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I wanted to sell paperbacks of my own books at a discount independent of the larger companies if you know what I mean. Lulu looked good. I contacted them with my concerns and they assured me I would be pleased and there's no contract. The quality of the books is great. My readers have told me so and I have ordered them myself at cost by momentarily dropping the price on my products page on Shopify.
The only problem left was constantly having to correct shipping prices both foreign and domestic. I contacted Cary Penrose who called me at my request and patiently talked me through setting up live shipping worldwide. It worked and now my readers in England can order delivery any way they want. I find Lulu very convenient and have had no complaints about pricing or delivery. I have just started advertising internationally, so time will tell how this works out when the volume picks up.
I received the very best customer service from a wonderful person at Lulu. They helped me get my book print ready. They were quick to respond to my support ticket when I was having trouble. The trouble I was having was user error. I am a writer not a digital artist. The software I was using to create my files was bare minimum. They were happy to assist me in getting my book print ready. I love Lulu Direct and highly recommend them for print on demand.
I am very disappointed with the Lulu app. When attempting to edit my books the page will not load. I can't make any updates to my books because of this. The shipping time is marketed at 3-5 business days but all of my orders have taken 10-15 days to deliver. I get that shipping may take longer under certain circumstances but if the majority of my orders are going to take almost 2 weeks to deliver then this app is not worth my time and I would rather go a different route. If someone could help me with these 2 issues that would be much appreciated but as of now I am looking for other options.
The app is very glitchy and there are major issues with their fulfillment and printing of the books. Their site has a production time of 3-5 business days which is false advertising. When emailing them about how it is taking much longer, now on 12 business days they respond saying that they're aware of it and that I should tell customers that it is a custom printing job for each and every book and that should keep them happy. This is before the shipping even occurs. I'm only in the stage of printing out proofs and am realizing I likely will not be able to use this for print on demand and dropshipping directly to customers due to the insanely long print time. This is not a sustainable model for print on demand and more so a better model for printing in bulk and holding inventory.
Thank you for your feedback.
Our average production times throughout the year are estimated at 3 to 5 business days. However, production times can vary based on factors such as order volumes, national holidays, seasonal changes (tax season, the start of the academic school year, etc.), or even uncontrollable/unexpected delays that may arise at the print facility (machine maintenance, inventory shortages, COVID, etc.). And while production times will always be a factor, with print-on-demand you will not have to manage product inventory or manually ship each order. That means you can spend less time on the logistics of running your business and more time growing it.
Recommended. The app works well. So far, all orders have been fulfulled properly. There have been one or two minor problems which customer service have handled well and promptly. In general customer service is excellent. There are some downsides to consider before using the app:
- Orders to some locations seem to arrive very slowly... some took around three weeks. Need to let customers know. They will see the shipping time but this doesn't include production time to actually print the book. - There is basically no functionality for looking through your own orders and gathering data, even just how much you've actually given Lulu. You have to email them to ask for a csv file (which they do provide promptly)
- More costly than manually ordering from Lulu or making a bulk order. However I am glad I am using the app, despite these limitations