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Hi all:

I am new here and to Cafe Press as well.

Just curious if anyone here sells products other than apparel at CP such as the housewares or stationery?

I set up 2 free shops for the purpose of trial and error.

my website is video scenes and stills of the Oregon Coast. I just started this a couple months ago and will be adding content throughout the summer and fall.

Obviously, t-shirts of scenic photographs are probably a recipe for disaster with a new CP store which is why I decided to start with the cards and mugs.

Eventually, if successful, I will go to the Premium store and start to create tees with graphics I create for that purpose with a coastal theme and keep the photo related items to gift type merchandise.

Anyway, just looking for some general feedback here...

This forum is very helpful FYI and I enjoy you all very much!

Thanks
 

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Anyway, just looking for some general feedback here...
General feedback is sort of hard to give (because it's so general :))

Do you have any specific questions that you need answered about the non apparel products?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Rodney: I guess I was curious if anyone sells their "designs" on other merchandise and if it does very well?

It also looks as though most everyone is using the Premium store over the Basic. Did most folks start this way as well and then move up to Premium once they could see it would at least pay for itself?
 

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When I started with CP I used free basic stores and upgraded to the premium store within a month. Much easier to work with. Although, I'm not thrilled about paying for a premium store when other POD's offer them for free, but to me there is no question, go with the premium store. I think it's worth it even if you have to pay for it "out of your pocket" until you start selling stuff.

The last time I checked back in Feb '08 I was selling 94% t-shirts. The balance was mugs, posters and tote bags in that order.

Good Luck
 

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Evening,

I'm with "fightingsaints" on this one,upgrade to Premium sooner than later.

I started on CP Nov 2006 and now have 4 Prem Shops,over 95% of my sales relate to apparel.

However,I've yet to add all my designs to all the products available and this is one mistake that I'm now trying to address.:mad:My other products sold are Stickers,Magnets Mugs,and Hats in that order.Oh,sold some Dog Shirts and Tote Bags too.

Hope this helps:D
BIGNUMPT
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Bignumpt and fightingsaints:

Thanks for the replies! (Rodney, jump in here too if you are interested)

You have made excellent points which bring new questions.

FYI: I consider this research in this process trying to cut through and do things well asap! I have spent about a full 8 hour day reading over posts and looking at fulfillment sites to start out some product lines.
If you look at my CP stores listed, the items are photo related for now. From what I read, combining photos on t-shirts is a recipe for disaster due to quality issues. This is why I chose to start with the paper and housewares products on CP. I had the photos already and it was easy enough to start this way. Besides, I figured that even if there weren't any CP sales, the stores have my website branded all over them and would help drive new traffic. I was right!
My plan is to offer a wider variety of photo designs on CP and to start creating t-shirt designs on PrintFection but I will have to create those designs before that happens.

1 Do any of you have actual websites that you are running besides CP?

2 There seems to be a triangular relationship here between: t-shirtforums, CP and Squidoo. Can you explain how you are specifically using Squidoo over a blog?

3 Do you both think that apparel is where the profit is and anything else is a waste of time?

4 Bignumpt: you mention not having all your designs on all CP products was a mistake. How so?

5 It looks like Mugs are the houseware item that you both are selling. That does make sense given both of your product lines. These are natural extensions from t-shirts to I'm guessing a large male demograghic. As my paper products are probably more popular with a female and possible senior audience, I am guessing I might have better success in this area than either of you have.
Thoughts on this?

Thanks again guys! I value your input as you are all making this happen for yourselves.
 

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2 There seems to be a triangular relationship here between: t-shirtforums, CP and Squidoo. Can you explain how you are specifically using Squidoo over a blog?


4 Bignumpt: you mention not having all your designs on all CP products was a mistake. How so?
Hi Coos'

Basically the mistake is quite simple,if you haven't got a ticket you can't win the raffle.So,if my designs aren't for example, on stickers,I'm not going to sell stickers.

When I started I just wanted to add designs to T-Shirts,and still do,but now I try and add the resized images to lots of other products,time consuming but beneficial.

As regards Squid,I've 4 lenses and get traffic from them and sales too,not many but a sale is a sale.I update them a little once a week,an hour max between them all.

Good photos sell on all sorts of products at CP and as I mentioned,no ticket no raffle win,so put them on you've nothing to lose.

Also,for the sake of a few dollars open a Prem Shop now and be ready for the Christmas rush which starts straight after Thanksgiving (Well it did for me last year,my first Christmas with a Prem Shop)

All the best
BIGNUMPT
PS Can't see your site think you need to register details
 

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BIGNUMPT:

I will be setting up the Premium store before month's end to make sure I catch the Christmas wave this year. I have been looking at ways to scale back the other monthly fees I already have going such as hosting fees on existing sites that aren't going anywhere to save a few bucks.

Just like everything else that promises to be the "Magic Bullet" and doesn't pay off, you have to draw the line somewhere.

And yes, my existing stores were not included in the original post; my mistake. They are:

Also, by the end of the week, the main website itself will have 3 times the content. The site is Oregon Coast Escapes. Once the CP store is up to standards, I will add a button to my site and direct customers there myself besides what CP does with their own search functions.
Besides all of this, I will also be adding DVDs of the video scenes which is the primary aspect of the marketing of the site.

Thanks again, let me know what you think.
 

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Thanks again, let me know what you think.
Hi again,

Impressive photos and vids, I "Stumbled" you too.

Couple of points why not go to "add this" site and put their button on your site,then visitors can share with lots more sites besides Stumble?

Also,have a look at GIMP it's free and ideal for maniupulating photos and creating designs,Rodney suggested it to me when I first set off on this path,he should have run for President!:D

The designs look great on the Calendar and Postcards so they should fit nicely on the Rectangle Magnets too,remember if you're not in the raffle....

And for my final trick,some advice that I picked up in the CP community forums.It's better not to have the image on a product if it doesn't fit the product properly,I mention this since the image on the Greeting Card would look better imo if it were full bleed as they say.

Hope this helps
BIGNUMPT
 

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For scenic photographs you may want to look at CP's new aquisition, IMAGEKIND.com which does a variety of high quality framed prints. The marketplace there is much more art focused then apparel.
 

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The way most shopkeepers do it is to put each design in it's own section or basic store (I don't know much about basic stores, since I only had one for about an hour before going premium), and put the design on as many products as it looks good on. I didn't figure out this when I first started, and had to spend a lot of time redoing my store later.
I have since sold some designs that I thought would only make sense as a t-shirt on things like pillows so you never know what people are looking for.

Also cafepress makes it easier to add your designs to many products at once. I have a store at a competitor and you can only add one thing at a time, which is very slow.
 

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Hi,

Cafepress??? I LOVE IT! In fact, my CP store is doing better than my Ebay store at the moment. I started it about 11 months ago and sales increased 25%-30% each month from the previous. However, I have over 250 designs currently placed on there. CP has enabled me to go from full-time to a contingent employee in my nursing job. Now, I will be devoting ALL my free time to submitting more designs to CP. You can't beat it. :DIt's EASY EASY $$$$. On the 18th of every month, walking to my mailbox to recieve a paycheck for NO WORK is awesome!!! I'm telling you, life doesn't get any better than that. My little Zazzle store is catching on also.

CP is the way to go...but being on multiple sites=quitting the day job. LOL:D:D:D:D:D:rolleyes:
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 · (Edited)
Hey All:

Thanks so much for the encouragement.

I am actually needing help now on a fundraising project that will involve an actual CP t shirt that I have designed specially for this.
As this is a fundraiser for the school and not my own business, I can't afford any unknown issues here so I appreciate your help!

1 The attachment is the PNG I will upload. What specs have you found that work best for CP?

2 Do you know if CP does anything special for fundraiser groups?

3 Any other words of wisdom I haven't covered would be REALLY appreciated as the school year has started and we want to implement this ASAP.

Thanks so much!
 

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The way most shopkeepers do it is to put each design in it's own section or basic store (I don't know much about basic stores, since I only had one for about an hour before going premium), and put the design on as many products as it looks good on. I didn't figure out this when I first started, and had to spend a lot of time redoing my store later.
I have since sold some designs that I thought would only make sense as a t-shirt on things like pillows so you never know what people are looking for.

Also cafepress makes it easier to add your designs to many products at once. I have a store at a competitor and you can only add one thing at a time, which is very slow.
sorry to chime in here, i am a newbie. how much does a premium store cost and how do i go about setting it up? and in brief, could u explain a little how CP works? from reading the forum i gather, its like an online store that people can sale thier items on? also what is the potential for making enough money per month to cover, lets say a $4000 a month overhead? any insight any of u could give me will be greatly appreciated...thanks
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
The Premium Store is $6 a month I think...Not there yet.

How it basically works is there is an entry level cost for each item that INCLUDES the cost of adding your design. So there is NO inventory to carry or out of pocket expense; it is called Print On Demand.
The customer picks what they want, pays for the product including shipping and CafePress does all the work including dropship the order direct to customer.
Since CafePress is the one doing all the work, the cost of the "blank" unit is higher thana standard wholesale setup.
So, if you want to do all the work to keep all the profit by having all the overhead, then CafePress is not for you. If you want to strictly design your merchadise and don't mind sharing the profit, CafePress is awesome!

Oh, also, you set the profit on your store. If you want a low retail price, you would choose maybe a $1 an item profit. It you want higher profit, you might choose 50% or higher. The risk to this is setting the price too high and not selling anything.

Make sense?
 

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Hi,

Cafepress??? I LOVE IT! In fact, my CP store is doing better than my Ebay store at the moment. I started it about 11 months ago and sales increased 25%-30% each month from the previous. However, I have over 250 designs currently placed on there. CP has enabled me to go from full-time to a contingent employee in my nursing job. Now, I will be devoting ALL my free time to submitting more designs to CP. You can't beat it. :DIt's EASY EASY $$$$. On the 18th of every month, walking to my mailbox to recieve a paycheck for NO WORK is awesome!!! I'm telling you, life doesn't get any better than that. My little Zazzle store is catching on also.

CP is the way to go...but being on multiple sites=quitting the day job. LOL:D:D:D:D:D:rolleyes:
Is this a premium or fee shop? if a premium do you have to pay per image you put on or is it a fixed priced per month?
Thanks
 

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The shop is premium, cost is $6.99/month. This is your ONLY fee. You can add as many designs to as many products as you wish. Just $6.99/mo....that's it folks. :) Or, go to ZAZZLE.com it's TOTALLY FREE
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
kippygirl12: while you are here... would you mind looking at the image I attached in the last post on page one of this thread?

I haven't actually done t shirts with CP yet and that image is for a fundraiser for my kid's Band program at school so I want to make sure before I set up their account!

thanks
 
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