I was approved for Merch by Amazon in August 2016. If you followed my Merch by Amazon start, you know that I’m not very creative, had zero Photoshop experience and purchased my first set of t-shirt designs.
Today I’m still not creative, but I can finally create a simple design in Photoshop.
In November 2016, I lost 18 of 25 shirts due to them not selling. Then I went two full months without uploading any designs. I put Merch on hold to focus on Amazon FBA.
In January and February, I purchased designs again because sales were going down the drain. Having less than 10 live shirts wasn’t cutting it.
In March, I started creating my own designs to save money because I didn’t want to keep purchasing designs.
Then as a big surprise, Amazon tiered me to the 100-level on April 1. This was unexpected considering that I had less than 20 shirts up.
Finally, royalty earnings are slowly moving up again:
I’m not doing cartwheels over my numbers, but I’m very happy that MY DESIGNS ARE SELLING! This is remarkable considering that I started from ground zero and have not been very consistent in learning and improving my t-shirt business.
Here’s the report for the last 7 days:
Here’s the report from March 1. I uploaded the design that has 5 sales on March 5th. My other designs were created in April.
Now I have 40 designs live and am uploading new ones more consistently.
I’m still losing older designs (both mine and purchased) that never had any sales. But that’s okay because I can upload them to other Print On Demand (POD) sites. I already uploaded a few to Sunfrog and will tackle Redbubble next.
The two tools that have helped me immensely with creating my own designs are Merch Informer and Make-Merch. I use Merch Informer to research niches and Make-Merch to quickly create the designs.
Merch Informer: I have really been focusing on niches that have a competition score of A. This means that the keyword or phrase that you’re targeting is a good one because there isn’t very much competition. Every design of mine that sold has either a Competition Score of A or it didn’t yield any results.
This differs from the fishing shirts that I purchased. Yes, they are well-designed shirts, but fishing tees have a competition score of F (lowest score).
Make-Merch: This is a wonderful tool for non-designers like me. The reason why is because you don’t need any design experience. The program has several t-shirt templates where all you do is enter your text, choose your font and text color and choose an optional image. What’s super-cool is that they even supply images so you don’t have to search around for legal images to use.
Once you’re happy with your design, you just download it to your computer. There are no modifications needed as it’s all ready to be uploaded to Merch. Usually it takes me less than 10 minutes to create my design. What’s nice is that they are continually improving it by adding in new fonts, features and images.
Note on Photoshop: I still use it when there’s a feature, font or color that’s not available in Make-Merch.
Another note – the design that has 5 sales was created in Photoshop.
Be sure to check out my Merch by Amazon Resources page to learn about other helpful Merch tools.
My biggest tip with Merch or with any project is to take consistent action. Those small, frequent baby steps do add up over time. I’m seeing positive results since I started taking more action in March, April and May.
I hope you enjoyed this post and as always, let me know if you have any questions either in the comments below or on Facebook!