T-Shirt Business Strategies


This guide brings to you the four critical T-Shirt Business Strategies to succeed with your ecommerce business. For some, it might be obvious but others completely fail getting these important elements correct from the beginning.


That’s why we are making the effort to point them out from the beginning.


1. Picking Up a Profitable Niche

Finding your niche is the first critical key to your success as an ecommerce entrepreneur. You need to research, understand, and fully define the niche that you want to sell in.


Exactly what does finding a niche mean?


It’s one thing to specifically target a customer base and something different to target a niche. Often, the niche will define the customer base and then you create niche and customer eccentric marketing materials to maximize sales.


You don’t want to just target females age 18 to 35 with several genetic products that you haven’t researched. Instead, you first focus on a niche that appeals to these customers – perhaps its arts and crafts.


Once you select the niche, you find or create unique products that they can’t find anywhere else.


Think of specialty restaurants as a niche. They cater to targeted customers. They aren’t trying to sell every type of food to everybody in town. Most specialize as a sushi restaurant or a high-end steak house or something else.


By staying highly focused, they are able to offer superior food to attract targeted customers. This creates repeat customers.


It’s less costly and more profitable to market to repeat customers than it is to constantly be trying to bring in new customers. Bringing in new customers is how you expand an already successful customer base.


When you have excellent products within a well understood niche, your chances at success are much higher than if you throw out a big net without a focused marketing plan.


However, your ecommerce business has the ability to reach a much more vast audience than most restaurants. You have instant 24/7 reach with the internet, while a brick and mortar chain can only expand one location at a time.


The consequence of that is even if your niche is small, you are able to market to a massive global audience. Even the smallest niche can do well with this business model.


What you want to do is find a niche, create great products, and you’ll have a great chance of finding huge success.



2. Basics of Design

There are three basics to product design that you need to always keep in mind. With niche marketing, design is always important.


It can make or break your business. This applies to selling T-shirts or any other physical products you might want to sell to your niche.


The three basics are:

  • Being unique
  • Keeping it simple
  • Staying fresh


Being unique

Being uniques is about not copying existing T-shirt designs. Especially if it has a copyright.


You can use existing designs to inspire your own design but you must create your own design. When you can improve on a well selling design, you can eat your competitor’s lunch.


Keeping it simple

This is about exactly that. Keep the design simple. There is a marketing history where the best designs, advertising, and marketing plans keep it simple.


Among the best is McDonald’s “Do you want fries with that”. Volkswagen is also famous for creating simple advertisements for the Volkswagen Bug and has had great sales success using this strategy.


One highly successful T-shirt entrepreneur that comes to mind is Johnny Cupcakes. All of his designs include a cupcake somewhere is his simple designs.


Johnny Cupcakes


The bottom line is that you want to keep it simple. You don’t need to be the best artist and you don’t need to create complex designs. When you keep it simple, your niche buyers will follow.


Staying fresh

This is about bringing new products to the market on a regular basis. You are marketing to a smaller niche market. If you only have two or three designs available, you’ll soon saturate that market, and you’ll have to and want to find new customers.  But you also want to appeal to repeat buyers.


The way you appeal to repeat buyers is by constantly expanding the product line that you offer. Also, consider that people’s tastes and preferences change over time.


When you create a new t-shirt design (or bring on a new product) stay with your original theme because you have a built in niche that you can easily market to.


You will want to alter your marketing message to match the new design but you’ll be able to use your most successful previous campaigns as a template for a new campaign.



3. Quality

Quality is another important part of running a successful business. You can find some initial success with low quality products but you won’t build the repeat buyer base that you are after.


Quality is about building sustainable success.


If you deliver low quality products, some people will return them but most won’t. Instead, they just won’t buy from you anymore.


You are also after “word of mouth sales”. That’s when people are thrilled with a product and tell family and friends about what you are offering. There is no better advertising than free word of mouth advertising.


On the other hand, there is no worse advertising than “negative” word of mouth advertising.


In addition to that, you’re going to want positive reviews and testimonials on your website that encourage people around the world to buy your products.


You can control negative reviews on your own website but there are tons of independent review websites out there that you have no control over.


A few negative reviews on those websites and your website will tank. Quality is at the heart of keeping customers happy, bringing in repeat buyers, and new buyers through word of mouth advertising.


High quality doesn’t always mean buying the most expensive T-shirts available. You do need to balance quality with cost. People would rather receive a high quality cotton T-shirt than be offered a Cashmere T-shirt at an extraordinarily high price.


You want to offer a reasonable price that also brings you a reasonable profit. If you try maximizing your profits in the beginning by delivering a low cost product, the result is you will destroy your niche buying group.


Don’t try to cheat anybody out of bad products, don’t try to fool anybody, just run an honest game, have as many high quality products as you can.


Along with a quality product, you want to offer quality customer service.


The two of them are closely tied together. For instance, if you offer a 60 day no questions asked return policy and a customer returns it on day 61, don’t refuse to make a refund.


That one dissatisfied customer just might post 15 negative reviews all around the internet.



4. Branding

Branding is essential. It’s done over time but you want to get started right from the start.


Just because it comes last in the list of four critical keys to succeed doesn’t make it any less important than the other three. Branding is about pulling it all together – niche marketing, nice designs, and quality T-shirts.


Your brand is what your customers are being reminded of every time they visit your store. It’s not so much about each individual product as it is about the overall experience and how everything ties together.


For instance, if part of your branding is about having superior customer support, you want that information displayed dominantly on your webpage and if you have multiple webpages, you want your superior customer support message on most if not all of the pages.


If having the highest quality products is part of your branding message, you do the same with that.


Display the message prominently. When visitors understand that message, they also understand why you charge more for your products than competitors do. Or if your prices close to your competitors, they understand you are offering a better value.


Either way, they feel like they are making an informed decision. Another possible branding angle might be offering environmentally friendly products. You would want to inform visitors that your T-shirts are not manufactured in sweatshops.


That you buy from worker friendly factories and that environmentally friendly processes are use for manufacturing.


There are many branding angles that you might want to consider. One that you certainly want to consider is anything that relates closely to the niche that you service.


In the end, you want your brand to stand out from all of the others.


One reason “Johnny Cupcakes” had early success is because he delivered more than buyers expected. Every one of his orders that shipped included a small inexpensive gift. Often it was a useful gift but it promoted another product that he offered. He became known for his fun and unexpected gift brand.


Also, what you want to do is keep your brand consistent. It should define and differentiate you from the competition. You don’t want to be changing that message every couple of months. You want to establish it and build on it.


profitable Dropshipping Store


Check more interesting Articles:

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How Do I Start A Dropshipping Business In 2022

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