Our standard process is the Direct to Garment (DTG) method of printing. That means we can create photo-quality prints, the amount of colors used doesn't affect pricing, and there aren't any order minimums. We use Kornit printers for all DTG-printed garments.
Why does my shirt smell like vinegar?
When unpacking a new shirt or hoodie with a direct-to-garment (DTG) print, you might notice a vinegar-like smell or an off-white residue. Don't worry, that's not unusual - it's from a fixation agent applied during the printing process and it's not permanent.
Fixation agent (sometimes known as pre-treatment) is used for all DTG prints across the industry. It helps the ink bond with the fabric, and without it, the ink would flake off the garment.
How are products packaged for shipping?
Apparel products are generally packaged in post-consumer recycled (PCR) polymer mailers. If there’s more than one product, after putting each item in its own separate transparent polymer bag, we then place them all together in a PCR polymer mailer.
PCR plastics are made from items people recycle every day, like plastic bags and bottles. Most of our PCR plastics are made from shopping bags and wrapping films.
Structured and unstructured hats are packaged in corrugated cardboard boxes. Beanies are packed in post-consumer recycled (PCR) polymer mailers just like other apparel items.
In our in-house facilities, we use kraft mailers to pack phone cases. Our partners in Japan use a mix of plastic bags and padded paper envelopes to package phone cases.
How long does fulfillment take?
Fulfillment time is the time it takes to make your custom-ordered product. Our fulfillment time is calculated in business days, and it’s 2–5 business days for all production techniques.
97.66% of our orders are shipped within 5 business days. More than 50% of our orders are shipped within 3 business days or fewer.
- Fulfillment time doesn't include shipping. To get an idea of how long an order will take to reach its destination, combine the estimated fulfillment time with the estimated shipping time.
- The fulfillment averages you see in our catalog are calculated based on our fulfillment data for each product within the time frame of 30 days.
- Our fulfillment averages don't account for the time an order might be put on hold.
- Fulfillment for large orders may take longer on average, but it’ll still be fulfilled within 5 business days.
- Our fulfillment times are an estimate, but not a guarantee. For a more detailed look at how we calculate the estimated fulfillment time, and to find out what can potentially slow down your order fulfillment check out this article.
Why are some orders fulfilled faster than others?
We try to fulfill products in the order that they come in, and usually, we're able to do that. To manage our order queue, we route orders to whichever facility has more capacity. Fulfillment order depends on the product and where it's routed to, so newer orders might get fulfilled faster if they're routed to another facility.
As an example, let's say you have two t-shirt orders. The older order might include a t-shirt that's only able to be fulfilled at our NC facility, so it's waiting in line. The newer order is a shirt that we can fulfill at a backup facility, so we might route that order and it gets fulfilled faster.
Keep in mind that when you change an order, that also pushes it to the back of the queue.
What is the estimated delivery time and how is it calculated?
Printful’s estimated delivery time (EDT) is our delivery time prediction. We follow a simple equation to calculate EDT:
estimated fulfillment + estimated shipping = estimated delivery time
Our average order fulfillment takes 2–5 business days for all production techniques.
We consider the current order volume and our fulfillment capacity when calculating our estimated fulfillment time. Similarly, we calculate estimated shipping time according to our historical shipping data for deliveries to your area or selling region.
But the estimated delivery time is just an estimate, not a guarantee. Here are some of the reasons why an order might arrive past its EDT:
- Issues with print or embroidery files
- Products being out of stock
- Shipping related delays like failed delivery attempts, service disruptions, or harsh weather conditions
Nonetheless, we work hard to meet our delivery estimates with each order.
If you’re ever in a situation where the EDT has passed, please wait a bit longer. Then, once 5 business days have passed, get in touch with us via email or chat, and we’ll take a look.
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