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Discussion Starter #1
Has anyone noticed prices dropping drastically online in the past few months??

My god! I sell my shirts for about $18. I'm noticing many of the 'big dogs' like Local Celebrity, Cotton Factory & Vintage Vantage selling their shirts for $11 & $10 bucks a pop. Wow - that's what most wholesale prices are going for.

Any comments on that? Is there a trend happening out there that I need to be considering?

I'm suprised I guess because I use American Apparel - and they are not cheap. Margins are coming down and it's going to affect alot of people in the business.

Is there something to be said for being a little higher priced? I think so - especially when I've got a high-quality, screen-printed, original selection. Thoughts?

Thanks!

Mike
 

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Have you noticed that every tom, Dick and Mary are now selling shirts on line.. The competition is fierce. I owned a company back in the 80's that bought and sold used video movies to new video stores that were opening. Prices for distributor new movies from suppliers was in the 45 dollar range and those were for movies that had been released the year before. So me and my partners bought videos from stores that had seen a decline in rental of those movies that they bought the year before and sold them to new video stores for half the rate of the new copy. We did a tremendous business. Whoops, there is always a whoops.. the new distributors overnight reduced the prices for older movie titles almost half. They found they were losing sales to people like me. So there I was sitting with 50 grand in inventory... I could not compete and had to unload my movies.. At what I paid or lower.. I made money but I could not compete.. Same for tee shirts.. How often do you even see a mom and pop video store.. soon you may not see so many tee shirts sold on line.. You have to know you are not the only game in town.
 

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While it is something to consider, I wouldn't worry about it too much. There wil always be someone out there cheaper; there will also likely always be someone more expensive. I still see the standard price of a t-shirt online to be $16-18, with a comon variance of around $10 to $26. You don't need to drop prices to stay alive.
 

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dude. your "obi-juan" ...GOL (that's Guffaw-Out-Loud) i'm still rubbing tears outta my eyes. and worth more than a 10 spot/11 spot.

yeah, the "competition" is thick and getting thicker, but quality and wit will keep you afloat, i am sure. nice work.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I've seen the same trends in some of my other businesses....specialty services & products eventually become commodities (if there's demand). It happens - and the high prices only last so long until (like you said) supply meets demand and the market finds it's equilibrium. I think the folks selling at $10 per shirt either don't use a high-quality shirt, or are unloading high inventories to come out with new designs, or, are charging to little and are trying to 'buy' their way into the market.

Busted Tees still charges $18 a pop. I see Vintage Vangtage's move to $11 as a desperate rush to sell inventory - I also think their design quality has been deteriorating. Cotton Factory I believe uses standard t-shirts (not the brushed cotton/fasion fit) so - they can charge less because their shirts cost less. Local Celebrity is a large player in the t-shirt game. They just completely redesigned all their tees - I think they are trying to move some inventory right now.

I expect to see prices come back up. Maybe it's a way to capture the market - is this typically a slow season? I guess so - that could be the other strategy.

Always learning. T-Shirts will always be around....we just need to stay in-tune with customer demand and style so we're there too! Hmmmphh...
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Twinge said:
While it is something to consider, I wouldn't worry about it too much. There wil always be someone out there cheaper; there will also likely always be someone more expensive. I still see the standard price of a t-shirt online to be $16-18, with a comon variance of around $10 to $26. You don't need to drop prices to stay alive.
I agree. I'd like to see prices come back up. I think $18 is a fair price for a quality & original tee.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
withwords said:
dude. your "obi-juan" ...GOL (that's Guffaw-Out-Loud) i'm still rubbing tears outta my eyes. and worth more than a 10 spot/11 spot.

yeah, the "competition" is thick and getting thicker, but quality and wit will keep you afloat, i am sure. nice work.
Thanks - I love it when people enjoy my stuff. Reinforces why I do it! Good luck - appreciate the feedback.

Mike
 

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I believe the reason that prices are on a steep decline is due to the fact that anyone and i man anyone can now sell t-shirts on-line. With the advent of cafepress and spreadshirt, everyone can sell t-shirts on-line. And many people are, however as long as teh quality is good, advertising is good, adn you have a core of loyal and happy customers I think you will be fine. Just my two cents.
 

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A quick post, I don't sale online and really don't plan to, I do however sale both wholesale and retail. My wholesale prices are just below the cost on the internet. 8-10 dollars. I am for higher prices retail, it's hard to explain to a business that there cost wholesale is what they can buy it for retail on the net, so I've had to do some creative thinking by making a wholesale purchase more benificial to my retailers. The 10 dollar shirts on the net are going for 16-20 in the shops. I do believe that the internet prices shouldn't be as high as store prices, but I do feel that they should be higher then wholesale. Knowing the industries, an Ideal price on the net for a transfer printed shirt would be 14-16 dollars, with more for a custom printed one. The reason behind this is the lower overhead of selling on the net verses the rent of a shop. I'm going to be setting up some people at some of the flea markets around Florida selling some shirts and doing custom printing. My pricing will be 12-14 if I don't have comp. If I do I'll have to ajust to get what the market will bear.
 

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I really see market saturation happening. I mean, it's a HUGE market, but it CAN be saturated. I mean, how could ANY industry retain this level of growth and sustain this amount of product?
 

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JKorman, good thing you are not selling t-shirts at FLEA markets here in Toronto Canada, 3 for $ 10 with those same type of prints (generic) you sell.

may be flea markets here are different then the USA. :D
 

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I have those too that you speak of but it's more like 4 for 5.00 dollars here, there misprints and 2nd and sometimes 3rd's They look very good but there factory rejects in some ways
 

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Swing Easy said:
I really see market saturation happening. I mean, it's a HUGE market, but it CAN be saturated. I mean, how could ANY industry retain this level of growth and sustain this amount of product?
yes its saturation but NOT everyone is selling shirts and making money.
So, the ones that are making Money, buy out the ones that go out of business and thats how it goes.....

remember, that even if you lose only 10% of the market, that may make you go belly up. You dont need to lose a big chunk of the market...only 10% may do it. Close out time.
 

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I mean, how could ANY industry retain this level of growth and sustain this amount of product?
Because (ideally), each product is unique.

If you can carve out a niche, market it well, with products/designs that no one else has, it doesn't matter how low or high people are selling their shirts for. If the customer wants your shirt, they can only get it from you (or the stores you allow to sell your designs)

Sure, a customer could just pick a different artistic t-shirt or a different funny t-shirt, and many do. But there are also many that want what they want, and a $10-$25 t-shirt is an easy impulse purchase.
 

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I buy the tee shirts already preprinted that sale all over florida in the gift shops for 3 for $10, I buy them buy the pound price and they are dirt cheap. My 1st runs I can make cheaper then most people because of my volume but I copuldn't come close to make first runs for that price and still make money
 

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I do agree with T-Bot no one has to worry about the saturation because the market with adjust itself, not only that but we sale what everyone needs. What we should worry about is schools making a dress code, that would ban printed shirts. This we all must fight in our own areas. You take out the school kids and you reduce our market share.
 

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Rodney said:
Because (ideally), each product is unique.

If you can carve out a niche, market it well, with products/designs that no one else has, it doesn't matter how low or high people are selling their shirts for. If the customer wants your shirt, they can only get it from you (or the stores you allow to sell your designs)
True, yes, and being a pretty experienced artist, I do have confidence in my design ideas, BUT there is still concern that even with very good, fresh original designs, and even with good promotion, the market share available still seems to be shrinking exponentially. Also, the more people out there selling every kind of imaginable shirt, the more one's "fresh, original" designs are likely to be, if not duplicated, at least encroached upon elsewhere.

I think there is cause for concern. What do some of the players who have been in the T-shirt racket for a fairly long time see?
 

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Jkorman said:
I buy the tee shirts already preprinted that sale all over florida in the gift shops for 3 for $10, I buy them buy the pound price and they are dirt cheap. My 1st runs I can make cheaper then most people because of my volume but I copuldn't come close to make first runs for that price and still make money
well, here you can buy 1st. quality shirts (not like gildan though) for $ 1.00 - $ 1.25, the generic prints for 25-50 cents each. So at about $ 1.50 cost, sell 3/10.

They are cheap t-shirts with side seams etc... but the prints are OK.

If you to Spadina Ave. here, they will even print them for you while you waite. ;)
 

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I think there is cause for concern. What do some of the players who have been in the T-shirt racket for a fairly long time see?
I'd like to hear others opinions as well, but I've in the t-shirt racket a fairly long time (selling online for 10 years), and I don't see a decrease in sales, I actually see an increase over the years.

I think the market is actually expanding. More people wearing t-shirts, more t-shirts being seen as "fashion" items and work items and play items so that people look to buy t-shirts over buying other types of clothing. Even big stores like the gap have whole sections dedicated to "graphic t-shirts".

I see the consumer market growing as fast as the producer market is.

But again, I'd love to hear others takes on this to see if I'm alone in my optimisim :)
 
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