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A 3D printing company is frequently associated with a bigger company, such as Shapeways. The advantage is that you can concentrate on generating 3D designs and collecting orders while Shapeways creates the real products. The proceeds are then divided between you and Shapeways.

3d Printing Design Company

Follow these 10 steps to start a 3D Printing Design Business:

Plan your 3D Printing Design Company

Create a legal entity for your 3D printing design company.

Register your 3D Printing Design Company for Taxation

Create a Business Bank Account and a Credit Card

Create Accounting for your 3D Printing Design Company

Get the Permits and Licenses You Need for Your 3D Printing Design Business

Get 3D Printing Design Commercial Insurance

Create a brand for your 3D Printing Design Company.

Make a website for your 3D Printing Design Company.

Configure your Business Phone System

Starting a company entails more than just registering it with the state. This straightforward guide to beginning your 3D Printing Design Business has been put together by us. These stages will guarantee that your new company is well-planned, correctly registered, and legally compliant.

STEP 1: Make a business plan.

A well-thought-out strategy is vital for entrepreneur success. It will assist you in mapping out the intricacies of your organisation and uncovering some unknowns. Consider the following crucial topics:

What are the initial and continuing expenses?

Who is your intended audience?

How much money may you charge your customers?

What will you call your company?

Fortunately, we have done a lot of the legwork for you.

What are the expenses of starting a 3D Printing Design Company?

The expenses of starting such a firm are negligible. Most businesses begin in someone’s house, eliminating the need for a pricey lease, utilities, or employee salary. You do not need a 3D printer to operate with Shapeways: just submit ideas to them, sell the items via your own website, and share revenues with Shapeways. If you want to purchase your own 3D printer, you can usually locate a commercial model for $6,000 or less, but models come in a number of pricing ranges. Otherwise, your main expenses will be the creation of a decent website (usually about $500) and promoting your services (most advertising will be done online, so your first advertising budget may be $2,000 or less).

What are the recurring costs of a 3D Printing Design Company?

One of the appealing aspects of this employment is that there are little continuing expenditures. As a home-based employment, your only definite charges will be the cost of hosting your professional website (usually less than $100 per year); you may choose to continue paying for advertising, which will normally be $500 or less per month. Other than that, you simply need to re-stock supplies (assuming you print the things yourself) as orders come in, and you will price items to account for materials. If you are printing via Shapeways, you will price your things to account for the amount that they will charge (you set a markup for each item sold, and this is the money you make, minus a 3.5 percent transaction fee).

Who is the intended audience?

This is one company where your desired clientele may vary substantially based on your location and whether or not you want to specialise in printing certain items. Hobbyists are one group that may become your favourite. Hobbyists are that unusual demographic that has highly specific interests and the discretionary cash to fulfil those hobbies, from collectors needing to replace components for their model trains to gamers wanting you to print stuff for their roleplaying adventure.

How does a 3D Printing Design Company earn money?

Customers pay a 3D printing company to produce and distribute 3D representations of forms and items. You may also generate money by accepting design requests from consumers who can’t find the shapes they want printed elsewhere.

How much money may you charge your customers?

Your objects’ prices will vary substantially depending on its size, intricacy, and materials utilised. In the tabletop gaming niche, for example, you may charge four dollars for a little object such as a miniature shopping cart. In contrast, you might charge up to $200 for massive, sophisticated terrain to be utilised in a tabletop war game. If you are printing via Shapeways, they will use the same parameters to assist decide the pricing of the item. The more specialised your goods, the more you may charge since buyers can’t get it anywhere else.

How much money can a 3D Printing Design Company make?

It’s tough to predict how much money you’ll earn. According to one research firm, 3D artists earn an average of $53,000 a year, however this figure includes people who perform such work for businesses rather than for themselves. Regardless, your real profit will be similar to that of any other specialised shop: if you discover the perfect mix of different items, niche markets, and appropriate advertising, the sky is the limit.

How can you increase the profitability of your company?

All of the methods for increasing your company’s profitability boil down to making your company more visible. To be noticed, try writing guest posts for websites that your target demographic visits. In order to create connections and garner awareness, offer to print anything that your community may need (such as prostheses). Finally, give 3D printed presents to loved ones. This is an excellent technique to develop positive buzz and word of mouth.

What will you call your company?

Choosing the correct name is both crucial and difficult. If you don’t have have a name in mind, check out our How to Name a Business guide or use our 3D Printing Design Business Name Generator to get some ideas.

If you run a solo proprietorship, you may choose to use a company name different than your own. More information may be found in our DBA guide.

We suggest studying your company name before registering it by checking:

The business records of your state

Trademark registrations at the federal and state levels

Platforms for social media

Availability of a web domain.

It is critical to register your domain name before someone else does.

STEP 2: Establish a legal entity

Sole proprietorship, partnership, limited liability company (LLC), and corporation are the most frequent business structure forms.

Establishing a formal company organisation, such as an LLC or corporation, shields you from personal liability if your 3D Printing Design Business is sued.

STEP 3: File your taxes

Before you can begin for business, you must register for a number of state and federal taxes.

To register for taxes, you will need to get an EIN. It’s really simple and completely free!
Taxes on Small Businesses

Depending on the business form you choose, you may have multiple choices for how your company is taxed. Some LLCs, for example, may benefit from being taxed as a S company (S corp).

These guides will teach you more about small company taxes:

Taxes on LLCs

LLC vs. sole proprietorship

Corporation vs. LLC

S Corp vs. LLC

How to Form a S Corporation

S Corporation vs. C Corporation

There may be state taxes that apply to your company. In our state sales tax guides, you may learn more about state sales taxes and franchise taxes.

STEP 4: Establish a company bank account and credit card

Personal asset protection requires the use of distinct business banking and credit accounts.

When you combine your personal and business accounts, your personal assets (your house, vehicle, and other possessions) are at danger if your company is sued. This is known as penetrating your company veil in business law.

Furthermore, understanding how to develop corporate credit may help you get credit cards and other financing in your company’s name (rather than your own), lower interest rates, larger lines of credit, and other benefits.

Establish a business bank account.

Opening a business bank account is not only required when asking for business financing, but it also:

Separates your personal assets from the assets of your firm, which is required for personal asset protection.

It simplifies bookkeeping and tax reporting.

STEP 5: Establish business accounting

Recording your numerous costs and sources of revenue is crucial to assessing your company’s financial status. Keeping precise and thorough

accounting also makes yearly tax filing much easier

STEP 6: Obtain all required permissions and licences

Failure to get appropriate permissions and licences may result in significant penalties or possibly the closure of your firm.

Requirements for State and Local Business Licensing

Certain state permissions and licences may be required to run a 3D printing design company. Visit the SBA’s reference to state licences and permits to learn more about licencing requirements in your state.
For information on local licences and permissions, visit:

Check with the clerk’s office in your town, city, or county.

Contact one of the local organisations mentioned in the US Small Business Associations database of local business resources for help.

Copyright & Trademark Protection

If you are creating a one-of-a-kind product, idea, brand, or design, you should safeguard your rights by registering for the necessary trademarks and copyrights.

STEP 7: Obtain commercial insurance.

Insurance, like licences and permits, is required for your company to operate safely and legally. In the case of a covered loss, business insurance protects your company’s financial well-being.

There are several sorts of insurance plans designed for various types of companies with varying risks. If you are unaware about the hazards that your company may encounter, start with General Liability Insurance. This is the most popular coverage required by small companies, so it’s a good place to start for yours.
Workers’ Compensation Insurance is another important insurance product that many companies need. If your company will have workers, your state may require you to purchase Workers’ Compensation insurance.

STEP 8: Establish your brand

Your company’s brand is what it stands for, as well as how the public perceives it. A strong brand will help your company stand out from the crowd.

If you’re not sure how to create your small business logo, check out our Design Guides for Beginners, where we’ll provide you useful ideas and guidance on producing the greatest distinctive logo for your company.

How to Promote and Market a 3D Printing Design Company

As previously said, it is critical to promote on your own professional website. You should also utilise social media (particularly Instagram) to display high-quality images of your work. You may also pay for professional ads on social media platforms like Facebook, which allows you to tailor your adverts to the most responsive people.

How to Keep Customers Returning

In addition to the suggestions above, seek for methods to display and sell your items in the real world. Local hobby stores may enable you to post ads for your services, providing samples of your work. Local sci-fi and fantasy events provide the opportunity to rent a vendor booth and sell handcrafted geeky jewellery and other goods that fans cannot obtain elsewhere. The purpose of both of these is to give out business cards and eventually build a steady stream of regular clients on top of the impulsive buys.

STEP 9: Create your company’s website.

After you’ve defined your brand and designed your logo, the next step is to build a website for your company.

While developing a website is an important step, some may be concerned that it is out of their grasp due to a lack of website-building skills. While this was a fair concern in 2015, online technology has made significant advances in recent years, making the lives of small company owners considerably easier.

The following are the primary reasons why you should not put off developing your website:

Every genuine company has a website, period. When it comes to bringing your company online, it doesn’t matter what size or sector it is.

Social media accounts, such as Facebook pages or LinkedIn company profiles, are not a substitute for your own business website.

STEP 10: Install your company phone system.

Getting a phone for your company is one of the finest methods to keep your personal and professional lives distinct and private. That isn’t the only advantage; it also helps you automate your company, provides it legitimacy, and makes it simpler for prospective clients to identify and contact you.

Entrepreneurs that wish to set up a company phone system may choose from a variety of options. We examined and ranked the best firms based on pricing, features, and simplicity of use. To choose the finest phone service for your small company, read our analysis of the Best Business Phone Systems 2022.