The period between October to December – known as Q4, or the fourth quarter of the calendar year – is the top shopping season and a time when you can sell tons of print-on-demand products.
Based on my records, 70-80% of my annual revenue comes from the last 3 months of the year.
So, if you haven’t made many sales this year yet, don’t be discouraged. You still have 3 months to end your year successfully!
You can sell print-on-demand products in family niches, profession niches, dog breeds niches, or any niches.
If you play your cards right, it’s possible to make over 6 figures during these three months.
In this article, I’ll give you my top 10 tips for crushing print-on-demand sales in Q4.
1. Choose Gift-Related (and small) Niches
The first tip is to choose gift-related niches.
Q4 includes holidays like Christmas and New Year’s, so it’s smart to create products that can be given as gifts.
Think about the sender and receiver to come up with niche ideas.
- Mom <—> Son/Daughter
- Dad <—> Son/Daughter
- Grandmother <—> Grandson/Granddaughter
- Grandfather <—> Grandson/Granddaughter
- Husband <—> Wife
- Boyfriend <—> Girlfriend
- Aunt <—> Niece/Nephew
- Uncle <—> Niece/Nephew
- Coworker <—> Coworker
- Friend <—> Friend with dog/cat
- Friend <—> Friend with the same hobby
Obviously, there is an endless number of potential niches you can target.
Personally, I love selling products in the profession niches during Q4. Most people have a job, and many of them love to buy gifts for their colleagues.
Coffee mugs with funny quotes like these sell well on Amazon and Etsy:
Also, many of the profession niches usually have less competition compared to family niches.
Products in the family niche can sell well, but you’ll be competing with tons of other sellers.
If you check out products in Amazon and Etsy, you’ll see plenty in the family niche.
You’ll have to compete with those products to make your product earn a better ranking than the rest, which can be difficult.
In contrast, many professions have only a few competitors but enough traffic for you to make tons of sales.
Think about professions like Case Manager or Air Traffic Controller. They’re unique niches that have a low number of products on Amazon and Etsy.
If you have products in many small niches like these, you can make many sales without having to work too hard to compete with other people in terms of your product ranking.
But if you still want to sell products in a family niche – which is still a good thing – target narrow family niches like Stepfather/Stepchild, Daughter-in-law/Father-in-law, etc.
This will help you sidestep the competition.
So, this is my first tip; find gift-related niches to create print-on-demand products for. Also, try to find small niches to avoid competition.
2. List New Types of Products
We all know that t-shirts and coffee mugs sell extremely well on Amazon and Etsy.
They’ve been top-selling print-on-demand products for many years.
But the competition is tough. You see millions of these products in the marketplaces.
If I’m not mistaken, I started selling t-shirts on Teespring in 2014, and tons of new t-shirts are created every year.
It’s the same with coffee mugs. They’re a classic gift, but there are tons of them in the marketplaces.
I have more than 40,000 coffee mugs, 30,000 shot glasses, and 30,000 travel mugs in my Amazon account. 😛
It’s hard for new sellers to make many sales from these top-selling products. If you want to make your job a bit easier, find new types of products to upload.
When everybody zigs, I zag.
I sold tons of coffee mugs – as you can see in my case studies – when I made over $400,000 in Q4. But I also sold other types of products.
In 2017-2018, my top-selling product was a silver bracelet.
In 2019, my team made tons of sales from black bracelets.
In 2020, we made over $400k in a short few days from black keychains.
In 2021, rope bracelets sold well, and I’m pretty sure my team will crush our sales of this product this year.
These products weren’t available from any print-on-demand companies at the time. We make and sell them ourselves.
So, it’s easy for us to make over 6 figures from these products because we have very few competitors.
Right now, you can find these kinds of products on Laser Chili. It’s a print-on-demand company managed by my team in Georgia, USA.
As you can see, if you want to make your selling a bit easier, you should look for other kinds of products to sell. Don’t stick to just the top-selling ones.
There are many other untapped print-on-demand products that people have never seen before – and they’re easier to sell.
3. Create Funny Designs
People love to make other people laugh.
I’ve been selling print-on-demand products for years, and I’ve found that most top-selling products have funny messages on them.
For holidays, people like to give funny gifts to their loved ones and see them smile when they open the boxes.
I usually get reviews like these:
“Can’t wait to see his face when he opens the box!”
“My mom can’t stop laughing when she reads the message on the mug!”
You just need to find quotes that make people laugh and create products with these quotes on them.
This approach is a good fit with products like coffee mugs, shot glasses, travel mugs, bracelets, and keychains.
If you go to Amazon or Etsy, you’ll see that most of top-selling products contain funny messages.
So, if you want to make selling easier in Q4, try to find funny quotes and use them to create print-on-demand products.
4. Create “Make Them Cry” Designs
If don’t make them laugh, make them cry (with happiness).
Apart from funny designs, you can find meaningful quotes to create beautiful print-on-demand products with.
These kinds of quotes are a good fit with kitchenware, but you can also put them on products like necklaces or jewelry message cards:
Many Etsy shops sell over 1,000 necklace message cards every month. I’m pretty sure they’ll still be selling at the end of this year, too.
Fun Fact: I personally prefer selling products with funny quotes because it’s easier for me.
I’ve tried to sell jewelry message cards with meaningful sayings, but I can’t make it work yet.
Anyway, many other people do make it work, so you should try it.
I’ll take another shot at it this year. Hopefully, I’ll be able to write a case study for you to read!
5. Upload Products to Many Marketplaces
When you create a product, try to upload it to different marketplaces.
If your time is limited, the top two marketplaces are Amazon and Etsy.
These are where you can make many sales easily.
I call them “Top-Tier Marketplaces”.
There are also “Second-Tier Marketplaces” like eBay, Bonanza, and Storenvy that our PODTurbo members upload products to and make good sales.
Some PODtomatic members upload products to Walmart manaully and make decent sales.
(The PODTurbo and PODtomatic team is working to add Walmart to our systems so our members don’t have to do it manually).
Again, if you want to make many sales, upload your products to many marketplaces so you can attract more customer eyeballs.
6. Add New Products Every Day
In Q4, it’s very important to add new products to your marketplaces every day.
In Etsy, when you list a new product, you’ll see it get a small boost from the marketplace. Etsy shows new products at the top of the related search results for a short period.
If your new product sells during this magic moment, there’s a chance that Etsy will keep your product at the top – and you’ll have a chance to make more sales.
Q4 is when many people buy products. If you have uploaded new products to Etsy every day, the platform will give them a small boost and you might make more sales.
The more new products you have in Q4, the more sales you’ll be able to make.
It’s the same on Amazon. New products receive a medium ranking when they first launch. But Amazon will determine the ranking again based on the sales stats of the products.
So, in Q4, be sure to upload at least 5-10 products a day, every day.
7. Increase the Price If You Have FBA Products
FBA is KING on Amazon.
If you have FBA products, increase the price to reap higher profits.
Why? Because most people buy gifts at the last minute, and only Amazon can ship their gifts on time.
If your product is in the Amazon Warehouse, it will be shipped very quickly by Amazon – and people are willing to pay a higher price for fast delivery.
In December, I usually increase the price of a coffee mug to $29.95 with free shipping, and it will still sell.
The cost of the product and shipping is around $10. You can make around $20 in profit easily from just one coffee mug.
This is the power of Amazon FBA. Normal suppliers just can’t compete with it.
So, if you have FBA products, don’t forget to increase your prices for last-minute buyers. You’ll make a lot of profit in no time.
8. Sell Personalized Products
If FBA is the King of Amazon, personalized products are the King of Etsy.
Etsy buyers LOVE personalized products.
If there are two products with the same message but one of them allows you to add a name to it, most Etsy buyers will select the one they can customize.
Go to Etsy and browse any keywords. Most of the products at the top of the search results are personalized products.
For example, if you search for “Mug for Mom”, you’ll find a coffee mug that lets you put your mom’s name on it.
The main issue with personalized products is that you need to create a design based on what your customer wants.
In other words, it’s not automated. It’s a manual job.
You need to communicate with your customer to check whether you’re creating the design they want, then place an order on the supplier’s website.
When the product is shipped, you have to insert the tracking info on Etsy’s website. All these processes must be done manually.
But it’s worth the time because you can make a lot by selling personalized products.
A few people I know sell over 4,000 personalized coffee mugs on Etsy in December alone.
That’s around $40,000 in profit in one month.
So, if you’re willing to trade your time for HUGE money like this, selling personalized products on Etsy during Q4 is definitely the best thing to do.
9. Use Paid Traffic to Scale Up
Once you’re making big sales on the marketplaces, you may want to make many more sales quicker. That’s when to use paid traffic like Facebook or Google Ads to scale up.
Organic sales from Amazon or Etsy will come slowly, but if you boost them with paid traffic you can draw many more visitors to your products and make more sales.
Just pick some products that are selling well on your Amazon or Etsy accounts, launch them on Shopify or Gearbubble Pro, and send paid traffic to them.
Warning: paid traffic is quite complicated and more difficult than free traffic on Amazon or Etsy. You must learn about it and test it slowly.
I’ve used this method many times. To learn more about this technique, check out my case study on how I make $400k on Mother’s Day and Father’s Day.
- Case Study: How I Make over $174K by Selling Mugs for Moms on Gearbubble, Amazon, and Etsy.
- Case Study: The Secret Hack I Use To Find *Unicorn* Print-on-Demand Products on Gearbubble
You’ll be able to scale up and make more sales faster by using paid traffic.
10. Launch Your Own Store
In the past few years, I’ve been launching products on platforms like Gearbubble and sending traffic to them to make sales on Gearbubble directly.
It’s an easy and quick way to make sales by selling print-on-demand because you don’t have to set up your own website.
Platforms like Gearbubble provide high-conversion landing pages and customer service. You don’t have to set up a landing page or manage the checkout flow by yourself.
You just have to focus on creating good products and sending traffic to the product’s landing pages.
All you need is one unicorn product to make a 6-figure profit.
That said, it’s not good for long-term business.
Paid traffic is not that reliable.
Once you’ve sold a few thousand of your unicorn product, your sales will decrease slowly over time, and you’ll have to find a new unicorn.
But what if paid traffic can’t give you the results you got before?
Facebook Ads are getting complicated these days, because Apple doesn’t allow them to collect people’s personal information.
The accuracy of the Facebook Performance stats has been getting worse recently because of this.
A few years ago, we could easily make tons of sales using Facebook Ads. The cost-per-click was just less than 50 cents.
We were happy with that because it was very easy to make good profits.
But nowadays, it’s difficult to get a cheap cost-per-click like that. The cost of paid traffic keeps increasing every year.
Even you’re selling on Amazon or Etsy, it’s not your own store. Amazon or Etsy might suspend your account at any time. What you’ve worked so hard on will vanish in no time.
- My Amazon Seller Account was Deactivated – Here’s my story, and what I did to get it back.
- Etsy Account Suspension – Easy Guide to Getting Your Account Back
It’s better to have your own store. Form a relationship with your customers. Make them love you and come back to your store many times.
When people like your brand, they’ll return to your store and you won’t have to rely on paid traffic alone.
I focused on building my own store this year to avoid having to rely on paid traffic as much in the future.
Hopefully it’s still on time 😛
Okay, these are the 10 tips you can use to crush your print-on-demand sales in the next few months.
Now it’s time to get back to work!