How to Start Your Own T-Shirt Business

How to Start Your Own T-Shirt Business

The global market for the custom t-shirt printing industry is expected to surpass $10 billion by 2025. You have a notebook full of ideas, but not sure how to get the wheels in motion. There's a lot to factor in when you are running a one-person operation and it can be overwhelming when you're not sure where to start. So let's break it down!


1. Find Your Niche

There’s tons of online t-shirt businesses out there, so it’s important to differentiate yourself from the competition. Let your interests spark an idea for taking advantage of an untapped market. It can be helpful to consider what age demographic you are aiming to appeal to, that way you can create products that are in demand for that audience, and know how to reach them effectively.


2. Producing Your Merch

Now it’s time for the fun part! Once you have your designs ready to go, you will need to make some choices in terms of producing your merchandise. Keeping your demographic in mind is important when it comes to selecting your garments -- will your audience be willing to spend a little extra money for higher quality garments? What’s trending for your audience? 

Comparing prices and benefits of different decoration methods can be helpful when deciding what will work best for your clothing line. Do you want to screen print in bulk or run a small batch of DTG garments to test the waters? Add finishing touches like branded packaging or custom labels? 


 DTG Printing:

Direct-to-Garment Printing works much like your home office printer, except it prints the image directly onto fabric with waterbased ink. Because it does not involve the set-up costs associated with screen printing, this is a great option for small batches or testing out designs.

- No limit on amount of colors you can use

- Great for detailed or photorealistic designs

- Ideal for small quantities


Screen Printing:

Your image is broken down into layers and printed onto screens. The ink is pushed through the mesh screens to transfer the stencil of your graphic onto the garment. Each color requires a separate screen which is why there are set-up costs involved.

- Good for bold graphics

- Designs with fewer colors

- Ideal for large quantities 


3. Choose a Platform to Sell On

How will you sell your merch? You have the option to create a shop on a marketplace like Etsy or host your own store on an e-commerce platform like Shopify. Make sure you accept multiple payment forms to make it easy for your customers to shop!

If you want to sell your tees without the hassle of dealing with orders and shipping, a Timed Campaign may be a good option. Just connect your online store, and we take care of importing your orders and shipping your product out directly to your customers. Timed Campaigns run for a limited time, so it can be great for a first time merch drop without inventory investment.


4. Market Your Products

Spread the word about your awesome new tees! Create social media accounts for your brand to post engaging content and quality photos of your merchandise. Offer a discount code in exchange for newsletter sign ups, so you can create e-mail marketing campaigns to keep your customers coming back. 


Starting a t-shirt business can be a great source of revenue, whether it’s a side hustle or diving in full force. We’re here to help bring your visions to life! Reach out to start building your brand today:


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