Printful vs Printify: Which Print-on-demand is Better?

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Sam Thomas avatar
Sam Thomas June 12, 2020

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Printful vs Printify: Which Print-on-demand is Better?

POD (Print-on-demand) business model has taken a blooming knock in the eCommerce industry in which is suitable for beginners looking to start up a business. Printify and Printful are two leading POD services that allow users to custom-print stuff like bags, hoodies, or T-shirts in just some simple steps. Choosing the right print-on-demand platforms is very important for a business owner and the success of the company.

It is always difficult to judge, which ranks better between the two top models mentioned. In this article, we will give you an in-depth comparison of Printful vs. Printify to help you see their pros and cons to take into account and run to the conclusion of the best option for your company.

Table of contents

What is Print on Demand?

Print-on-demand, also called POD, is an online process used by sellers to make custom-print products on an order basis or specific style. Sellers tend to work with a supplier to make this up. These products vary based on the order of selling companies. They may include T-shirts, bags, pants, caps, pillows, curtains, or hoodies.

Custom-print products
Custom-print products

The supplier is an online platform combining with the drop shippers to customizes labels products under the brands of sellers or customer’s design. You don’t need to pay for any fees until the product is sold to the market. Therefore, this is ideal for newbies to test a business idea. If you are about to build an audience via marketing strategy or campaign, POD is the best option for you to monetize your content.

There are various platforms providing POD service. Let’s compare the two most popular: Printful vs. Printify.

Read more:

What is Printify

Printify is a popular free print-on-demand dropshipping provider in Shopify App Store. Using Printify, you can not only create your products customized with your own designs but also process orders and ship them directly to your customers without a big deal of investment.

Printify is especially suitable for those who start approaching print on demand because it is super easy to use. In each step of the process, Printify guides you carefully. Let’s see how it works in the following steps:

Step 1: Create an account

First, you should click the “Get” button to get started with your account. Then, fill in all your information to create a new account

Step 2: Choose your products

One plus point of Printify is that it provides nearly 300 products range for you to choose from. You should decide which products you’d like to custom and sell to customers, then pick your favorites

Step 3: Upload your design

It’s time to drop in your design using design tools on Printify and its Mockup Generator. Moreover, you can also adjust the size, color and where to place your designs on the products

Step 4: Choose your printing partner

Next, you should consider which providers among multiple top-class ones to commit to based on quality, customization options, or price. It is highly recommended you test out the products carefully before the final decision

Step 5: Bring your product to your store

In this step, you can speed up the process by integrating with Shopify or Etsy. Set the price, description, and don’t worry about storing any inventory

Step 6: Selling

Firstly, click on the “Publish” button and wait for the first sale. Printify will take responsibility in the billing, manufacturing request, packaging, and shipping for you

Finally, it’s your only job to decide the marketing strategy. In general, Printify makes the process as simple as possible, which is suitable for anyone from those who are masters in technology to newbies trying to get used to POD service.

Printify makes the process as simple as possible
Printify makes the process as simple as possible

As mentioned above, Printify has a huge variety of products to choose from. They offer different categories, together with materials, sizes, cuts, sexes, or colors for each product. This useful feature makes it easy to find what you need. Some of its main categories include Clothes, T-shirts, Shoes, Home decorations, Accessories, Jewelry, Books, etc.

What is Printful?

Printful is a large company that runs production houses in both America and Europe. This large geographical scope helps it accomplish orders of customers quickly.

Similar to Printify, to begin the process, you also have to sign up and connect your store to Printful. Only by integrating, you can use its mockup generator to start customizing your products. The key reason is that print-on-demand is also any other dropshipping method. We also mentioned the mockup generator in the Printify process. The mockup generator is a design tool for you to create custom prints for your choosing products for those who don’t know. Using it means that you can apply many modern templates to build up your own attractive and high-resolution pictures.

Printful's large geographical scope helps it accomplish orders of customers quickly
Printful's large geographical scope helps it accomplish orders of customers quickly

There are also more than 200 products for users to choose from. Just pick your favorite ones from Printful’s POD items which you are about to upload on your online store. Here are some of its high-selling categories:

  • Clothing: t-shirts, hoodies, sweatshirts, leggings, shorts, tank tops, polo shirts, long sleeve shirts.
  • Accessories: stickers, phone cases, bracelets, necklaces.
  • Bags: tote bags, laptop cases, drawstring bags, backpacks, fanny packs.
  • Home & Living: coffee mugs, blankets, pillows, posters, canvas prints, bean bags, beach towels, embroidered aprons.
  • Collections: sportswear, streetwear, workwear, beachwear.

Printful also provides a simple guide when it takes care of the whole fulfillment process. Putting all your mockups together, Printful lets you import your product designs to your online store. Now it is high time communicating and promoting your designed products to your target customers and wait for success.

One different point from Printify is that The drop shipper has to pay for the fulfillment costs once an order is completed. Two business deals will be made an order anytime from customers for a print-on-demand product is happened. The first one is when you draw a pricing formula to set your profit margins. The subsequent one is charged by Printful, which is used to buy the product and settle the fulfillment fees.

Printful vs Printify: Ultimate comparison

To select the best option for your business, let’s come to 6 factors to compare two providers mentioned.

Printful vs Printify Features comparison

In this round of general features, it is easy to see that Printful takes the lead.

Printful is a platform that has an organized structure, classifies its service categories in brief. This feature helps users find it easy to use and choose from. Another rare feature of Printful, which hardly any other platforms offer, is its E-commerce photography service. This feature makes it suitable for those who care about the image’s quality, especially high-resolution to create the brand’s personas.

Although you have to pay for photography service, it offers discounts on bulk orders. Specifically, Printful gives you a 20% discount if your products need to be photographed and completed. Moreover, you do not have to worry about the time wasted on waiting for images for your products because Printful provides a storehouse of stock pre-made samples.

What’s more, Printful ensures same-day fulfillment for any orders made before noon thanks to its automated order processing solution. The final feature, which is also the best one we would like to mention is its pricing calculator that allows users to decide competitive retail prices.

On the other hand, Printify also has many useful features. One significant characteristic of it is a rich catalog of products. However, when it comes to design services, Printify makes its user disappointed because its graphic design options are not as noticeable as Printful’s. Printful steps up with this feature for business branding, promotions, and accessories. Printful will give you more samples based on your purposes by showing some of their impressive design works or a professional team of in-house graphic designers to customers on their official page.

Printful vs Printify Pricing comparison

When it comes to pricing, the most important factor to consider, Printful is more expensive than Printify. However, it seems to be worth it.

You have to pay for both Printful and Printify when it comes to picking the right solution. If you are hesitating that those platforms ask for any hidden fees, there are no worries because they are transparent with their pricing. A newbie doesn’t pay to create new account access to their platform. Moreover, you also don’t have to pay for membership or subscription fees.

Let’s see which platform is overall less cost-effective

Printful’s pricing plans

In general, Printful charges more than Printify but you will get high-quality printing products. The margins seem to be not as good as its competitor at first but if you look at long-term branding, it is much better to choose Printful to satisfy your customers.

At the beginning of setting up a store, you don’t have to pay because Printful is free for that step. However, it will automatically deduct a fee from the final order price when an item is sold. There are two transactions here. Firstly, you set the price of the products you would like to sell and charge your customer. Then, Printful charges you for the product and fulfillment. It means that when the platform charges you, the rest belongs to you.

Each customization has its price and the actual cost bases on the type of order and specification from customers.

Printful charges more than Printify but it's worth it
Printful charges more than Printify but it's worth it

Printful charges you a small amount of fee for white-label products. Besides, you can order to have your product tagged with inside labels, which include the garment’s size, material information, the manufacturer’s tag, or logo. You can also set a budget for Inside labels to build customer loyalty. To do it, you can simply choose a favorite label template and design it to fit your brand.

Moreover, another free service of Printful is making your brand’s logo design. Then you can print it on the packing slips. This logo design is used widely for customer engagement, issue discounts, and new product launching. But if you want to promote your products, you have to pay $0,75 for each order to print on pack-ins like business cards, stickers, or flyers. A typical sales trick many businesses use to advertise their brand on the market and make them visible to more customers is personalizing the label. Printful provides this service and charges $2.49 for each label.

Some of the other services that cost include:

  • Outside label – $2.49 per label
  • Long sleeve print- $ 5.95 per sleeve
  • Short sleeve print- $ 2.49 per sleeve
  • Embroidered logo- $2.95 per additional placement

You have to pay for most of the services provided by Printful but it also gives you pricing strategies to help you in business works. One impressive tool of it is profit calculator which shows you the effects of price on your profit margin. From that, you will understand more about pricing products and how much to expect in net profit per product.

Printify’s pricing plans

The overall price of Printify is cheaper, which means a high margin for sellers. It provides three unique plans, which include one free plan for those who want to test it out first.

Printify provides three separate pricing plans
Printify provides three separate pricing plans

Let’s evaluate each plan to see what is included in them and which one is suitable for you.

Printify Free Plan

This plan is recommended for those who just start with the dropshipping business and do not regard POD as their long term job. You want to test first before officially starting, or you are having no or few sales per month, this plan is perfect for you.

You can upload as many as possible to your online store because the product design number is unlimited. You can integrate with 5 stores per account. Moreover, what you can get by using Printify free plan are:

  • Mockup generator
  • Integration with Shopify, Etsy, eBay and more
  • Manual order creation
  • 24/7 merchant support
  • Self-serve help center

Printify Premium Plan

This plan is for those who want to do POD business for the long term. In addition to having all free plan features, the Premium plan provides five more stores which makes it suitable for merchants with many stores. It charges $29 per month but its benefit is the 20% discount on all products ordered. Moreover, using this plan means that you can access to sell personalized products in your store.

Printify Enterprise Plan

This plan is a perfect match for big companies that receive thousands of orders per day and want custom integration and features. One plus benefit of it is its customer support team who is always ready to help sellers solve any pitfalls. What’s more, users of this plan are allowed to post on any new features as they wish.

To grasp all these benefits, you have to pay more than two left plans and contact them for subscribing instead of applying from the pricing page.

Some of its advanced features may include:

  • Unlimited stores per account
  • Early access to new features
  • Custom API integration
  • Dedicated account manager
  • Branded customer support
  • Custom order import
  • Up to 20% discount on all products
  • Plus all free plan features

In this round, Printify seems to take the lead because of its cheap price overall and three pricing plans suitable for all businesses.

Printful vs Printify Integration comparison

Both providers have in-built APIs to let users integrate with other eCommerce platforms. These provided third-party services will help you promote your store in POD networks.

Similar to Printify, Printful also integrates with Shopify and WooCommerce. The integration list of Printful is much longer with multiple famous names like WordPress, Wix, Squarespace, Ecwid, PrestaShop, Gumroad, ShipStation, 3dcart, Weebly, Bigcartel, Magento, Launch or some marketplaces like Amazon, eBay, Wish, Storenvy, Inktale, Bonanza. You can choose from this list to connect with your store for selling products more effectively

On the other hand, Printify has fewer platforms but it makes headway for other product listing platforms such as Amazon, Storenvy, Inktale, Wish, and Bonanza.

To sum up, in terms of number, Printful does better. So if you are about to communicate your products to customers via other marketplaces, Printify is not for you.

Printful vs Printify Fulfillment and Shipping cost comparison

Fulfillment process and shipping cost also take important roles because your business can be in slow sales if shipping takes longer than expected.

For Printful, once an order is made, the process begins. It takes you about less than 1 week to make apparel products while the time is just 2-5 days for non-apparel products. The shipping cost and time, of course, will depend on where to ship the products to. It is estimated that one order will last about 4 business days.

Here is the shipping cost for the first product and additional product based on locations customers want to ship to:

First product

  • USA: $3.99
  • Europe: $4.39
  • Canada: $6.49
  • Australia/ New Zealand: $6.99
  • Worldwide: $5.99

Additional product

  • USA: $1.25
  • Europe: $1.09
  • Canada: $1.25
  • Australia/ New Zealand: $1.25
  • Worldwide: $1.25

It is recommended to include the shipping in the retail price but you can also let your customer do the calculating task. The geographical area of the customer will decide the custom fees.

Also working with top carrier companies and local fulfillment companies to help drop shippers sell products to many locations in the world, the time taken for shipping solutions is longer because they have fewer center taking care of fulfillment:

  • USA: 7-15 business days
  • Canada: 10- 15 business days
  • International: 10-30 days

Unlike its rival which updates the shipping rates during checkout, Printify doesn’t inform much about the time for the manufacturing process. However, it provides a faster solution for users of the Advanced Shopify plan. In this round, Printful is the winner again due to its convenience

Printful vs Printify Print quality comparison

Before choosing any platforms to start out, let’s calculate their printing qualities. It is understandable as one of the most crucial considerations on POD service. Let’s take a look at both platforms to compare them.

Printful – Print Quality

Undoubtedly, Printful has better qualified printed products since it invested a large amount of $20 million in printing equipment, machines, warehouses, and graphic designers to make your products look good and maintain them in both short- and long-term status.

Printing equipment Printful uses to print products include:

  • Kornit series printers and inks for DTG apparel
  • Happy and Tajima embroidery machines for hats
  • SubliJET HD ink for mugs
  • Epson series printers and inks for wall art
  • Mimaki UV printers and inks for phone cases
  • Mimaki series printers and inks for cut & sew and sublimation products

Printify – Print Quality

The printing quality of Printify is still good in the first some months before washing many times. The apparel products turn faded and crack, the color changes lighter and the overall look is not the same as it was before. The reason for this is Printify acting as a middleman. They are not the direct printer but source this service from 3rd party companies

Therefore, in terms of print quality, Printful is the best choice for you

Printful vs Printify Packaging & branding comparison

Two platforms allow you to print the brand logo on the packaging but the contents including are different. Now, we will show you about their packaging and branding

Printful Packaging & Branding It is a white label so the branding cannot appear on the shipment packaging. However, you can upload your custom brand logo to print on the shipping label and outside of the package.

Some of the information you should keep in mind:

  • Upload your own “3 x 2” logo
  • The background for the logo must be white or black
  • Custom inside and outside label costs $2.50
  • Packaging slip will also be included in your product
  • Your customer will receive a white polybag

Luckily, customers of Printful users also get packing slips with their customized messages.

See the sample below as an example of how it looks like

Sample of Printful's package slip
Sample of Printful's package slip

Printify Packaging & Branding

Printify also provides white-label which means there will be no branding on the package. On difference from Printful is that Printify’s shipping label includes your store name as a text, not a logo. Thanks to its print providers like DTG2GO or Fifth Sun, Printify let you print neck label on your products.

Printify shipping label example
Printify shipping label example

Printful vs Printify: Which is better?

The battle between two POD platforms is not just which one is better but which one is more suitable for you. Each platform has both own advantages and disadvantages; let’s dive in to find your best option.

Pros and Cons of Printful

Pros of Printful

  • A large number of products to choose from
  • More integration options
  • An automated order fulfillment solution
  • Fast turnaround time
  • Higher printing quality
  • Many warehouses located in various countries
  • Easy to use
  • More support options and chances to join the community
  • Package boxes and slips with brand logo
  • Large customer base

Cons of Printful

Its only minus point is that Printful is a bit expensive. It means you need to search your customer base to determine the suitable price for them to spend on custom branded products.

Pros and Cons of Printify

Pros of Printify

  • Higher margin
  • Flexible pricing plans
  • Cheaper products
  • Low shipping rates
  • Large number of products
  • Option to choose your printing provider

Cons of Printify

  • Fewer integrations
  • Limited branding services
  • Low printing quality for the long run

Visit Printful

Visit Printify

Summary

In conclusion, Printful takes the lead in almost all round. However, it doesn’t mean Printify is not effective. Each has its pros and cons to take into account. Therefore, you take a stroll on the Internet to search for more about each solution and test them separately to find your best option.

The POD service has become more popular. We hope this post gave you a summary of POD service, the definition of Printful and Printify, and an in-depth comparison of two giants, which helps you choose the most suitable one for you and your company. Good luck!


Helen
About Author: Helen
Hi! I'm Helen. I am a content marketer at Avada Commerce who is into music, writing, reading, traveling, and discovering new things. Also, I have been purchasing international communication and digital marketing for 4 years. I’m ready to help customers find solutions for their troubles, especially in business development
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