Creating a successful online spirit store

creating a successful online spirit store

Kirkwood Trading Company St. Louis custom t-shirt screen printing shop

Creating a successful online spirit store has never been easier. First and foremost now more than ever people are making all kinds of purchases online. Second, Kirkwood Trading Compmany provides it’s clients with a free online store where schools, teams, and organizations can sell their custom spirit wear. So the costs that are associated with selling spirit wear are no longer there because there is no need for costly inventory or space. There is no longer a need to purchase a domain name and hosting plan. Kirkwood Trading Company now provides all of these things completely free to our clients. What’s more, we also completely build the store for you, handle order processing, and if need be, shipping and bagging. All you have to do is sit back and collect the revenue. Yes, it’s that easy.

First Things First
When it comes to a successful online spirit store you don’t need to reinvent the wheel. The mmost successful stores contain 80% of the staple apparel and 20% unique apparel that is geared specifically towards your clientele. By staples we are talking about t-shirts, hoodies, shorts, hats, jackets, bags, etc. By unique apparel we are talking specialty apparel where you know they’ll be a hit. This might be a baseball tee, a unique cut women’s cut tee, it could even be a unique one time design, which we’ll get to in just a bit. Staples are important because they are expected, they typically remain the same in both style and print year after year and a perfect case and point would ba high school spirit wear store. If a schools colors are black and gold then more than likely a staple would be a black hoodie with a gold print that says something like Springfield. Something a student might by a couple times throughout his high school career but it’s common enough that town citizens, incoming freshman, and the like all buy this staple year after year. Staple items are the life blood of a successful online spirit store. The unique items are to gain additional revenue from the people who own the staples.

Go unique to get more sales
One thing we find successful is when a school or team offers a new and fresh design that is only offered for a limited time and then never to be seen again. This creates buzz and buzz creates sales. Nobody likes to feel left out and if a particular shirt with a unique design is only for sale for a limited time, then people will jump on it. It’s a way to create buzz, attract new customers, and get additional sales from existing customers.

We do this exact same thing for a local club sport here in St. Louis. They have an online spirit store 3 times a year for a few weeks each time. They offer about 20 different items. Of those 20 different items 15 of them are always the same, there staples. 4 items are completely new and fresh with each time the store is reoponed, and the 20th product, is always a brand new limited edition design that is only for sale during that particular time the store is open. If they have 200 memebers, they’ll see about 160 of this unique limited edition shirt alone. The rest of the sales are from the staples and unique designs. But what is nice is that you’ll find people who ordered apparel from their store in the summer, so they typically won’t order anything in the fall, but the summer people will most certainly buy that one limited edition item in the fall.

Having something limited edition is a great way to gain additional sales.

If you have an interest in learning more about how Kirkwood Trading Company can help you with your custom online spirit store, give us a call or send us an email and we’ll be happy to discuss what we can do for you to help you generate revenue without spending any money. We promise, it really is that simple.

Top 5 T-shirts to customize

top 5 t-shirts to custsomize

custom t-shirt screen printing in St. Louis

Top 5 T-shirts to Customize

This list of top 5 t-shirts to customize is based on the past 3 years of our personal clients buying habits which is based on quality, color availability, price point, and durability. As a local St. Louis screen printing company we can agree with these choices and give you the reasons and feedback to back that up. So if you are in the market for custom t-shirts you may want to take a look at these top 5 t-shirts and see if their popularity aligns with the goals for your custom t-shirt order.

Performance T-shirts A4 3142 unisex
While performance tees have come a long way over the past few years with several companies now offering a 100% moisture wicking polyester t-shirt, it can be hard to choose the best one for you. I’ll tell you a diry little secret: 100% polyester is 100% polyester and there isn’t going to be a difference between a $50 t-shirt or a $4 t-shirt. The main difference comes in the weight of the shirt and for consumers of custom t-shirts, color availability and price point.

The A4 brand is a great up and coming brand. While they are well established and known for quality shirts at a great price, only in the past few years have all of the major distributors picked them up. They offer several styles including men, women, and youth and they get into the popular trends of sublimated designs where you can buy their shirts with camo patterns or accent piping. They offer socks, shorts, sweatshirts, and more.

Screen Printers Perspective:
They are readily available, come in enough colors to satisfy most of our clients, and the shirts themselves are very durable so we don’t have to handle them with additional care in order to not cause runs in the fabric.

Customers perspective:
A4 boasts the best price point among 100% poly moisture wicking t-shirts and they have a nice color selection as well as nice ladies and youth compliments to their 3142. Customer feedback has been really positive which is great because it’s usually us turning new clients onto this product to save them money.

Fashion T-shirts Next Level 3600 cotton crew
Fashion tees have beceome a big trend in recent years with more and more people wanting a softer tapered cut t-shirt. Next Level would have several t-shirts in the Top 5 T-shirts but only this one because of price point, feel, and availability puts it in the top 5 t-shirts. It’s ringspun cotton so it is softer than your typical shirt.

Screen Printers Perspective:
It’s a great price point and great availibility. Only downside would be limited color options and of those a lot of earth tone colors.

Customer Perspective:
Customers are able to get into a trendy shirt at a lost price point. This is great for branding, especially when selling shirts or promoting something because they have soft feel everyone wants.

Garment Dyed T-shirts Comfort Colors
If you are in high school or college, then you know comfort colors. These are garment dyed shirts that sit in a category of their own and pretty much have complete market saturation. They have TONS of unique colors and a soft feel for a garment dyed shirt. These would be the most popular shirt among the 14-22 year old consumer. In addition they have several styles that include pocket tees, tank tops, and sweatshirts. The only downside which should be ending soon is their availability as their stock has suffered greatly and cost them some major dollars because they have been hard to get. That should change though with Gildan purchasing them at least that is hopefully the plan.

Screen Printers Perspective:
Their price point is a little higher for a solid colored t-shirt but customers who order this expect that. Their limited stock can make fulfilling customers orders difficult, but they are easy to print on, durable, and when they have stock in the colors the customer wants, it makes for a rewarding order.

Customer perspective:
Unique colors and softness stick out the most. Again, they have a higher price point but customers expect that and are willing to pay for it. But the unique colors stand out among all of the others which is great to get a message across. So for some years they have been in the top 5 t-shirts

Most Popular T-shirts
: Gildan 2000 and 5000
Gildan is the largest T-shirt manufacturer in the world and more than likely if you see a custom t-shirt, it’s a Gildan brand shirt. They have 2 styles really, the are in the top 5 custom t-shirts to customize. Their 2000 – 6oz 100% preshrunk cotton and their 5000 5oz 100% preshrunk cotton. The 5000 has the best price point and comes in over 50 colors. The 2000 comes in over 70 colors. The price point is great, every single distributor carries them, their availability is second to none. They also come out with new colors each year and curb the poor selling colors so you always get the latest and greatest color trends.

Screen Printers Perspective:
Withhout a doubt their low price point, high quality, and huge color options make them a fit for 90% of the custom t-shirt consumers out there. They are very durable, the cotton is preshrunk, and their fit is the gauge by all shirts. So you get a standard fitting t-shirt that comes in a lot of colors and even sizes for that matter. You can get virtually any Gildan t-shirt on a one day ship which make them great for rush orders.

Customer perspective:
Customers love Gildan because of their color choices and their durability and most colors come in both youth and adult so they are a great fit for virtually anything under the sun be it awareness walks, fundraisers, trips, family reunions, or whatever.

Blend Shirts Gildan 8000 Dryblend
Gildan came out with their 8000 some years back and it’s their 50/50 cotton poly Dryblend. So it has some moisture properties and is a little softer than their preshrunk cotton styles. They have over 30 colors available in this style and it also comes in youth and long sleeve. The price point is the same as the Gildan heavy cotton tee so it’s a great option for a myriad of ocassions.

Screen printers perspective:
Availability is great, durability is great, lots of color options at a great price point. Easy to print on and easy to sway a customer into a more modern blend shirt since the price point is the same as a cotton.

Custom perspective:
Customers are getting a softer more modern trendy shirt at a great price with lots of color options. You can’t go wrong with this blend.

Honorable Mentions:
There is an abundance of honorable mentions that didn’t make the top 5 t-shirts to customize. Some of them could just be the consumers aren’t aware of them and other times price point and avaialability don’t make them a good match.

Any Gildan product is going to be a great buy. Their durability, availability, color options, and price point make even their new tech performance shirt and softstyle shirts something to consider. Everything is moderately priced from Gildan and you simply can’t go wrong no matter your purpose for ordering custom t-shirts.

Fruit of the loom, Jerzees, hanes, are all in the same category as Gildan with practically the same price points and same color options.

Next level has a great lineup and compete directly with Bella but Next Level tends to have a better price point. There are specialty brands such as LAT, Rabbit Skins, Boxercraft that also offer a variety of products and colors as well.

When you are in the market for custom t-shirts contact Kirkwood Trading Company in St. Louis. We serve a clientele across the United States and offer super fast turn around times and ultra competitive pricing.

You can contact us here Free quote

T-shirt Fundraising made easy

T-shirt fundraising

Kirkwood Trading Company

T-shirt Fundraising made Easy

Smart fundraisers know that people like to get something in return for their donation which is why a t-shirt fundraiser makes sense. In fact, studies show that people tend to give more when they get something back for their money. It doesn’t have to be a something of equal value like most people think, because let’s face it, that would defeat the purpose. Although the perceived value is something that really encourages people to donate. Let’s say you want to buy the latest trendy t-shirt at a store, more than likely you will end up paying $25, $45, or much more.

Now imagine selling a custom t-shirt for your cause that has a price tag of $15 or $20. Plenty of people out there will buy a $20 gag t-shirt for a single use ocassion. So to sell a fundraising t-shirt for $15 or $20 where the buyer can wear it all the time is a no brainer.

The most successful fundraising campaigns will have a broad audience with a high number of possible contributors so the t-shirt cost is very minimal. In order to have a successful t-shirt fundraising campaign, ideally you want to buy a high volume of shirts. Of course that all just depends on your goals.

Custom t-shirt fundraising is a great way to have fun by coming up with a unique design catered to promote the cause. They can be serious, funny, abstract, it doesn’t matter. And that’s just it, t-shirt fundraising can be cateret to fit your specific audience and geared toward the outcome you wish to portray.

The best part is there is no cost to you to get started. You can do away with costly inventory and taking the time to sell them to each individual. Kirkwood Trading Company provides you with a free web store where we’ll handle all of the order processing and if need be, shipping as well.

It’s easy to get started with a simple email or phone call. We’ll be happy to talk with you and help you with design, best practices, and whatever we can do to help. A successful t-shirt fundraiser is a goal that serves everyone involved.

You can contact us here. Contact Us

Custom Band T-shirts

custom band t-shirts

Kirkwood Trading Company screen printing in St. Louis

Custom Band T-shirts

custom band t-shirts are a means to promote a band while at the same time earning additional income through the merchandise. We work with several bands from all walks of life from the big global bands to your smaller scale local cover bands. While an international signed band might order 10,000 shirts for an event, a local cover band may only order 100 shirts. In that respect the purpose is exactly the same, both bands are order custom band t-shirts for the same purpose.

Our biggest custom band t-shirt client are the local bands ordering 100-200 shirts at a time. They have a dedicated following and are able to push new designs onto their followers a few times a year. It’s a great way to grab additional income from the pay of the gig itself. Any additional money for the local bands is a bonus simply because they love what they do and most have full time jobs.

But there is nothing like a cult type following. These are your customers and they gobble up their favorite bands merchandise. So it’s always a good venture to invest in offering band merch.

Custom band t-shirts – screen printed success

So I touched on this briefly above, but the best way to get the maximum dollar out of your local following is to switch things up. A lot of times bands will have t-shirts screen printed with their band logo on them, a staple in any event. Another way to take advantage and to keep things fresh is to constantly have different designs to offer your fans from time to time. Keeping it fresh is a great way to get people buying time after time. With more people buying, new fresh designs, your brand is out amongst the people on the shirts of fans backs promoting your band.

Best practices, keep it simple. The smaller the quantity you order the less ink colors should be involved. You want to keep the shirts cost effective for a return on investment so keep them budget friendly. Stick with one or two color designs for the best return. Your cost is lower and you can sell them for a lower price point as well.

Custom Charity Walk Event Tshirts

Charity walk event tshirts

Custom Tshirt Screen Printing in St. Louis

Custom Charity walk event tshirts

The fundraising season is upon us with various charity walk and run events taking place. Few things are as cost effective when it comes to marketing than a custom t-shirt. The exposure each shirt gets compared to it’s investment makes logo shirts among the best money spent for getting a name or event in front of people.

Let’s do some simple math. A $10,000 billboard seen by 50,000 people basically costs around $.20/cents per impression or per person who sees it. An $8 custom t-shirt that is seen by 300 people costs around $.02/cents per impression or per person who sees the shirt. You cannot compare 50,000 people seeing something and 300 people seeing something and assume more people will purchase or get involved with the product because 50,000. The important thing is the cost per impression. Multiply that 300 people seeing a t-shirt and multiple that by 500, 1000, or 2,000 t-shirts. On 500 t-shirts, those would be seen by 150,000 people and when it costs $.02/cents per shirt for that impression, few things are better than t-shirts when it comes to marketing.

The custom charity walk event tshirts are always a big hit. That’s why they always order them because they know the impact that having each participant walk away with a logo shirt for that fundraising effort is only increasing awareness which equals dollars spent on that particular cause. Take Autism for example. It is now a household term do in part to more diagnosis meaning it’s hitting more homes first hand. But with that comes the awareness and the incredible number of people who sign up for these walks and then get the t-shirt for participating. It’s a huge cycle that just makes the end goal of finding a cure that much more reachable.

What’s more is the team aspect and the fundraising teams ordering their individual custom charity walk event tshirts. They are raising awareness and showing unity amongst those in their inner circle that care. The t-shirt shows the unity and makes for a great marketing piece and a keepsake at the same time.

Custom charity walk event tshirts – people love them

When it comes to t-shirts, people love them whether it’s a t-shirt from their last vacation or their latest walk event. Custom charity walk event tshirts are about two things. First, people tend to donate or donate more when they recieve a tangible item in return for their donation. So tshirts make a great cost effective gift. Second, the exposure is second to none. Compare cost and exposure to other ad mediums and you’ll find custom charity walk event tshirts are a great commodity year after year.

For further information or to request a quote for your custom charity walk event tshirts, you can contact us here.
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Custom Prom Tank Tops

Custom prom tank tops

Kirkwood Trading Company

Custom Prom Tank Tops

So this is the 2nd year in a row we are seeing a trend for orders for custom prom tank tops and t-shirts. The traditional order has a design, school name, a reference to prom, and then on the back they are customized with the year, and then your dates name on the back.

The popular custom prom tank tops are comfort colors. Still a popular brand among high school and college students. While a higher price point compared to most brands, students are willing to pay for the trend and with so much customization they already expect to pay a higher price.

Kirkwood Trading Company provides a one week turn around on such orders as long as we receive everything from the client that is requested. Shirt style, color, and sizes. A list of names and the design is in a vector format ready to go. From there we can order your t-shirts or tanks on a Monday and have them ready to go that Friday.

Custom Kickball Team Tshirts

custom kickball team tshirts

Kickball T-shirts

Custom Kickball Team Tshirts

St. Louis is a growing hot bed for adult kickball leagues. What better sport is there to relive our playground youth in a fun environment where age doesn’t determine the enjoyment. With more and more teams getting organized the need for custom kickball team tshirts arises.

Hey, we get it and we don’t blush easily. So when someone comes in with and wants their team name Shift Kickers or Dragonass on a shirt, we love the humor.

So if you are looking for custom kickball tshirts Kirkwood Trading Company has you covered. We have a full catalog of the most popular shirts from cotton, blends, performance tees, and even the really soft trendy tees from the most popular manufacturers. We’ll take your design and print it on some tshirts and you can be the big hit of the league.

Need help with for a graphic for that awesome team name you came up with? No problem. Our graphic artists can put anything together.

Short on time, no problem. Our typical turn around time is 3-5 business days in most cases. We can print, number and letter your custom tshirts in just a few days and it won’t cost you an arm and a leg to be unified out there on the field of battle.

Give us a call and we’ll be happy to put a price together and earn your custom t-shirt printing business.

#kirkwoodtradingcompany #screenprinting #customtees #Stlouis

Designing Cost Effective custom t-shirts

Designing Cost effective custom t-shirts

Kirkwood Trading Company Saint Louis screen printing

Designing Cost Effective Custom T-shirts

So you want to design your own custom t-shirts and you want to keep them cost effective. If you follow these key points about how we price custom t-shirts it will help you in designing cost effective t-shirts.

4 Things play a part in the ultimate price you pay for your custom t-shirts.

1. Type of shirts (Cotton, Poly, blend, etc)
100% preshrunk cotton t-shirts will be the least expensive shirts. White t-shirts are also less expensive than colored tshirts and grays fall in the middle. Performance Poly like your dri-fit materials and poly cotton and triblend shirts are more expensive. Camo and tie-dye tshirts are your most expensive.

2. Printing (Print location and colors) Is the design a 1 color design or an 8 color deisgn or any number in between. The less print colors the less costly the shirt. Print location, one location is less expensive than multiple locations. So a shirt with a print on the only the front is less expensive than a shirt with a print on the front & back or front, black, and sleeves.

3. Quantity: How many shirts will you need to order. The more shirts the less costly each shirt becomes. Where a 12 shirt order with a particular design might be in the $9-$10 range per shirt, that same design on 50 shirts would closer to the $8 per shirt range.

4. Print Colors: The rule to keep in mind to get the most cost effective shirts is dark ink colors on lighter shirts is less expensive than light ink colors on darker shirts. Light ink on dark shirts often demands an under base or multiple hits on the ink to gain the correct opacity.

In the graphic above you have the same design printed in 4 different ways. A single color print on a white shirt being the least expensive and a 7 color design on a black shirt being the most costly and then 2 examples of a print that will fall in the middle. One thing to keep in mind is a high nummber of print colors should equal a high quantity of shirts. You don’t want to get an 8 color design print on 24 shirts. It’s completely cost prohibitive.

Each print color commands a $15 screen charge. So a one color print will have a $15 screen charge. An 8 color print will have $120 in screen charges. Ideally when you divide the screen charges by the number of shirts you want to order you are looking to keep the cost per shirt when divided by the screen charges as low as possible.

Example: 100 white t-shirts with a 1 color front print is going to run around $6/shirt with a $15 screen charge. If you divide that $15 by 100 shirts you get $.15 cents. So of the $6 shirt cost, $.15 cents of that $6 is going toward the scren charges. Now take $120 worth of screen charges and divide that by 50 t-shirts. 50 shirts with an 8 color design would run say $10.00. If you divid $120 by the 50 shirts you get $2.40. So that would be considered a high number. The lower you can keep the screen costs effecting your per shirt cost then that is how what designing cost effective custom t-shirts is all about.

Remember, small quantities should have low print colors and high print colors should be reserved for larger quantities of shirts.

Free Online T-shirt store

Free Online T-shirt Store

Kirkwood Trading Company

Free Online T-shirt Store

So you are looking for a website where you can sell a t-shirt for fundraising or team wear to your members or sell your t-shirt brand to the masses, you’ve come to the right place for your free online t-shirt store.

Kirkwood Trading Company has been screen printing tshirts and logo wear for over 20 years. Over the past 5 years we have provided an additional service of providing clients in need with an online store where they can sell their spirit wear or their own logo wear items to the masses. Starting in 2017 this free online tshirt store will not cost any of our customers a dime to use. That’s right, we are offering a completely 100% free online t-shirt store where you can sell your shirts or logo wear.

Free Online T-shirt Store – How it works

Here is how your free online t-shirt store works. We print the shirts, we ship the shirts or you pick up in bulk, and you collect the revenue, it’s that simple. We carry a full line of apparel from all the major brands. We print in-house and have shipping accounts with both UPS and USPS.

We build the store with your products on a dedicated store. We discuss your intended volume of sales and provide you with a price per piece based on that. You profit the difference. We handle ALL order processing and if need be shipping.

These free online t-shirt stores are perfect for:

Fundraising: Have a cause you want to raise money for. Selling a t-shirt is a great way to get people to donate. Statistically people tend to donate when they receive a tangible item in exchange for their donation. A t-shirt is a great low cost high profit way to raise funds for any need.

Spirit Wear or Team Wear: We work with many club teams who want to offer their logo wear to the parents and families and general supporters of their teams as well as spirit wear for the student body. These stores are typically made up of several different items such as t-shirts, sweatshirts, hats, bags, blankets, etc. A great way to gain exposure and reach more people with the trend of people making more and more purchases online.

Apparel Branding: We get a lot of people contact us who have the next big t-shirt idea. Often times they have the cost of a website, a webstore and then the cost of shirts. We can build a dedicated store for your own brand. There is no costly inventory or upfront costs to on an idea that may or may not work. Keep costs low.

Here is a fully functioning (Shopping cart disabled) sample store that is one of a few teamplates we can use. You’ll see it’s perfect for a shop as it’s a one page store with a logo and very simple routing.
Kirkwood Crush Spirit Store

Contact us if you are interested in learning more and how Kirkwood Trading Company can help with your online presence to sell t-shirts.

2017 Popular styles for your custom tshirts

2017 popular styles for your custom tshirts

Kirkwood Trading Company

Popular styles for your custom tshirts – what’s omitted

2017 Popular styles for your custom tshirts is based on buying trends from our customers. What you won’t find on this list are the absolute most popular styles that have been around since the dawn of time and remain the highest volume of styles. Those are:

Gildan 5000 – lightweight 100% preshrunk cotton
GIldan 2000 – heavy weight 100% preshrunk cotton
Gildan 8000 – 50/50 Dryblend
And various comparable styles from brands of Jerzees, Hanes, and fruit of the loom.

These above styles will make up roughly 90% of what every screen printing shop prints in a given year. The purpose of this post is to give people ideas who are looking for something different.

Popular styles for your custom tshirts – Something new and different

For people looking at something different from the status quo custom tshirts, we bring you the following:

Comfort Colors Garment Dyed Tees and Tanks:

These offer unique colors not offered by any other manufacturer. They are the go to shirt for high school and college aged kids. A higher price point than your traditional popular tees, the colors and feel are worth it. Their shades of greens, blues, red, and everything in between are a few shades different than any other manufacturer. Printing your message on these is sure to gain attention.

Next Level Brand:
They offer a ton of different hip styles that are more tapered than your traditional tees. They have various blends and textures making them very soft and comfortable to wear out on the town or even to bed. Their Triblend comes in many different styles including tanks and vnecks and both men and women’s styles. A slightly higher price point compared to the traditional custom tshirts but well worth the extra money. If you are in the market of giving away tees or selling a design or tshirt for profit, look at these because people like the feel and are more prone to buy when they like the soft feel of a shirt.

A4:
We were actually introduced to this brand by college coaches we were calling on. At the time they weren’t carried by any of the major distributors. Low and behold a year later and all major distributors with the exception of one is carrying the full line of A4. They have tons of styles for both adult and youth as well as women’s and mens. They also cater to more popular trends with camo accents and piping. A great 2017 popul styles for your custom tshirts. These are strictly a performance brand so everything will be of materials that assist in moisture management from their hoodies to their shorts and everything shirt inbetween. Their quality and styles compete with the big boys but at a percentage of the big boy cost.

Gildan Softstyle:
If it’s Gildan then you know it’s quality. This softstyle is a few years old at this point and it uses ringspun cotton to give it the unique softness. It’s also tapered with a thinner body and shorter sleeves. It comes in various styles for adults in both mens and womens. A generous price point that can boost your tshirt sales or impress your own wearers.

2017 popular styles for your custom tshirts is just what trends we see happening at Kirkwood Trading Company. Especially with our customers who are more quality and return conscious than price conscious. We understand that organizations often will give their shirts away for an awareness cause or something like that. Stick to the traditionals on that. These styles are for people who are selling a brand, including a shirt in their event signup cost, team sports, and just in general who want know the end wearer will be happy with the feel.

While these 2017 popular styles for your custom tshirts are current, there are other styles growing in popularity that aren’t listed simply because there are styles and competing brands. We just like these the personally and it’s what we show our clients and their feedback has been excellent.