Sunday, 4 January 2015

Redbubble VS Zazzle

When I was thinking of joining a print on demand website, I searched for comparisons to find out which to start with, and settled with Zazzle. Today I am going to share some of the things I have liked and disliked about both these websites thus far, mainly their usability but also how artist friendly they are. I hope my experiences can help you decide where you will start your POD journey. :)

Now before I joined Zazzle, I was quite skeptical about the whole POD selling style. The user agreement, royalty rates and usability were things that I was concerned about. I knew for sure that I wanted to maintain the rights to my own images, to set my own royalty rates and to be able to put my designs on products hassle free.

The good thing about both Zazzle and Redbubble is that you maintain the rights to your images. When you sign up for these websites you grant them the right to print your images on their products, and to use your designs in advertisements if applicable. When you remove your designs from these websites, that terminates the user agreement and Zazzle and Redbubble will not be able to use your designs anymore.

Redbubble and Zazzle both allow you to set your own royalty rates, which is good. The only downside to this is that the products on both these websites are pricey to begin with, and high prices might dissuade people from buying, or encourage them to buy only during sales. Keep in mind that your designs are unique - if someone really really likes it, they will buy it, regardless of what so-and-so's item is priced at!

As for usability, both are relatively easy to use. I actually found Redbubble very easy to start up... I am not sure if it is because I tried it after I had learned Zazzle.
Zazzle has a more in depth customization system. You can either add items individually or you can use quick create. Both of these options allow you to adjust your artwork to your liking, change your background colour, add text, etc.
It did take me quite a long time to get zazzle's customization system figured out, and I am still learning new tricks as time goes by.
Redbubble on the other hand has less options for customization, and since there is less you can do with your artwork on a product it takes less time. I do like how easy it is to add things here, and that they group similar products together. The products look eye-catching and professional in the preview, which is a nice bonus.

As of today I still prefer zazzle, even though it takes me a lot longer to upload products there.
What I like about Zazzle that Redbubble lacks is the customization. I like that I can pair different design elements and template fonts together to create unique designs that people can customize themselves.
The other thing I love about Zazzle that Redbubble does not have (and I have mentioned this one before) is the ability to tile images. I love to pattern my illustrations. Zazzle lets me upload a smaller pattern and tile it to fit the whole design. If you are uploading a pattern on Redbubble, you have to tile it yourself in photoshop or illustrator, and upload that huge file. Most of the time my computer can't handle making a file of this size, so I am unable to put my designs on everything.

Right now this is still a hobby with potential for me, so my decision is partially based on how much fun I have creating on each website, and Zazzle wins out in that regard. :) There are things I have been noticing about Redbubble that makes me feel like I will have more success there, but that is something for another post.

Maybe in the future I will add another POD site to the mix, who knows? (I am open to suggestions!)

I would love to see your online shop, feel free to share it here!