You’ve finally made the decision to start a t-shirt business. That is awesome. We want to show you how easy it can be to create a t-shirt business on shopify and sell your shirts. In this short tutorial you will learn all of the ins and outs of creating your own Shopify t-shirt business.
Find Your T-Shirt Niche
You might be asking yourself what is a niche? It is a segment of a market. It is very focused. Things like chihuahua owners, sci-fi lovers, or romance novelists. You will need to find the right niche for your designs. When you have a niche it becomes easier to sell. Your marketing is targeted towards those people. It is easier to find those people. Those people will most likely be interested in what you are selling. If you need help coming up with a great idea for a niche we’ve written a handy guide called Choosing the Right Screen Printing Niche to help you out
Design Your Shirt
Create a unique design using Adobe Illustrator, Photoshop, or Corel Draw. If you don’t have access to any of these premium tools there are free Photoshop options online to help. Make sure that your designs are great. People love great t-shirt designs. You’ll probably want to try out a lot of different designs. This way you can see what sells and what doesn’t.
Not everybody is an artist. You may want to have a professional designer create your designs for you. You can look for designers on Fiverr or Upwork. Make sure that you have a release in place so that you own the rights to produce the designs. If you don’t have an artist release then you could have copyright issues. We’ve created a guide for understanding copyright issues.
Create Your Online Store
It is easier than ever to create an ecommerce website. Gone are the days when you hire somebody to build a massive online store from scratch. You may still want to pay somebody to create the store for you, but it won’t cost $15,000 like it used to. Shopify is very user friendly and makes it easy for you to get up and going with a brand new website in no time flat. Shopify works great with dropshipping companies. Many of the dropshippers have created their own proprietary apps that integrate with Shopify so setup is simple. If you need help setting up your Shopify shop there is a community of people that help each other answer the most difficult questions. They also have support specialists there to help you as well.
Find a Dropshipper
At this point you will want to find a dropshipper that will print the shirts. They will be responsible for a lot so you want to make a very informed decision. Evaluate the reputation of the company. Check out their prices and costs. You’ll want to know as much as you can about who is going to print your shirts. This includes their customer service policies as well. If you have to return a shirt you need to know what you are getting yourself into. We’ve created a guide to print on demand companies for you. Make sure that your dropshipper will integrate seamlessly into your Shopify site.
Consider other platforms that your store may integrate into as well as Shopify. Does the platform that you are going to use integrate into Etsy, eBay, or Amazon? If it doesn’t, you could be missing out on additional sales. Even though this article is primarily about Shopify it cannot hurt to look at the other outlets for your shirts.
Market your shirts
At this point you need to create a marketing plan. You have to figure out how you are going to sell the shirts. You may want to use social media platforms like Instagram or Facebook because they have visual appeal that can promote your products. They also have advertisements that you can purchase to drive traffic to your store. We’ve created a guide called How to Market Your Screen Printing Business on Social Media to help you get started.
Another option is to use Search Engine Optimization to drive traffic to your website. This can be a lengthy endeavor. A page or product can take anywhere from 3 - 6 months to become indexed in a search engine like Google. In that time your business adventure could be dead.
Ultimately you want to use a variety of methods to market your services. This way you are not dependent on one single method to get customers. If one source stops providing leads then you will have another source to provide those leads.
The Final Word on Starting A Dropshipping T-Shirt Business on Shopify
Shopify is one of the easiest platforms to use. There have been many entrepreneurs who have started businesses on it. Shopify is a great platform to use for a t-shirt business. It integrates with so many print on demand companies. While there is a cost to use their platform it does practically everything that you need an online store to do.