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Hi im new to this forum!Im thinking of selling my brand of t shirts..i habe a website up.. and a few thisrts on display..

how do i go about getting the merchants into my website?do i need a company registered first?i was told i don need to if im doin my business purely online..is this true? thanks
 

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Hi Kriss2fer,

Welcome to the site. I think you are asking how to get customers to your site. Is that correct? Merchants are others that sell stuff. You want customers. Unless you want retail merchants to see your stuff, then just give them your web address.

You want to get the word out that you make t-shirts. You want people to be able to find your site, so you have to optimize your site so the search engines will list it. There are a lot of various ways to do this, and I won't get into all of them now.

Start with some of the basics first. You are still working on your site from the looks of it. You will want to add more text to your home page. It should state exactly what your site is all about. Be creative, and to the point. Search engine spiders will not have much to grab onto if you only have a picture on your home page.

Also, make sure you put some meta tags into the code of your homepage.
They go between the and tags.

Examples are...

YOUR website name here







This will tell robots (spiders) to crawl all your pages for content.

Here is an excellent site that tells you how to Search Engine Optimize your site.
http://www.wordsinarow.com/seo.html Actually, I need to read this too and update one of my non-t-shirt related sites.

After that, actual advertising, word of mouth etc. are the best way to let others know where to find you.

Before you bother with any of this though, make sure your site is up and running and ready to actually sell your stuff. Make sure everything is spelled correctly, and all of your links work.

Your designs look pretty good. Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #3
thanks...how bout getting the credit companies to come in?(i mean when buyers want to buy it online..how do i go about doin that?what are the diffrent mediums i can use for buyers to buy my shirts?
 

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You can use PayPal,2checkout,propay or find a merchant account to accept credit cards.

To accept Visa, MasterCard,Discover,AmericanExpress, you'll need to apply for a merchant account at one of the various online merchant account companies (there are lots of them in a google search). I would look for one that uses the authorizenet gateway, since it seems to be the most supported gateway.

Here's a link to the Merchant Account category at t-shirtlinks that has a few companies listed:
http://www.t-shirtlinks.com/?id_category=67
 

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Discussion Starter #5
thanks!really apreciate the help....what about t shirt printing?do you know of any high quality not too pricey onloine printing companies?(would be useful if it provides good quality t shirts too)
 

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Most screen printing places online and offline will provide the blanks and print the shirts. Just do some searches for screen printing in google or yahoo or check your local yellowpages.
 

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Hello,

Since you are looking for a merchant acount I suggest you go with www.pipelinedata.com they are good and give you free shopping cart. Paypal isnt really a good company with a merchant account the money come straight to you not held in an account by paypal. Or just seach merchant accounts til you find one that better suits you. Paypal isnt FDIC certified, so that can cause many problems.
 

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I think PayPal can and does work fine for many t-shirt sellers just starting out. Once the money is in your PayPal account it can be easily transferred to your bank account.

I've been using PayPal for probably close to 7 years and haven't had any problems. I would actually recommend that even if you have a regular merchant account (which is a good idea to get anyway), that you still offer PayPal as a method of payment, since there are people that actually prefer to pay through PayPal instead of other means.

It doesn't look like pipelinedata uses authoroizenet gateway (looks like they rolled their own solution).

I would recommend that your first merchant account be with a company that uses the authorizenet gateway because their gateway is the easiest to use and the most widely supported in off the shelf shopping carts (like miva,oscommerce,shopsite,zencart, etc)

It looks like the fees at pipelinedata are good, so if you don't need to support an off the shelf shopping cart, then it might be worth considering.
 

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I agree with you all above but most merchants let the transaction enter your account with in 24 hours. But the reason i go against paypal cause they are not fdic certified and have had problems. Because you may run into an untrustworthy customer and they will freeze your account if that person lies about anything so if within those 3 days all of your funds are not yours. Plus the fees they charge are not so hot but I suggest that she still offer it for a customer to have an option, based on the fact that more people are familiar with the name.
 

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manufacturer2006 said:
I agree with you all above but most merchants let the transaction enter your account with in 24 hours. But the reason i go against paypal cause they are not fdic certified and have had problems.
Being FDIC insured is not so much of a problem for the type of service they provide. Most merchant account providers have also had their share of problems.

Because you may run into an untrustworthy customer and they will freeze your account if that person lies about anything so if within those 3 days all of your funds are not yours
This is really no different than a standard merchant account. A customer can initiate a chargeback for a LOT of reasons with a standard merchant account and in some cases you won't get the funds back even if you shipped the product to the customer.

I've had untrustworthy customers pay me through PayPal and PayPal hasn't frozen my account, just the funds related to the transaction (happend in December). They have a simple dispute resolution process that allows you to provide proof for the transaction and actually have more safeguards in place to protect the merchants than a lot of merchant account providers. Once the dispute is over, they either give the funds back to the buyer or you get to keep them in your account. I've had both happen.
 

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rabid said:
Another thing to note, you can transfer the money out in 3 days with Paypal. Most merchant accounts only pay out once or twice a month.
Actually, most real merchant accounts pay out within 2-3 days directly to your bank account.

Places like ccnow,worldpay,2checkout only pay out twice a month because they are the true merchant and they have to hold the funds in escrow in case there is a return or dispute. These services are still good ways to get started accepting credit cards if you can wait for the funds. I first started out with just mail order (back in 1996), then I went to CCNOW, then I added PayPal, then as I grew, I applied and got accepted for a regular merchant account (through cardservice intl). I also have a merchant account through another provider that uses the authorizenet gateway (which I prefer over the linkpoint gateway).

But if you get a regular merchant account like from pipelinedata, eonlinedata, linkpoint (cardservice international, etc), you get the funds deposited pretty quickly.

For example, the charges that go through today (Friday) on my linkpoint merchant account will show up in my business checking account on Monday morning.
 
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