Creating merch for your brand through print-on-demand


One of the best ways to build a sense of community in your brand is through merch. Everybody is looking for a community to belong to and when your audience is invested in the relationship they have with your brand, they will want to identify themselves as being a part of your community through merch.

The great news about this is that we have a wide variety of options now with companies who provide print-on-demand services that will allow us to create a plethora of merchandise and offer a seamless shopping experience for our clients. These print-on-demand companies handle the hosting of the shop, the creation of the merch, payment processing and shipping to customers anywhere in the world.

It's in this seamless experience that we can do merch at scale and wow your audience. We need to emphasise the ease of purchasing with your brand because when you don’t have a seamless experience, it creates friction in the buying process, hinders your audience from completing the purchase and can reflect poorly on your brand.

I'll give you an example of why we need to keep our audience in mind and ensure the buying process is smooth.

Soca star Nadia Batson is currently running a merch campaign to promote her upcoming show on February 9. The merch is phenomenal, and I was looking to order a shirt myself. When I went through the ordering process, there were too many steps to place the order.

First, you needed to send an email with all the required information about which shirt you wanted, the size and your contact details. Then they would email you back with the payment information and then they would email you back after that with your payment confirmation and details about picking up the t-shirt.

You need to pick up the t-shirt at the event on February 9 at Five Islands, Chaguaramas or you can pick it up one day before the event.

This is a lot of steps to purchase a t-shirt and just placing the order is a lot of friction, especially when you factor in someone having to manually respond to these emails which a few folks have told me they have waited for about eight to ten hours for responses.

Instead, a better process would be to load all the merch onto your website. Allow for payment options like credit card, Visa debit through Wipay or First Atlantic Commerce, PayPal and bank transfer instead of
only bank transfer payments.

You can have a drop-down in the order form for pickup at the event or pickup the day before, I would also encourage delivery through our many courier services to make it easy and cut down on the rush for t-shirts at the event itself and allows people to come to the event already dressed in their merch.

Running the sales through the websites also allows you to collect emails, and gain data on your audience through Google analytics and other tools, you would also be able to allow your Facebook pixels to tag site visitors so that you can re-market to them on Facebook.

This form of automation ultimately creates the best experience for your community and makes collecting payments and managing your orders effective.

If you want to create merch and use one of the print-on-demand companies to ship your merch globally, here are a few platforms to check out: Printful, Teespring, SPOD, Printify, Teelaunch, Customcat, Lulu Xpress, T-Pop, JetPrint and Apliiq.

You can create a full merch shop on any of these platforms and some of them can also connect directly to your website so that you can host all the merch on your website but when an order is placed, they will receive the order and handle the printing/logistics for you. If you don’t have your website, remember, these services will host your shop on their platforms.

You will be given a link to your shop which you can then share on any of your social media platforms. When you are creating your merch, they will give you the costs to create each item and then you set what you want to charge so you know how much you will make on each sale. Shipping costs are automatically added at the checkout for your customers and will vary based on their location.

Get started on your merch and have fun bringing a new element to your community.

Keron Rose is a digital strategist that works with Caribbean entrepreneurs to build their digital presence. Learn more at or check out the Digipreneur FM Podcast on Apple Podcasts/Spotify/Google Podcast.


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