How To Start A 3D Printing Design Business

How To Start A 3D Printing Design Business

Demand for 3D printing has risen dramatically in recent years, making it an excellent time to start a 3D printing design business. A 3D printing design business 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 resulting revenues are then divided equally between you and Shapeways.

In this article, we have crafted unique ways and some ideas to start a 3D printing design business that will be effective for the entrepreneur.

How To Start A 3D Printing Design Business :

1. Learn More About 3D Printing Technology

If you intend to start a 3D printing design business, you must first educate yourself on the technology. But allow me to emphasize it once again.

Because the learning process is not an option, it is critical to have a thorough grasp of the technology on which your firm will be built. There are several online courses available, and you must complete at least the intermediate level before pursuing the notion to start a 3D printing design business. Remember that learning does not end here. Because 3D printing is a developing technology, you may need to make modifications to keep your firm up to speed with the most recent 3D printers or design software.

2. Choose the Type of 3D Printer You Want to Be

3D printing may be utilized in a range of applications. As a result, there are several viable 3D printing company specializations. 3D printing prototypes and manufacturing components are a few examples, as are establishing a local 3D printing business and 3D printing toys.

3. Prototype and Model 3D Printing

Engineers creating industrial, electrical, or consumer items account for around 65 per cent of 3D printing demand. Models of equipment, manufacturing components and chemical compounds are also required in sectors such as architecture, engineering, technology, and medicine. These businesses also often commit a portion of their research and development process to test prototype designs or developing more efficient ways to create a required manufacturing item. 3D printed parts and components not only expedite production but also save costs. As a result, committing to a 3D printing design business to assist other organizations with these requirements may be quite successful.

Raise 3D recently spoke with 2050.AT, a 3D printer farm, to discover more about how 3D printing can help to manufacture. 2050 AT designed and manufactured 3D printed components and parts. According to 2050.AT, 3D printing is useful for generating parts that are difficult to locate or expensive to create. Prototyping is more efficient with 3D printers. Click here to discover more about 2050.AT’s work with 3D printing.

4. Service for 3D Printing

A broader concept is to build a local 3D printing service. As we saw in the last example, many companies utilize 3D printing in their manufacturing process. However, not every firm can afford 3D printers. In this case, a local 3D printing service is still more efficient than traditional research and production techniques for these companies. A 3D printing design business may also provide work for individuals that need their own 3D printed things. Students, for example, may require a 3D printed model for a school assignment. Alternatively, an artist may require 3D printed objects or equipment for creative endeavours.

5. Toys and Models 3D Printed for Children or Collectors

A third alternative is to 3D print character toys and models, as well as character attire, for youngsters, collectors, and cosplayers. A helmet featuring a well-known figure from a television program or film, for example, will appeal to all three categories.

6. What Type of 3D Printing Business Can You Set up?

A 3D printing design business, like any other, will take time to get off the ground. As a result, understanding how much you can manage is an important component of selecting to start a 3D printing firm. This includes understanding your budget, how much physical space you can devote to your business, how many people will be working with you, and how much time you can devote to each of your tasks. Because no two  3D printing design businesses are alike, each niche will have its own set of requirements. 3D printing prototypes and manufacturing components, for example, will necessitate larger printers with more specialized capabilities.

7. Set Up a Cost Plan To Start a 3D Printing Design Business?

The actual cost of starting a 3D printing design business is determined by the sort of emphasis you select. The cost to start a 3D printing design business, on the other hand, ranges from $1,000 to $10,000. This cost will be influenced by the type of 3D printer you use, as well as utilities, rent (if you do not work from home), software, and marketing. The price of a 3D printer varies depending on the size, capabilities, and quality that you want.

8. Budgeting

This is the most important step of your company strategy. Because the 3D printing business market is full of surprises, you should make sure you have adequate financing, especially if you want to experiment extensively.

You might opt to budget your project through numerous crowdfunding platforms or seek loan assistance from banking organizations. The budget will be fully determined by how modest or large you wish to begin with. If you want to start from home with one or two 3D printers, you might not need much financing if you have some saved up. Otherwise, if you want to build a full-fledged manufacturing facility, you’ll need to hunt for financers and funding possibilities. You may still utilize 3D printers to start making money at home and then grow as you go.

9. Filaments for 3D Printing

Understanding the capabilities, qualities, and variances of each printing material is critical to creating a 3D printing design business. Filaments are numerous types of 3D printing materials. Plastics are the most often used filaments in 3D printing. Each plastic has unique properties that make it appropriate for a variety of applications and jobs. A 3D printed gadget may have several sections, and each portion may operate better with a different type of plastic. TPU/TPE filaments, for example, are sometimes so flexible that they resemble rubber. PLA filament is also long-lasting and simple to print with.

10. Analyze Your Competitors in 3D Printing Design Business

Each form of 3D printing design business will have its own market and set of rivals. A 3D printing service, for example, will have a local market with local rivals. In the meanwhile, 3D printed toys and models will be highly reliant on internet sales and social media. A basic recommendation for all 3D printing design businesses is to locate and concentrate on being visible on platforms where other businesses like yours emerge.

11. Selecting Selling Platforms

Sign up for famous e-commerce platforms such as eBay, Amazon, and others to promote your items in addition to your own website.

Participate in social media campaigns and spread the word. Maintain contact with your users and respond to their inquiries. Make a lasting impression. The more prominent your brand is, the better it will sell.

12. Making Your 3D Printing Design Business Stand Out

All types of 3D printing enterprises are competitive, and it might be difficult to know how to differentiate yourself from the competition. Knowing how to develop models is one method to provide value. Model design is an essential step in the creation of a 3D-printed object. Many organizations outsource the model design process to another company. You may, however, learn how to convert a picture into a digital model that will be utilized for 3D printing. This gives you more control over your project and allows you to retain your work in-house. Post-finish is another method to differentiate yourself from competitors. Post-finishing entails smoothing out and colouring the finished 3D printed object. Choosing how far you want to go with post-finishing may also help you stand out from the crowd of the 3D printing design business.

3D printing allows you to develop a lucrative business in a range of areas. Knowing the specifics for laying the groundwork for each speciality will necessitate additional in-depth study. However, there are certain common criteria for starting any type of 3D printing business, such as learning about filaments and getting to know your competition. Once these elements are identified, a solid basis for a lucrative 3D printing firm may be laid.

Starting a 3D printing design business is unquestionably an excellent idea. Looking at what technology is capable of offering, the future possibilities are only going to improve. Governments across the world are attempting to find out how to make 3D printing more accessible to local businesses while also helping to boost their economies. 3D printing has provided businesses with faster and less expensive solutions, and technology is being used to save lives during natural disasters. We can now create foodstuffs using 3D printing, which was previously confined to prototyping. There are many people that wish to start a 3D printing design business, not just you. 

So, prepare well and let your competitors mope while you advance and start your printing design business.

Some Unique and Innovative 3D Printing Design Business Ideas


You may start a profitable 3D printing business by quickly manufacturing prototypes for others. Entrepreneurs with an idea or design they want to bring to life turn to 3D printing professionals for faster, lower-cost product development possibilities than traditional manufacturing processes. Because there are several prototype creation services, developing expertise and a good reputation in a certain market may be advantageous. If you are an engineer who is skilled in retooling, refining, and suggesting methods to enhance a design, you will have a better chance of success.


Toys are among the simplest objects to manufacture with 3D printing and are in high demand among people wishing to expand their doll, action figure, fidget spinner, toy car/truck, and bath toy collections. Chess or board game pieces are popular 3D printed things that may be customized and personalized to improve the play experience. Of course, 3D printing has significant ramifications for toy replacements and replacement parts – after all, who wouldn’t want to be a hero by rescuing a child’s favourite doll or action figure? However, there are also safety rules to consider, as well as copyright laws. While intellectual property laws frequently regard things made for private use to be fair trade, duplicating branded or patented proprietary designs might result in legal action.

Cases for Smartphones

Smartphone covers are one of those things that individuals frequently use to express their individuality or preferences. They are also something that people rapidly tire of and prefer to switch up, although appreciating protective features stays a constant in their purchase selections. A 3D smartphone printing business may be a terrific small business option if you have a strong eye for what’s trendy in design, fashion, and pop culture and can create to the tastes and interests of clients while delivering protective features and materials. The worldwide revenue for protective smartphone covers was $21.67 billion in 2019, with a CAGR of 6.3 per cent predicted between 2019 and 2027. On average, one big spool of filament produces around 200 smartphone cases, and there are several filament variants based on the type of case and required durability.

Decorations for the home

3D printing lends itself nicely to the housewares industry for people with a penchant for home decor. Vases, lamps, planters, photo frames, plates, drinkware, tablecloths, and cutlery may all be simply manufactured with additive printing. Complex patterns with distinctive textures and finishes may be printed quite easily. The goal is to establish your speciality and build a distinct look. Create an e-commerce site to sell your ideas and then print on demand to client specifications. Simultaneously, you may capitalize on current traffic on sites like Etsy, where shoppers are always seeking unusual and distinctive home decor that represents their particular style and a desire for one-of-a-kind things.

Printer rental

With the average cost of a 3D printer being approximately $1,000, many entrepreneurs who want to investigate the ramifications of the technology on their ideas simply do not have the funds to invest and test. There is also a market for people who want temporary access to a small-scale project. If you have the means, you may make a lot of money renting or leasing your 3D printer and supplies to business and residential users. Begin with a Google Business listing, a photo-rich website, social media advertising, and word-of-mouth brand marketing. Pricing should be differentiated between individual users and commercial enterprises. Weekly rentals may bring in a few hundred dollars per week, or $500-$600 per month, plus the cost of supplies and training.