People love to associate themselves with brands they love. One of the easiest and most sought-after ways to do it is through owning merchandise of that brand. Apart from brands, people also want to preserve their memories by etching them as images on products. Many of us would have a coffee mug with our family photos or a picture of our favorite places.
About a decade ago, owning such merchandise was not so easy. People had to visit stores that did these printing works and spend considerable effort to get items customized. With the improvements in technology and eCommerce facilities since then, the demand in this space has exploded.
You, as a retailer, can tap into this widening opportunity to make and sell your merchandise online. eCommerce solutions, such as Aasaan, can help you launch your online store and sell merchandise seamlessly. Before we understand how eCommerce solutions can help your merchandising business, let's discuss what you need to remember while producing your merchandise.
Products that carry the logo, captions, or images of a popular brand or person are branded merchandise. They are used to establish and grow band identity. Some of the most common forms of branded merchandise include T-shirts, bags, caps, and mugs.
You can design creatives that correctly represent your brand and message to your target customers and start selling them to grow your business.
Once you have decided on your brand identity and are clear on the aesthetics, it's time to determine what products you will sell. You can arrive at this by understanding who your target audience is and study their interests. This will help you identify the right products to promote. For instance, promoting your brand through notebooks, pens, or pencils will be good if you are in the stationery business. It is better to start small and grow big while positioning your brand.
The following steps will help you in the process of making and distributing your merchandise:
You can work with a designer to shape your idea of what your brand stands for and come up with designs that resonate with the idea. This is an ongoing process until you get the perfection that you have in mind.
As discussed earlier, it is critical to decide the specific products your target customers are most likely to buy. A clear understanding of your customer demographics and psychographics will help you with this decision.
Identify a vendor who can work with you on your merchandising journey by starting small and growing big. Initially, you can order a small sample batch of products and test your customers' response to it. A smaller batch allows you to understand your customer expectations without spending a lot exactly.
Once you have agreed with your vendor on the mock-up and initial sample, you can price your product based on the end-to-end cost of purchasing the product, branding it, and selling it, along with your margin.
It is crucial to gather customer feedback early on to reduce your capital expenditure and help correct any unintended, incorrect brand positioning. The longevity of a brand and customer loyalty hinges on this aspect.
You can improvise your brand's image and positioning based on customer feedback. Understand the aspects that appeal to them more and leverage that to reach out to a broader audience. Customers like to identify themselves with brands that listen to their feedback.
Selling your merchandise
Having decided on what to sell, you must now decide on the medium for sales. The most convenient and popular way of reaching out to a large customer base is online. Apps, such as Aasaan, help you build your online store effortlessly and in a cost-effective manner.
Although many marketplaces let you sell your products, it is in your business's interest to go with eCommerce apps, such as Aasaan, that help you retain your existing brand identity by setting up your online store in your name.
There are certain essential aspects to consider while choosing an online platform, such as:
It's a default expectation of customers that your online store has a mobile app as well, apart from a website. Aasaan offers the perfect solution for this by helping you with your app on Android and iOS platforms.
One of the most critical activities to sell online is to identify and prepare a catalog online. Your eCommerce platform must allow for easy creation and updating of a product catalog, one that Aasaan provides.
Another sensitive area is the professional delivery of orders to customers. You can either have your delivery personnel or collaborate with third-party delivery service providers. Ensure your eCommerce solution has provisions to integrate with such services so that you can provide a seamless shopping experience to your customers.
When your store is online, payments must mostly be handled online. For instance, the Aasaan app integrates various payment gateways to offer convenience to your customers during checkout.
Offering customers ease of access to your store for any issues is vital to the success of your online business. There are multiple provisions that Aasaan offers, such as phone calls or WhatsApp chat, for the ease of customer-client queries.
Evaluate your eCommerce solution for its capabilities to provide promotions, discounts, and special offers to acquire, retain, and expand the customer base.
With online transactions, the concern for data privacy and security come into play. Make sure your eCommerce partner has adequate security mechanisms in place to protect your and your customers' data.
Brand merchandise sales is a growing area with considerable potential for success. After understanding the process of making and selling your merchandise for online sales, it is time to put your lessons into action and start growing your business.