How To Start Selling T-Shirts Online With Print On Demand T-Shirts
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How To Start Selling T-Shirts Online With Print On Demand T-Shirts

Is starting an online t-shirt store a good idea? Yes, it is. T-shirts have been a fundamental part of wardrobes across the globe for a really long time. Its universal acceptance and popularity among all demographics make selling t-shirts online a lucrative business opportunity for lots of entrepreneurs. 

selling t-shirt online

T-shirts are economical to source, have a universal appeal, and are pretty simple to customize. As a result, ‘selling T-shirts online’ is a popular choice for beginners, as well as veteran eCommerce entrepreneurs.

Even though this business seems to be easy, there are a lot of things you need to take care of to make it successful. A good understanding of your competition, making sure that your brand stands out from the crowd, high-quality produces, unique design and strong brand image are some areas you will really need to focus on.

 

 

Well, let’s help you with some steps that will help you set up your online t-shirt store and start selling T-shirts online.

4 Steps To Keep In Mind Before You Set Up Your Online T-shirt Store Start Selling T-Shirts Online

1. Find Your Target Audience And Niche

Start by asking yourself, “who is going to buy these t-shirts”?

eCommerce is a huge world and there are multiple T-shirt sellers out there. Answering this question will help you figure out a way to define who you are catering to and this will help to stand out from the competition.

Now you may be wondering how defining a target audience will help since almost everyone wears t-shirts. Well, narrowing down your target audience is what will help you find your product niche.

It will help you to clearly envision and define what your product should look like, who is going to buy it, how will it be perceived, and why will the buyers need it. Understanding the interests of people around you and your target audience will help you define that niche.

2. Setting Up An Online T-Shirt Store

Once you have determined a target audience and niche for your T-shirt business, the next step is to find out how to sell your T-shirt designs.

For this, you have to set up an online store. While there are multiple eCommerce platforms that will enable you to launch a store in just a matter of minutes, finding the perfect domain name for it may pose a challenge. 

The best way to overcome this challenge? Pick a brandable, short name on a relevant .store domain. Not only does the .store domain clearly communicate that you are in the business of selling online, but it also helps to better position your brand and helps to stand out from other t-shirt business that are using clunky domain names.

For instance, Stately Shirts, the company that offers high-quality printed t-shirts that showcase numerous geographic states for people to flaunt and celebrate, uses Stately.store as its web address.

According to Seth Maschmeier, the Founder at Stately:

“Our original domain was www.thestatelyshirtcompany.com which we eventually decided was far too long and could be difficult for people to remember or even read at a glance. So then we worked on finding easier domains.

We went to www.thestatelyshirtco.com and then www.statelyshirtco.com and then www.statelyshirts.com. Then I thought just “Stately” would be perfect. We picked www.stately.store and .STORE works great because we offer more than just shirts and will continue to expand with our ideas. It describes who we are very well.”

Stately.store is a pretty cool domain name. You can take inspiration from the name ideas mentioned in the second half of this article.

Search your .store domain NOW!

.store

3. Adding Products To Your Online T-Shirt Store

After setting up your online store, you need to add products to it. There are lots of ways through which you can source your products for your online store.

One of the easiest ways is to partner up with a “print on demand” site, which prints t-shirts on demand. There are also websites that provide the service of shipping them along with printing.

Since the products are going to be printed only when the order is placed, there wouldn’t be any extra upfront costs. In this way, you can also introduce newer products, and even discard the ones that aren’t selling.

 4. Failing And Trying

Your research might have suggested that whatever product you have designed and created will be driving a huge amount of sales. However such results are sometimes impossible to achieve by just launching your store.

Your predictions might fail to match the actual needs of your target audience resulting in low sales. Don’t let it put you back.

To sell T-shirts online is a process of trial and error. Giving the customers a voice is going to help you find the solution. If a design isn’t working out, try something very different.

If buyers don’t react to it, try something yet again. Let them pick what products and designs are attractive to them. Empower customers to give you feedback so you can fine-tune your offerings and give them what they need. 

Creative Online Store Name Ideas For Your Print On Demand Online T-Shirt Store 

An important part of starting a t-shirt business online is finding the right name for it. While you certainly can come up with creative name ideas, finding exact match domain names can be challenging.

The best way to solve this name-game muddle is to pick a smart name on a relevant new domain extension like .store. As a word that has always been associated with a business that sells something, the .store domain fits perfectly for any business selling online.

400+ Print On Demand Shirt Brand Names on .STORE Domains To Inspire You:  

Outlander.store OrbitFlex.store RaggedEdge.store
Earthly.store TeeTrip.store SummerSplash.store
TeeTag.store PuberTee.store TeeForTwo.store
TurbanTee.store CabanaTee.store TeeLife.store
HavanaTee.store LeagueofTees .store AdmiralTee.store
Thundertee.store TalkingTees.store BlueCoconut.store
Greenfrog.store ShirtSquad.store SmartCotton.store
TeeZip.store TeeTime.store CrazyBlackTee.store
ThinTee.store HappySumo.store ElevenThreads.store
NinjaTee.store DopeTee.store YellowVibe.store
1983tshirt.store headcrack.store radifornia.store
4ts.store hearourvoices20shirt.store rapturetheory.store
500level.store hearourvoicesshirt.store rgboutique.store
8and9.store hearourvoicesshirts.store riotsociety.store
911tees.store heaventees.store ritorika.store
aafnations.store heretodaygonetomorrow.store rmft.store
abitofyou.store heyniceshirt.store rockstarinbed.store
adtees.store highway555.store rollinshirts.store
ajtees.store hippielovesshirt.store rushtshirts.store
alapi.store hotfashiontshirt.store ryanhstees.store
alexmill.store hshirt.store sandroonline.store
allshirt.store hurrys.store sassyshirt.store
alltall.store huynsoon.store sayno.store
althouse.store hydrashirt.store sharaza.store
aminashirt.store idw.store shirtair.store
aniholic.store imatter.store shirtexpo.store
antiviralshirtco.store inkrabbit.store shirtforyou.store
apparelprint.store instor.store shirthub.store
aprint.store ishirt.store shirtified.store
aqshirt.store ivyclothing.store shirtlive.store
aqshirt.store jayzono.store shirtnow.store
arbuzzz.store jlibs.store shirtnshoes.store
arena.store joebiden46.store shirtomize.store
artbooq.store joyforyou.store shirtprints.store
arttees973.store jpeu.store shirts101.store
awesomeshirts.store juzzb.store shirts4women.store
azshirt.store kameil.store shirtsagainsthumanity.store
babufrik.store kanatee.store shirtshack.store
bcommohamed.store kengunlock.store shirtstay.store
beckettrobb.store kentshirt.store shirtstop.store
beeinspiredmarket.store kerusso.store shirttales.store
beeshirt10.store kissshirt.store shirtx.store
beeshirt13.store klibs.store shirty.store
beeshirt16.store knlm.store shop4shirts.store
belovedshirts.store koalashirt.store shorty.store
berniesanders46.store kotshirt.store shtefan.store
bestshirtever.store kstate.store shuboy.store
bewithme.store kuale.store sillytshirt.store
bfud.store kustom.store silvifort.store
bjsay.store kwlle.store simplemeet.store
blushirt.store lafumaonline.store simplyhawaiian.store
bodybuildingshirt.store laikey.store slidesneaker.store
bodybuildingshirts.store larunia.store smartees.store
booshirt.store lastbeerstanding.store smgha.store
boue.store latestpadded.store smoove.store
bringmetacos.store lawgnosis.store sobrietees.store
bshirt.store leamons.store socae.store
bucketlistshirt.store leath.store societal.store
burntface.store legendsareborn.store softtshirt.store
businesscasual.store leoshirts.store southernmarsh.store
buyingmaker.store letteringab.store southernshirt.store
bytrt.store leup.store spacegear.store
cabon.store lifestyleave.store spokeshirt.store
cader.store lilrichy.store sprnt.store
captainshirty.store limitedtshirtman.store stately.store
catechis.store lookalive.store stormshirt11.store
catslover20shirt.store lookapparel.store stormshirt14.store
caty.store losaka.store stormshirt16.store
chiemseeonline.store lotusshirt.store stpday.store
chillshirt.store lovealwayswins.store strippiar.store
chowdaheadz.store lovelytshirt.store studioshirts.store
chrisart.store loveyourselfie.store suppi.store
christmasmovieshirts.store lowpriceretro.store suppliersrelease.store
classicshirt.store maddoriginal.store sweatshop.store
cleanattire.store madetoinspire.store tailorgame.store
clothingartss.store maketshirt.store takeyourtee.store
clovershirt.store massbunk.store tapez.store
cmba.store mauishirts.store tartz.store
cocotshirt.store mavericktees.store tasteshirts.store
collartales.store means.store tatooshdesign.store
colourcopystat.store memortees.store tazashirts.store
comers.store mensplaidshirts.store tcpc.store
comfytees.store mentshirt.store teemania.store
contextdesigns.store millord.store teeprinted.store
coollook.store minco.store teeshirt247.store
coolrandom1.store mintar.store teeshirtgifts.store
covidninetees.store mishkaat.store teesprint.store
creativitees.store montesaro.store terrifictshirts.store
currentevent.store morningshirt.store teshirt.store
customizeddesign.store mtendi.store thebigt.store
cx3.store muiea.store thechrist.store
cybertshirt.store mumbaigames.store thechristianshirt.store
decksdesigns.store mumeri.store thecoder.store
deutf.store musicstore.store thecoolshirt.store
dieselit.store mustangjeansonline.store theofficeshirts.store
dinodesign.store myonline.store theright.store
diyanu.store myrights.store thestiffcollar.store
dokechy.store myshirts.store thexconcept.store
domshirt1.store mytshirtbiz.store thnext.store
dovens.store mytshirtprinting.store topfind.store
dreamalive.store nanablanket.store totens.store
dreamtshirt.store nashrags.store trendingshirts.store
drykornonline.store newlii.store trendtshirts.store
eaglesixgear.store newsigh.store trendyshirt.store
ehsan.store newsworking.store tribbuz.store
eirad.store nfljerseypro.store tshirt2020.store
eqlt.store nhlfans.store tshirtdesigns.store
etamonline.store nicesell.store tshirtlab.store
etees.store nikos.store tshirtnow.store
factorymailorder.store nissa.store tshirtt.store
faithgear.store nucampaign.store tshirtwear.store
fanaticsonline.store nyknights.store tuxshirts.store
fanaticstshirt.store offensiveshirts.store uastudent.store
fatanbuy.store ohboyprintshop.store unlimitedshirt.store
feministapparel.store ohmycat.store unspeakablemerch.store
firegirls.store olafan.store urbaanmisfit.store
flirtytshirts.store oldfind.store valestone.store
footballshirtcollective.store onepunchman.store varthagaminternational.store
fucktrumpshirts.store onfit.store veryshirt.store
fullyfilmy.store orderpersonalis.store viesw.store
funkytshirts.store ouionline.store vinmax.store
funkyturtle.store outofprint.store vios.store
gatt.store ovabest.store visualshirt.store
geotshirt.store pingyshirt.store wada.store
getoutalive.store plasticballs.store wajakaa.store
givemeliberty.store playbook.store wannaink.store
godlessshirt.store pocketpets.store weebtees.store
goodtee.store podshirts.store welovebeer.store
gosfe.store popularfans.store whatthe.store
gospelighttshirt.store premierrea.store wildanimalsshirt.store
graphicshirts.store pricepersonalised.store womenpower.store
graphictees.store prideapparel.store woolandprince.store
halfandhalf.store protshirts.store wtees.store
hamisheh.store quarantineandchill.store wtscribbles.store
happymini.store quickdrawshirts.store wynnsracing.store

Making The First Print On Demand Shirt Sale

Having an online t-shirt store up and running is just the first step. The real deal is to make that first sale. Below are a few things that might help you do that successfully.

Product Reviews

It’s a proven fact that product reviews accelerate sales growth.

But the question that remains is how to score those product reviews before making the first sale?

The people who you can rely upon buying your product without questioning its legitimacy, are your family and friends. Ask them to buy your product, and once they have done that, learn about their shopping experience.

Get feedback from them about how you can improve, and also ask them to leave you a product review.

Search your .store domain NOW!

.store

Giveaways

Despite what you may think of it, this age-old trick always works like a charm. For a consumer, what’s better than getting something they need for free? It’s as simple as that.

A free giveaway campaign, in the beginning, is sure to attract a huge number of customer base and create much-needed brand awareness for you. Once they have used your product and they like it, they’re sure to use it again. They are even likely to recommend it to friends and family.

Social Media

In today’s world of digital media, every business has to maintain its presence on social media. And this is more applicable for eCommerce businesses. Consumers might not really come to your store, but there’s a much higher probability of them landing on your Instagram handle or Facebook page.

Truth be told, your audience will most likely find you on social media first. This is why you need to invest in a strong Instagram marketing strategy and up your hashtag game

With Instagram’s Shoppable feature, you can even sell directly from the social media channel. 

The key is to use social media to your advantage to build an audience. Post about your products regularly and make sure your brand is reaching out to potential customers.

However, posting alone won’t help you attract customers to your brand. The more you engage with them, the more likely you are to create value for your brand in their minds.

You don’t have to be a salesman, you just have to provide great content and the rest will follow. Involve with forums, groups, blogs, and articles and it will get your brand noticed.

Hell, get them to participate in a quirky hashtag challenge!

Social Media Influencers

Influencer marketing’ is something that has gained unfathomable popularity in the past few years. Social media influencers are people with a large follower base and their followers tend to hero-worship them. 

In other words, followers want to use products that influencers are using, do the things that they are doing. It’s simple – these social media influencers already hold a strong position among members of your target audience.

This means you can leverage from collaborating with these influencers who will happily promote your t-shirts and your brand to their followers. 

Influencers promoting your brand on their social media handles (in exchange for a few free T-shirts), could really attract a lot of customers to your store.

Retargeting Ads

Most of the time, you will find users browsing through your product catalogs, adding your product to their cart but leaving without making a purchase. 

Cart abandonment is inevitable and online shoppers do that all the time.

The solution to this is a solid retargeting campaign. Retargeting ads use cookie-based technology to make sure that the visitors who left your store without placing the order, are being shown custom ads about the same products on their social media handles.

Even when they are surfing on the web, with no intention to shop online, you can show them the ads about the products they intended to buy and eventually didn’t.

How to Start a Print on Demand Shirt Business

What is Print on Demand T-Shirts?

“Why fit in when you can stand out?”

Print-on-demand T-shirts has emerged as a successful eCommerce model as it harnesses people’s inherent aspirational quotient and lets them express their individuality through an endless range of creative and customized T-shirts. 

What is print on demand (POD)?

Simply put, it is an eCommerce model wherein print on demand t-shirts are designed only AFTER an order has been placed for them. 

The POD process boasts efficient turnaround times, often taking only 2-3 business days for order fulfillment.

Why choose print on demand as a model to sell t-shirts online? 

Prints on-demand t-shirts have disrupted the prevalent trends of the online t-shirt market in the last few years. Print on demand t-shirt companies cater to a niche market base and offer them unique benefits over traditional eCommerce platforms.

Some of the benefits of print on demand t-shirt business are: 

  • Minimal or no requirement for warehousing – Print on-demand t-shirts are printed only after an order has been placed for them, eliminating the need for holding prior inventory. 
  • Efficient processing time – Advanced digital technology enables print on demand companies to ensure that high-quality t-shirts are designed with speedy turnaround times rivaling those of Amazon.
  • No onus on order fulfillment – Print on demand companies manage the logistics of shipping the t-shirts. This takes away the hassle of order fulfillment and allows for effective resource allocation. 

See below for a list of some of the best print on demand companies you can work with:

What Is The Best Print On Demand Site?

Here’s a list of 45+ best print of demand sites for inspiration.

Website Description
1 0stees.com Funny T-shirt, Movie T-shirt, TV Shirt & Video Game Tees
2 6dollarshirts.com Funny T-Shirts, cool tees, and soft vintage shirts shipped daily for only six dollars each. New shirt designs all the time!
3 aafnation.com Patriotic apparel and gear for men and women. The best Fourth of July shirts, tanks, and hoodies in the land.
4 artistshot.com Artistshot offers a wide range of custom clothing as well as cool t-shirt designs. Sell your art and become part of their t-shirt designers teams.
5 betterthanpants.com Browser our catalog of thousands of funny, offensive, and sometimes just plain dumb t-shirts.  High quality prints  on heavyweight cotton tees shipped fast
6 bigcartel.com Build a unique online store, sell your work, and run a creative business. Perfect for clothing designers, bands, jewelry makers, crafters, and other artists.
7 bonfire.com Create your custom shirt campaign for free. Upload art or design your shirt online  sell to your community for a good cause or for profit. Launch today!
8 bucktee.com Best of pop culture clothing for you.
9 cafepress.com Best merchandise to express yourself
10 chummytees.com Must see trendy t-shirt designs – funny, vintage/retro, political, offensive, and plenty of text tees.
11 coolshirtsmean.com Have you ever asked these questions? What Does Your Name Mean? What Does My Name Mean? Find out! See name meanings and get a cool t-shirts, hoodies for your name!
12 crazydogtshirts.com Funny t-shirts printed on crazy soft apparel. Shop online for cool shirts for men, women and kids. Cute maternity tees and soft tank tops.
13 creativefabrica.com Get access to our ever growing library of fonts, graphics, crafts and more. Over 1 million unique premium designs. Access them all today.
14 customink.com Make custom T-shirts, apparel & promotional products online with the highest quality printing & customer service. Easy Ordering. Fast & Free Shipping.
15 customizedgirl.com Custom Shirts, Tanks, Undies, & More
16 designbyhumans.com Shop cool graphic tees selected by a community of creative and unique designers. Browse new graphic t-shirts from artist all over the world at Design By Humans.
17 fineartamerica.com Buy art online, decorate your home with incredible works of art, and help support living artists all over the world!  Fine Art America is the world
18 iloveapparel.com Funny T-Shirts, Hoodies, and other fun Apparel just for the things you love.
19 lookhuman.com T-shirts made from preshrunk 100% cotton and a heathered tri-blend fabric.
20 merchbar.com Lowest prices on 1,000,000+ band t-shirts, vinyl records, hoodies, posters and more from over 35,000 Rock, Pop, R&B, Hip-Hop, Metal and EDM artists. Shop now!
21 moteefe.com Moteefe is a social commerce platform providing a solution for users to sell customised products through social media
22 pixels.com Shop for t-shirts, art prints, phone cases, and more from independent artists and iconic global brands.
23 printify.com Create and Sell Custom Products with your design.
24 prowrestlingtees.com Wrestling t-shirts sold by over 1500 wrestlers directly. 14,000+ items. Official apparel providers for AEW, NJPW, Impact & more
25 rageon.com RageOn is your one-stop all-over-print shop for T-Shirts and more for brands like KISS, Lisa Frank, Black Eyed Peas, Technodrome1, Larry Carlson etc.
26 redbubble.com Awesome products designed by independent artists
27 rockabilia.com Rockabilia is the premier music and entertainment merch site. We have shirts, shoes, sweatshirts, bottoms, accessories and more from your favorite movies and bands.
28 rushordertees.com Custom T-Shirts Fast, Design Online
29 sellmerch.org Learn how to make, market and sell your custom merch
30 sevencopy.com There are various styles, designs, colors, graphics, sizes, shirts about your name you can choose.
31 snorgtees.com Funny t-shirts, hoodies and tank tops updated with new designs every week. Shop our huge collection of awesome, cool, and hilarious pop culture, nerd humor and overall funny designs today.
32 spiritshop.com The Official Store for SpiritShop.com!
33 spreadshirt.com Custom T-Shirts and T-Shirt Printing
34 spreadshirt.net Create personalised products or shop from their designer marketplace.
35 storenvy.com Discover inspired goods from authentic brands. Or, build your own brand with a free store.
36 sunfrog.com SunFrog Shirts is a community for designers and shoppers. Shop SunFrog Shirts for creative & custom designs as unique as you are. Customer satisfaction guaranteed.
37 teechip.com Design and sell shirts, mugs, and phone cases online with TeeChip Pro. Upload your artwork and we take care of the rest. No upfront costs. No minimums.
38 teehag.com Pop-culture inspired tees for all ages!
39 teenavi.com TeeNavi store, all the t-shirts, sweatshirts, hoodies, tank tops, mug that you could be looking for.
40 teepublic.com Shop Art, T-Shirts and Other Apparel Created by a Global Community of Independent Designers.
41 teeshirt21.com Millions of crowd-sourced designs from independent designers all over the world. Large selection of shirt styles. International Shipping. Satisfaction guaranteed.
42 teeshirtpalace.com Get quick shipping on unique T-shirts, tank tops, long sleeve shirts and hoodies from TeeShirtPalace, with funny and cool apparel for men, women and kids
43 teespring.com Teespring is the free and easy way to bring your ideas to life. Design your product, set a price, and start selling. Teespring handles the rest – production, shipping, and customer service – and you keep the profit!
44 teespy.com Get A Massive Edge And Make Your Next T-Shirt Campaign A Winner With This Push-Button Software.
45 teezily.com A French company, internationally renowned. Founded in January 2014, Teezily is a platform marketing thousands of personalized products.
46 theshirtlist.com The Shirt List is the biggest collection of curated pop culture t-shirt lists on the Internet. We list t-shirts by theme, artist, and store.
47 threadless.com Awesome t-shirts, art prints, iphone cases, and more featuring unique designs by the global Threadless artist community.
48 zazzle.com From cool t-shirts to custom mugs to DIY invitations, Zazzle is the place to unleash your creative side. Shop for, or design, amazing products today!

Is The Print On Demand Profitable?

A resounding, YES!

The POD market in the USA and Canada has been on a steady upward curve and with the base for print on demand drop shipping increasing exponentially; it’s still a viable business model today.

How Do You Price Print On Demand Products?

This short video on how to price print on demand products explains this beautifully.

What is Dropshipping? 

Dropshipping is a core aspect within print on demand. To put it simply, print on demand dropshipping is a process wherein the seller doesn’t need to hold inventory.

Upon receiving orders for a t-shirt, the supplier dispatches the t-shirt to your customer directly. The entire order fulfillment process is automated and low-risk, hence it’s emerging as an attractive option for start-ups or even individuals to dabble into. 

How to Make Your Print on Demand T-Shirts Business a Success 

  • Niche is everything – Before you get started with optimizing your store, you’ll need to ensure your t-shirt designs are desirable to your niche. The more specific your niche, the better!

It increases your chances of tapping into the market share that’ll consider your offerings seriously.

  • Design & feedback – Create unique and engaging design concepts that’ll resonate with your selected niche. It’s also important to receive feedback from the relevant sample size to determine if your offerings will be attractive to your niche. 

You can have your design critiqued by your social media base or on Reddit. If you’re seeking to outsource design creation, you may find freelancers on design sharing communities like Behance or 99designs

  • Create your online marketplace – It’s pivotal that you have a website set up before you begin your print on demand t-shirt venture. Register a domain name. Ensure you design an attractive and user-friendly POD website (sites like Shopify can help you here)

Search your .store domain NOW!

.store
  • Choose the right print provider – Partner with reliable print on demand websites. Do note their USPs; for example, TeeSpring specializes in print on-demand t-shirts.
  • Spread the word – Once you’ve got your marketplace set-up and have chosen a print provider you’re satisfied with, it’s time to promote your online store. However, here make sure that you have your T-Shirt business shipping sorted out so that you can fulfill the orders.

There are many ways to do this, popular methods include:

  • SEO optimization
  • Hiring social media influencers
  • Joining relevant forum groups
  • Leverage paid social media by running ad campaigns
  • Leverage word of mouth marketing by using testimonials & user reviews

 

  • Monitor the results – It’ll take some time to ascertain what works for your business and what doesn’t. Conducting regular analysis of performance will help you make effective tweaks (e.g. changes to the pricing model, website design using Shopify, promotion methods, etc.)

Other Popular Print on Demand Product Categories

The biggest markets for print on demand products are shirts. Many are enamored by the idea of flaunting their individuality through unique and exotic designs on custom shirts/t-shirts.

The increasing number of sellers uploading exuberant designs over the years has provided an endless assortment of choices for the discerning customer. 

However, this has also led to high competition and market saturation in the print on demand t-shirts niche.

Print-on-demand companies today need to conduct thorough audience profiling to ensure their t-shirt matches their audience’s demand. 

Some print-on-demand products are perennially popular on sites like Amazon, eBay etc. Examples include:

  1. Notebooks & Print
  2. Mugs
  3. Stationery
  4. Personalized gifts
  5. Art decor & wall prints 
  6. Printed pet t-shirts
  7. Bags & purses
  8. Phone cases 
  9. Towels, pillow covers

Pros & Cons of Print on Demand T-Shirts

Print on demand provides an affordable and low-risk approach to venture into the eCommerce markets of Canada & the USA.

However, it’s important to objectively analyze its advantages and drawbacks:

Pros

  • Monetize your online audience – For those who enjoy an active social media following, print on demand can be a great option to connect with your audience while seamlessly monetizing your content.
  • Easy set-up of operations – Print on demand websites are largely user-friendly and easy to set up. One can register, set up their profile, and begin uploading their creative designs within minutes.
  • Low startup cost – Compared to conventional eCommerce business models, print on demand business model doesn’t require a large capital. Print on demand websites like Shopify allows you to kickstart your business with a low budget too.
  • No need to hold inventory – Print on demand companies handle the task of packaging and logistics, removing the hassle of holding stock. 
  • Freedom to experiment with a business idea – Unlike most marketing ventures, print on demand enables you to test if a new t-shirt will perform well without carrying the risk that comes with buying inventory. 

Cons

  • Low margins – The biggest drawback of print on demand t-shirts are the low margins of profit. This is most prevalent in niches that are highly competitive as competing stores are willing to sell items at minimal prices. Selecting the right niche helps mitigate this problem to a large extent.
  • Errors on supplier’s side – Human error is inevitable in any supply chain process. Even proficient print on demand companies can make mistakes whilst fulfilling orders, the responsibility of which will be borne by you. 
  • Limited range of t-shirts – You may be constrained by the type of t-shirt you wish to sell depending on your chosen POD partner. While print on demand t-shirts are widely popular; the same isn’t the case for sellers who wish to sell highly customized tees.  

The print on demand model has emerged as an ideal, low-risk option, and an easy alternative to traditional eCommerce business models. POD helps empower new entrepreneurs or start-ups to essentially test an idea and its market feasibility before they invest in it.

Tips For Starting A Low-Risk Print On Demand Business

As mentioned earlier, print on demand gives you the privilege of not having to manage your own inventory. However, there are a few considerations to be made if you are looking to start a print on demand business.

We’ve curated a list of tips that might help you build your print on demand business.

1. Strategize your Shipping

Customer satisfaction is highly dependent on how they receive the products they buy. Even though you aren’t directly taking care of shipping, there are a few things you could strategize to improve their experience.

Whenever you are intimating the shipping time to the customers, make sure you’re also taking into consideration the printing time, which could add 2 to 4 days to fulfillment time.

Create a FAQ page or a separate shipping page, where you can clearly explain all the terms of your shipping well to the customers. The more upfront and transparent you are about the shipping; the better the confidence you build amongst your potential customers.

You can also consider absorbing the shipping costs into your retail price, partially or completely. It’s a known fact that surprising shipping costs added during checkout increase cart abandonment.

 Besides, free shipping has its own benefits:

  • Even if offered in specific regions, free shipping acts as a sales sweetener providing customers an incentive to buy
  • Conditional free shipping like setting a minimum purchase limit to acquire free shipping encourages customers to buy more products and at the same time helps you achieve a better shipping rate by shipping products together
  • Free shipping gives the necessary satisfaction to customers, and you can use it to justify longer wait times in fulfillment

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2. Order Samples

Quality assurance is the topmost priority when using print on demand services online. The possibility of something getting lost in translation or a modification in the design from what you saw on screen to the printed product is high.

You need to ensure that the t-shirts you ordered look and feels exactly how you intended it to be and the perfect way to do that is to be your own customer.

You can use sample discounts or free shipping options to buy the t-shirts yourself and experience first-hand what it’s like to receive your own products.

One of the other benefits of ordering samples is that you can take some really cool pictures to spruce up your Instagram marketing. 

3. Niche Marketing

The key to building a successful print on demand business is to target a particular niche.

If you’re planning to design and sell t-shirts, it’s always better to define the audience you are targeting. Otherwise, you’ll just get lost into the vast pool of generic businesses with very fewer results.

For example, if you target fitness enthusiasts or cat owners, you can design specific products that are in demand and incur lower costs to acquire customers by maximizing your profits since your targeting decisions would be precise.

You can also build an audience of your own through target marketing, to whom you can always sell your newer t-shirt designs in the future. A few ideas for that are:

  • Starting an Instagram account and creating content to build a follower base amongst your target audience. Building relationships with them would help you in converting your sales
  • Running Facebook ads and targeting the interests of your niche customer base and using low-cost ads to analyze which designs are resonating with your audience
  • Collecting emails from visitors so that you can continue marketing it to them for free through email marketing
  • Collaborating with social media influencers to reach out to an unexplored customer base

4. Create Mockups

Many print on demand services helps you create your own mockups, where you can show your products in the flesh. They also provide mockup templates that you can use to bring your products to life.

Mockups increase the chances of people buying your products as they get a better perspective and it’s worth spending a few extra bucks on.

In Conclusion

Since you will be new to the business of selling T-shirts online, you’ll need to figure out ways to stand out from the existing t-shirt business owners. A great way to do that is to understand your target audience, what they need, what their lifestyle is like, and how you brand yourself to meet their ideologies. 

It’s simple – If someone can relate to your product, selling is easy.

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