Starting Your Own Tee Shirt Business

Posted in How To's on February 16, 2018 Last Updated on October 3, 2018

One of the questions we are often asked, is how we make money on the road to fund our travels. Designing and selling tee shirts is one of our income streams, and it is easier to start doing than you may think!

I don’t have room to store tee shirts!
Great news, you don’t have to! There are websites offering POD (Print on Demand) services. These websites allow you to upload your artwork and sell it on anything from tee shirts, to coffee mugs, to pillows. You simply upload your artwork, select some product options, and let them handle everything else

No design experience? No problem!
All it takes to start selling shirts are a few good ideas. If you have the ideas, but lack the knowledge of design programs, like Photoshop or Illustrator, there are designers out there willing to work for less than $10 per design. Websites like Fiver and others will help pair you with a designer that will fit your needs.

Which POD Sites Really Work?
As always, we do not recommend it unless it works, and we’ve successfully sold our designs on the following sites. Creating accounts and selling on these would be your best place to start and will net you the most sales.

  • Merch by Amazon – Amazon’s massive audience has netted us the most sales over any of the other platforms. At the time of this posting, Merch is only shirts.
  • Redbubble – Another site bringing in steady sales, Redbubble is one of the larger POD companies, offering a wide variety of products to sell your designs on.
  • Teepublic – Lower in sales than some others, but still worth a mention. Teepublic is another site offering way more than just tees.
  • Cafepress – CafePress is another site offering a large amount of products for your design to be printed on. While the sales from this site are not as steady as some, we do still receive the occasional sales.
  • Etsy / Printful – That’s right, you can sell your shirts on Etsy and have them fulfilled by a company called Printful. You simply set up your products in Printful, sync everything over to your Etsy store, make a few adjustments in Etsy, and publish. From there, everything is automated! When an order comes in, Printful will automatically handle everything and ship the shirt to your customer.
    Printful can also sync your shirts to your own website – Southside Studios has a post on how to easily create your own web site.
  • Threadless

What Other Sites Are There?
While we haven’t made money on these sites, we do have accounts and have listed our designs on them. Being they are popular sites, we’re listing them in case you would like to see if you have better luck than us.


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