11 things about Print on Demand websites.
Here are a few things to keep in mind if you are an artist and decide to join a POD Website.
#0 Before anything else: Do your research. Some POD services out there offer little transparency and can sometimes scam you. Be careful what kind of websites you join and remember most prints on demand service require you to hand over the high-resolution files without a watermark. So be careful and know your rights.
#1 Make sure your art is sharp. Don’t upload low-resolution images. Some of these websites like fineartamerica.com populate your shop based on the resolution of your images. So if your image is of low quality, the number of products available on your store will be limited. Most PODs offer a chart on how to size your art for their systems.
#2 Know your rights. You are essentially giving your images away to a third party. Most of these websites let you keep all your rights as an artist but some of these rights might fall through the fine print. Take the time to read the contracts associated with the services and learn your position as the artist.
#3 Don’t sell yourself short. Know your value as an artist. Know your worth. If you’re starting out and you have a few pieces that you want to test to see how they sell do it. But don’t under price yourself.
#4 Do your research. Find out what other artists are doing and how you measure against them. You don’t want to undersell your art but you also want to stay competitive in the market. Keep in mind the materials, hours, and research that went into creating your art and then determine some of the value based on that.
#5 Keep it simple. There are POD’s like Crated.com that only offer a few options, maybe you don’t want to sell shower curtains and coffee mugs. Some POD’s are more complex than others and doing your research can help you determine where you want to be and what you want to offer.
#6 Take advantage of social media. You now have an online store, you have art for sale and you have crossed all your T(s) and dotted your I(s) but its been days and you still have no visitors on your page. Use the power of social media and use it effectively. Make announcements, post photos of your behind the scene process, educate your customers on what you know or don’t know. Ask questions and engage your followers.
#7 Reinvent yourself. If your strategy is not working, try something else.
#8 Join an artist community. Facebook has a lot of artist-focused groups where you can communicate with other people who might be doing the same thing you are doing. Ask questions to other artists and get a little more knowledge about what you’re venturing out to.
#9 Keep it real. Don’t offer one thing and then deliver something else. This is an easy way to alienate your customers. Make sure your art looks as good in your hands as it does online. Order some samples and inspect them for quality, that way you know exactly what the customer is getting.
#10 Stay true to yourself.