Essential Tips for a Rock-Solid Preparation to Crush Print-On-Demand Sales in this Q4 Holidays: What to Do and What Not to Do

12 min read

So, I started my print-on-demand business a couple of years ago and I have watched it grow from just a side hustle to a massive income channel.

And the thing is that I didn’t even spend a lot of hours on the screen and all. Amazing, right? So, what’s the secret? The “Krabby Party Secret Formula”?

Well, I’ll tell you for one that while there is no special secret, there is proper preparation and a good market strategy. One important strategy is to make the most of the seasons and yearly sales demand.

When it comes to selling print-on-demand products, Q4 is the best to make great sales. Why? The thing is that from my own stats, I’ve discovered that 70 to 80% of yearly sales happen in the Q4 in Q4, especially between October and December.

These 3 months cover some very important holidays, and more people want to buy gifts for their loved ones. So, if you want to make sales during these holidays, you might want to cancel that plan to sink into your couch all month long, binge-watching your favorite shows and all.

It’s time to make sales!

It is very important that you don’t allow this season to sneak up on you without proper preparation. So, you need to have been building your momentum by putting things in place before now.

I must confess, I am really looking forward to this time of the year with so much excitement and anticipation. You see, the thing is that I made a couple of mistakes last year and I’m ready to make viable amendments this time around. You can call it a move for redemption.

So, if you are yet to make a practical sales strategy, it is not too late.

From my experience, more sales are recorded from October down to December. For us print-on-demand sellers, success during this period can serve as a great springboard for a memorable financial year.

In this guide, I will be sharing some highly essential tips that can help you crush the print-on-demand sales in this Q4.

Who knows? If you play your cards right, you might just make enough to take the whole of January off – go to some exotic island or something like that.


Why Must We Prepare Well?

The year 2019 was a happy one for Amazon and third-party sellers like me and many others. The platform enjoyed a remarkable Q4 performance in 2019 and significantly surpassed all the predictions made by analysts.

During the 2019 Q4, Amazon netted more than $1B over what Wall Street forecasted.

That is massive.

This also translates to all sellers on the platform as a larger percentage of their annual sale was made during that period. A lot of companies and businesses earn roughly about 60% to 70% of their yearly sales during the holidays.

So, why must we prepare well? Because if we don’t, we run the risk of losing a lot of money. We don’t want that, do we? I know I don’t.

PS: Debit notifications make me cringe!

It’s a no-brainer, most of the major holidays are concentrated within the last couple of months I the year. Thanksgiving Day, Black Friday, Cyber Monday, Green Monday, Christmas Day, and the Boxing Day spin-off are all during these months.

That’s a lot of money-making opportunities if you ask me!

People would give gifts to their loved ones to show much they care about them.

Print-on-demand products are very unique, customizable, and presentable. These make them a perfect gifting option all season long.

An increase in demand for these products equals an increase in sales and profit for us sellers so we can smile at our banks. And this is not me trying to sweet talk you. I made over 5-figure last year on Amazon and Etsy during this period in 2019.

For Etsy, I started my sale in October last year and managed to rack up over 3-grand with less than 1000 products. Cool, right?

You can trust me to lead you through this process of how I had a great figure and how you can even make more. The Q3 can be very quiet, but you shouldn’t. You should have a rock-solid plan for these holidays so that you can make the most of this lucrative period.


Your Target Audience and Niche

When the right products meet the right audience, cash begins to flow in! It’s not rocket science. You cannot sell big if you don’t offer your products to the customers who actually need them.

As a print-on-demand marketer, one of the best things you can do for yourself is to define your target audience. This would help you tailor your products to suit their possible needs and the trendy demand in the niche.

There are several audiences and niches that you target. You can offer your products to moms, dads, daughters, sons, husbands, wives, family members, lovers, and friends. And the fine truth is that everybody in the world falls into one or two of these categories.

You can also target niches such as professionals. An engineer mug, a lawyer mug, or a nurse mug, something like that.

However, looking at how 2020 went down, I would recommend that you create products for frontline workers.

This way, most people who have them as friends, colleagues, family, or lovers will see your product as a little way of saying thank you to them for their fight against the COVID-19 pandemic.

It is a very great way to show love and respect.

So, due to the times we are, a mug with “I’m Superman a Doctor” has the likelihood to rack up more sales in that niche than other professionals.

Target niches with health workers, education & childcare, public service workers, grocery store workers, fire service, transport, and delivery agents – all of which are considered frontline workers.

Create print-on-demand products around them and you might just be in for a treat in this Q4.

The *big secret* is to create broad niches as well as narrow niches. Carry out in-depth research to find out other potential buyers.

When creating your product, think like a buyer. Take out every personal bias and create a product that the members of that niche will fall head over heels for at first sight.

That there is a big secret.


The Key Dates in Q4

A major part of your preparation is to know the exact dates where sales are likely to peak. While most sellers in the US know all of these dates, international sellers like me might need to do some research, mark our calendars, and set reminders.

Some of the popular ones are well known. Like, who doesn’t know that Christmas is on the 27th of December? Or, is it the 24th of December?

Hahaha… I’m just kidding. It’s on the 25th of December.

It is crucial for you to know the rest. Here are some of the vital dates in the Q4 that every print-on-demand marketer must know:

  • Halloween – October 31st
  • Veterans Day – November 11th
  • Thanksgiving – the 4th Thursday of November.
  • Black Friday – the day after Thanksgiving
  • Cyber Monday – the Monday after the Thanksgiving
  • Green Monday – the 2nd Monday of December
  • Free Shipping Day – December 14th
  • Christmas Day – December 25th
  • Boxing Day – December 26th
  • New Year Day – January 1st

DO NOT MISS ANY OF THESE VITAL DAYS!

If you miss any of these vital days, honestly, you have wasted your Q4. You don’t want to do that. So, mark your calendar now!

People spend more during these periods. For instance, an average shopper spends over $400 on a typical black Friday. You will be doing yourself a lot of good by preparing your products before each of these mega-days.


What Products To Sell?

There is a great difference between having products to sell and knowing the best products to sell. Read that again.

There are different types of print-on-demand products. Coffee mugs, face masks, and T-shirts are just a few of them.

But when it comes to selecting the best product to sell during the holiday period, you must be strategic with what you put out.

The last quarter of the year is when winter sets in. So, a coffee mug is definitely going up for sale. You should also consider shot glass, travel mug, and hoodies.

While these products are perfect for the winter period, they also come in handy throughout the rest of the year.

In addition, they are classic gifts that you can get without breaking the bank. This makes it easy for customers to pick one for their friends, families, or themselves.

In the last Q4, I increased the selling price of my coffee mugs from $19.95 to $24.95. I also raised the price of my shot glasses from $12.95 to $16.95, and travel mugs from $24.95 to $29.95.

Guess what? I still made incredible sales. I was able to sell them well, even at that higher price. If you sell 1000 units, you will make an extra $5,000 from last-minute sales.

Although these items appear cheap, the massive increase in demand will increase your profit even with a slight change in price.

Face masks are fantastic choices in this Q4 because of the outbreak of COVID-19. People need to wear them to reduce the risk of contracting the disease. So, it is a wise decision to have them up for sales.

Check this Guide: How to Sell Face Masks and Other Print-on-Demand Products in Q3

The demand for face masks will be higher, especially during the holidays, because most people want to go to public places. Cinemas, parks, and other fun places will be filled with people who have been locked up in their homes for the good part of the year.

So, they will need to purchase face masks to protect themselves while still having fun.

Also, you will be making a great decision by listing the hoodie during this season.  Most people will need new ones to survive the harsh weather that comes with winter.


How to Prepare

Step 1, Step 2, Step 3 – Success Ladder

More than the want to make great sales, you must have an actual plan. An actionable one, in fact. Proper and strategic planning will help you take great advantage of the huge sales during the holiday season.

Here are some of the best ways to make maximum sales and profit during the Q4 period:

Find Many Quotes in Many Niches

Gone are those days when you have to sit down with a piece of paper and pen to come up with hundreds of quotes on your own.

What are we? 2010? 😜

The first step is to make a list of all the niches that you want to create products for.

Now conduct research based on the list. Let’s say you’ve got about 20 different niches on your list; you can get about 100 quotes for each. That’s about 2,000 different quotes waiting to be converted into an amazing print-on-demand product.

You can find amazing and funny quotes online. For more in-tune professional quotes, you can take quotes from books, movies, or authoritative figures in that field.

If you are feeling too lazy or just too occupied to do this yourself, you can delegate it to a team member or a paid researcher.

Create Designs

Come to think of it, why do people buy print-on-demand products? Is it because they don’t have a coffee mug? Or a hoodie?

Nope! People buy print-on-demand products simply because of the message on it.

This should tell you something: SIMPLE SELLS FASTER!

Yeah, you read right. Don’t try to create heavy or complicated designs. Products with simple text designs sell best because they are relatable, easy to read and carry captivating messages.

So, a captivating message plus simple design. That’s the secret ingredient of a great print-on-demand product. Legibility and clarity are the most important attributes of great product design.

Never sacrifice simplicity for aesthetics.

Except you have graphic design skills, you don’t have to do this bit yourself. There are several graphic designers that can easily whip up eye-catching designs for you on a low budget and in no time too.

But we recommend that you delegate it, even if you can do it yourself.

Knowing when to delegate tasks to experts is vital to your success as an entrepreneur. You can focus your energy on the things you know very well, such as finding a niche market and optimizing product titles and keywords.

Let other people help you with other aspects of your business, whether or not they are your strong point.

This principle is one of the sure ways of building a strong and sustainable brand that would remain relevant for a long time.

List New Products on Amazon and Etsy Every Day

There is no use having products that do not get to potential buyers.

To get your sales going, you must put your product in the face of buyers. Some of the best ways to do this are to list your new products for sale on Amazon and Etsy every single day.

Amazon and Etsy are unarguably part of the world’s biggest eCommerce platforms, if not the biggest. So, as an internet marketer, it would do you a lot of good to be conversant with these sites.

The more products you put up on these platforms, the more traffic you are likely to get. And more traffic means more possible sales.

Amazon and Etsy are the top marketplaces for gifts purchase in the US. Thousands of consumers visit these websites on a daily basis in search of different products.

Your best shot at increasing your product visibility and boosting sales is putting them up on these two platforms.

Just like the designs and research, you can also delegate your product listing to an expert in this field. Although this might cost you some money, it’d be worth it in the long run when you start making enough sales.

But with technology, everything becomes easier. You can take advantage of technology for uploading your products without hiring someone, saving you a lot of money in the process.

There are many systems out there that can help you publish your products with ease. One of the best is PODTurbo.

PODTurbo is an automated system that can be used to create and publish print-on-demand items to multiple marketplaces like Amazon and Etsy effortlessly.

Therefore, this system is your best bet for earning consistent passive income from your product sales.

Check the Products that can be Sold

Once the Q4 begins to set in, you need to keep your eyes peeled so that you can catch early trends in different niches.

This would help you to know the products you can sell.

When you notice a trend in a particular niche, you can create more products in that niche to make the most of it.

You can also note the products and designs that are doing exceptionally well in the market.

A particular quote can be attracting more purchases than others in the same product category. Here’s when you need to capitalize on it.

It’s good to scale up by adding the winning design to other products. But it’s also good to find more quotes on the selling niche and create more designs and optimize the product title and keywords to get more traffic.

In addition, it is important for you to pay attention to weekly sales and store circulars. This would help your understanding and familiarity with top brands as well as products that are making waves in the market.

This way, you can adopt an approach or idea from other brands to better your products and increase your sales.

A little tweak in design can make a lot of difference when it comes to POD business. Continuous research will keep you updated with the current trend. You can search online or other brands on Amazon and Etsy.

Searching Amazon, for example, can give you a bundle of ideas about the products you should be thinking about. Search for products that are earning great customer reviews. Pay attention to the comments. Use these remarks to improve your products to make them more attractive to your target market.

Additionally, it is safer to go for products that often do well in Q4 rather than one season wonders.

Check the Niche Market that You can Sell in and Create more Products

One of the best ways to get yourself prepared for the holidays is to recognize the thriving niche market.

This can be done by checking your sales stats. Once you can identify these niches, the next step is to create more products to serve the buyers there.

Once you have your products, start uploading them immediately to avoid a last-minute rush.

For instance, if you notice that “Doctor Mug” or “Nurse Mug” is gaining a lot of traction, you should start creating more products that would fit the niche.

In the same way, if you notice that dog or cat breed-related products are in vogue, you should put more focus on getting more products there.

Usually, the thriving niche in Q4 is family. Most people want to show their appreciation to their loved ones during this period.

They want to use the holiday season to remind their friends and families that they mean a lot to them. So, I would recommend that you create more products in this niche.

The professional niche comes close too because many firms will want to buy POD products to celebrate their best employees. Some employees will also want to use that season to appreciate their employers and team leaders.

When to Start Selling

First of all, let me put this out there, there is no specific time to make good sales!

What I mean is this; you don’t have to wait until the busy season and holidays – in anticipation of increased sales and higher prices – before you start selling.

Also, ensure that you have enough product for the holidays. But this doesn’t still mean that you should not sell now. Only that during these times, people are will to buy products for their loved ones even at a higher price.


It’s a wrap…

Phew! That was a lot of good information, right?

There are a lot of selling opportunities for print-on-demand products in Q4. It is very important for you to prepare in advance so that you can make the most of it.

Identifying your target audience and product niche will help you plan ahead. This way, you can create the right products to suit potential buyers’ needs.

You must also take note of the products to sell and when to sell them. Keep close tabs on the special days in the Q4 so you don’t miss out on golden opportunities.

If you have not been preparing, it’s not too late. Start making your quotes research. Get your product designs done and get your product out there immediately. I spoke about the PODTurbo and yes, I’ve made mention of it a number of times. You can try it out here.

Hopefully, you’ve gained one or two things from this guide. If you can get all of these in place, you should be just fine.

Hey! Don’t go back to a movie or something. Take an active step today.

Let me know in the comment section if you have any questions.

—Bank K.

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