Designing and selling shirts or other branded merchandise used to involve extensive amounts of time, financing, and resources. An online service has now made it possible to get started for free, with little knowledge or skills required. CafePress is a print-on-demand service for clothing and gifts. Much like POD book printing, you design the images that you want to appear on the products, and CafePress prints and ships each item as it is ordered. There is no inventory for you to maintain or financial transactions for you to manage. You get paid a monthly commission based on what you sell.There are 3 main steps to preparing products to sell:
Create high-resolution images with a graphic editing program
Properly designed images appeal to shoppers and reduce the likelihood of returned merchandise. They also fit the shape of your product and look more professional.
Invest in your business by upgrading to a premium shop
Basic shops are free and allow you to offer only one of each product. Premium stores allow unlimited product availability, shop customization and organization, and valuable marketing tools.
Use effective titles and descriptions for your products
Search engines use the keywords found in your product titles and descriptions to rank and list your shop's pages.
Choose a theme for your shop and organize it accordingly
CafePress shops have a habit of getting out of hand as shopkeepers design images unrelated to their main theme.
Use the affiliate program to make even more money
You can earn 20% on any merchandise you sell as an affiliate.
- Keep your shop clean and simple. Don't overload your visitors with mixed marketing messages.
- Use premium pricing. Shopkeepers agree that premium priced merchandise sells better.
- Use Google Base to make your products available through Froogle.com, Google’s popular shopping search engine.
- Promote your shop using your blog, other websites, and Squidoo lenses, and through articles and press releases.
- Tag your images carefully. Appropriate tags result in better search rankings.