How to Sell Print-on-Demand on eBay

Ever dreamt of starting your own business to make money online but got cold feet thinking about the startup costs? I’ve been there too, and guess what? There’s a way to make money online without emptying your pockets.

Here’s where print-on-demand and eBay come in. A duo is like salt and pepper in the business world. You list your custom products on eBay, and they only get made when someone hits “buy.” No upfront costs, no unsold inventory. Plus eBay has such a large audience, that there is no limit to what products you want to sell.

And the best part? Getting started is a breeze. Seriously, all you gotta do is create your accounts, link ’em up, create some cool designs, slap ’em on products, and boom—you’re in business.

So why’s this combo a winner? It lets you dip your toes into entrepreneurship without diving headfirst into debt. You get to flex your creative muscles while eBay and your print-on-demand service handle the nitty-gritty.

So, buckle up! By the end of this guide, you’ll be all set to embark on your journey and make money online with print-on-demand on eBay.

How to Sell Print-on-Demand on eBay: Step-By-Step

Starting an eBay print-on-demand business can seem daunting, but don’t worry, we’re about to break each step down into digestible nuggets.

Quick Overview Of The Steps

  1. Setting Up Your eBay Account: You need to set up your eBay seller account. This is the face of your business, so choose an eBay shop name that reflects your brand and resonates with your target audience.
  2. Find Your Niche: You’ll need to identify a specific market you want to target. This should be based on your personal interests, trending topics, and or a gap in the market.
  3. Creating Your Designs: Once you’ve identified your niche, start creating unique designs that will appeal to your target audience. You can create these designs yourself, hire a designer, or use templates.
  4. Choosing Your Print-on-Demand Supplier: A good production partner is key to your business’s success. Consider factors such as product range, print quality, pricing, and shipping options when making your decision.
  5. Listing Your Products on Your eBay: Once your designs are ready, it’s time to list your products on your eBay shop. You’ll need to include detailed descriptions and high-quality images on your listing to attract customers.
  6. Marketing Your eBay Store: It’s time to bring the customers. Use social media, SEO, and other marketing strategies to drive traffic to your eBay store. Remember, the more visibility your shop has, the more sales you’re likely to make.

Remember, starting a print-on-demand business is a journey, not a destination. Each of these steps will take time and effort, but with the right strategies and hard work, you can build a successful POD eBay business.

Now let’s jump into the nitty gritty of How to Sell Print-on-Demand on eBay.

1. Getting Started with eBay

If you’ve never sold anything on eBay before, don’t sweat it. I’m here to guide you through the process.

Getting started with eBay includes 2 major steps, creating your account and understanding their policies and fees.

Setting up your eBay seller’s account is pretty easy, you create an eBay business account you want your business to be run on. The more important part of this step is understanding their fees and policies. But don’t worry, we’ll take you through a brief rundown to get you going.

1. Set Up Your eBay Account:

Create an eBay business account

1. Creating your business account: First things first, you need an eBay account. Head over to eBay’s homepage and click on the “Register” link at the top of the page. You’ll need to provide some basic information like your name, email address, and password. Easy peasy!

2. Create a killer profile: Your seller profile is like your online business card. It’s the first thing customers see when they visit your store, so make it count! Add a catchy store name, a compelling description, and a professional-looking profile picture. Remember, first impressions matter!

2. Familiarize Yourself with eBay:

Before you start selling, it’s important to understand eBay’s fee structure. eBay charges a small fee for each listing and takes a percentage of the final sale price. Make sure to factor these fees into your pricing strategy.

ebay seller policies

eBay has a set of policies that all sellers must follow. These include rules about what you can and can’t sell, how transactions should be handled, and how to interact with customers. Make sure to read through these policies to avoid any hiccups down the line.

And voila! You’re now an official eBay seller. But we’re just getting started.

2. Finding Your Niche

Niche selection vinn diagram

Next, it’s time to choose your niche. A niche is a specific segment of the market that you plan to target with your products. Your niches will encompass all of the print-on-demand products you will be selling and what will be on them.

When selecting a niche, consider the following:

– Your Interests and Passions: Choose a niche that you’re genuinely interested in. This will make it easier for you to create designs and market your products. Plus, customers can often tell when a business owner is passionate about what they’re selling, and it can make your brand more appealing.

For example, if love jewelry, consider opening a custom jewelry store, but if you’ve never worn jewelry in your life it probably wouldn’t fit too well. Pick something you know and love.

– Market Demand: Check the marketplace to see what other sellers are selling that you’re considering. See what products they have and what you think is missing to determine if there’s a place for you in the market. If you see a market that is extremely overloaded (like cat tees), maybe you should look for something different.

– Profit Potential: Some niches may be more profitable than others. Consider what prices people will pay for your products and the potential size of your customer base.

Remember, finding the right niche is a balance between choosing something you’re passionate about and something that has market demand. It might take some time and research, but finding your target market is a crucial step in setting up a successful POD Business.

If you’re still not sure about your niche, read about some of the top print-on-demand niche ideas.

With your niche selected, we can move on to choosing the right print provider for your eBay store.

3. Choosing Your Print-On-Demand Supplier

The service you choose will be responsible for printing your designs on products and shipping them to your customers, so you want to ensure they’re reliable and offer high-quality products.

There are several print-on-demand services to choose from, each with its own strengths and weaknesses.

Here Is What To Look For:

  • Product Range: Does the service offer the types of products you want to sell? This could include t-shirts, hoodies, mugs, posters, and more.
  • Print Quality: Look for reviews or order samples to assess the print quality. Your designs should look vibrant and sharp on the products.
  • Pricing: Compare the pricing of different services. Remember, the cost of printing and shipping will be deducted from your selling price, so it’s important to find a service that offers competitive pricing.
  • Shipping: Consider the shipping options the service offers. How long does it take for products to be delivered? Do they offer tracking? Can they ship internationally? How much does it cost?
  • Integration: Ensure your chosen print provider integrates with eBay. This will create the smoothest process for you and your customers and keep your hands off the orders.

Take your time to research and choose the right service for your needs.

If you want somewhere to start we recommend Printful or Printify. They offer the best consistent quality and service while also having a wide range of products. On top of that they are super beginner-friendly.

Printful is known for its extremely high-quality products, as well as its exceptional customer service. Printify is sometimes a hit or miss with quality, but you can get cheaper prices and they have more products to choose from.

Another option is to print the products yourself. While it takes more work, you can raise your profit margins by choosing a method of printing your products yourself. I won’t be going through this here, but I do recommend looking into it as an option.

Once you’ve chosen a print-on-demand service, the next step is setting up your online store.

5. Creating Product Designs

keep it simple tee

Alright, you’ve got your store set up and your POD supplier chosen, now it’s time for the fun part, creating the designs.

This is where you get to bring your ideas to life and create something that people will love. So, how do you actually make these designs?

If you’re artistically inclined, you can create your designs on graphic design tools such as Adobe Illustrator. However, if you’re not a wiz with Adobe (I’m not), it’s easy to use a tool like Canva online for free to create some pretty cool designs.

I recommend creating your own designs in the beginning as it’s a great way to be involved in creating your brand image and it keeps costs low.

Another option is to use pre-made design templates available on various platforms (Canva has these too). Just be sure to customize them to fit your own brand and avoid copyright issues. This is another great way to start.

editing T shirt in canva

However, if you still don’t want to create your own designs, don’t worry. You can hire freelance graphic designers from platforms like Upwork or Fiverr (which can be costly). Just be sure to clearly communicate your vision and expectations.

Regardless of how you get the designs, be sure they resonate with your audience, reflect your niche, and are HIGH QUALITY. Bad designs and low-resolution images can result in poor print quality, which can lead to unsatisfied customers and negative reviews.

canva shirt done
A Design I created on Canva in minutes using a template

Here are some tips on creating the designs yourself:

  • Know Your Audience: Figure out who you’re designing for. What’s their vibe? The better you know ’em, the better your designs will hit the mark.
  • Use the Right Tools: Grab user-friendly design software like Canva or Adobe Spark. They’ve got templates to make your life easy.
  • Keep It Simple: Less is more. A clean design can pack a punch, so no need to go overboard.
  • Use High-Quality Images: Ditch the blurry stuff. Crisp images make you look pro. Plenty of online spots to find ’em.
  • Experiment: Mix up colors, fonts, and graphics. See what sticks. It’s all trial and error.
  • Get Feedback: Show your designs to people you trust. Their two cents can be golden.

5. Create Product Listings

Now that you have everything ready, it’s time to list those sick products you made.

Your eBay listings are the display window of your store. It’s what the customers see first and what entices them to click and explore further. This will be your first impression for your customers, so make it count.

But wait, before you go to creating your listing on eBay, check if you can connect your provider with them, it makes this part a lot easier. Connecting eBay and your provider allows you to make your listings directly on your provider’s site, so you don’t have to copy and paste or deal with downloading all your product images.

create a listing on ebay

Product Titles and Descriptions: 

First things first, make sure those product titles and descriptions are clear, descriptive, and engaging. They should accurately represent your product and include relevant eBay SEO keywords to help your products show up in eBay’s search engine.

Quality Images

Images are arguably the most important part of your product listing. This is likely the first thing the customers will see, so they should be high-quality, well-lit, and showcase your product from various angles.

If possible, include images of your product being used in real-life situations. A good print-on-demand partner will have a mockup generator for your products, which makes high-quality images a breeze.

canva shirt done

Pricing Your Products

Prices from Printful’s listing creator

Look at the competition and see how your products compare in quality. Are you offering embroidery and they’re not? Are your designs higher quality? These are all reasons you can raise your prices over the competitor, just be sure to tell the customers why yours is better.

You also need to factor in the shipping costs, eBay fees, and any marketing you may have done into these prices.

Taking all of this into consideration when setting your prices will ensure you get the profits you are want with no unexpected surprises.


Similarly to you wanting to know how much you’re making, the customers want to see how much they’re paying for what. Be sure to clearly state your shipping policies, including costs, shipping methods, and estimated delivery times. Transparency is key.

Remember, your product listings are often the first interaction customers have with your eBay store. Make a good first impression, and you’ll be well on your way to making sales.

Speaking of making sales, let’s dive into how to market your products to drive those sales up.

6. Marketing Your Products

Alright, your print-on-demand store on eBay is up and running, and it’s looking fantastic! But setting up your store is only half the battle.

Now, it’s time to get the word out and make more sales!

Marketing is all about promoting your products and making them visible to customers. It’s about showing people why they need your products in their lives.

Let’s dive into how to market your print-on-demand products on eBay:

ebay ad service
  1. Use eBay’s Promoted Listings: eBay’s Promoted Listings is a powerful tool that can boost the visibility of your products. For a small fee, your listings can appear in prime spots on eBay’s search results, attracting more views and potential buyers.
  2. Optimize Your Listings for SEO: SEO, or Search Engine Optimization, is all about making your listings more visible on search engines like Google. Use relevant keywords in your product titles and descriptions, and provide detailed, accurate information about your products. The better your SEO, the more likely your products are to appear in search results.
  3. Leverage Social Media: Social media is a great way to promote your products and attract customers to your store. Share your products on platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and Pinterest, and engage with your followers. You can even run ads to reach a wider audience.
  4. Offer Excellent Customer Service: Never underestimate the power of excellent customer service. Respond to customer inquiries promptly, handle issues professionally, and go the extra mile to make your customers happy. Happy customers are more likely to leave positive reviews and recommend your store to others.
  5. Analyze and Adjust: Finally, continuously analyze your marketing efforts and adjust as necessary. What’s working? What’s not? Use eBay’s analytics tools to track your performance and make data-driven decisions.

Remember, marketing is an ongoing process. It takes time and effort, but the payoff is worth it.

With the right marketing strategies, you can attract more customers, make more sales, and grow your print-on-demand business on eBay. Now that your store is all up and running, let’s jump into some considerations for successfully selling on eBay.

Key Considerations For Successfully Selling Print-on-Demand on eBay

So, you’re creating awesome designs, marketing your products, and managing your business like a pro. But as you embark on this exciting journey, there are a few key considerations to keep in mind to ensure your success.

  1. Quality is King: Always ensure the quality of your products. Remember, your customers are buying your products based on the images and descriptions you provide. Make sure they get what they’re expecting, or even better, exceed their expectations! This will lead to positive reviews and repeat customers.
  2. Stay Consistent: Consistency is key to running a successful POD business. This applies to everything from the quality of your products and customer service to your branding and marketing efforts. Consistency builds trust and loyalty with your customers.
  3. Keep Innovating: The print-on-demand industry is dynamic and constantly evolving. Keep up with the latest trends and be ready to adapt and innovate. This could mean exploring new product types, trying out new design ideas, or experimenting with different marketing strategies.
  4. Customer Feedback is Gold: Listen to your customers. Their feedback can provide valuable insights into what’s working and what’s not. Use this information to improve your products, service, and overall customer experience.
  5. Patience and Persistence: Success doesn’t happen overnight. It takes time to build a brand, attract customers, and start making sales. Be patient, stay persistent, and keep pushing forward. Your hard work will pay off!

Remember, running a successful print-on-demand business on eBay is a journey, and it won’t happen overnight or even over a week. You need to be patient and persistent, just don’t give up.

How to Grow Your Print-on-Demand Business

You’ve got your print-on-demand store on eBay thriving, and you’re ready to take things to the next level. But how do you go from good to great?

Here are some strategies to help you excel in your print-on-demand business:

  1. Expand Your Product Range: One way to grow your business is by expanding your product range. If you’ve been selling t-shirts, why not add hoodies, mugs, or posters? Offering a wider range of products can attract more customers and increase your sales.
  2. Build a Strong Brand: A strong brand can set you apart from the competition and attract more customers. This involves creating a unique logo, developing a consistent style for your designs, and providing a consistent customer experience. Remember, your brand is not just about your products; it’s about the overall experience you provide to your customers.
  3. Leverage Social Proof: Social proof, like customer reviews and testimonials, can be a powerful tool to attract more customers. Encourage your customers to leave reviews, and showcase positive reviews on your product listings and social media channels.
  4. Invest in Marketing: As your business grows, consider investing more in marketing. This could involve running paid ads, collaborating with influencers, or hiring a professional to optimize your SEO. The more you invest in marketing, the more visibility your products will get.
  5. Analyze and Optimize: Use eBay’s analytics tools to track your performance and identify areas for improvement. Are there certain products that are selling well? Are there others that aren’t performing? Use this data to optimize your product range and marketing strategies.
  6. Provide Exceptional Customer Service: As your business grows, it’s crucial to maintain a high level of customer service. This includes responding to customer inquiries promptly, resolving issues quickly, and going above and beyond to exceed customer expectations.

Remember, taking your business to the next level requires a combination of strategic planning, creativity, and hard work. With these strategies, you’ll be a step ahead of the game when you start to grow.

Now that you know how to run the business, let’s take a look at what’s going on behind the scenes.

What is Print-on-Demand?

What is Print on demand

It’s an e-commerce business model that lets you sell your own custom-designed products without needing to keep any inventory or have upfront costs.

It’s one of the best ways to make money online, especially for new entrepreneurs.

Instead of the traditional retail grind where you buy a bunch of products upfront and hope they sell, print-on-demand is way cooler. You create a design, upload it to a platform offering print-on-demand services, and list it for sale on your store.

When someone buys it, the order goes to the print-on-demand provider. They print your design, package it, and ship it straight to the customer. You only pay after a sale has been made, slashing the risk and upfront cash.

It’s a hit for selling custom stuff like apparel, home decor, and accessories.

You get to be creative, try out different designs, and build a brand without needing a pile of money or dealing with inventory and shipping headaches. Now that you’ve got the business model down, let’s dive into why eBay is a great fit.

Why eBay is a Go-To Platform for Print-on-Demand


Okay, so we’ve talked about what POD is and why it’s a pretty awesome business model. But why eBay? Why not some other platform?

Well, let me tell you, eBay is a goldmine for print-on-demand sellers, and here’s why:

1. Massive Audience: eBay is one of the largest online marketplaces in the world. We’re talking about millions of shoppers from all over the globe. That’s a whole lot of potential customers for your print-on-demand business!

2. Easy to Use: Setting up a store on eBay is a piece of cake. Seriously, it’s so easy, even your grandma could do it! Plus, eBay has a bunch of helpful resources to guide you along the way.

3. Trust and Credibility: eBay has been around for a while (since 1995, to be exact), and it’s a platform that people know and trust. When you sell products on eBay, you’re not just some random store on the internet. You’re part of a reputable marketplace. Which will make you seem like a trustworthy seller right off the bat.

4. Seller Protection: eBay has got your back. With their seller protection program, you can sell with confidence knowing that you’re protected against fraud, chargebacks, and other unpleasant surprises. So you won’t have to deal with any scams or lose any of your hard-earned money.

5. Marketing Tools: eBay provides a bunch of marketing tools to help you promote your store and attract more customers. From promoted eBay listings to eBay SEO, they’ve got everything you need to get your products in front of the right people.

6. Community: When you sell on eBay, you’re not just a seller. You’re part of a community. You can connect with other eBay sellers, share tips and advice, and learn from people who’ve been in your shoes.

eBay is not just a platform; it’s a launchpad for your POD business. It’s got the audience, the tools, and the credibility to help you succeed.

So, what are you waiting for? Let’s get this party started!

Alternatives to eBay for POD

  1. Etsy: Etsy is a marketplace for handmade, vintage, and unique goods. It’s a great platform for selling print-on-demand products, especially if your designs cater to a niche audience. Plus, Etsy’s user-friendly interface and supportive seller community make it a popular choice among print-on-demand sellers.
  2. Amazon Merch: Amazon Merch is Amazon’s print-on-demand platform. It allows you to create and sell your designs on a variety of products, which Amazon produces and ships on your behalf. The biggest advantage of Amazon Merch is the massive customer base that Amazon provides.
  3. Shopify: Shopify is an eCommerce platform that allows you to create your own online store. With Shopify, you have more control over your branding and customer experience compared to marketplaces like eBay or Etsy. You can use Shopify in conjunction with a print-on-demand service like Printful or Printify.
  4. Redbubble: Redbubble is a global online marketplace for print-on-demand products. It’s known for its supportive community and creative audience, making it a great platform for artists and designers.

Wrapping Up With Selling Print-on-Demand on eBay

Jumping into the Print-on-Demand (POD) game isn’t just a hobby; it’s a legit business model. And when you sync it up with a powerhouse like eBay, you’re setting the stage for a win. Trust me, with my e-commerce background and endless research, eBay is a solid bet. I’ve seen countless e-commerce businesses succeed at selling on eBay, and there’s no reason you can’t join them.

Knowing your audience is crucial. You gotta understand their likes and dislikes to design stuff they’ll want. And this isn’t a “set it and forget it” deal—keeping tabs on market trends is a must to stay ahead.

Customer service? It’s a game-changer. Even in the digital world, how you tackle issues can make you stand out. Quick, effective solutions are your ace in the hole here.

Let’s be real, POD isn’t a fast track to being a millionaire. It’s a mix of creativity, strategy, and some good old hustle. But if you’re down to put in the effort, especially on a tried-and-true platform like eBay, you’re looking at a solid way to scratch that creative itch and make some cash.

So, if POD is on your radar, you’re already making moves. It’s a smart play for anyone ready to get their hands dirty.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much can I make selling print-on-demand on eBay?

The amount of money you can make selling print-on-demand on eBay varies widely.

It depends on factors like the price of your products, the number of sales you make, and your profit margin.

Some sellers make a few hundred dollars a month, while others make several thousand. The key is to create high-quality designs that appeal to your target audience and market your products effectively.

Do I need any design skills to start a print-on-demand business?

While having design skills can certainly be beneficial, it’s not a requirement to start a print-on-demand business.

There are plenty of online tools and resources available that can help you create professional-looking designs, even if you’re a complete beginner.

Plus, you always have the option to hire a freelance designer to create designs for you.

How do I handle returns and refunds?

As an eBay seller, you’re required to specify your return policy in your listings. Most print-on-demand providers offer returns and refunds for faulty or damaged products.

However, because the products are custom-made, they typically don’t accept returns for reasons like the customer changed their mind or ordered the wrong size.

Make sure to clearly communicate your return policy to your customers.

Can I sell print-on-demand products on other platforms in addition to eBay?

Absolutely! Selling your print-on-demand products on multiple platforms can help you reach a wider audience and increase your sales.

Just make sure to keep track of your inventory and orders across all platforms to ensure everything runs smoothly.

What if I don’t have any ideas for designs?

Coming up with design ideas can be challenging, but there are plenty of ways to find inspiration.

Look at what’s selling on eBay and other online marketplaces, follow design blogs, join print-on-demand communities, or even hire a designer to come up with ideas for you.

Remember, the key is to create designs that resonate with your target audience.

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