Live Webinar : How to prepare yourself for adopting web-to-print for your business? 24th August 2016

Blog / Exploring the Big Opportunity in Personalized T-Shirts and Why It is Important?
Tuesday, July 22, 2014


One of the toughest businesses to be in is apparel retail. There are a range of options that you can offer your customers including pants, T-shirts, shirts, jumpers, tank tops, capris, jeans and a lot more. At the other end of the spectrum, customers have their own choices based on gender, their age, profession, demographics etc. As an apparel retailer, you will need to offer a whole range of choices to your target customers to ensure they buy from your store.

Quite a number of merchants are going the online route, as it helps them reach out to more customers and offer more clothing options to their customers; at the same time, going online, also helps cut down on their operating costs.

But online businesses have their own set of benefits and challenges. One of the biggest challenges they face is stiffer competition. Seemingly everyone now wants a share of the massive e-commerce pie. We are talking about a trillion dollar market here. This is why online retailers need to pull out all the stops to attract online shoppers to their site and increase conversion.

What online merchants must understand is that it is a buyer’s market out there, with shoppers having a smorgasbord of product choices irrespective of the category. Whether it is pricing, quality, type of product, features or something else, customers have a wide range to pick from. So how do you differentiate your business from that of your competitors?

One answer, especially for online retailers who are selling T-shirts lies in personalization. Yes, there is a huge opportunity in personalized T-shirts that you must explore if you want to boost business sales.

Let’s take a closer look at this opportunity.

Personalization is the Way to Go for E-retailers of T-shirts

According to survey conducted by Bain, of the more than 1000 online shoppers surveyed, 25% to 35% were interested in trying out personalization options.

To put this percentage in perspective, let’s do a bit of number crunching. Online apparel sales in 2013 were projected to reach around 54 billion, so even if 25 % of these sales were to be customized,you get a mammoth figure of $13 billion. As an apparel retailer can you afford not to make a play for even a small portion of this massive figure? And what’s more, online apparel sales are projected to go up year on year.

Personalized T-shirts therefore could lead to massive returns.

There is another reason at play here as well.

Personalized T-shirts are in demand because people want to wear their attitude, philosophy of life, world view and interests and preferences. They want to be in charge of what their T-shirt says. They want to design their own T-shirts, which makes sense actually, because who else but the customer can understand his/her needs best. What they want from the retailers is a fairly convenient means of designing their T-shirts.

As a retailer, if you deliver on their expectations, you have a good chance of boosting your sales figures. What’s more, you don’t have to try too hard. You already have an online presence; all you need is a solution that can be implemented with your online store that helps you leverage the potential of this particular aspect of customer psychology.

T-Shirt Design Software to Leverage this Opportunity

Personalized T-shirts are a huge opportunity and if you want to make good use of this opportunity, you need to implement design software in your online store, the kind that makes T-shirt designing simple and super fun for customers. You must offer them the use of software that can be used by even the most creatively challenged individuals with zero designing knowledge. The user should be able to design a fantastic looking T-shirt by uploading clipart/pictures or using fonts, clipart and images that a user can pick from the library offered by the tool. What is also important is that the T-shirt design software offers pre-designed artwork template that users can easily personalize according to their needs and requirements.

The idea is to make it really very simple for customers to personalize their T-shirts.

Grabbing the Opportunity with Both Hands

As a retailer, it really doesn’t matter whether you are running an online or bricks and mortar business; you must be able to explore newer opportunities for growth. Personalized T-shirts are one such fertile opportunity, fertile because there is still tremendous scope for it to grow. If you want to get a head start over your competitors, this is one opportunity you shouldn’t fail to explore because there are still retailers who are weighting in the pros and cons of offering the personalization option to their customers. While they wait to decide whether they should go for it, you can capture the market share that is just waiting to be grabbed.

To Conclude

The big opportunity in personalized T-shirts is knocking on your doors. The question is – are you ready for it? The one big advantage you have is there is a readymade solution available on the market that helps you capitalize on this opening to grow your business. The customers are out there and so is your solution. You don’t have to search far and wide for either of them. All youneed to do is start exploring and that too without making a substantial investment into the proceedings. You don’t have to pay through your nose to tap this opportunity. The software that allows you to offer personalized T-shirt design services to customers doesn’t cost a bomb. On the contrary, their price can be considered quite affordable if you are to see it from the prism of returns on investment.

It really doesn’t make any sense that you are still waiting to foray into personalized T-shirt printing. Don’t wait any longer. Just explore the opportunity and reap the benefits.

CEO and Co-founder at Design'n'Buy.