Let’s face it: not everyone has — or wants to spend — the cash to launch a private label Amazon business.
Fortunately, Amazon offers a cool way to start selling stuff on their platform without having to spend thousands to purchase inventory: Merch. Amazon Merch is a print-on-demand service offered by Amazon that lets you sell your product designs without any upfront costs.
How does Amazon Merch work?
The biggest advantage that Amazon Merch has over other forms of selling on Amazon is that the barriers of entry are fairly low.
It’s easy to set up, there’s no upfront cost, and even if you aren’t an artist, graphic designer, or have a large social media following, you can start an Amazon Merch account.
The setup process is pretty simple. Once you get an invitation to join Merch (see below), all you have to do is upload artwork and choose the type of product you want to sell.
Once Amazon approves your design, they create a listing for you.
Then, when your product sells, Amazon handles the printing, shipping, and customer service on your behalf. And then you earn royalties!
Merch by Amazon is so popular, even big brands use it. (Yep, that Baby Yoda shirt you bought on Amazon was probably created by Amazon Merch.)
The one major drawback to Amazon Merch is that it’s an invitation-only platform.
Otherwise, all you need to be successful is a good, unique idea, and a good social media account or blog to drive customers to your designs.
How much money can you make selling merch on Amazon?
Royalty rates can range anywhere from roughly 13% to 37% depending on the product’s price. But if you want to see Amazon’s full schedule of Merch royalties, you can check it out on their FAQ page.
Once a sale is made and your product is sent to the customer, you earn a royalty for the sale. The amount of royalty you earn is the price of the product minus applicable taxes and Amazon’s costs.
Amazon’s costs include:
- Customer service
- Resources required to detect and prevent fraud
How many Amazon Merch designs can I make?
Amazon Merch limits the number of products you can create and sell at one time. For those just starting out, you’re allowed only 10 submissions. However, as you make more sales and prove the quality of your designs and products, Amazon increases how many designs you can submit, also known as your ‘tier.’ You’re required to make 10 sales in order to move to the second tier.
Amazon increases your tiers as follows:
How do I get invited to Merch by Amazon?
To get invited to Merch, go to merch.amazon.com and click the blue “Request invitation” button. From there, fill out the application explaining why you want to be considered for Amazon Merch.
Once that’s completed, you’ll be placed on a waiting list. Due to high demand from sellers, it can sometimes take as long as six months to get accepted by Amazon.
How do I create a product on Amazon Merch?
Once you’re approved, Amazon Merch will send you to your dashboard, which looks like this:
From your Amazon Merch Dashboard, you can create new designs, manage existing ones, and analyze your sales. On the dashboard itself, you can see your account status which includes:
- Available submissions: the number of designs that you can create.
- Published products: the number of live designs you have on Amazon via Amazon Merch.
- Tier: your “seller level,” which dictates how many designs you can submit and how many products you can create.
There’s also a large button that lets you immediately “Add products.” From there, you can view information on recent sales in both the U.S. and EU market.
Step 1: To create your first product, click the ‘Add Products’ button from your Dashboard.
Currently, you can choose from a variety of products for displaying your graphics, including shirts, sweatshirts, pop sockets, phone cases, pillows, and tote bags.
Step 2: Click the ‘Upload Artwork’ button (or ‘Edit details’). If you’re unsure of your editing skills, Amazon Merch offers downloadable templates to make the process easier.
Note: Make sure that your artwork adheres to Amazon Merch’s guidelines, which generally prohibit objectionable content and copyright infringement.
Amazon has specific guidelines for Merch products to ensure that the final product is high-quality and accurately reflects what customers will view in the listing.
In general, uploaded artwork files for Merch designs should be:
- In sRGB (the standardized RBG color space for digital graphics)
- Transparent PNG files
- No larger than 25MB
Here are some general tips for creating high-quality designs:
- Use high resolution images and vector files to avoid image pixelation
- Format your design to suit each specific garment or product. For instance, the best artwork placement for a v-neck shirt will be different than for a crewneck
- Keep in mind that typically, colors will look more vibrant on a computer screen — make sure colors pop when printed by avoiding subtle color differences between the design and the base product
Take a look at Amazon’s best practices for more tips.
Amazon provides design templates for Adobe Illustrator to guide the placement and sizing of your art on the product of your choice.
Step 3: Once your design is ready, set a price and go live. From there, your listing goes through eight different statuses as Amazon reviews your creation.
- Draft: This is the state of your design while you’re working on it. It stays in draft until you submit the design.
- Under Review: After submitting your design, it goes through a review process to ensure it’s not infringing on Amazon Merch’s content policy.
- Rejected: If your design does not meet Amazon Merch’s content policy, its status is changed to ‘Rejected.’
- Started Process: If your design is approved, Amazon starts the process of adding your design to their library.
- Processing: Quickly after the process is started, your product moves to ‘Processing’ as Amazon starts to create your listing.
- Pending Your Approval: You also have the option to review a sample of your design. After you give Amazon “the okay” it goes from “Pending Your Approval” to “Live.”
- Live: Once your listing is created, your status changes to ‘Live’, and you can start making sales.
- Removed: Designs that don’t sell within the first 180 days of going live or that violate Amazon’s Content policy are removed.
Keep in mind that if you update your Merch listing’s price, title, brand, or description, it’ll go back through the status process (though the previous version of the listing will stay live on Amazon).
Tips for success selling Amazon Merch designs
- Use your designs to target a niche, like pop sockets for beauty influencers or t-shirts for fishing enthusiasts
- Find freelance graphic designers on sites like Fiverr or 99Designs for professional-quality artwork
- Use public domain images for your artwork— you won’t have to license these, and they’ll still be recognizable to shoppers
- Capitalize on trending content on social media — you can always find new images, memes, and concepts that people want to wear on a t-shirt
- Build a following for your brand on social media so you can alert large numbers of potential customers about new design releases
- Advertise your listing through Amazon’s portal promotions section or PPC advertisements
- Remove low-selling designs to make room for new ideas
Are you a successful Amazon Merch seller? We’d love to hear what has helped you succeed on the platform. Share in the comments below!
Firstly, thanks for the informative article. Secondly, could one use hand drawn art or actual photos that they have taken? I don’t really have experience with editors like photoshop. Plus, I’m not sure how original I could get from images others are using. It feels like it would just be copying.
What most people do is hire a graphic designer from a site like Fiverr.com. Just explain what you are looking for and they will be able to create something that you can easily upload to Merch by Amazon!
All i need to ask when seller has to drive client through my social media and blogs then what is benefit of amazon merch ???
everyone need clients on platform so amazon merch should make sure to work on marketing to bring clients instead of relaying on sellers.
i think we are sellers not your marketers or promotors.
Amazon brings in millions of customers per month. The customers are there, you just need to make sure you are selling a design that is in demand, high-quality, priced optimally, and advertised on a keyword-rich listing.
Amazon will not send customers to your listing automatically.
Are there any printables other than clothes available on Amazon? I was thinking of doing a mug printable, but I’m not sure!
At this time, I believe it is only clothing items Amazon Merch offers.
Hi, Can I sell the same products Merch are already selling at an competive price? How will my ranking compare to the Merch selling the same item? Thanks
Do you mean products that other Merch sellers are selling? You can sell similar products to other sellers but you may not rank well right away if it is a competitive market. It will also depend on the market demand for the shirts you want to sell.
Hello Brian, Thank you for your most informative article. I have a few quesrions and would appreciate if you could help answer them.
1. The amazon resource page only shows tees, tanks, hoodies, phone cases, tote back and pop socket. Does Merch By Amazon also include cups, mugs, bottles, thermos flasks, caps? Will there be greater choice of merch in the dashboard?
2. Given the possible difficulties or length of time to get approval to join Merch By Amazon, the alternative seems to be setting up a store within Amazon and items can be delivered by our POD dropship partners or by Amazon warehouse. Seems there are costs to the warehouse storage on top of the monthly subscription and referral fee. Looks like the warehouse has minimum number for storage pricing. Would you suggest setting up a store within Amazon?
Merch by Amazon does not have the greatest selection of products.
If you are using FBA, yes, there are additional monthly storage costs. I do suggest setting up an Amazon store if you can sell your products profitably after all fees involved. You also do not need to use Amazon fulfillment. List your products FBM and fulfill yourself or with dropship partners.
Amazon is a great place to sell your products so I suggest at least testing out a few products to see how they perform.
Hello. I am curious to start printables with mugs but a question: is Amazon providing printables other than clothes?
I was planning to do it with icon Ecom but got stuck with the details!
Also, what are the basic requirements to start I heard Amazon asks for TIP, GST number. Furthermore I am Indian, will Amazon accept me to sell world wide?
Thanks for your time. I totally enjoyed reading the article and it was helpful 🙏
You can see here what else you can sell with Merch by Amazon: https://merch.amazon.com/resource/Y28FFE5NLRYJG4V
Creating an account is fairly straightforward. Just follow the prompts and provide Amazon with what they’re requesting. They will ask for some kind of tax ID number when signing up.
You should be able to sell on Merch by Amazon from India.
Thanks for reading!
Dear Brian Connolly,
I am from Bangladesh. Bangladeshi accounts are not accepted by March by Amazon. By using an Amazon account, you can discover out who is marching. My profession is that of a t-shirt designer. I also have a full-time job.
Do you have any idea?
If Amazon does not allow Merch accounts in your country, then there is not much you can do. You can design t-shirts for other Merch sellers or even start your own Shopify store selling your custom t-shirts. Check out our article on Shopify: https://www.junglescout.com/blog/how-to-sell-on-shopify/
Is an Amazon Merch account the same as an FBA account or FBM account?
No, it’s not. It is a separate portal from a Seller Central account.
Does merch by Amazon allow you to sell fto the uk and EU market aswell as to the usa market?
Yes, you can.
Very informative. thanks for sharing this article.
Thank you for all the info. It’s really helpful.
This is my first step into the POD arena. I am looking for a good (and profitable) place/space to sell my inspirational and motivational T-shirts, mugs, totes, pillows, wall art, phone cases, and apparel (hats, jackets, jogging/yoga pants). If I apply and am accepted by Amazon Merch, can I list the same merchandise on other POD platforms at the same time?
Yes, you can list your designs on other platforms other than Amazon Merch! Good luck!
The content of your blog is so amazing. I have learned various tips from your website. Thank you for sharing. keep it up.
Thank you for reading!
I recently started selling on POD sites and found this post very informative & helpful. It will allow me to expand my reach. Thank You!
Hi – There is no request invitation button in BLUE.
Appreciate your support
It should say “sign up” now.
So effective bog you have written and such step by step tutorials is really more effective and understandable. I have read and appreciated this one. Thank you guy.
Your blog content is amazing. I learn different tips from your blog. Thank You so much for sharing.
Thanks for reading!
I am looking for a little help, been selling on Merch for about 2 months. I have 15 sales, and a couple of 5-star reviews, (no bad ones) but they don’t seem to want to move me out of tier 10. I have e-mailed them, and they won’t even talk about it. It also seems when you are in tier 10 your designs do not show on Amazon searches, and they won’t allow you to advertise. Makes no sense, why they are putting up so many obstacles to success. Maybe it’s time to focus my energy on a different platform?
It’s getting very frustrating, do you have any suggestions?
Maybe you can try out new designs to increase your sales. It could be that your sales are too low currently to move onto the next tier. List those same designs on other print-on-demand websites as well.
Great tips! I am a new Merch By Amazon seller… “ Pending Your Approval” is not a step that I experienced. I went “Live” after under review. I began my journey with Merch approximately July 25, 2021.
I am perplexed about why the only way I ca see my t-shirts listed on Amazon is by typing my brand’s name ( EnhanceInner) in their search .
Do you know why?
Your shirts do not show up when you search for keywords related to them?
Thank-you for the info. I am an artist and need to get my work online.
Thanks for reading! Good luck on Merch by Amazon.
Is it really that easy to do? Is it worth it? I seen that they take money out before your royalties, how much is that? Also is the designs I upload protected and mine, to where nobody can steal them?
Give it a shot! It can be worth doing if you launch shirts that people are looking for. The royalty is based on the purchase price. https://merch.amazon.com/resource/201858580
Yes, if you own the design, then no one should be able to steal. Though, there may be someone who will copy your design.
This is very helpful and informative I have learned a lot thank you for this .
I applied. And within a month was denied and told I could never reapply and that they do not have to give me a reason. I’m a graphic arts student just looking to get my ideas out and printed on a platform like this. Amazon is extremely biased on who they allow. I’ve seen random people with no real idea or backgrounds get on there.
That seems strange Amazon would deny your account without reason. It is fairly simple to create a Merch account. Have you contacted them? There is a “contact us” link at the bottom of the Merch homepage.
sir. I am from Bangladesh. march by amazon does not accept Bangladeshi accounts..sir who to find march by amazon account. I am a t-shirt designer. and I am in fulltime job
Author write: “The biggest advantage that Amazon Merch has over forms of selling on Amazon is that the barriers of entry are fairly low.” –> I would probably modify that. I’d say the biggest advantage of Merch over FBA, by far, is that you have ZERO inventory. See this list of headaches: dealing with suppliers; capital requirements to fund a physical goods business;import duties; lost goods; mis-labeled goods; customer returns; 3rd party warehouse issues; stock-outs, and a host of other issues related to physical goods –> all those issues go away with Merch. Pretty much the only issue you have to deal with is copyright. That’s a BIG deal. Trust me – I operate in both businesses. Merch feels like “free money” when you get a sale (its really passive income), whereas FBA is just a sh*t ton of work.
Great points! Thanks, Marc!
When creating a product, what do I put in for the brand?
For the brand name, you can make something up that fits your products or you can enter in “Generic.”
Don’t put “Generic” as the brand. The brand is actually used by Amazon as part of the search criteria. You can prove this out by searching for “funny dog tshirts”. You will see several shirts from “Crazy Dog T-Shirts” brand on the first page that have nothing to do with dogs (for example, the “Deez nuts” tshirt). I just use a single brand for all my shirts to build a brand, but at least put relevant keywords in the brand.
Hey Dave, a little late but I just read a question asked by Rony, an Italian reader, I am interested in your answer. He says,
Dave, thank you very much for your article, very articulate and professional. Amazon is the largest platform in the WORLD, a MONEY MACHINE. I fully understand your POINT OF VIEW. What I try to ask you. I am a CREATIVE, multi-talented without CAPITAL, is there a PLATFORM similar to AMAZON? Are there other CHANNELS? Thanks again, a greeting from Italy.
Not sure I understand your question. There are many other marketplaces available to sell on other than Amazon. Ex. eBay, walmart etc.
What do you want to sell?
Dave,grazie mille per il tuo articolo, molto articolato e professionale. Amazon e’ la piu’ grande piattaforma al MONDO,una MACCHINA per fare SOLDI. Capisco perfettamente il tuo PUNTO di VISTA. Quello che cerco di chiederti. Sono un CREATIVO, multi talento senza CAPITALI, esiste una PIATTAFORMA simile ad AMAZON?Con criteri di criticita’ -svalutanti- e restittivi. Esistono altri CANALI?Grazie ancora,un saluto dall’Italia.
Unfortunately, I don’t speak Italian, my friend, so I won’t be able to answer your question.