Branding T-Shirts online

Brands and Branding while Selling T-Shirts Online: Your Questions Answered

Last Updated: January 20, 2017

When it comes to selling T-Shirt online, branding is one of the things you’ll wrestle with sooner or later.

  • Should you have one T-Shirt ‘brand’ for all your designs – or several?
  • Should you keep your brand identity specific to a single niche, or broad and general to appeal to as many people as possible?
  • Should you brand yourself as an individual artist / designer, or as a business / company?

These are questions I get asked a lot, so I thought I’d delve into some of the various considerations here…

(and that way I don’t have to personally reply to a bunch of emails individually in the future – I can just send people this link 🙂 )

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T-Shirt Income Review 2016

2016 Year In Review [$100k Profit, Channel Breakdown and 2017 Plans]

Last Updated: January 5, 2017

2016 is over – so it’s time for a review post.

This isn’t going to be a particularly long or exhaustive article – more of a brain dump. I just want to share my raw numbers and pull out some major headlines, plus explain my thinking and plans for 2017.

2016 was a big year for me.

In 2016 I…

  • left my full-time job to go full-time on T-Shirts
  • started this blog, alongside an email newsletter and a Facebook group (secret, message me if you want in 😛 )
  • wrote a book called How To Sell More Shirts! and released it for free (updated, non-free version is coming soon)
  • designed at least 300 T-Shirts
  • made a lot of new friends 🙂
  • was interviewed for two podcasts (here and here)
  • and the big one…brought in over $100k in T-Shirt profits (not just revenue).

How did I do it?

Read on my fellow T-Shirt traveller…

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5 Mistakes To Avoid When Selling T-Shirts Online

5 Mistakes To Avoid When Selling T-Shirts Online

Last Updated: December 22, 2016

I’ve been selling T-Shirts online for 3+ years, and have made a lot of mistakes along the way.

Thankfully I’ve learnt from those mistakes, and now I make a decent living from my T-Shirt designs.

If you want to make a good income from selling T-Shirts online (and believe me, it is possible to do so – and has never been easier) – then you’ll want to avoid these mistakes.


But first I want to get a few things straight:

  • I am not talking here about how to make money from starting your own T-Shirt ‘brand’ – for example setting up your own T-Shirt store on Shopify or similar. (I do have a shopify site, but the majority of my income comes in the form of royalties from print-on-demand sites such as Merch By Amazon, Redbubble, Teepublic and others). If you want to start your own site and deal with customers directly – then you will still get something from these tips, but that is not the type of T-Shirt income I’m discussing primarily.
  • I’m talking here about how to make money from T-Shirt designs – not about how to design them, or how to make the best T-shirt design the world has ever seen. Design is obviously important when you want to design T-Shirts that will sell – but I’m not giving photoshop tips and tricks in this article. Rather I’m telling you the principles you need to make decent money from your work.

So with that out of the way, let’s get into the 5 mistakes you should avoid…

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Start a T-Shirt Brand

Why You Should Start Building Your Own T-Shirt Brand Today

Last Updated: December 15, 2016

Merch By Amazon started a serious crackdown on policy-violating designs and sellers in the past few weeks, and it’s made everyone a little bit jumpy (me included).

I love Merch By Amazon – it’s responsible for about 70% of my current income, and the system Amazon has put together is slick and easy to use. It’s a god-send for independent designers like myself, and for all it’s issues (it’s still only a year old remember) it is still an incredible platform and opportunity for those who can, and will, use it right.

But Merch is ultimately just another vehicle for taking the ideas from my head, and putting it into the hands of a customer, in the form of a T-Shirt.

And it isn’t the only vehicle available for doing this.

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Copycats Merch By Amazon

Stolen Designs? How To Deal With Copycats On Merch By Amazon

Last Updated: December 7, 2016

Copycats are a part of life for creative individuals, and this is especially true in the online T-Shirt market.

What is a copycat? Put simply it is anyone who steals your design and uses it without your permission – where no income from the sales would ever make its way to you. 🙁

The same technology and developments that have made it easy for individuals like myself to make money from T-Shirts online (Print-on-demand sites, easy to use graphic design software etc.) – have also made it easy for those who don’t know – or don’t care – about the concepts of Copyright or Intellectual Property.

I have been dealing with Copycats of my work for the past 3 years, across various sites (Etsy, Redbubble, Teepublic) – but the platform with the biggest copycat problem right now is Merch By Amazon.

This is no surprise, given the size and lucrative nature of Amazon and in particular Merch to generate sales. And Amazon is beginning to deal with this problem – making advances against the copycat scourge daily.

Having said that, it’s not a problem that is likely to go away anytime soon. And when copycats have a real-world impact on your sales and income, it’s hard to just ignore them.

Copycats on the internet may be a ‘fact of life’ – but it helps to have techniques and tactics with which we can mitigate their impact on our sales.

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Merch By Amazon Tools

Merch By Amazon Tools and Resources for Noobs

Last Updated: December 2, 2016

Are you a complete Merch By Amazon newbie?

Then you’re probably overwhelmed with all the information being thrown at you.

Everybody’s using abbreviations and talking about plugins and stuff – things you know nothing about.

So I thought I’d run through some of the basic Merch By Amazon tools that every newcomer should know about – before you go a-diving into the world of Merch By Amazon.

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How To Dominate T-Shirts Online

How To Dominate A T-Shirt Trend (And Keep The Competition At Bay)

Last Updated: November 24, 2016

Wouldn’t it be great to dominate the next big T-Shirt trend?

Trends come in all shapes and sizes – from serious political statements and movements to trivial fly-by-night jokes.

But one thing that is almost certain: there’ll always be trends.

Pop culture moves fast – and that’s good new for T-Shirt designers – because the T-Shirt is one of the most popular and versatile mediums for communicating a message (whether that’s support for a particular political candidate, or knowledge of a specific pop culture joke).

But how can we dominate in a trend when there is so much competition – with new sellers and new designers entering the market everyday?

I don’t pretend to be an expert at this, though I have had some limited success.

I can’t tell you how to predict the next big trend (I wish I could – but I don’t have a crystal ball) – but I can give you some tips for ways to maximise your earnings from the next big trend – especially if you have spotted it ahead of the competition.

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Merch By Amazon book

How To Sell More Shirts! Strategies, Tips And Tricks To Help You Sell T-Shirts Online With Merch By Amazon And More [eBook]

Last Updated: November 18, 2016

Merch By Amazon Ebook

Are you a designer, illustrator or artist selling T-Shirts online?

Do you want to sell more Shirts?

Who doesn’t, right!?

For the past 3 years I have been making money online from my T-Shirt designs. In the past year that income has been super-charged by Amazon’s new print-on-demand platform: Merch By Amazon.

I’m now making a steady $10k a month in profit from selling T-Shirts online.

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How To Market T-Shirts

How To Market Your T-Shirts Without Spending Money

Last Updated: November 18, 2016

If you’ve been following my blog for any time at all, you probably know that I do almost no paid advertising for my Shirts.

Instead I rely on ‘organic traffic’ to drive my sales – the searching habits of customers who actively seek out the kind of designs I am selling.

This organic traffic can come a number of ways, but will usually be from direct searches on websites (eg. the search bar on Amazon.com or Redbubble.com) or via search engines such as Google.

There are pros and cons of relying exclusively on organic traffic, but the big pro is that you don’t need to spend any cash to make sales.

But organic traffic does have it’s limitations.

Firstly, it can be very hard to stand-out and get noticed in crowded niches and within the search results pages.

The low barrier to entry means everyone is trying to pick up sales via organic traffic, so to get a leg-up on the competition you have to start looking at other ways of getting your products in front of potential customers.

Let’s take a look at some of those ways now…

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15 Things About Selling T-Shirts Online

15 Things I’ve Learnt About Selling T-Shirts Online

Last Updated: November 18, 2016

I’m three and a bit years into selling T-Shirts online, and I’ve just begun to learn a few things. (!)

I wish someone would have been around to tell me this stuff when I was starting out. But sometimes it’s best to learn things the hard way.

Here’s my purpose with this article: to help the young designer or illustrator get a clearer picture of the key principles that have the biggest impact on your success selling T-Shirts.

If you can grasp and apply these principles, I believe you will be streets ahead of your competition.

Like any business (and be in no doubt – as soon as you start trying to make money from something, you are starting a business) – making money from T-Shirts online takes hard work and dedication. But working hard on the wrong things is not going to be effective. With a clear understanding of what matters and how to achieve your goals, you are much more likely to succeed.

So let’s get into it!

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