Selling merchandise as a DJ
Merchandise can be a great way to build your DJ or music producer brand. You may think that this is expensive but this is untrue. Depending on how you do it you can do this for free.
How to get a merchandise store for free
This section assumes that you have a minimum level of graphic design skills. If you don't then you can just pay someone on Fiverr.com for about $10 per design, you can start with just one. Paying a fan could also be an option; they might even submit a design for free if you ask for designs.
Designs don't have to be super flash. If you don't want to spend money then I would suggest that you use learn to use Canva.com to create a basic text design.
Once you have a design then you can join Print On Demand manufacturers such as TeePublic.com, RedBubble.com and/or Merch By Amazon. There's dozens of other websites that let you sell merchandise on demand.
Tee Public generally has better product purchase prices than Red Bubble. Merch By Amazon doesn't ship internationally and doesn't accept everyone.
Feel free to join TeePublic through our TeePublic affiliate link to help support this website
Once you have designs up then you can promote them to your fan base.
A good thing about selling on Print On Demand websites is that you don't have to deal with customer service or refunds. Sometimes they deduct money when they give out refunds but this doesn't happen often.
If you want to use local manufacturing there will probably be a fee involved. This pays for merchandise. You'd probably need some space to store the items.
Once you get the merchandise you'll need to send it to customers. You'll need to charge for shipping too if you're sending them to your fans. You can sell them at shows too.
You can sign the merchandise and/or a card to increase the value to them.
Amazon has a Print On Demand service but you can also sell locally manufactured merchandise on the website. You'd need to join the Seller Central section of Amazon.
Ensuring that your designs are legal
All pictures and fonts that you use within your designs must have a commercial or public domain license. Usually the websites that you get these items from would state the license.
You could also hire a photographer to take photographs of yourself or anything that you want displayed within the merchandise. You may have existing photographs that you can use so you may not need a separate photo shoot.
Complying with rules
Some Print On Demand websites have rules that you need to abide by. For example with Merch By Amazon you cannot create alcohol related products on youth/kids sizes.
Ensure that you're familiar with the rules of each service that you utilize to produce merchandise.
I stated that a pure text design (meaning a design without pictures) could be acceptable but most of the designs that I have purchased at concerts have had at least one picture on them.
If I was doing a shirt with a photograph I would reduce the number of colors in the photograph. You may need the help of a designer to do this. Sometimes when companies print photographs on merchandise it doesn't come out correctly, I think that reducing the number of colors will solve this problem.
If you're paying for each color you may want to convert the photograph to black and white. For effect you could add another item in a vibrant color.
Options for merchandise on your website
If your website is on WordPress you can get WooCommerce and a Print On Demand plugin. Printful and Printify both have plugins that you can use.
If you can't add WooCommerce to your website then you can set up an additional website just for your store. This would have an additional monthly fee.
Shopify could be an option if you want a dedicated store for your merchandise but they change monthly fees. If you want a dedicated store without monthly fees then you could go with TeeSpring.com or SpreadShirt.com.
Limited edition designs
Occasionally you may want to do limited edition designs to raise money.
You can do limited edition designs for an upcoming tour too. Many major artists create a design with tour dates and locations on the back of the clothing.
Thanks for reading
I hope that your merchandise sells well.
Read more about how to make money as a DJ.