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Wait, Spreadshop is a tech company?

Wait, Spreadshop is a tech company?

“Why didn’t you implement this feature sooner?” This is a question we often receive from you. Time for a few answers.

We want your Spreadshop to empower you to do your thing. Print-on-Demand allows you to create products from your ideas and earn money in the process. It may sound straightforward, but the features that make all this possible don’t grow on trees.

No, they grow from the seed of your ideas and feedback, are watered and tended and pruned in our Headquarters, and slowly come into being. When we release a new feature, that new bloom is the result of lots and lots of time and effort.

To make this happen, we do a lot of work behind the scenes. Every day, over 60 teams of real humans are working to make sure that our website, Shop system, purchasing, shipping, customer service and the printing processes at our five production sites in Europe and the USA are all operating smoothly and securely. (Not to mention the people writing these articles, taking care of the other employees in HR, or marketing our services!) All that in twelve languages across 18 markets and worldwide. And the Shop system humming along in the background? It’s not just a ready-made shop system where features or new functions can be added at our every whim. We are proud to write every line of code ourselves. What can we say, we like DIY.

We don’t just create T-shirts, we also manage our IT. Spreadshirt is a tech company that develops everything itself: from the initial seed of an idea to the full bloom of a digital product. Sounds complicated? Well, sometimes it is.

So why do we do it? Because of you!

Empowerment

We’re only successful when you and your Spreadshop are successful. There’s a ripple effect at play: if we inspire you, you inspire other people with your products and trigger the “gotta-have-it reflex.” So it’s in everyone’s interest that we provide our Shop Owners the right tools and features to do what they do best. But how do we decide what the right features are in the first place? Does the houseplant illustrator need the same Shop functions as the merch shop of a Grindcore band that regularly tours the world? (Hint: No.)

On top of that, every development we make has to measure up financially—every feature must be profitable in some way. We are, after all, a business. It goes without saying that our developer resources are limited. Our developers have homes, hobbies and families, too.

So what has made the cut? In the past three years we have proudly developed four new comprehensive functions for the Partner Area alone (one of ten digital products at Spreadshirt). And you’re the reason behind each of them!

All of these improvements can be traced back to your suggestions and requests:

  1. Template function
  2. Shop Homepage
  3. Statistics page, esp. Bestseller
  4. Shop Themes

Simplicity

Even the best product idea pretty useless if we don’t take the market into consideration or if the usability isn’t quite right. That’s where a Product Owner or Project Manager comes in: someone who is responsible for each new feature. They nurture and check on the feature’s long-term development. For every new release, we organize internal workshops, collect ideas, identify stumbling blocks and milestones along the way—all parts of typical Project Management.

Along the way, we also:

  • invite our partners and customers to interviews
  • develop extensive Customer Journey Maps
  • work with partner personas
  • develop prototypes
  • perform usability tests
  • take polls

Want to be a part of it? Just contact us—we love being in touch with our Partners.

Maybe you’re starting to get a feeling for how much work goes into market research, development and user tests. As we go along, all the results are evaluated and then fed back into the development process. But that’s not the end of the road— the results also have to be feasible within the framework of our extremely complex platform. We often have to adapt existing functions or even publish a few new mini-functions to create a landing pad for the main new feature itself. Not to mention business aspects (keyword: return on investment) and legal considerations (keyword: data protection).

Excitement

So why do we do all this is work? Because we believe that our digital products should not only be easy to use, they should also be fun. And that’s why we keep looking for new and better ways to do things, and why we always strive to involve you and all our Partners in our processes.

Tell us what’s missing, what you like, what bothers you, what we can do differently or better.

The best channel for this feedback is our forum. We have several moderators online every day to answer your questions and forward your suggestions to the right contact people in our company.

We evaluate the feasibility of your requests, and in the best case we start the machine described above and get cracking with the development. And that can take a bit of time.

You can give us your feedback on current features by commenting below. Or get in touch with us directly over the forum!

To the Forum

Let’s do this: Tell us what you’ve always wanted to get off your chest about your Spreadshop. We are really interested in your feedback. Without it, Spreadshop wouldn’t be possible.

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