Would it be worth the savings? It would certainly seem so from looking at the hundreds of reviews in that store. Most people are happy with the pillowcase, some even uploaded photos to show it gracing the sofa in their living room. So I browse their store and found a really pretty one, it had a painting of birds in a tree.
I place the order for this lovely design and the wait begins. I've become accustomed to Amazon's two day shipping so waiting 3-4 weeks feels like an eternity. But I rationalize, after all I am saving 50 percent and I get free shipping too. This must be the same thought process that goes through a customer's mind when they order these things.
In the meantime I also order the genuine product from Society 6. I receive the pillowcase in a week.
Amazon hasn't forgotten about me either, they send me a follow-up email beckoning me to order more pillows:
A few weeks pass and my China shipment arrives:
My fears were quickly put to ease as I took the cover out of its packaging and compared it to the real deal.The counterfeit was definitely inferior in quality with respect to the print and the fabric.
Advantages of buying from Print on Demand Sites (POD)
- PODs are authorized to sell these designs. What you see in the Amazon marketplace are usually stolen and unauthorized, a violation of U.S. copyright laws. Support the artists that create these designs, not the Amazon thieves.
- Higher quality printing. PODs use high resolution images to print their products. Counterfeits are produced from low resolution images resulting in poor quality print.
- Price. POD sites regularly have sales and free shipping offers which make the prices attractive.
- Better product quality. For pillows you get a double-sided print, the Amazon ones are only one-sided. The fabric quality is a finer weave. The counterfeit was a more course rough fabric similar to burlap.
- Shipping Turnaround. Generally you can expect to receive your order within a week unless you upgrade to express shipping. Expect to wait a month for a counterfeit to arrive.
- Customer Service. Contacting customer service for Amazon's third party sellers can be difficult. They are generally overseas which creates a time difference and there may also be a language barrier.
- Returns. If there's a problem with the product, perhaps it has a defect, shipping back overseas is quite expensive.
- Personalization. I sell on Zazzle and sometimes for my pillow covers I will offer a different design on each side. If you get tired of the design you just flip it over. Or if you're like me and have little ones sooner or later they are going to soil or spill on your pretty pillow. It's always nice to just flip the pillow over and hide those stains. But I digress, on Zazzle you have the opportunity to personalize the pillow with text. You can add a name, a quote. You can also upload a photo. So one side may be a family or baby photo, the other side can have a design. There's a flexibility in customizing that the Amazon sellers cannot offer.