7 Creative Ways to Promote Your T-Shirt Store Online

  1. Purchase advertising through Project Wonderful.

    Project Wonderful allows you to buy advertising auction-style and many of the per-day bids are under 50 cents.

    With most of the major t-shirt blogs using these guys, along with tons of niche bloggers, this is one of the best ways for small companies to purchase affordable traffic.

  2. Participate in the forums of popular t-shirt communities

    And by “participate”, I don’t mean spam the site with the URL to your store. Here’s how you do it right:Set up a link to your store in your signature with some creative and/or descriptive copy (things like “Click here to see my work” or “Click here to see awesome urban designs” seem to work well). Write relevant responses to other people’s posts and try to really get involved in the community.

    The more valuable your posts are, the more curious people will be about who you are, and what you do. You’d be surprised how many great networking connections you can make through forums.

    Here’s a few forums to get you started: emptees, teefury, and cameesa. (most of the major contest sites have pretty lively forums)

  3. Set up an affiliate program with shareasale.com

    This is another advertising site that targets smaller retailers and blogs. Affiliate programs work by offering people a percentage (or fixed dollar amount) per sale that’s made by following banners to your site.

    You choose the amount you want to offer, provide a selection of banners that people can put on their sites, and then approve or deny affiliates that apply to your program. This is a great way to get sales without paying for per-click advertising. Click here to get started with them.

  4. Submit to the major t-shirt blogs/sites

    Start with PopCultureTees, and then submit your store/new t-shirt to all of the major industry blogs. Most of us bloggers are more than willing to feature new designs. Make sure you get an email address from the sites you submit to and build a mailing list. You can use this list later on to notify en masse about new t-shirts, specials, or important news.

    Check out this BIG LIST of t-shirt blogs to help you get started.

  5. Create an etsy store and sell a select number of your products through their site

    Etsy, a worldwide marketplace, is the hottest thing right now in the world of handmade/indie goods. Setting up a store here has a couple of advantages: there’s a huge amount of existing traffic on the site to tap into, there’s great options for low-cost promotion in their showcases, and many of their built-in search functions offer opportunities for free promotion.

    Setting up a store takes just a few minutes, payment is handled through PayPal, and there’s a place in your store description where you can include a link back to your main site.

  6. Start a blog (or write more, if you already have one)

    It’s common web-wisdom these days that having a blog for your company is a great way to encourage repeat visitors to your site. Not sure what to write in your blog?

    Talk about the experiences you’ve had as a designer/store owner. Talk about finding the write printer for your t-shirts. Talk about your successes, your failures, and what you’ve learned along the way.

    Encourage readers to subscribe via RSS, work to create great and interesting content, and then use your blog as a platform to announce new ventures, products and sales.

  7. Compete in one or two larger design competitions on sites like Threadless or Cameesa

    Ultimately, selling your products is all about exposure, exposure, and then more exposure. Even if you don’t win, submitting a design to one of the larger competition sites buys you some additional exposure and buzz via comments.

    It can be a great way to get people talking about your work, reading your profile, and gives you an opportunity to engage more people.

    Check out our REALLY BIG LIST of contest sites for an idea of where to start.

Got some other suggestions for marketing ideas that have worked for you? Drop a comment and let us know!


38 thoughts on “7 Creative Ways to Promote Your T-Shirt Store Online

  1. I think tip #2 is the best tip. I think that by joining a community and letting people get a feel for you is the best way to move product. People will purchase stuff just because they became your online friend. I think one thing people should really to is flyers. I mean really good 4×6 High Gloss flyers. They really help.

  2. BlockQuoteProducts says:

    Really nice resource – found PopCultureTees from a comment in the Zazzle forum. Tees are alive and doing well 😉

  3. BlockQuoteProducts says:

    Really nice resource – found PopCultureTees from a comment in the Zazzle forum. Tees are alive and doing well 😉

  4. Thanks for the post! I recently signed up to some forums and it has been very helpful. not only in getting advice, but giving it as well. I never actually thought of submitting designs to competition sites before but I'll give that a try too.

  5. Make sure to submit your tee designs to me after Pop Culture Tees, maybe I can even beat Liz to the post 😉

    I couldn't agree with #3 more, make sure you use a major affiliate site like share-a-sale rather than a small one — tee bloggers like me prefer it! Also, most tee bloggers are happy to post designs they like, even without an affiliate program — it's just gravy.

  6. Clothes for every occasion and all information about clothing, dresses, skirts, jeans, pants, sweaters and other Accessoiries.

  7. Also… write comments on blogs like this, with your website linked… and hope someone clicks your name!
    (try it)

  8. Don’t forget to start a Zazzle store (free). Link your store to your blog, twitter, facebook and so on. Whether you have an existing site/store – this will increase your visability. Once you have a store, scroll to the bottom of Zazzle and start posting on their forum. Tons of traffic awaits!!!

  9. I might try Project Wonderful. Before I started, I thought my designs would be all intricate and crazy graphics that bloggers would like but after 15 or so under my belt, they’re mostly text and simple designs. I’m turning into a fogie.

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