01 Jan 2016

Make Easy Money Selling Your Merchandise With These Tips


Merchandise is an artist’s best friend, it can be the main source of income for many ‘straight out the van’ bands and artists, and it plays an important role in supporting every artists in some form, making the difference between sleeping in the tour van or in a hotel room.

But are your fans becoming disillusioned with the same old t-shirts, posters and badges? Are you doing your best to make your merch as much a part of you, as your music is? Is merchandise really worth the cost if you’re not making the most of it?

In all areas of music your fans are expecting more, and merchandise is just the same. There are numerous ways you can innovate and experiment with your merchandise, but the first step you need to take before you do this is to evaluate yourself and your fans. What do you stand for, what do your fans associate with you? What do your fans want? Ask them, you might as well sell them what they want, then from their you can understand them and sell them what you think they need.

Here are a few ideas to take your merch table and store to the next level:


Exclusive/One Off:

Make something in short supply and it will fly off the metaphorical shelf. If you let people know there are only 10 of one item ever going to be made, you can afford to charge a little more as your fans will want to make sure they have a limited edition product from you. The exclusivity is more appealing that the product itself in this case, but still make the merchandise something worthwhile.

The Homemade Touch

You create your own music and your fans want that, so if you can create decent merchandise why wouldn’t they want that too? If you’ve got a flare for design and craftsmanship then why not make some of your own merch?

Something handmade by you is a much more attractive product to the fan and will stand out much more than the last XXXL t-shirt you have left. Try hand painting your album art, or some other imagery relevant to you, nothing huge, you don’t want to replicate the Sistine Chapel, maybe an A5 size painting will do. It doesn’t have to be a painting, let your creative juices flow, make something or a number of somethings yourself, but be aware of the cost.



Not the most original of subjects I know but vinyl, while growing steadily is still a niche market. If you believe you fit into it and believe your fans are the type to want to not only have a physical product but have the quirk of vinyl then maybe you should look into putting your latest release into inches. With this you can find some great companies to create customized vinyl cases.

Don’t commission your vinyl in huges bulks, you might end up being left with an excess you’ll spend a year shifting, shop about look for the best deal for the number you want, but also do a bit of fan research and see how many would be interested.

The Merch Table

We all know the merch table. A friend of the band drinking far too much while trying to persuade people to buy CDs and T shirts. Don’t replace that, but try to make it a bit more efficient and make yourself stand out, add your own character.

Put focus on your “digital�? merch table, make sure you have an ecommerce aspect to your merchandise, your fans should be able to buy your merch at all times. Add ecommerce to your website, a simple Paypal checkout will do. If you can’t do this then set up an account with Big Cartel. They allow you to set up a free or tailored budget account to set up and manage your own store front.

There are many more ways to innovate your merchandise, take the first point and do some research see what products you could tailor to yourself and ask your fans if its something they’d be interested in, if you're worried use Toto Merch to make it to order so you're not left with excess. From there sell, sell, sell.