As a business owner, you know you’re doing something right when you’ve built a loyal customer base who purchases and shows off your branded merchandise in their everyday lives.
You’ve taken the all-important step of connecting directly with your audience, and your e-commerce store has become an extension of your brand, generating real revenue.
To take full advantage of this opportunity, you have to make important decisions on how your products are marketed, manufactured, and delivered.
As sales volume grows, often business owners wonder if it makes sense to take control of print fulfillment and manage all the aspects of production in-house. However, this can often lead to an assortment of headaches, many known and many more unknown.
With the right service managing the backend of your production, you can accomplish much more with less hassle.
More Than You’ve Bargained For
Many business owners who make the decision to bring printing in-house consider the cost of the physical printers as the greatest expense. However, the truth is you are not just paying for printers.
You are leasing real estate and covering ongoing maintenance expenses. You are sourcing blanks directly from manufacturers and ensuring that your boxed products are passed to your delivery services. You are paying for staff to operate machinery, fulfill orders, oversee logistics, and likely manage other staff. You are building your business around relatively illiquid capital investments and accepting exorbitant shipping fees to non-regional markets.
Many owners who begin printing in-house realize they’ve moved from a design and marketing business to becoming a small-scale manufacturer.
The Problem of Downtime
Having an in-house production team means that your business must be consistently busy enough to utilize the printers throughout the year. Considering the seasonal nature of retail, it’s likely that your printers will be at capacity for the winter holidays, but will then be underutilized for the majority of the year.
While standalone print facilities can compensate for the slower months by bringing on a larger number of clients, companies that print in-house simply take a loss.
A Distributed Manufacturing Solution
Rather than owning and operating printers, you can use a distributed manufacturing solution to send design files around the world to localized print facilities, and dramatically lower shipping time and cost.
Tech innovation has solved the majority of headaches involved with complicated manufacture and supply logistics.
The right product fulfillment partner with a network of print vendors can adjust to virtually any workload, even making last minute or one-off campaigns possible without you having to invest in any equipment or resources.
For instance, with the Gooten Shopify App, every time a customer makes a purchase, the app intelligently routes that order to one of our global manufacturers. You can monitor the progress of each shipment from the luxury of your home or office (and not on the floor of your warehouse).
Low Risk, High Scale Potential
Investing in a distributed manufacturing solution instead of an in-house production model means you can go to market faster, with essentially unlimited volume and local delivery to your customers around the world.
You also benefit from the financial freedom that comes with not having your investment tied up in overhead. You’ll increase your gross margins and you can then reinvest that additional capital into promotional campaigns that will grow your e-commerce business.
More Time For What You’re Good At
Your true value isn’t in your capacity operating a commercial print facility.
Why waste time and valuable resources training an in-house team, buying and maintaining expensive equipment, and leasing real estate to house that equipment, when there are print fulfillment companies to partner with that can scale your business according to your needs?
You can control the creation and designs of your products while dramatically freeing up your time to focus on other areas of growing the business.
For the growth of your e-commerce business, and to continue to develop your relationship with your audience, using a solution that outsources your production through a distributed network is a win-win.
If you would like to learn more about how the Gooten platform can simplify the way your merchandise is made and delivered please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org and one of our Partner Success agents will gladly get you started.