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DTG in retail space

1390 Views 1 Reply 2 Participants Last post by  treefox2118
The newest NYC location of Urban Outfitters. sign of things to come? T-shirts next?


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It's already happening in Chicago, I think. I've been contacted by more than one retail shop about consulting on a DTG for them to offer custom one-offs in-house. So far, no one has pulled the trigger (as far as I know), but I do expect it to happen, especially on Michigan Avenue or one of the "hip" retail market areas.

I always explain, up front, what I consider to be the dangers of rolling-your-own print shop in a retail store. The upside is that a known retail brand can make huge profits because they can (and will) end up selling one-offs for $60. The downside is their overhead is extremely high because they need to destroy the retail space for a DTG printer (there's a heavy cost in rent for that square footage), hire THREE professional artists who can also handle fulfillment (hours of 9am to 9pm 7 days a week = 3 full timers), put someone in charge of maintenance and repairs, etc.

I've told them all go with Epson's DTG because I would consider support and maintenance to be "less" of an issue. After the numbers are added up, it's at least a $150,000 first-year cost. Not including the lost retail space.

If you set up a DTG printer in a retail store and give it just 150 square feet and blow $150,000 in hardware costs and labor costs, you're also going to lose $5,000-$10,000 a month in fast retail sales from that lost square footage.

Can a shop sell 3500 $60 shirts a year to offset it? 10 shirts a day? Every day? And what do you do at the Christmas rush when you might have 300 customers a day wanting a shirt while they wait?
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