Sneakers are no longer just for sports—they’re the fashion statement of the moment. They’ve become highly sought-after collectible items, with fans eager to purchase the latest drops and branded celebrity collabs. In fact, it’s predicted that the sneaker market will reach $120 billion by 2026.
With the sneaker boom in full swing, there’s also demand for clothing that matches the most popular models. This demand is what inspired the launch of Match Kicks—an online store where customers can find apparel and accessories that match their sneakers.
Kody and Jose touring our Westlake facility
We invited Jose, Match Kicks’ Chief Visionary Officer, and Kody, their Chief Technical Officer, to visit our facility in Charlotte. While we showed them around, we got to talk about their success and how Printful helped their business innovate and grow.
When they first launched their business, the Match Kicks team thought it would be cheaper and better to print everything in-house. But it was challenging keeping up with inventory, managing employees, and dealing with operational hiccups like broken printers.
Eventually, they realized it would be more effective in the long run to find a partner who could handle the manufacturing for them.
Jose and Kody did a lot of research about their options and ordered samples from 3 or 4 different print-on-demand suppliers. Ultimately, they found that Printful fulfilled their wishlist.
The main criteria for Kody were fast shipping times, product quality, and inventory. Printful had the most SKUs and conveniently already carried the same products Match Kicks sold. So transitioning to Printful was a seamless experience for their customers—they were still getting the same products they knew and loved.
Jose was impressed by Printful’s top-of-the-line printers and resources. While there were things Match Kicks could continue doing in-house, he knew that they couldn’t match the service they would get working with Printful.
“There are some things we might be able to do in-house, but in the end, we’re never going to match the type of service that [Printful] can bring to the table.”
Kody and Jose knew that they’d have to increase their product prices to cover the costs of outsourcing. But they found that price increases were worth it for the service they got. There were fewer print mistakes, fewer returns, and higher customer satisfaction.
“Even though the cost per item went up a little bit, our profits are much better than what they were.”
Printful’s API lets the Match Kicks team innovate and automate their processes. They have about 120 million SKUs on their store, which they wouldn’t have been able to do by uploading each product individually. Instead, they built a custom website that auto-generates product listings with code and a design file and imports them to Printful. This lets them expand their collection without spending time on administrative work.
Source: Match Kicks
Kody and Jose understood that their passion wasn’t in printing, but in technology. With Printful, they don't have to focus on every aspect of running a business, just the parts they actually love.
“Partnering with Printful just took a huge responsibility off our shoulders so we could focus on what we do best.”
And their visit to our Westlake facility confirmed that they made the right decision. They were pleasantly surprised by their experience on the tour, commenting on their positive impression of Printful’s culture and environment.
“What stood out for me in the tour was Printful's culture. When you're dealing with production, it becomes about production at all costs. I didn't feel that.”
Visiting our facility changed their vision of what a warehouse should be.
Nora has been part of the Printful team since 2015. She has spent the last several years writing content, coordinating communications projects, and helping customers learn about ecommerce. Now as Printful's Brand Manager, she gets to use her experience and knowledge in new and challenging ways.
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