Getting your print on demand store all set for summer
It doesn’t seem five minutes ago that we were putting up our Valentine’s Day cards. Now we’re surrounded by half-eaten Easter Eggs waiting for the next seasonal trend to hit us.
Before you know it, summer will be here — but is your online store ready?
For any business, being ahead of your competitors is crucial. Don’t just go with the obvious summer items that every store will be selling such as plain white print on demand t-shirts. Do your research and discover what fashion or gifting trends are popular right now, then design your stock around them.
Doing this due diligence and planning in advance is essential when you’re running a print on demand business — read on for our top tips to getting your online shop ready for the summer months.
Running a print on demand business allows you to be bold when it comes to selling. You don’t have to worry about having a spare bedroom full of boxes with unwanted items, and you’re free to take risks to get your products noticed.
Sales of certain products, such as lightweight apparel, are seasonal. Customers don’t want to be wearing long-sleeve shirts and hooded tops in the warmer months, so make sure they’re not the first thing customers see when they visit your online store.
Think of your online store as a real-life shop window, where you’d put all your best and relevant products in a prime position for everyone to see. Over the summer months, ensure your relevant seasonal products are the first thing your customers notice.
The focus needs to be what will sell now, but don’t try and second-guess your customers. Your aim is to get people to buy your summer products, but that doesn’t mean they won’t be interested in your other products too.
It’s important to not just focus on clothing, have a good look at what accessories are hot and create some designs tailored for that market.
Products like tote bags are very popular for taking to the beach (assuming on a positive note that we get some beach holidays despite Covid). Adding a great, summer-inspired design to this product is a no-brainer to appeal to any sunbathing fanatics in your audience.
Ensure any promotional messages — whether on email or an online advertising campaign — reflect the mood of the season from a design perspective, as well as capitalising on any annual colour bias. Trends for 2021 are set to include contrasting shades of both grey and yellow.
Brighter, warm colours are always great for attracting attention, and are synonymous with summer months.
Learning about the psychology of popular colours might not be a tactic you’re familiar with, but can also be useful to consider when picking the perfect palette for summer promotions.
Once you’ve decided which products you’re going to focus on and the design scheme to entice your customers, consider tempting potential shoppers with great deals.
Don’t just tweet or post on Facebook for the sake of it, constantly promoting your products will get old very quickly and the impact of your post will be lost. Keep your post in context, something along the lines of "Don’t miss out on the prime sunbeds this summer, purchase your beach towel today!" and include an image of a towel you’re selling.
This paints a nice picture of how you can use the product and gets your customers in the mood for their upcoming time away.
For instance, families going on holiday will be looking to take more than one beach towel. Influence their spending habits by offering "buy one beach towel and get a second half-price" to grab the attention of your customers, as they’ll be keen to make as many savings as possible.
Another option is to offer a free gift or special deal. Something like "Buy a beach towel and receive a free tote bag" is a great way to promote the product mix of your store.
Around 67% of consumers have admitted they bought a product they weren’t going to originally after finding a coupon or discount.
Social media can be your best friend when it comes to getting noticed. You can create a buzz with your followers and even offer them rewards. Create a hashtag that is relevant to your brand and offer them an incentive such as ‘a free item worth £15’ or ‘25% discount voucher’ if customers send in photos of themselves, including the hashtag, featuring your products.
Running a flash sale is another way to help grow your business. The reasoning behind this is to entice customers to make an on the spot decision to buy your product. Flash sales are normally used to help unload excess stock, but you’re a print on demand store so that isn’t going to be a problem for you.
The main reason you’d run a flash sale is to increase brand awareness. It’s seen as a short-term solution but if executed well you can get your brand message across to the right people.
As a good example, Case-Mate, a mobile phone case manufacturer, ran two flash sales in the space of a fortnight to see if they would be beneficial in the long-run.
The first test showed a 51% increase in traffic as well as a 50% increase in conversion rate, while the second sale revealed a 5% increase in traffic and a 105% increase in conversion rate.
Another good way to promote your store and get your products noticed is by bundling certain items together. For instance, "great shoes, do you need a bag to go with that?"
Target your promotions
As you can see, it’s not just a case of flooding your store with products and hoping for the best. Take time to research recent trends and plan your next move in advance, especially when it comes to upcoming seasonal events.
Remember, customers love offers and free gifts so seriously consider running summer promotions to get people talking about your products.
Here’s to a great summer!
Interested in more useful tips to help you run your print on demand store? Check out the rest of our blog for inspiration.