When I started selling my own t-shirt designs on organic shirts I used a plotting service to get the t-shirts printed. wavetaxi Over the years my designs became more complex and the problems with the plotting service started. I had many rejects from the service and the time of correcting the vector files was increasing very much.
After 3 rejects I started searching for another service, but there weren’t any other fulfillment services around which could print the shirt and send it directly to the customers. That’s when I decided to start this on my own.
I bought a plotter, a textile press, different colors of plotting foil and some organic t-shirts to start with. My designs were all vector based. I plotted them, optimised them for speed – but made sure that they stayed delicate. When I got about 20 motifs ready I researched online shop software.
There are many shopping systems around. It mostly depends on what you can afford and how many products you want to sell. There are huge differences around. To cut it short: I’m using open Source because there are no licensing fees, there are plenty of freelancers or companies around dealing with it – and if you can’t afford them: you can play around with it on your own and get it running.
If you are selling shippable goods you have to look into logistic companies. I recommend checking prices, additional cost for services like track and trace and their delivery times. As I’m running my shops with less effort and at the lowest cost possible I’d like to have the shipping company in the near of my work place – makes it easy to send out orders in time and without checking opening times, maps, and so on.
Somehow you have to get the payment for your services. The more payment options you offer the more orders you might get. Accepting credit card payments can be difficult in different countries due to their laws. There are some payment providers available which accept credit card payment without the hassle of being responsible for fulfillment and privacy protection. I mostly recommend an e-payment provider like for example PayPal. PayPal only takes some minor fees for transaction and comes with the credit card acceptance benefit. There are some other providers out there as well, some are country specific. It’s up to you.