I’ve heard plenty of horror stories about merchandise ordering in local clubs: people that pre-order but never pay, tales of over-ordering and having too much stock that never moves, the hours of time it takes to nag people to pre-order and for payments, and settling for poor quality merchandise so you can actually make a buck. And don’t even start on the minimum quantity issue!
Looking at the problem as one to be solved, I got to researching and arrived at Redbubble.com. Redbubble allows you to upload a design which can then be printed on-demand (no minimum quantities) onto a whole heap of different products, from mugs to doona covers, to tees, hoodies and even iPhone covers.
As far as pricing goes, Redbubble products will cost more – that’s just the nature of on-demand printing. The upside of the system is that you’re able to set your own margin percentage, however with the fluctuating US dollar the final purchase amount is impossible to predict. The hope is that as a volunteer you’ll save time on getting quotes from a few suppliers and can put the purchasing decision in the hands of the people in your club.
The flexibility it offers is fantastic: think about all those times you’ve ordered Premiers t-shirts only to have boxes sitting in the cupboard a year later.
My baseball club is going to start with 2 designs and I’ll follow up with another article discussing the engagement and take-up within the club.
In case anyone was wondering, Redbubble has no connection with me writing this post.