Are you interested in starting a business of your own? If so, perhaps print on demand and selling t-shirts could be just the thing up your alley.
This kind of work is challenging, requires creativity, but the rewards after creating a well-functioning e-store are difficult to describe. And if you can scale it and turn the store into a passive source of income that requires a few hours of maintenance every week, your life will become much easier.
However, like with every other project, there are certain steps one has to take in order to ensure that the outcome is successful. This article will be a good reference for those who want to get started working on a print on demand store but lack some experience.
Start with the T-Shirt Design
Since you will be selling t-shirts and maybe some other merchandise later on (like hoodies, phone cases, or key chains), start with the design.
There is very little reason to work on a website if the product is missing. Now some people would stick to what they believe and test out the market or get feedback from others after they are finished with the design. However, it would be better to research some trends and act accordingly to them. Selling products or services that have the appeal is safer than blindly throwing something in and expecting the magic to happen.
The design itself has to be of the highest possible quality. Also, once you start to see some more customers coming your way, you will want to expand and introduce new designs. Hiring a freelancer and leaving him or her in charge of the designs could be one of the options to consider.
Image source: https://printify.com/
Create a Name for Yourself
Brands are recognized just by looking at their logos. Reaching this point is a tough ordeal, but it is important to keep in mind that focusing entirely on sales is not always the best strategy.
Brand awareness plays a very important role as well and you want a positive word of mouth to travel around. Always strive to create a brand that stands out in the world of mediocrity.
Remember to Protect Yourself
Infringing another brand’s copyrights is a terrible thing to do and who would want to have problems with the law? Do not attempt to copy other people’s designs because that will only put you in a world of problems.
At the same time, it is important to remember to protect your own elements like logos, designs, and slogans. If you neglect this part, other brands will be free to profit from you.
Look to Select the Best Possible Supplier
It is highly unlikely that you will be the one manufacturing t-shirts. Relying on someone for a product is the only option. Your choice of the right product supplier can make or break your entire business so when you are looking to select one as well, here are some key points to consider:
- But do not accept the lowest bidder. Look for the right balance between quality and how much you have to pay for the product.
- It will be impossible to cooperate if the communication is not clear, honest, and consistent.
- Look at the track record and how the said company has fared while working with other brands. Will it be someone who can meet your expectations?
Marketing the T-Shirt
There are various methods of marketing and some work better than others depending on your skills and the kind of product or service you are promoting. As a rule of thumb, there are a few practices that are recognized as some of the best for continuously scaling your business, and those would be:
- Search engine optimization. It helps a lot when your traffic comes from Google and other search engines. These people enter particular keywords with intent to buy and are worth a lot.
- Social media. According to Emarsys research in 2019, there were about 3.5 billion profiles on social media. Platforms like Facebook and Instagram are great for raising brand awareness, interacting with your audience directly, organizing giveaways and contests, or showing exclusive footage and teasing upcoming products and services.
Keeping Relationships with Customers
A happy customer will be the one who returns to the website more than once, giving you more money. But how does one reach a point in which customers are happy?
It takes time and work. First of all, you want to have your customer support department in check and ensure that any inquiries they might have, be it via emails, live chat, or social media, are answered as soon as possible.
Rewarding loyal customers is also a good piece of advice. After all, they are the ones mostly responsible for your success. Do not hesitate and gift them free shipping, a discount here and there, or any other perk you can think of.