The 5 Most common mistakes Gelato customers make (and how to avoid them)

At Gelato, we understand your business success hangs not only on the quality of your product but also the ease of your delivery and user experience. But basic errors can impact your business and affect customer relationships before they even start.

While it can be exciting to throw yourself into your business, if you don’t make sure your user experience is seamless then customers risk losing faith. Based on our experience supporting thousands of merchants, we have compiled a list of the 5 most common mistakes that Gelato customers make when launching their store and integrate it with Gelato. Remember, if you need any further assistance, just reach out to our Customer Support team at apisupport@gelato.com - we’re happy to help 24/7.

1. Forgetting to sync files

In order for Gelato to be able to fulfill your orders, you must ensure that the products you sell in your ecommerce store are connected to Gelato. In other words, you have to tell us what design, Gelato product, and format/color we should print when your customer orders a specific product from your store. This is done when you create a new ecommerce product in Gelato or when you connect your existing ecommerce products to Gelato.

You can read more about adding products to your store here.

2. Using improper print files

To offer consistent quality, we work only with print partners who can ensure high-quality results thanks to the professional equipment used, the automatic machine calibration from Gelato, and the constant monitoring of their performance. This is to protect you and your customers, and to ensure you are consistently satisfied with your products. At the same time, it is necessary that you follow some basic guidelines when you design your products to ensure the best print results.

One of the most common mistakes that customers make is to use an image with a white color on white garments. We don't print white ink on white garments, which means any designs containing white color will have areas with no print on them. Another thing to consider is that white ink elements on bright-colored garments such as red might look tinted.

Another common mistake is not using a high enough image resolution - measured in DPI (dots per inch) - which results in images looking blurry or pixelated. We always recommend uploading files with a resolution of at least 300 dpi to ensure that your images look sharp when printed.

Check out the Products & Design section of our Help Center for additional guidelines on creating properly formatted print files.

3. Missing billing information

It goes without saying, but you can’t make money if your customers are unable to pay you!

If you have an ecommerce store connected with Gelato and customer orders from your store are imported into Gelato automatically, there are two separate transactions that occur:

  1. The first is the retail transaction between your customer and you. Your customer places an order on your store and pays you using one of the payment methods you set up through your store’s payments platform. Gelato has nothing to do with this transaction.

  2. The second is the order fulfilment transaction between you and Gelato. When Gelato gets the order, we will charge you for fulfilment and shipping using the payment method on record (typically credit card or Gelato Wallet).

For your orders to be processed smoothly, you need to set up payments on your storefront - this will allow you to collect money from your customers. At the same time, you also need to set up everything on Gelato’s side so that the second transaction can take place. To check what payment methods we support, visit our dedicated Help Center page.

If your profile is currently showing “No active payment methods” this means you haven’t added a payment method (card/wallet) to your account, so money cannot be transferred and no sales can be completed. To address this problem you can add your desired payment method in the Gelato dashboard - then we will be able to fulfill your orders automatically.

4. Margins set incorrectly = no profits

When you define the retail prices in your store, you need to understand your margins. To do this you need to take into account the price you will pay Gelato for the product, as well as the shipping, customs and any applicable taxes. Anything that is left after that is your margin. Miscalculate this and your business success will be impacted. Calculating shipping prices isn’t as fun as designing your own products or interacting with customers, but it’s a necessary part of your business model. To make it easier for you, we offer flat shipping rates for most products which are automatically mirrored to your customers in Shopify and Etsy. To know more about shipping with Gelato, take a look at our dedicated guide.

In addition to flat shipping rates, Shopify customers now have access to offer live shipping rates, which give your customer the power to choose what type of shipping they would like. You can find more information about live shipping rates and how to set them up in your store here.

Regarding taxes, it’s a good idea to have at least an approximate estimate of the percentage of your earnings that will go towards paying taxes. The exact tax rates and the types of taxes that you’ll need to pay vary based on the location in which you reside. Most common are VAT (Value Added Tax) on orders going to places within the EU and Goods and Services Tax (GST) to places like Australia.

If you want to know more about how Gelato charges taxes on your order, take a look at this dedicated guide. Please remember that Gelato does not provide professional tax advice. We advise you to consult a tax specialist to find out your specific obligations.

Don’t forget to factor in other expenses relative to your business such as paid marketing (Google, Bing, Facebook, Instagram, etc.), payroll for employees or freelancers, software, or legal fees.

5. Missing important information

Unlicensed designs

You can’t sell copyrighted designs without prior payment and/or permission. You need to have the license to display, use or profit from copyrighted designs. Giving a mention to the original creator is not enough. Ensure you have all permissions in place before sale or offering to the public. If you don’t want or have the resources to create your own designs, we offer access to over 360 million images from Shutterstock.

You can read more about our content and intellectual property policies here.

Store policies

Define your store policies based on Gelato’s policies and your own judgement. Inform your customers of your policies in advance - there will inevitably be occasions when an order is delayed, lost, or goes wrong. Store policies are a vital part of an online business and create a sense of trust for anyone considering buying a product from you. They also give you security should anything go wrong on your end.

Ready to get started? Place your first order here