become one of the go-to print-on-demand services for YouTubers, TikTokers, and influencers.
You can add custom designs to over 150 products using the intuitive mockup generator.
There’s also an opportunity to include custom branding and packaging as part of the TeespringGo premium service.
Integrations: Yes. But it is not as easy to connect as other sites. TeeSpring also offers integrations for social media and streaming sites.
teelaunch has one of the most unique catalogs of print-on-demand products. Alongside the typical apparel and accessories, you’ll also find more unique items.
You can create custom rugs, chopping boards, power banks, jewelry boxes, and more.
There’s also a range of printing options, including sew all-over-print for clothing and laser etching for homeware and accessories.
teelaunch also provides a personalization tool that you can add to your website for your customers to use.
Integrations: Shopify and Etsy.
JetPrintApp offers a wide range of 200+ print-on-demand products with a great variety that you won’t find with many other companies.
You can print your custom designs on shoes, watches, home decor, and more.
When you upload your design, JetPrintApp will automatically create eye-catching product photos to display in your store.
It takes between 3-5 days for a product to be ready for shipping.
All of JetPrintApp’s products are manufactured and printed in China. On average, it takes 13-18 days for standard delivery to arrive with your customer in the USA.
Integrations: JetPrintApp offers Shopify, WooCommerce, and other integrations to connect your store.
Gelato is a print-on-demand site with more than 100 vendors in over 33 countries.
With an enormous range of vendors, shipping times are much faster than some smaller POD companies.
Alongside the fast delivery, Gelato claims that most orders are printed and ready for shipping within 72 hours.
You can print your custom designs on a range of apparel products and less generic wall art, mugs, bags, stationary.
The catalog of products isn’t as extensive as some, but a good range is available at competitive prices.
Gelato also makes an effort to reduce its carbon footprint. So if you want to make your eCommerce business more eco-friendly, Gelato could be a good option.
Integrations: Gelato offers Shopify, WooCommerce, and direct API integrations.
T-Pop is one of the best POD companies in Europe.
You can choose from a range of 36+ customizable products and add custom branding.
Add your logo to the packaging, the packing slip, and include a custom thank you note - all for free.
T-Pop is another print-on-demand business with strong eco-friendly credentials. All T-Pop products are shipped in cardboard envelopes with zero plastic packaging. Packing slips are also made out of 100% recycled paper.
Integrations: WooCommerce, Shopify, and Etsy integrations.
Zazzle is one of the most established POD companies. It’s trusted by major brands, including Warner Bros, DC Comics, and Universal.
You’ll find hundreds of print-on-demand products in the catalog.
If you want to sell custom homeware, Zazzle is probably the best option. You can find custom products for every room of the home.
There’s a basic mockup generator, but you’ll need a third-party tool like Placeit if you want to design something truly unique.
Zazzle claims that the majority of its products are printed and ready to ship within 24 hours.
Integrations: Use Zazzle’s API to connect your store.
Gooten is an increasingly popular print-on-demand site with a great range.
You can find over 150 products, including apparel, homeware, and travel accessories.
Gooten’s biggest selling point is fast printing and shipping.
Products are printed in 2.8 days on average. And with over 70 routing locations around the world, Gooten achieves an average shipping time of 3.8 days.
Compared to other companies on the list, that’s an impressive turnaround.
Integrations: Yes. Integrates with all the major eCommerce platforms and provides an API.
RedBubble is one of the biggest print-on-demand marketplaces in the world.
Founded in 2006, over 700,000 creatives use the marketplace to sell print-on-demand products.
There are 60+ products currently available, including apparel, homeware, stationery, and accessories.
RedBubble is based in Australia but has fulfillment centers in the USA, Canada, and Europe.
While the marketplace has a reputation for quality print-on-demand products, it is a marketplace only.
The only way to sell your customized products is to create a store in the RedBubble marketplace.
Printy6 is a print-on-demand company based in China used by over 30,000 drop shippers worldwide.
It offers a wide range of apparel and a few homeware products and accessories.
Production time is fast, with orders taking 1-3 days to print. Printy6 can ship to 230 countries worldwide, and pricing is very competitive.
But Printy6 does have the same drawback as other print-on-demand companies based in China. On average, it takes 10-20 days for products to arrive with customers.
Integrations: You can easily connect your store with Shopify, WooCommerce, and other platforms.
AOP stands for All-Over-Print.
As the name suggests, this print-on-demand company specializes in all-over-print products.
One of the key benefits of choosing AOP+ is the easy-to-use app.
You can download the app, upload your design, and choose which products you want to sell in a matter of minutes.
It’s an easy way to get started with print-on-demand product design.
There’s also a good range of products, with 200+ currently available.
AOP+ is free to use, but there are paid plans that offer additional customization options, discounts, and custom branding.
Production takes 3-5 days, and shipping depends on the location of the customer. The company has fulfillment centers in the US, Europe, and the UK.
Integrations: AOP+ offers easy integration with all major eCommerce platforms.
If you’re looking for premium print-on-demand products at a higher price point, Apliiq is your best option.
This POD company offers a range of high-quality apparel, including t-shirts, joggers, hats, hoodies, and more.
There are also some great customization options. For example, Apliiq allows you to add pockets, tags and even design the interior lining of hoodies.
If you’re considering selling some products offline, Apliiq offers wholesaler discounts. For example, you can get 20% off if you order 10 of the same product.
Integrations: Apliiq easily connects to Shopify, WooCommerce, and other platforms.
Society6 is a growing print-on-demand marketplace with a massive range of products.
You’ll find the usual apparel along with furniture, rugs, sunglasses, and other less generic POD products.
Production for most products takes 3-4 days, and shipping in the USA takes 5-10 days.
However, Society6 does offer several shipping options so that products can arrive faster.
Society6 is a marketplace - not a POD service company. There is no way to connect your store, so you’ll only be able to sell through the Society6 website.
Unlike many POD marketplaces, you can set pricing to determine how much profit you make on each item.
Threadless is a well-established print-on-demand marketplace with an active community of artists and creatives.
It provides a channel for you to sell POD products, but it also runs regular design competitions to encourage creativity on the platform.
There are currently 100+ products that you can sell on the marketplace.
Like other POD marketplaces, you need to create a shop on Threadless to sell your custom products. Currently, there are no integrations or ways to connect your online store.
Established in 1999, CafePress has over 20 years of experience selling POD products.
There’s a vast range of products available. You’ll find everything from stuffed animals and wall clocks to t-shirts and mousepads.
One of the best features is the ability to create designs featuring characters and logos from movies and TV shows.
CafePress has official usage permission for Friends, Star Trek, Spiderman, and more.
However, there are some restrictions on how you can use the copyrighted material. Make sure you check out the guidelines for each brand on the CafePress website.
You can set your pricing for each product, putting you in control of how much profit you make.
Like other POD marketplaces, CafePress doesn’t offer integration with Shopify or WooCommerce. You can only sell your products on the platform.
21. Design By Humans
Design By Humans is a POD marketplace that offers a wide range of affordable custom-designed products.
You set up a store on the marketplace, upload your designs, and sell customized t-shirts, tank tops, leggings, and other apparel.
The company is based in China and ships to 108 countries around the world.
Unlike most marketplaces and POD services on the list, you need to apply and submit your designs before you can start selling on the platform.
You’ll need to receive approval for each new design you upload. Design By Humans claims this usually takes under 24 hours. But plenty of reviews online show the process can take much longer.
Pricing per product is set by Design by Humans. This limits how much profit you can make on each sale. For example, if you sell a t-shirt, you will make a $3 profit.
Designed by Humans is a standalone marketplace and doesn’t provide integrations with eCommerce platforms like Shopify or WooCommerce.
22. KITE (Prodigi)
KITE is a print-on-demand service that is part of the larger Prodigi POD company.
You can sign up via the KITE website, but the service will soon be merged into the larger Prodigi company.
It offers a wide range of products, with 250+ items currently available.
You can easily upload your designs and customize products using the intuitive drag and drop mockup generator.
The company is based in the UK but has fulfillment partners around the globe. Production is fast, with most products ready to ship within 48 hours of an order being placed.
Integrations: KITE has integrations for Shopify and BigCommerce.
Spreadshirt is one of the biggest POD companies in Europe. Based in Germany, the company provides a good range of high-quality apparel and accessories.
Pricing is slightly different from most POD companies. You pay for the product and then an additional fee for the custom printing.
Spreadshirt isn’t the cheapest company on the list, but the quality is usually excellent.
Production is also fast, with most products ready to ship within 48 hours.
You can also get bulk discounts if you order six items or more - the size of the discount increases with the size of the order.
There’s also a handy 30-days easy return policy that you can pass on to your customers.
Integrations: Spreadshirt integrates with all major eCommerce platforms, including Shopify and WooCommerce.
24. Scalable Press
Scalable Press offers POD services to small businesses, large enterprises, and everything in between. It uses the latest technology to provide a large printing capacity and a vast range of products.
There are currently 4,000+ products listed in the catalog.
However, many of the products are very similar, with lots of different styles of the same product type.
Scalable Press is based in the USA and has 4 production facilities around the country.
Production times average seven business days, and shipping times average 5 days.
Integrations: Currently, Shopify is the only integration available.
25. WC Fulfilment
WC Fulfilment is a print-on-demand Shopify app.
It’s easy to use and can be set up and connected to your store in minutes.
You’ll find a range of POD products, including t-shirts, hoodies, blankets, wall art, watches, and more.
The company has fulfillment centers in the USA, Europe, and China, with production taking 2-7 days.
Shipping takes an average of 2-5 weeks, depending on the customer’s location.
The basic plan is free to use. But WC Fulfilment offers an optional premium plan with exclusive discounts and added features.
It’s important to note that the company does not accept returns. However, if a product arrives damaged, they will provide a free replacement.
How To Choose the Best Print-on-Demand Company for Your Dropshipping Business
The right print-on-demand company will help grow your business.
The wrong partner can damage your reputation and waste your time and money.
So what should you look for in a supplier?
Keep these five factors in mind when choosing a partner for your dropshipping business:
1. High-Quality Products
This is the most crucial factor.
You can have unique, eye-catching designs, but your customers won’t be happy with a purchase if the product is poorly made.
The best way to judge the quality of a product is to order a sample. Many print-on-demand companies are willing to offer discounts on sample products.
You can try a few different companies and compare the quality of the products and the print.
Cheaper printing methods can result in the ink rubbing off or fading dramatically after clothing has been washed.
2. Shipping Times
Print-on-demand products will always take longer to arrive than off-the-shelf products. But some companies are faster than others.
The best print-on-demand company for your business may depend on where your customer base is located. For example, if you sell to an audience in the USA and choose a supplier based in China, it’s always going to take a long time for products to be delivered.
There are lots of companies that have fulfillment centers around the globe that can help reduce shipping times.
If possible, try to keep production and shipping times under 7 days to keep your customers happy.
3. Product Pricing and Shipping Rates
You’re in the business to make money.
The more you have to pay per item, the lower your margins will be.
You’ll have less money to invest in promoting your products and growing your business.
But choosing a partner based on costs alone isn’t a good strategy.
Try to find a balance between quality and price.
4 Printing and Branding Options
Do you want to add custom tags to your products?
Custom branding can be a great way to differentiate your products and build a loyal customer base.
But not all print-on-demand companies offer custom branding options.
Some companies also have limited customization options. For example, your design can be limited to a central area of a t-shirt.
Before you spend time and effort uploading your designs, make sure the company offers the customization and branding options you need.
5. eCommerce Integrations
Integrations allow you to connect your store to the print-on-demand company seamlessly.
When somebody purchases in your store, the order is automatically placed with the print-on-demand company.
It’s important to check which integrations are available before you partner with a company.
You should also consider future sales channels. For example, if you choose a company with multiple integrations, you can easily add an Etsy or Amazon store later.
These are the best print-on-demand companies available in 2021.
Finding the right supplier is an important task that you don’t want to rush.
Using the above list, you’ll be able to quickly make a shortlist of the companies that meet your requirements.
The next step is to upload your designs and order samples.