T-shirts are a staple clothing piece in almost everyone’s wardrobe. They come in a lot of different styles, sizes, designs and have huge demand. Opening a t-shirt business is quite popular these days.
In order to stand out, you need to create custom t-shirts that are unique and stand out. Also, you need to be aware of the t-shirt making process from beginning to end. Read below, the amazing business guide on How to start an online custom t-shirt business.
1. Choose a Profitable Niche
To grow your custom t-shirt business, you must stand out. Choosing a niche is what helps in standing out. You focus on your target audience only when you narrow down your niche.
General categories do not usually stand out in saturated and competitive markets. Choose particular niches like motivational t-shirts for students, graphic t-shirts for gamers, custom tshirts for dog owners, etc.
There are plenty of ways to find a niche and evaluate it. Work a little before choosing one.
Visit your niche’s subreddits and look at subscriber count and engagement. Next, you can find the size of your niche on Facebook using the Facebook Audience Insights tool. Look for popular hobbies on the internet.
2. Source Good Quality Materials
For being successful in business, provide quality to your customers. You may not get higher profit margins in the start. but, in the long run, there are greater chances of people coming again and referring because of high quality products.
For customers, quality t-shirts can be based on fit, softness of material, durability, fit, sizing and weight. Narrow down some t-shirts, bring in samples to make sure it’s of good quality and then make your final decision.
After finalizing the base, now is time for designs. The quality of designs highly depends on the printing method chosen. Get some insight on few famous printing methods and then finalize one for your business-
Direct To Garment (DTG) – This printing method is used to print directly on t-shirts with full accuracy. It can print complex designs also. It operates like an inkjet printer and has little set up costs.
- High color options
- Good for small batches
- High accuracy
- No set up cost
- No volume discount
- Not good for large orders
Heat Transfer- Heat transfers have been around for a long time. Iron is used to transfer design from paper to clothes. More advanced form of heat transfer is plastisol transfers. It can print full colored images efficiently.
- Print on Demand
- Low quality and less durable
- Not good for large orders
- Large investment
- More time input
Screen Printing- Screen printing method is being used for a long time for printing. It is a popular method for creating durable and long lasting designs. It may require more work in the beginning but it can be cost effective for bulk orders. It is great for simple designs. designs with more colors cost more as every color needs a separate screen.
- Great for bulk orders.
- Volume discounts
- Can print only simple designs and images
- Need extra screen for every colour
3. Design Your T-shirts
Before beginning to create your designs for customt-shirts, make sure you check your rivals. Knowing your competitor’s designs will avoid any chances of similarity. Designs that could be misunderstood for your opponent’s business is the last thing you want. So, try to avoid such a situation by creating unique and different designs.
Next, depending on your target audience, create amazing and visually appealing designs. Get on social media and see what your audience loves. In addition to this, pick on trends to create even more appealing t-shirts.
Go minimalistic and create simple designs. Adding too many details makes people lose interest fast. Also, complex designs are not effective in communicating messages with potential customers. However, simple designs connect with the audience and stand out easily.
For good quality print of designs on t-shirts, design files must be 300 DPI or PPI, have clear background and should have enough space.
If you are not proud of your creative skills, do not worry. Hire a professional designer online to create perfect designs. Also, you can create a contest on Desinghill and choose the winning design and give the prize. It doesn’t cost as much as professionals do.
After finalizing your designs, mock your t-shirts. This will give you a clearer idea about how things work in reality. Remove things that do not serve any purpose in the design. Now, you are ready for the next step.
4. Validate Your T-shirt Designs
Before getting into the market straight, you must be sure about your designs. You need to do something to know whether your designs are loved and have any scope or interest. There are various ways to validate your designs and few are mentioned here-
Reddit- Reddit is a platform where you can get lots of honest reviews for your designs. With the help of subreddits, you can target your niche audience and ask about their thoughts and opinions. In this way, you will know exactly what your potential customers want. Create such designs and sell.
Crowd funding- With crowd funding sites, you can test and validate your designs and even collect money for your business. It may require time and effort but it can be of great help.
Social Networking Sites- Social networking sites like Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, Pinterest, etc are great places to show your work. Facebook and Instagram have become amazing marketplaces. Ask your friends, family, followers about your designs and ponder about what they say. But make sure you get honest reviews not ones out of kindness.
5. Set Up an Online Store
The last step is to set up an online store for your audience to reach you. You can open a store on various sites available online. Shopify is a great platform to create your own shop and build your t-shirt business.
You can also go for print on demand services on these platforms. These online service stores take your orders, print your designs and ship them directly to your customers. In this way, you do not need to worry about printing set up, investment and material.
Promote your store as much as you can. Use social media platforms like Facebook groups, Facebook pages, Pinterest, Instagram, etc. You can use a variety of advertising methods to grow your reach.