Mike Nelson will teach you how to start your own T-shirt business that replaces your nine-to-five income. And you can do it without purchasing any expensive printing equipment or buying a bunch of inventory up front. In the past few years Mike claims he’s personally sold over fifty-three thousand tee shirts, generating over one-point-two million dollars in the process. Even better, sales and fulfillment were almost entirely passive. Skeptical? Me too. Read on for my 9to5 Dropouts review.
NEXT: Compare This To Having Your Own T-Shirt Biz
You can start your own hands-off T-shirt business for under five hundred bucks, Mike says. Just follow his blueprint and you, too, can have a six figure side hustle selling T-shirts. Step one, whatever you do, do not create another job for yourself. The mistake most aspiring T-shirt entrepreneurs make is, they go and buy printing equipment that sets them back thousands of dollars. Aside from the money, you printing the shirts is not scalable.
Step two, then, is to use other people’s resources. Let them print your shirts; save time, money, oh and your sanity. The technical term is print on demand. There are affordable companies, all setup for scale, who will happily print, package, and ship your shirts off for you. Step three? Come up with a T-shirt design people will buy. Ship it to your new print on demand partner. They’ll handle the rest.
Here’s the cool part: you don’t even have to come out of pocket to pay them. They take their cut, right off the top, the minute the T-shirt sells. You keep the rest. This is what makes it so bootstrap-friendly and passive, once you’re up and running. Now you can work on, and not in your business. And that’s what real business owners do, Mike says.
How much do these print on demand companies actually charge? Usually around eight to ten bucks per shirt. Mike sells pretty much all of his shirts for twenty-four-ninety-nine. That leaves him about fifteen dollars, profit, per shirt sold. What are some of the names of these companies? You can use Shopify; just search in the app store for print on demand companies. There’s Printful, Printlee, and a few others that aren’t as popular.
What about designs? How do you know what will sell and what won’t? Simple. You model what’s already working. Go to Amazon and do a search for the niche you want to go into plus t-shirt. “Dog t-shirt,” for example. Have a look at the top sellers; the ones with lots of reviews. Boom. There’s your winning designs right there. Of course, you can’t copy those designs verbatim. You’ll have to tweak them, make them your own. Assuming you’re not a designer yourself, you can hire someone on Fiverr to help you out.
Now how do you get sales? Mike recommends going to Instagram, searching for relevant hashtags, sorting by popularity, and hitting up influencers who already have huge audiences that might be interested in your t-shirts. You’ll have to hit up quite a few and make deals with them. Ugh. That’s the only part that turns me off. I can only imagine how many nos you’d get; or how badly they’d gouge you on price. Seems like it’d whittle your profit down to almost nothing. If you can get past that, Mike has a 4-Week T-Shirt Bootcamp he sells for $497.
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