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How to use personalised products to make money for your business

As a business owner you may be worried about how your business can thrive in the times we are currently in. Despite the cost-of-living crisis, there are still consumers out there, but what do they care about? And what do they want to buy?

In November 2020, the search term “personalised gift” peaked in interest online. Likely as people were stuck in lockdown looking for meaningful gifts to send loved ones when they couldn’t see them in person over the holidays. This trend of buying unique and personalised gifts has stuck, with consumers expressing more and more interest in buying personalised gifts, but also products for themselves that are unique to their tastes.

Using search data tool Ahrefs, we were able to determine what people are searching for when it comes to personalised items. We grouped and analysed this data to find out:

• What are the most sought-after personalised products?
• Which events in the calendar are people wanting to buy personalised products for?
• Who do people want to buy personalised products for?

Knowing the answers to all of the above will help your business thrive when jumping on the personalisation trend.

What are the most sought-after personalised products?

Gifts in general were the most searched for “personalised” product, with online shoppers wanting to find unique gifts for family or friends. There are approximately 504,210 searches per month on average for various types of personalised gifts.

Next up is cards. With the likes of card companies such as Thortful and Funky Pigeon increasing in popularity over the years, it is a huge trend now for companies to offer personalisation on cards. People want to be able to buy cards that are completely unique to the person they are buying for. Etsy is a great example of a place where independent sellers can hop on trends quickly and easily to create personalised products.

Below are the top 15 personalised product searches:

Product type Average searches per month
Gifts 504,210
Cards 190,760
Mugs 143,880
Photos 136,780
Books 125,480
Necklace 98,350
Phone Accessories 88,010
Bottles 74,430
Calendar 49,330
Keyring 48,150
Stickers 43,960
Baubles 41,000
Chocolate 35,680
Banners 24,810

Events to capitalise on for personalised products

By analysing our search data, we have been able to identify important events that people are wanting to find personalised products for. As expected, personalised birthday products and personalised Christmas products are searched for more than products related to other types of events.

Event Average searches per month
Birthday 135,680
Christmas 134,220
Wedding 68,840
Teacher 18,750
Easter 15,810
Mother's Day 15,670
Father's Day 15,550
Eid 2,130
Halloween 1,540

Each event tends to have various popular products. For birthdays, “personalised birthday cards” (10,000 searches) and “personalised birthday banners” (5,500 searches) were the top two searches. For Christmas, the top two searches were “personalised Christmas baubles” (9,800 searches) and “personalised Christmas cards” (7,800 searches).

If you’re wanting to branch out into the wedding industry, personalisation is a crucial element to wedding planning. Wedding stationery and products, including invitations, RSVP cards, menus and more, have a combined monthly search volume of 68,840 per month.

If you are looking to introduce personalised products into your business, you could start with birthday and Christmas related products to capitalise on these searches. Or, perhaps you would rather stick to a more niche area where you may find there is less competition, for example Halloween mugs and banners.

Most popular person to buy personalised products for

Knowing who people are buying personalised products for is crucial to understanding the types of products to invest in. We began our investigation by searching for family members such as “mum” and “dad” but ultimately found that furry friends were very popular searches online for personalised products. Searches related to personalised items for dogs make up more searches than for mum and dad combined!

Family member Average searches per month
Dog 78,490
Mum 38,510
Dad 32,450
For him 27,260
For her 26,190
Grandparents/Grandkids 16,410
Cat 16,280

From our search data, we can see that dogs are the most searched for “family member” to buy personalised items for! This includes items such as:

• Personalised dog bowls (searched for 3,900 times per month)
• Personalised dog gifts (searched for 3,100 times per month)
• Personalised dog collars (searched for 2,600 times per month)
• Personalised dog bed (searched for 2,300 times per month)
• Personalised dog tags (searched for 1,800 times per month)

Items for mums and dads range from gifts to cards to keyrings, whereas the “for her” and “for him” searches are more generalised; consumers are at the beginning of their buying journey, looking for inspiration for unique gifts.

If you're a business owner, you may be wondering how you can use personalisation to your advantage when it comes to driving sales and boosting brand awareness. Here are a few tried and tested ways personalisation has been used by businesses.

Marketing your products with personalisation

Using personalised products as marketing tools is a great way to capitalise on the personalisation trend. From influencers to promotional print, there are many ways you can design your very own personalised products and use them to your advantage.

Personalised and branded products

Creating personalised marketing collateral gets your brand name out there. Whether you want to personalise a banner, stickers or books, creating your own branded merchandise gives that extra special touch to your marketing plans.

Personalisation and influencer marketing

Perhaps you like the idea of personalisation but are not interested in creating new products to sell to consumers. In this case, you can use personalised products to send to influencers to promote a different product or service.

Laura Ferry, a plus-size fashion and self-confidence blogger who has 121k followers on Instagram, says that personalising an item is a great way to generate coverage. “Just look at campaigns like Coca Cola’s, putting names on bottles – it generated huge income and coverage”, she says. When it comes to working with brands, Laura says that personalised products are great when it comes to unboxing, “influencers are much more likely to feature something if it has been made personal to them”.

Foodie influencer, Jordon Lawrence, behind the account Purely Belta Bait, says that receiving personalised items really shows that bit of extra effort from a brand, “I also think it helps build up more of a connection with that client too.”

Olivia McHale, otherwise known as The Northernist on Instagram, discussed how she personally loves when a gifted item is personalised, whether it is from a brand or from friends/family. She says, “it adds to the feeling of owning something a bit more unique and makes the item feel as though it was made especially for you.” Olivia also mentioned various products that she likes to personalise, “whether it’s a bag, notebook, planner, I love using bits and bobs that have some kind of personalisation on them. I think having something with my name on, my handle or star sign is really fun!”.

Overall, personalised items are a tried and tested way to get people speaking about your company, whether you offer personalised products for consumers to buy directly or want to use personalisation as part of a marketing or influencer campaign.

At WTTB, we know all too well how important it is to offer personalised products. With our collection of cards, mugs, banners and much more, you can create your own unique designs on a variety of products that work for your business, alongside our award-winning customer service and artwork support.

Need a helping hand with personalising your products? Read about our brand-new personalisation service and let us help you bring your personalisation ideas to life.


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