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View Poll Results: Using a Print On Demand site? Which do like best?
Zazzle 24 19.35%
RedBubble 7 5.65%
CafePress 6 4.84%
Other? (Tell us about it) 15 12.10%
I don't POD, but want to see the poll result. 72 58.06%
Voters: 124. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 04-25-2010, 04:04 PM
Nate Nate is offline
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POD POLL: Zazzle, RedBubble, CafePress or ???

Comparison?
RedBuble - CafePress - Zazzle... ?

Indicate your preference in the poll, and if you like, post your experience and reasons for your choice.

I've had a RedBubble account for years (http://www.redbubble.com/people/nateowens)
There was very little activity... I had a bit more with Cafe Press, but have pretty well directed all my activity of late to Zazzle... I'm particularly fond of the way in which Zazzle displays the different products with the art on them.
So, I have a fairly extensive Zazzle store: Zazzle.com/NateOwens
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Old 04-25-2010, 08:11 PM
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Re: POD POLL: Zazzle, RedBubble, CafePress or ???

I voted Zazzle. Here are some of my thoughts (non-comprehensive -- I'm sure I'll forget stuff):

Zazzle -

Pros:

Better-than-average and more consistent sales volume, compared to my other sites. (Zazzle sales don't seem to rely on networking or socializing within the site, thank goodness. )

Set your own profit margin.

Very high-quality, larger prints available from moderate-sized files, massive prints from large files.

Beautiful print quality on paper products (prints, cards, stickers, etc.) with a nice selection of papers (poster, archival, canvas) available.

Multiple stores belonging to a single Zazzle member is allowed (encouraged?).

Acceptable processing/print/ship speed (about 1 week from end-to-end in the U.S.).

Frequent discounts and coupons. Scouring the 'net for Zazzle promos, before you order, can save you a bundle!

Zazzle prints are not the cheapest, but you definitely get what you pay for.


Cons:

High shipping costs.

Inconsistent print quality on merchandise other than paper and mousepads. (I've found that b&w, lighter colors and simpler, vector-type art produce better results on mugs, magnets, etc. Heavier, more saturated colors can become murky and shift. Your results may vary.) Currently, I only offer paper products and mousepads in my Zazzle stores.

Too many frame and mat choices. I imagine potential buyers saying, "Forget it; this is too hard!"

Inability to choose specifics for each print. For instance, I don't like most of my digital work to be printed on Canvas. Zazzle does not allow me to remove the option for Canvas prints. This irks me.

Posting or editing of items is clunky and time consuming. (But, I guess, worth it in the end.)

With so much 'novelty' merchandise available, Zazzle still doesn't feel like a true art site.


RedBubble -

[i]Pros:[/I]

Set your own profit margin.

Nice layout with easy navigation.

Easy to post; easy to purchase.

Very nice print quality.

Acceptable shipping times and costs to the U.S.

With the exception of clothing, no 'novelty' merchandise offered (yet).

Admin seems very open to community input.

Decent selection of printed merchandise available (see Matted Prints and Mounted Prints comments, in Cons, below).

Ability to choose specifics for each print. For instance, I don't like most of my digital work to be printed on Canvas. RB gives me the option to not make Canvas prints available.

Generally high standard of art exhibited, with a lovely, gallery-like front page.

The many, many RedBubble 'groups' seem to be very civilized. So far, I haven't run into any serious online 'drama' between Bubblers.

Cons:

Larger files required for anything but the smallest prints or greeting cards. I'm completely spoiled by Zazzle's ability to turn my 5mp photos into gorgeously vivid 16"x20" prints. Admittedly, I don't know enough about the different printing technologies to explain this phenomenon. I just know that RB can't (doesn't?) do the same.

Proliferation of 'groups'. It's nearly impossible to rack up a decent number of views of any work on RB, unless the work has been submitted to multiple 'groups'. This makes me think that most RB viewers are also RB members. I keep an itemized list, just to keep me participation in groups manageable.

No 'matte' finish available on mounted prints. I love RB's ready-to-hang prints mounted on Gatorboard, but HATE the 'hi-gloss only' finish.

Only one size of 'matted prints' offered. Why, RedBubble, why?

Too few frame and mat choices. I imagine potential buyers saying, "Is that all there is? Seriously?"


CafePress -

I'm not a fan. With CP I've had quality problems, packaging problems, customer service problems.

CafePress is off my POd radar.


Summary -

There's no 'perfect' POD site. They all take dedication and hard work to pay off. Posting, then just waiting for sales, will only lead to heartbreak (and, probably, financial disaster.) They all have strengths and weaknesses -- remember to order samples! It's only right that you have some idea of what your buyers will receive.

The key to POD, like any selling endeavor, is to market, market, market!

I'm a Zazzle fan -- for me, Zazzle provides the highest quality prints, cards, etc., with the highest number of sales. The ultimate winning combination!

EDIT: Forgot to say that sometime, soon, I intend to try out FineArtAmerica and ImageKind. I'm interested to see what they have to offer.

Last edited by EyeSpy : 04-25-2010 at 08:19 PM.
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Old 04-26-2010, 12:41 AM
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surreal surreal is offline
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Re: POD POLL: Zazzle, RedBubble, CafePress or ???

Quote:
Originally Posted by EyeSpy
I voted Zazzle. Here are some of my thoughts (non-comprehensive -- I'm sure I'll forget stuff):

Zazzle -

Pros:

Better-than-average and more consistent sales volume, compared to my other sites. (Zazzle sales don't seem to rely on networking or socializing within the site, thank goodness. )

Set your own profit margin.

Very high-quality, larger prints available from moderate-sized files, massive prints from large files.

Beautiful print quality on paper products (prints, cards, stickers, etc.) with a nice selection of papers (poster, archival, canvas) available.

Multiple stores belonging to a single Zazzle member is allowed (encouraged?).

Acceptable processing/print/ship speed (about 1 week from end-to-end in the U.S.).

Frequent discounts and coupons. Scouring the 'net for Zazzle promos, before you order, can save you a bundle!

Zazzle prints are not the cheapest, but you definitely get what you pay for.


Cons:

High shipping costs.

Inconsistent print quality on merchandise other than paper and mousepads. (I've found that b&w, lighter colors and simpler, vector-type art produce better results on mugs, magnets, etc. Heavier, more saturated colors can become murky and shift. Your results may vary.) Currently, I only offer paper products and mousepads in my Zazzle stores.

Too many frame and mat choices. I imagine potential buyers saying, "Forget it; this is too hard!"

Inability to choose specifics for each print. For instance, I don't like most of my digital work to be printed on Canvas. Zazzle does not allow me to remove the option for Canvas prints. This irks me.

Posting or editing of items is clunky and time consuming. (But, I guess, worth it in the end.)

With so much 'novelty' merchandise available, Zazzle still doesn't feel like a true art site.


RedBubble -

[i]Pros:[/I]

Set your own profit margin.

Nice layout with easy navigation.

Easy to post; easy to purchase.

Very nice print quality.

Acceptable shipping times and costs to the U.S.

With the exception of clothing, no 'novelty' merchandise offered (yet).

Admin seems very open to community input.

Decent selection of printed merchandise available (see Matted Prints and Mounted Prints comments, in Cons, below).

Ability to choose specifics for each print. For instance, I don't like most of my digital work to be printed on Canvas. RB gives me the option to not make Canvas prints available.

Generally high standard of art exhibited, with a lovely, gallery-like front page.

The many, many RedBubble 'groups' seem to be very civilized. So far, I haven't run into any serious online 'drama' between Bubblers.

Cons:

Larger files required for anything but the smallest prints or greeting cards. I'm completely spoiled by Zazzle's ability to turn my 5mp photos into gorgeously vivid 16"x20" prints. Admittedly, I don't know enough about the different printing technologies to explain this phenomenon. I just know that RB can't (doesn't?) do the same.

Proliferation of 'groups'. It's nearly impossible to rack up a decent number of views of any work on RB, unless the work has been submitted to multiple 'groups'. This makes me think that most RB viewers are also RB members. I keep an itemized list, just to keep me participation in groups manageable.

No 'matte' finish available on mounted prints. I love RB's ready-to-hang prints mounted on Gatorboard, but HATE the 'hi-gloss only' finish.

Only one size of 'matted prints' offered. Why, RedBubble, why?

Too few frame and mat choices. I imagine potential buyers saying, "Is that all there is? Seriously?"


CafePress -

I'm not a fan. With CP I've had quality problems, packaging problems, customer service problems.

CafePress is off my POd radar.


Summary -

There's no 'perfect' POD site. They all take dedication and hard work to pay off. Posting, then just waiting for sales, will only lead to heartbreak (and, probably, financial disaster.) They all have strengths and weaknesses -- remember to order samples! It's only right that you have some idea of what your buyers will receive.

The key to POD, like any selling endeavor, is to market, market, market!

I'm a Zazzle fan -- for me, Zazzle provides the highest quality prints, cards, etc., with the highest number of sales. The ultimate winning combination!

EDIT: Forgot to say that sometime, soon, I intend to try out FineArtAmerica and ImageKind. I'm interested to see what they have to offer.


Thanks for this wealth of information!!!
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Old 04-26-2010, 12:45 AM
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Re: POD POLL: Zazzle, RedBubble, CafePress or ???

For the most part, I have had excellent experiences with finerworks.com.


The quality of the prints has been well-liked by my customers (except when I first began using them and made incorrect choices of paper for certain carefully-detailed work.)


Their customer service is exceptionally fine!

I have listed prints for sale from finerworks.com, on ebay, and made quite a few sales.
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Old 04-26-2010, 01:52 PM
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Re: POD POLL: Zazzle, RedBubble, CafePress or ???

Quote:
The quality of the prints has been well-liked by my customers (except when I first began using them and made incorrect choices of paper for certain carefully-detailed work.)

Glad you brought this up, Nina.

Paper choice is key -- which is why I'm not sure it's a good idea to leave this choice up to customers. Being printed on canvas or soft, fiber-type papers (watercolor or rag paper, for instance) is the fastest way to ruin the look of many of my images.

This is one of the primary reasons I haven't yet listed my work at ImageKind. I need to re-read their info and see if paper options can be limited.
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Old 04-25-2010, 08:34 PM
Nate Nate is offline
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Re: POD POLL: Zazzle, RedBubble, CafePress or ???

ImageKind as I understand it has been acquired by CafePress.
Thanks for your great informed input.
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Last edited by Nate : 04-25-2010 at 08:36 PM.
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Old 04-25-2010, 10:09 PM
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Re: POD POLL: Zazzle, RedBubble, CafePress or ???

That's true, Nate. But, I think they've left a lot of IK intact. For instance, I think IK still offers archival prints which, last time I checked, CP did not.

I'll definitely have to check into that.

I hope you get lots of other responses to your poll. I know there's no such thing as a collective experience when dealing with any company . . . especially online! :-)
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Old 04-25-2010, 10:37 PM
Nate Nate is offline
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Re: POD POLL: Zazzle, RedBubble, CafePress or ???

Thank you ES
I have some things at ImageKind and have for some time.
Sold a few... little activity of late... probably need to replenish my stock there. http://nateowens.imagekind.com/
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Old 04-26-2010, 04:46 PM
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Re: POD POLL: Zazzle, RedBubble, CafePress or ???

Very interesting, thanks a lot for the info! (I'll vote when I have experience.)

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Old 04-28-2010, 10:33 AM
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Re: POD POLL: Zazzle, RedBubble, CafePress or ???

It seems like it's a good idea to give Zazzle a whirl!


I created a few products on Zazzle, just to give it a try awhile ago.

I think that creating a good-looking shop might be very challenging for me, as I am not savvy with HTML or other code.
*edit: I just observed that I am clueless as to put together a nice Zazzle shop.
oh, well - it's O.K.- not the worst thing in the world...

Thanks to all who have supplied feedback about Zazzle here and on other threads.

Last edited by surreal : 04-28-2010 at 10:42 AM.
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Old 04-28-2010, 11:51 AM
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Re: POD POLL: Zazzle, RedBubble, CafePress or ???

My Zazzle shops are very simple, too. I let the art do the talkin'. ;-)

In the meantime, though, I market my Zazzle stores as enthusiastically as any others. Which means, they're on my biz cards, flyers, email sig, signage at my local exhibits, etc..

Online selling is all about letting potential buyers know where to find you.
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Old 04-28-2010, 11:54 AM
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Re: POD POLL: Zazzle, RedBubble, CafePress or ???

Quote:
Originally Posted by EyeSpy
My Zazzle shops are very simple, too. I let the art do the talkin'. ;-)

In the meantime, though, I market my Zazzle stores as enthusiastically as any others. Which means, they're on my biz cards, flyers, email sig, signage at my local exhibits, etc..
.....


O.K.
I just noticed that you have Zazzle stores as opposed to one Zazzle store.

May I see links to your stores?
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Old 04-28-2010, 01:28 PM
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Re: POD POLL: Zazzle, RedBubble, CafePress or ???

When I signed up with zazzle I found it very complicated and pretty much abandoned it until I began having trouble uploading images to Cafepress. The more I worked on zazzle the easier it became and now I find it quite easy to work with. You just need to spend some time on it and you will get the hang of it. It's not really necessary to know HTML to put together a decent looking shop, zazzle has options to easily change colors, upload your own top banner and add categories.

While my earnings at cafepress have been going down, my sales at zazzle are increasing and I'm now working on a second zazzle shop. So I definitely would recommend zazzle, especially when it doesn't cost anything.
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Old 04-28-2010, 02:29 PM
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Re: POD POLL: Zazzle, RedBubble, CafePress or ???

Quote:
I just noticed that you have Zazzle stores as opposed to one Zazzle store.

May I see links to your stores?

Sure, Nina. I disliked the cluttered look of a single store, so I split my merchandise into categories. Not sure if there are more stores to come, but sales increased (slightly, but climbing ) after I made the split.

I'm steadily, if slowly, increasing the inventory in each store. The stores are linked, for convenience, though I'm planning to switch from text links to image links:

http://www.zazzle.com/EyeSpy*
http://www.zazzle.com/art166cards*
http://www.zazzle.com/art166*

.
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Old 04-30-2010, 03:27 PM
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Re: POD POLL: Zazzle, RedBubble, CafePress or ???

Quote:
Originally Posted by EyeSpy
Sure, Nina. I disliked the cluttered look of a single store, so I split my merchandise into categories. Not sure if there are more stores to come, but sales increased (slightly, but climbing ) after I made the split.

I'm steadily, if slowly, increasing the inventory in each store. The stores are linked, for convenience, though I'm planning to switch from text links to image links:

http://www.zazzle.com/EyeSpy*
http://www.zazzle.com/art166cards*
http://www.zazzle.com/art166*

.




Thanks!
I like how you have linked your stores!


I now have 2 images that I have placed on many products.
Here is my store and you cannot see any of the images of products I created with my "owl" drawing.
http://www.zazzle.com/iamsurreal


I find Zazzle very time-consuming, as far as figuring out how to design stores. When time permits (if it ever does) I will try and create different stores for different products or designs.

I wish Zazzle was more intuitive.
I am used to Cafepress being an absolute breeze to work with.

Thanks again for your helpfulness.
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