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Designed to help both beginners and experts in the industry, our glossary provides clear explanations of common terminology and phrases we use to talk about print on demand, personalization, technology solutions and more.

Printing & Decoration

All Over Print (AOP)       

Tightly registered, full color graphics that are accurately repeated across an entire material.


The area of a printed document that extends beyond the trim edge. A piece with a bleed has printed area edge-to-edge with no border.


The CMYK color model refers to the four colors used in process printing. The acronym stands for Cyan, Magenta, Yellow, and Key (Black).


The amount of ink or toner used to print text or an image.

Crop Marks        

Small lines in the corners of a printed item that indicate where the item should be cut. Crop marks are also known as trim marks.


The process of altering a product or service to meet the individual needs of a customer.

Digital Inkjet      

A type of printing technology that uses inkjet heads to spray tiny droplets of ink onto a substrate.


The acronym dots per inch refers to how many dots of ink are applied in a one inch area. It is a measure of the resolution of an image or printer. A higher dot density results in higher-resolution print quality.

Eco-Solvent Digital Print

A type of digital printing that uses biodegradable solvents to transfer ink onto a substrate. These eco-friendly inks use fewer volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and produce less printing odor.

Full Wrap            

A printed design that completely covers, or wraps around, an object.

Heat Press          

A machine that applies heat and pressure to a material such as fabric, paper, or plastic in order to transfer a design or pattern to its surface area.

Live Area             

An active space where text and graphics can be printed without risk of being cut or cropped. Once elements move to the edges of the live area (also known as the print area), they risk being affected by the margin or bleed.


The space between the edge of a page and the live area that displays text or images. In printing, it serves as a guideline to prevent important elements from being trimmed.


A full-size model of a design or device, used for demonstration, teaching, design evaluation, promotion, and other purposes. In design, it may also be referred to as a composition layout, or comp.


A method of making an individual unit one-of-a-kind by including a name, logo, a special date, or other variable element.

Print On Demand (POD)           

A printing process for order fulfillment in which items are made to order, typically using digital technology and often without order minimums. Commonly referred to as POD.


A trial impression of a document, also known as a repress or a prototype, used to check for errors before final printing.


The level of detail in an image, as measured by dots per inch (DPI).


A color model used in digital imaging and other applications. It is an additive color model in which red, green, and blue light are used to reproduce a broad array of colors. The acronym stands for Red, Green, and Blue.

Seamless Wrap 

A graphic printed on a single sheet that can extend fully around its object. It results in a smooth, uninterrupted application with no seams.


A type of decoration that uses heat to transfer dye onto a variety of materials, such as metal, ceramic, fabric, paper, and plastic. The dye is printed onto a special transfer paper and then heated to a high temperature, causing the dye to turn into a gas and bond with the material.

POD Processes

Automated Order Fulfillment

A process that uses technologies, not humans, to manage and streamline the fulfillment process. Automation can help expedite ordering processes, saving companies time and money.


A fulfillment process where a seller uses a third-party to complete orders and deliver goods to consumers. This allows the seller to eliminate bulky overhead, streamlining production or shipping. A dropshipping partner is commonly a manufacturer, wholesaler, or a different retailer.

Fulfillment Center

A storage facility or a warehouse that is used to organize inventory or process and deliver orders. Goods ordered usually ship directly from a company’s fulfillment center.


Inventory Management

A function that coordinates the tracking of goods throughout the entire manufacturing and sales process. These systems work to manage the flow of parts and materials from production all the way to the fulfillment of finished goods.


Order Tracking

A management system that codifies individual orders to track the progress through manufacturing, fulfillment and delivery. Unique order codes also help inform consumers and support customer service.


Print Provider

The vendor who physically prints the designs onto a product. Their responsibilities include printing and delivering orders to meet a client or customer’s timeline. 


POD Technical


The acronym for Application Programming Interface is used to describe protocols that connect different pieces of software. For online sales and ecommerce, an API can be used to seamlessly integrate a sales platform with a fulfillment center to automate order processing.



A connection between the API on a website and a server. In the context of ecommerce, an endpoint automates the customer sales transactions. These are commonly referred to as Web Endpoints or API endpoints.



The acronym for File Transfer Protocol is a standard method of communication that supports the transmission of files between a client and a server on a computer network.



The acronym for JavaScript Object Notation, a text format that represents structured data. It’s used to share data between a web application and a server, and can house and organize content for a website.


Order Management System        

A digital management solution to organize and manage customer orders. An order management system, or OMS, will track customer information and processes from the initial order through inventory management, product fulfillment and delivery tracking.



In the context of an Order Management System, a push system is used by a business who can accurately forecast demand trends. Companies who can accurately measure fluctuations in consumer demand are able to scale their inventory so products are ready to ship when ordered. When predictions are accurate, a company can reduce individual order costs by ordering in bulk, without long-term overhead.



Also related to a company’s Order Management System, a pull system is a lean approach to inventory management. Rather than having product on-hand and ready to ship, a pull system is prepared to create the product when demand increases. It is commonly used by companies who cannot predict demand, or when demand levels fluctuate.


A callback type of API that is triggered by events. In ecommerce, a website can alter its behavior with custom actions. Their function is to inform a site owner or third-party organization when a desired action has taken place.

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