• Successful content creators design and sell tangible products to engage fans and generate revenue.
  • Monetization through social platforms like YouTube and TikTok is essential for creators, with methods such as sponsored posts and ad revenue.
  • Building a brand is paramount in merchandising, which can range from clothing to gadgets, aligning with a creator’s content niche.

Part of being a successful content creator is designing and selling tangible products for fans to enjoy. Monetization on social platforms is the bread and butter for content creators. There are many different ways to profit from YouTube, TikTok, Instagram and more — sponsored posts, partnerships and ad revenue to name a few — but at the end of the day, it’s all about building a brand. Making merch is an excellent way to build both brand awareness and a profitable revenue stream. Let’s dive into several of the most popular merch-making companies for online video creators.

Where to start?

Merch can come in different forms including clothing, gadgets, makeup or any product that aligns with your content niche. Creators design and produce products that their audience can purchase to rep their favorite creators. Selling merch also provides the means for creators to continue creating and doing what they love. 

Once you have decided it’s time to make some merch, it can be tough to know where to start. It’s essential to know your goal for selling merch beforehand. The first step is to determine how much time you want to spend designing merch, producing products and fulfilling orders.

Hands-on approach

For creators planning on producing merch themselves using free websites to sell is the route to go. Sites like Shopify, Etsy, Wix, Squarespace and eBay are great platforms to start an online merch shop. This method is more beneficial for creators whose work centers around their merch. Using these sites is a time-intensive, hands-on way to sell your product. It is a worthwhile effort for those who want to oversee their means of production. 

Hands-off approach

For creators with a busy schedule, a hand-off approach is the best way to sell merch efficiently. For the majority of creators, making merch is not the first thing that comes to mind when building their brand. The creation of their content alone is all-consuming. Using platforms that produce and handle merch for creators is a great investment. Companies like Spring, MerchLabs, Design By Humans, Juniper and Crowdmade give creators an outlet to create merch with ease. Let’s take a deeper look at these five popular merch-making companies.

Top 5 merch-making companies for creators

Spring 

Spring (formerly known as Teespring) is a social commerce platform that makes and sells specialized products online. They are the leading merch-making company with integrations from YouTube and Twitch and collaborations with major brands like Champion. Spring produces products on demand, which means an item is made only after it sells to ensure there are no upfront costs or risks. On the Spring website, the process is laid out. First creators design products and make an online store for free. Next, creators are able to share their launch of products on their social accounts. Lastly, Spring will operate the production, shipping as well as customer service for your merch. 

Spring puts much emphasis on being “committed to a standard of excellence in every aspect of the business.” They do this by “respecting the rights of all individuals and the environment,” which also includes following regulations, laws and minimizing environmental impact. 

With integrations from major video platforms like YouTube, the service is geared towards video-based creators. Teespring is very user-friendly with tons of support for creators to start selling merch.

MerchLabs

MerchLabs is very similar to Teespring in the means of operation. They provide a merchandising service with no upfront costs, no inventory and no risk. Merchlabs prides themselves on their 15 years of experience in the entertainment business. They’ve worked with huge names in the entertainment industry such as Lady Gaga. MerchLabs focuses heavily on music artists and athletes. If your social influence falls into the entertainment realm, MerchLabs may be the best option for you. One huge perk of MerchLabs is the ability to have your merch store up and running in less than a day. 

Design By Humans

Design By Humans is yet another online storefront for creators. With over 10 years of experience in the industry, “Design By Humans has woven a shared spirit that thrives on designing vibrant and meaningful art.” Some licensed brands DBH works with include “Star Wars” and Marvel. They put much emphasis on their community and raising up the creators they produce for. Design By Humans may be the best merch-maker for you if you want to get very creative with your merch and want to connect to a company on a deeper level. Some of their perks include licensing opportunities, worldwide shipping and the largest prints available on the market. 

Juniper

Juniper is an online merch-making company that believes its services are unparalleled to competitors. Some of Juniper’s key features are limitless product options, real-time analytics and integrative creative campaigns. Juniper claims they are always up for a challenge and want their creators’ imagination to run wild with ideas for merch. Their business model is organic and stable. If you are a creator with unique ideas for merch but not much knowledge on how to launch a successful product line, Juniper would be a good fit for you. 

Crowdmade

Lastly, Crowdmade is a thriving merch-making company that requires creators to have 100k subscribers to join their program. They offer over 3500 products for creators to choose from. Crowdmade offers industry-leading prices so that partnered creators make more on sales than competitors. Crowdmade also offers site-wide promotions taking pressure off creators to have strict marketing plans. 

Time to get started

The world of merch-making can be daunting; it’s all about finding the right fit for your needs. Each of the companies mentioned above operates similarly but does have key differences that should be considered. Whatever you want your merch launch to look like, you should be able to achieve it with the right platform behind you.