How to Use T-Shirt Pre-Order Sales
Printing custom apparel for groups or events can be a tricky business. Printing too many shirts leaves leftover inventory on the table, with wasted money. Printing too few shirts leaves money on the table that you didn’t earn (but could have if you printed more). The solution is using a t-shirt pre-order form.
This is a tough balance. Using t-shirt pre-orders is one way you can manage this problem. There are several benefits of using t-shirt pre-orders.
Pre-orders are not always an option, though. Try pre-orders for fundraisers, events, or if you are testing out a new line of shirts.
For example, if you have a group that wants to sell shirts for a festival but they don’t know how many they should order, have them do a pre-sale before the festival if they have access to this group.
T-shirt pre-order sales help you gauge what people want before you even print a single shirt. You may be surprised how many people order something that you think would not sell, or vice versa, not buy something you put a lot of stock into.
Pre-orders take out this guess work. Work with the group you are printing for to create pre-order forms.
Once they have decided what they want to buy in terms of apparel and prints, you can add these to a form. They can then distribute this form to their group.
On the form, include the options that they can buy, such as sizes, colors, apparel choices, and designs, especially if you are selling multiple choices. Don’t forget to include payment information and when the apparel will be finished and delivered.
On our sales flyers page, we have a template that you can download and use for pre-sales forms. You can also use Easy View, our online designer, to create the apparel designs to paste into the template.
With pre-orders, you don’t have to pay up-front for inventory. You only have to print what people actually ordered.
Give your group a time frame that you are doing the pre-order. Give them a start and end date. After the end date, have them turn in all the forms.
Tip: Have the end date and due date for forms much earlier than you actually need them. That will give you some buffer time because there will always be late-comers that want to order after the deadline is over.
One of the other benefits of pre-orders is that you can collect payment up-front. When someone in the group fills out the pre-order form, have the group collect payment immediately.
That way, when the group places the final order, you can get paid before you print the job. You know you will have full payment.