Last updated on February 24th, 2023
Custom merchandise is the customized clothing line ordered by a third party for sale. It’s a set of printed clothing created by keeping the customers’ preferences in mind. Most buyers, therefore, find such merchandise close to their hearts. For many small brands and graphic designers, creating a unique merch becomes a consistent source of earnings. In this article, we’ve shared what is custom merchandise and how to sell custom merch using the online shop.
A custom merch is something you come across frequently in today’s highly competitive business environment. Companies are seen offering such merch for free to people for driving their attention to a newly launched service or product. You get such complementary gifts also in offices and elsewhere.
Merchandise marketing is now a well-recognized form of marketing for its ability to enhance a brand’s reach amid target customers. But creating custom merch is no longer restricted to companies for brand promotion.
Even you can personally create custom merchandise to sell online. You can create designs or illustrations and print them on products such as men’s and women’s apparel, accessories, etc. to sell and make money.
What Is The Custom Merchandise?
Custom merchandise is a product that is given a new look by printing a design or illustration on it to make it look personalized for people. Such products are specially created for sale.
The merchandise, also known as promotional products, is often distributed free of cost as a gift to people by the side of an event and in offices.
A wide variety of custom merchandise can be used for sale and brand promotion. These products include customized hats and caps, tees, hoodies, and other many other garments, backpacks, water bottles, shoes, coffee mugs, stickers, wall art, and phone accessories.
Why Is Custom Merchandise So Important?
Almost every brand today is taking up custom merchandise as an effective way to market products or services. The growing significance of custom merchandise for brand promotion is very much important from the industry stats as well.
According to a survey, in the U.S., 24.7 billion dollars worth of promotional products were sold in 2018. Clearly, the creation of such products for promotional purpose itself is a huge industry.
If you want to promote your business aggressively, then create custom merchandise as part of your marketing strategy. With these promotional products, your customer reach increases rapidly.
This is because people keep these useful products for a longer period with them, making your brand highly visible to the target audience. But know the ways to create merchandise and sell using online platforms.
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Here Are Some Major Reasons Why Custom Merchandise Should Matter To You
i. People Love To Buy Custom Products
A majority of people want to stand out in terms of their choice of products they use. So, they look for a t-shirt or a mug, etc. that is different from other products. Every single piece that you create is unique, which is the reason that people will flock your online shop to buy the merch.
ii. Increase Your Earnings Manifold
Individual graphic designers can use their design skills to create unique designs. Then print those designs on men’s and women’s apparel such as Tees and custom hoodies and accessories like phone covers.
With some social media promotion of your online shop, you can surely earn decently from selling your custom merch.
iii. Engage Your Audience
If you have a lot of unique custom merchandise displayed on your online shop, this helps engage people with your shop for a long time. This means you are creating more opportunities to sell your art to them. They may even spread word of mouth for your designs and merch.
iv. Generate Brand Awareness
Businesses can buy a wide variety of custom merch from the online shop at lower prices and then distribute them. This helps generate a tremendous amount of brand awareness. The brand gets exposure continuously.
Now that the importance of creating and selling custom merchandise is clear to you know how to create and sell them.
Tips For Creating Custom Merchandise
As a graphic designer who wishes to create and sell merch, you should first ensure some basics to create your designs.
Consider These Useful Points To Create Your Custom Merchandise
01. Know Your Potential Customers
Before designing your merch, first, find out which set of people are likely to buy. If you do not already know your audience precisely, then do some research to find out more about the interest buyers.
Generally, the designers think that their fans, followers, and supporters are their audience. But these are not the sole audience.
To find who else is more interested in buying your custom merch, you should ask some questions and answer them precisely.
Know who is the set of people likely to order your custom tees or other products. Where these people are more likely to come together for interaction and why they should value your work.
What possible jokes, catchphrases, motifs your potential customers love? You can then incorporate those jokes and motifs in your designs.
Find out what is the one thing that attracts your followers most about you or your works. These are the clues you can use to target the audience by creating the merch just for them.
02. Incorporate The Right Colors, Fonts, And Style
Based on the data you gathered after researching your target audience, now is the time to incorporate merchandise ideas for them. You need to do some brainstorming to find new and exciting concepts. Then test them on various mockups before finalizing the design to put it on sale.
Pay attention to the specific design elements that need to go into creating a custom merch.
Consider what colors and fonts that you should incorporate in the merch to make your own t-shirt, mugs, accessories, etc. Colors evoke our passion, while fonts give personality to a design. Keep that in mind when designing.
It would be rewarding to just play with colors and fonts with the intention of creating contrasting elements that help catch the attention. For inspiration, have a good look at some current design trends.
03. Pick The Right Custom Merch Platform
Equally important is the choice of the right online platform that allows you to create and sell a variety of merchandise. Such a platform should be flexible for the users and loaded with many useful features to create and sell your merchandise such as personalized phone cases, tote bags, t-shirts, etc.
Since there are plenty of online platforms that allow you to create merch and open a shop to sell, compare their features.
You should start with one or two of them only so that you can focus your time and energy on creating custom merchandise. With the experience, you can then start offering your merch for sale on any such sites and make money online.
04. Promote Your Merch
Now that you have picked the right platform to sell your custom merchandise to create and sell do not forget to spread a word for what you offer. Start with your followers on social media. They are your ready audience and customers. You should promote your latest offerings amongst them.
Here Is What You Should Be Doing:
i. Post Enticing Visuals
A surefire way to attract followers and others to your latest creations is to present them in an engaging way. For instance, you can be a model for your tees. Wear those tees with attractive poses to engage visitors.
ii. Use A Variety Of Content
While promoting your merch, avoid being repetitive and pushy as it puts off the potential customers. Instead, write in an inviting and friendly tone.
Such content must be unique and varied. Since you designed your merchandise based on the customers’ preference, write promotional content that reflects their choices.
iii. Provide One Link
When promoting your offerings through your content, do not confuse the customers by giving them too many link options. Rather, give just one link that takes them to your online shop’s order page of the merch you wrote about.
iv. Explore Social Media
Promote your online shop aggressively on varied social media platforms. Explore Twitter and Facebook, but Instagram can be your potent tool since it is a visual media.
While promoting on Instagram, create your promotional calendar using a calendar maker, and stick to it. You should prepare dozens of engaging visuals of your merch, especially that of tees, custom hoodies, etc. garments and post them regularly. Most importantly, pick the right hashtag.
05. Engage Your Followers
Another surefire way to lure customers to your online shop to sell brand merch is to engage your audience with your promotional campaign. To do it successfully, you need to invite your followers to you be part of the campaign.
You should request your followers to send their photos of wearing your custom t-shirts, hoodies, etc. This helps build a sense of community amongst followers, and many of them come to your online shop to buy.
When they send the photos of them wearing your tees, do not forget to thank them publicly. This is your way to generate goodwill for your artwork and brand.
Also, encourage them to speak about your merchandise, such as tees on their profiles. This you should do after they purchase merch from your shop. Such tactics work well also when your merch is raising funds for a cause.
These are the key strategies that will work well to create custom merchandise and then promote it with a marketing strategy. Make sure that you pay attention to the points discussed above.
You will take time to build credibility for your artworks and online shop. But as we have mentioned before, the most important part of it is to choose the right platform to create and open your merch shop.
Explore Designhill PrintShop
While there are plenty of such platforms, the PrintShop from Designhill is perfect for them all for starting your online shop.
Since it comes from the world’s leading creative marketplace, the PrintShop is your one place to create and sell your men’s and women’s tees and other garments, accessories, wall art, and a wide range of other merchandise.
Just open your online shop at this site and start selling and making money. The site helps print your artwork on garments that you can display in your online shop. Then, PrintShop will ship your orders to the customers.
This online store has men’s, women’s, kids and youth clothing, accessories, wall art, and much other merchandise. You can choose any type of clothing you want to customize. Then use the site’s tools to incorporate color, quantity, shape, size, etc. to customize the garment.
You can also upload your own artwork or our predefined artworks. Preview mockups to see how the art will look in print. Just display your well-crafted branded merchandise on your online shop on PrintShop and start selling.
Know that Designhill is amongst the biggest online stores for customized apparel. It has major brands available for sale, and you can customize them. These brands include American Apparel, Gildan, Alternative, Anvil, Next Level, Bella+Canvas, and many more.
As a graphic designer, you can earn more by creating your custom merchandise and then sell it online at an attractive profit. But make sure that you create tees, hoodies, accessories, posters, and a wide range of merchandise based on your audience’s choices. But equally important is to open your online shop at a trustworthy platform. Then, promote your merch aggressively on social media to bring customers to the shop. Consider several other aspects of selling these promotional products from your online shop.