YouTube provides lucrative opportunities for those who are ready to seize it. Creating a place for yourself amongst influencer giants may seem daunting. However, by diligently creating videos about your passion and gaining a solid audience, you can start monetizing the platform.
While you can generate good revenue as your followership increases, you can use YouTube to sell your merchandise.
This article will help you understand how to sell merchandise on YouTube and gain a side income through that.
What is YouTube Merchandise?
YouTube and Shopify recently collaborated to create YouTube Shopping. YouTube Shopping is a podium that allows eligible content creators to exhibit their commodities and authorized labeled merchandise on YouTube.
Sell and offer products created to stand out and showcase your YouTube brand. Merchandise that reflects the YouTuber’s authenticity tends to do well. Understand your target audience and monetize on simple products connecting them to you.
It can be popular apparel items, such as custom hoodies, or tools and software used to make their lives better.
What are the benefits of selling your merchandise on YouTube?
Top YouTube creators such as PewDiePie, Dude Perfect, Vanoss Gaming, Dan DTM, and many more earn seven figures on a monthly basis through sales of their personalized YouTube merchandise.
Depending on your followership, your earning numbers will vary. However, it is a good side income alongside the revenue you get from videos to sell YouTuber merch through your channel.
Furthermore, YouTube merchandise is a great way to promote your channel for the following reasons:
- People wearing or fashioning your merchandise become your advertising agents.
- It creates an emotional connection between people and the brand with a physical object to adore and appreciate.
- It produces a sense of belonging for your followers and purchasing clients.
When should you think of selling your own YouTube merchandise?
Unfortunately, only eligible creators can sell products using YouTube only in certain countries with YouTube Partner Program. You can check if the program is available in your country here.
You can consider selling personalized merch only after you meet the channel eligibility criteria, which are:
- You need 1,000 + subscribers, or Youtube approves your channel as an official artist channel.
- Your target audience is not children.
- Your channel abides by YouTube monetization policies.
- Your channel does not have a past violation record of community guidelines.
If you pass the eligibility barometer, you have a heads-up to sell your own YouTube merchandise. But how? Let us discuss that now.
FIRST STEP: Create personalized merchandise!
Create merchandise that is unique to your brand. Base the products on an often used slogan, your logo, or a design that is your brand identity. Start with items that do well in the market, such as clothes, mugs, stickers, etc.
Take inspiration from already existing merchandise shops of YouTubers such as Dude Perfect. They sell products that share their sporty ethos with various apparel products such as caps, t-shirts, and bottoms that fashion their brand logo. They even launched backpacks, bottles, sporting goods, etc.
Once you have finalized the products you wish to sell, you will need to decide on how to produce them. There are two options:
- Mass manufacturing
Team up with local manufacturers and mass produce the items.
- Customizing options with Print On Demand (POD)
Print your customized products as you get demands using platforms like Printify. POD is a better option when you are just getting started and cannot afford to order mass production without knowing your sales capacity. Let us look at how POD services work:
- Upload the branding image you want on the listed white-label products or blank items.
- POD service prints, packs, and delivers to your customer.
For example, you can sell custom sweatshirts at your marketplace. You set the price for the product to cover the raw materials and printing service and set a profit margin.
STEP TWO: Choose the right selling platform for your YouTube channel
Once you know what you are selling and your channel is eligible to make sales, The most common way is probably to set up an online store where you can sell your YouTube merchandise. If you do not have a website to sell the branded merchandise, you need to create a store with supporting selling platforms. With Printify more than 300 different goods can be customized. After that, you’ll be able to open a storefront and begin selling items to your followers. Upon receiving new orders, the platform will handle,
- Manufacturing of products
- Management, and
- Delivery of your goods.
Once you have chosen a platform, connect the store with your YouTube in four simple steps below:
- Log in to YouTube Studio.
- Select the monetization option in the menu on the left side.
- Select shopping to enable YouTube Shopping.
- Click on Get Started and follow the instructions on the screen to link your merchandise store to your channel.
Please check the Merchbar guidelines and notices for creators here.
You can organize your merchandise on the product shelf displayed under your videos and live streams. Different criteria determine the display order of your merchandise, including price, popularity, and availability. However, you have the option to personalize merchandise shelves for the entire channel or organize products individually under each video and live stream. Check showcase guidelines here for more details.
STEP THREE: Promoting your products and making sales
Now your store and merchandise are ready and open for the public, but how do you get people to notice it and purchase it?
Use Your Platform to Promote Your Products
Eligible YouTube Creators can use YouTube Shopping to advertise products from their own stores across the platform and make money in the process. In order to showcase your own products, such as merch, in your videos and live streams, you may set up and connect your store to YouTube with YouTube Shopping.
YouTube Shopping has features like:
- Your channel’s store
- Products on the end screens of videos
- Tagged products in your videos and live streams
- Pinned products in live chat
You may organize your products for display across various surfaces in YouTube Studio. With channel-level and individual video layouts, you can arrange your products as per your preferences.
Dedicate videos to talk about your merchandise.
Create short introductory videos about your merchandise, and tell your viewers why is it a big deal! Create hype by releasing pre-launch videos and stock running-out videos. Be proud of your store, and do not shy away!
Look at how Lily Singh, A.K.A. the superwoman, boasts her products in this video.
Include merchandise in engaging followers.
You can use merchandise as giveaways or give shoutouts to your loyal customers, building a sense of community around their shopping experiences. Engaging with merchandise creates a relationship between viewers and creators.
Tag your merchandise everywhere.
The goal is to get the news going. Put easily accessible clickable links of your store everywhere, such as in,
- Videos, or other
- Social Media Platforms.
Ask people to share your products or them using your products. Repost their posts using your merchandise tags.
Use SVOD (Shoppable Videos) When You Advertise
Shoppable videos redirect viewers to buy the product when viewers click on merchandise presented in the video. YouTube shoppable feature displays browsable product photos underneath the advertising videos.
To utilize this functionality,
- You must integrate your Google Merchant Center feed into your advertising.
- Now, it allows you to broaden the advertisement’s CTA to retail sites and highlight goods, directing people to the featured merchandise on your site.
The server redirects viewers to the brand merchandise site when they click it.
Host Live Videos
Use live videos or live streaming options to advertise your merchandise in between your session. Live videos create more engagement amongst the fan base of the creator. When a viewer purchases the merch during the live session, the YouTube feature alerts all live stream viewers in the chat box. So do not miss out on using this feature as it can create a ripple effect amongst viewers boosting your sales.
Make Affiliate Partners
Have you seen influencers promote products and distribute personalized discount codes for their followers to buy their products? These influencers are affiliates. You can find such affiliates among your followers. You can partner with a past client and provide them with an affiliation link to promote your merchandise to their followers.
Many eCommerce platforms such as Shopify and POD websites have affiliation features. Make sure to check if your POD provider allows such partnering options.
To sum it up:
Selling your brand merchandise is a great opportunity for growing YouTube creators. If you have a thousand or more followers, it can serve as a lucrative side income and channel promoting campaign in itself. While selling your merchandise may seem daunting at first, you don’t have to worry about losses when you partner with a great POD. Just choose a design and start promoting the products to your viewers and subscribers.