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The Rise of PODtomatic

10 min read

The easiest way to build a successful print-on-demand business with free traffic is to keep adding new products to your Amazon or Etsy accounts every day.

You have to create thousands of products in thousands of niches and try to tap untapped markets.

Many small and narrow niches have just a few competitors, and your products can be ranked at the top of the page easily.

When you make sales from your products, you can scale up by adding more products in these niches, use your best-selling designs to create other products, designate products as Amazon FBA (if you sell on Amazon), or scale up using Facebook or Google Ads.

Rinse and repeat.

It’s as simple as that.

I’ve done this for years, and my sales from print-on-demand products have been increasing every year.

But many years ago, when I was just getting started, I hired two virtual assistants to do the work for me. One was a graphic designer. The other person uploaded products.

I paid thousands of dollars to these two people to list over 60,000 products in my Amazon account.

I discovered that the work is easy and repetitive.

It’s about creating simple designs, using them to create products, and uploading the products to Amazon or Etsy.

I figure it would be great to build a robot to handle this work.

I’m a computer nerd, so I’m fascinated by automation. If any work can be done by a robot, I’ll find a way to use or build one.

A few years ago, I built my first software, “PODTurbo”, to automate many of the tasks in the print-on-demand process.

I released the tool to the public and many sellers joined my crew.

To date, the tool has made over $600,000 for our sellers.

I wrote a story about this software a few months ago. You can read it here: The Rise of PODTurbo.

This year, I wanted something to create something even more automated than PODTurbo.

Although PODTurbo can upload tons of products in a short time, we still need to create the designs ourselves.

I used to hire a designer to create designs and upload them to PODTurbo for me.

But now I’m too too lazy to do even that.

That’s how PODTurbo’s little brother was born.

His name is PODtomatic.

In this post, I’d like to share the story of how he was created.


What is PODtomatic, and how he is different from his older brother, PODTurbo?

PODtomatic is basically a fully automated print-on-demand system that will choose niches and products, create designs and product mockups, and automatically upload them to Amazon and Etsy.  

You don’t have to do anything except connect your marketplace accounts to the system.

(Well, that’s the ideal. At this early stage, there are a few glitches we need to iron out, and we’ll need help from our members to improve the system.)

How is PODtomatic different from PODTurbo?

PODTurbo is a system that helps you upload products faster and more easily. You create designs and enter product info (like product titles, keywords, etc.) into a .CSV file and upload it to the system.

When the system gets the product info and designs from the user, it creates product mockups and uploads them to the connected marketplaces automatically.

In contrast, with PODtomatic, you don’t have to create designs or prepare the product info in .CSV format. The system does all those boring tasks for you.

It selects niche markets, finds quotes, creates designs, comes up with product titles and keywords, creates products, and uploads them to the marketplaces. You don’t have to a thing.

PODtomatic is for people who don’t have time to do the work and are okay with simple designs – that is, people who are very lazy but want to upload any products to the marketplaces to make some money.

“Just make me some money. I don’t care what my products look like. I can wait. Just do the work for me.”

PODTurbo is for people who want their products to have nice designs, want their products uploaded with highly optimized product titles and tags, and have the time to do some work themselves.

“I don’t want ugly products in my store. All of them must be beautiful and very professional. I’m willing to do the hard work. I just want to use a tool to distribute my products to many marketplaces.”


The PODtomatic Story

It all began with mistakes…

The idea for PODTurbo – the older brother that’s helped our sellers generate over $600k – is rooted in a few mistakes my Virtual Assistant made a few years ago.

As I said, I used to have two people upload products for me every day.

One was a graphic designer who created designs. Another VA used these designs to create products in Gearbubble and upload them to Amazon.

I paid these two people $250 a week to create and upload 750 products for me.

It cost me $0.33 per product to upload.

Hiring these two people to upload 30,000 products a year for me cost me around $10,000 a year.

That’s a lot of money, right?

Nah. Actually, this was cheap.

If you go to freelancing websites, you’ll find it’s difficult to find freelancers who will work for this rate.

The business ran well. I rarely needed to do anything.

My team did most of the work for me. I just had to check my sales stats and do market research.

When I got paid by Amazon, I reinvested it in my team so they could upload more products and build my POD empire.

Money in, money out.

The passive income I made from Amazon was increasing every month.

Everything seemed great, until one day…

I got a notification from Amazon that my products contained trademarks.

The Amazon and Target logos were on two of my coffee mugs.

Logos are trademarks…

And my account got suspended.

I was very disappointed. I hadn’t sold either of these mugs.

But they were why Amazon suspended my account.

Luckily, I managed to get it back.

And that’s what sparked the idea for PODTurbo.

PODtomatic began in a similar way.

It also started with a mistake.

It wasn’t a serious one that got my account suspended.

As I said earlier, if you have PODTurbo, you still have to create or hire a graphic designer to create designs for you.

Then, you need to prepare the product info in a .CSV file and upload it to the system.

My wife helped me review the designs before I uploaded them to PODTurbo.

But my wife always found typos.

My graphic designer was always forgetting to add words or was misspelling words in the designs.

Only then did I realize that way too many of the designs I’d hired my graphic designer to create many years ago contained typos.

Those designs would never sell because of those misspelled words.

My wife spent hours checking the designs and sending them back to the graphic designer for revision. She was very annoyed because there were so many typos.

(Trust me, you dont want to make your wife annoyed!)

I was mad, too. It had taken me a long time to get these designs to upload to PODTurbo.

I thought it might be better if we had a system that could create designs. Then my wife wouldn’t need to spend time checking them and my work would be faster.

Also, my sales stats told me that simple text designs sell BEST. We didn’t have to create complex designs.

If you check the top-selling novelty coffee mugs on Amazon, you’ll see that most of them contain text-based designs.

These kinds of designs can be created by a robot.I decided to create new software to do all the work for me.

I designed a system that is VERY EASY to use.

I came up with a concept I call Connect & Forget”.

I thought it would be cool if people could build a print-on-demand business in just 5 or 10 minutes.

Not 5 or 10 minutes a day or a month. But in 5 or 10 minutes in total!

I explained my ideas to my developer. He thought I was crazy.

He said,Its cool, but itll require lots of work at the backend. Itll be very complex to build.”

He added,We need to create a system that will choose a niche, find a quote, create a design, do keyword research, create a product title, create a product, and upload it to the marketplaces.

Its possible, but it will take time to build. Are you sure you want to do it?”

Lets do it,” I told him.

During the project, my developer had to work very hard for days and nights. It was very complex and there were many details in the system.

I was the product tester. Some days, we tested until nearly 5 o’clock in the morning.

Anyway, after too many days of us getting hardly any sleep, it’s finally ready to go!

Right now, if you get access to PODtomatic, all you have to do is log in to the system and connect your Amazon and Etsy accounts.

Then forget about it.

Just let the system upload products for you, every day, over and over.

It’s the same thing I did with my team over the past few years.

Except now you dont have to deal with people. No more human error. No more $$$$$ spent on hiring costs.


How to Use PODtomatic to Build a Print-on-Demand Business for the Long Run

I’ve had some interesting questions about PODtomatic.

One of them is: If I buy PODtomatic and start using it, how much money will I make?”

Honestly, I don’t have an estimate yet. We just launched it publicly and don’t have any sales stats from users.

But I’ll answer using my own stats.

Right now, I have over 100,000 products in my Amazon account.

If you recall what I wrote earlier, many of those products contained misspelled words, and people wont buy those products.

Still, I’ve made around $50-70k annually in the past few years, and my income keeps growing every year.

But to be honest, most of my sales are from FBA products – the coffee mugs, shot glasses, and travel mugs I send to the Amazon warehouse.

My sales are roughly 60% FBA and 40% FBM.

(FBA is Fulfilled by Amazon, in which you have to send products to the Amazon warehouse so Amazon can ship them for you. FBM is Fulfilled by Merchant, which is the PODtomatic model.)

You can make sales from FBM products uploaded by PODtomatic.

Im pretty sure youll be able to earn more than $997 to cover the cost of PODtomatic!

But I think there’s a better way. This way, you just do a bit more work and much better results. 

Use PODtomatic to find winning products for you.

That’s what I always do. Once my team has uploaded many products to my store, I check which ones generate the most sales.

Then, I’ll send these products in bulk to the Amazon warehouse.

When your products become FBA products, they are much easier to sell because they gain some benefits from Amazon.

And that’s the ultimate reason for using PODtomatic: to find winning products and make a lot more profit from them.

When you have many FBA products in your account, you can make lots of passive income consistently and expect to bring in 4-5 figures a year.

But don’t expect an immediate flood of sales from PODtomatic.

The fact is, when youre selling FBM products, its difficult to beat FBA products in terms of sales.

With FBA, your products are packed and shipped by Amazon. Amazon will give better rankings for these products.

These products will also bear the Amazon Prime Badge, which Amazon Prime Members love because they get special benefits like discounts and free shipping.

FBA products are much easier to sell than FBM products.

So, if you think PODtomatic can make you lots of money – like 5-6 figures a year – without you having to do anything, then this software is not for you.

But if you expect your passive income to grow slowly and youre willing to work to send winning products to Amazon to make more sales, then PODtomatic is for you.

And yes, thats sales from Amazon only.

Don’t forget that PODtomatic also upload products to your Etsy account. You can make many sales on this marketplace as well.

That’s what you can expect from PODtomatic.

The more products you have, the more passive income youll earn.

The more winning products you have, the more consistent your passive income will be.

You might feel like what I wrote is counterproductive, as if I dont want you to buy PODtomatic.

Well, I think its important to tell you the truth about the product. Its not a get-rich-quick” scheme. Its a tool that needs time before it works for you.

Making passive income by selling print-on-demand products takes time, and you need to add new products consistently.

The more winning products you have, the more consistent passive income youll make.


Results From Our Members

Although we launched this software about a month ago, there are over a hundred sellers already make a sale! I’m really happy about this.

When we launched PODTurbo, the results came in a bit slower because people had to upload the products by themselves.

But PODtomatic uploads tons of products for them automatically, so many people made some quick sales.

Here are some of the people who made some sales using our software: 🙂


Fun Facts

Let me tell you some fun facts about PODtomatic!

  • Only three people are building PODtomatic. There is only one person who writes code for this entire system! Surprised!? Don’t be! So please forgive us if we’re slow to fix things and introduce new features. We might hire someone else soon.
  • Just like PODTurbo, we put the ‘Beta’ badge on the system and some members asked for a refund because of this. I kept for PODtomatic because I don’t want too many people using it right off the bat. If anybody wants to leave, they can go!
  • The reason I don’t want many people at the start is that it’ll force me to rush my team to find new quotes, fonts, etc., and feed them to the system so the system can upload tons of products for our members.
  • I issued many refunds before people asked for them. I did this because I think some people aren’t a good fit for the software.
  • Some people asked me a question like, “Hey, I have 60 products already. Why don’t I see any sales!? Your system is crap!” I issued a refund right away. Just 60 products in your account? Come on, man!
  • The first sale from the system came when our system had been opened for two days. Just a few products had been uploaded at the time.
  • There are some misspelled phrases and other issues with some of our product designs, but they have made our members some sales already.
  • I try to make automate everything in PODtomatic, but it turns out that many people still want to adjust parts of the system!
  • Anyway, this is a good thing. It helps me come up with new ideas. I won’t do everything you guys requested though 🙂

Conclusion

So far, so good!

My team and I have been very busy over the past few months. We have spent countless hours building this software to help many sellers make money by selling print-on-demand products.

Honestly, I didn’t expect many people would make their first sale quickly, because I know we need thousands of products in our accounts first to make sales.

Seems like PODtomatic works better than I expected!

Anyway, we’ll keep working hard to improve the system and make sure it can make many more sales for our crew!

—Bank K.

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