The days when shops were constrained to brick-and-mortar establishments are now long gone. E-commerce has exploded over the last two decades, opening up countless routes into profitable markets that were simply unheard of as the 20th century drew to a close.
Today, anybody can sell almost anything online, with Amazon still leading the way as the world’s number 1 marketplace. Hats and caps always stay in style, making them the perfect option to sell online. Here’s everything you need to know.
Why Should You Consider Selling Hats on Amazon?
There have never been so many options for selling online. Etsy, Shopify, eBay, and social media platforms all provide a vast market pool, but one name is impossible to ignore.
Amazon is now nearing its 30th birthday but shows little signs of letting up its quite extraordinary growth. What began as an online book marketplace in 1994 has spawned into the market for almost everything across the planet. Amazon currently boasts a roughly 300 million customer base, with 1.9 million small or medium shops hosted on the platform, selling a massive 7,500 products every minute.
Yes, there are other options to sell online, but with this record-breaking retail juggernaut at your fingertips, why choose anything else?
6 Steps To Start Selling Hats & Caps on Amazon
If you’ve never dipped your toes into the world of e-commerce, it can seem a little overwhelming, but with this 6-step process, you’ll go from complete novice to bonafide online seller in no time.
1. Open an Amazon store
Opening your Amazon store is the first step to online sales. You’ll need to open an Amazon seller account, which can be done via your existing account (if you have one), or you can open up an entirely new account solely for selling.
You’ll also need to decide on a selling plan at this stage. Amazon offers two different plans:
- Individual Plan – Free to use but incurs a $0.99 fee every time you sell an item
- Professional Plan – Costs $39.99 per month, no matter how many items you sell
While you may wish to go with the individual plan when starting up, it makes more sense to go with the professional option if you’re selling large quantities. Amazon also collects a referral fee for every item sold for both plans.
2. Brand Your Business
Who are you, and what are you selling? Before you dive in and start designing your weird and wacky hats and caps, take some time to establish your brand. Businesses with a clear identity about what they’re selling tend to do better on Amazon while attracting repeat customers.
Think about your brand and products. Is there a specific niche that you’re trying to corner? What kind of designs, slogans, and images will you use?
Don’t worry about getting everything perfect right at the start, as we can almost guarantee that things will have changed dramatically after just one year of selling. This process takes time to evolve fully, but starting with one step forward is essential.
3. Choose a Hat Fulfillment Provider
The next step is sourcing your hats – unless you plan on making them all yourself, and if that’s the case, you probably need to get started.
The beauty of e-commerce is that it has completely negated the need to carry physical stock. With on-demand, you can link a third-party manufacturer to your account, meaning customers choose a product that doesn’t exist until they buy. Only after a purchase is confirmed will the manufacturer make it.
Amazon Merch on Demand
Amazon’s merch on-demand service is the easiest way to do business, but it does give you limited control over the process. Simply set up a merch on-demand account, upload your designs, and let Amazon do the rest. You’ll then earn a royalty on every product sold (for a $15.99 product, you can expect to receive around $1.93 royalties).
This is undoubtedly the easiest method for selling on Amazon, but with limitations on set prices, it has drawbacks—a good option to get started with.
Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA)
While merch on demand takes care of the entire process, Fulfilment by Amazon (FBA) instead focuses only on the final stage, storing the products and getting them out to the customer. With FBA, you will need to send your product to Amazon, which then stores, packs, and sends them out when needed.
This option costs a little more as fulfillment and storage fees are involved, but it does mean that your product can be ready and waiting in facilities worldwide. These then deliver to customers with Amazon Prime within a guaranteed two-day window.
This is an excellent option if you know a product will sell well and want to avoid delays or production issues. Once you have set up a seller account, you can use the Revenue Calculator to get a rough idea about referral fees.
Our final option gives you the greatest control over the entire process. By using a third-party custom hat manufacturer, such as The/Studio, you can design products, order them in bulk, and store your stock in either your home or an Amazon warehouse. Customers buy directly from you, meaning you have more say over price and other factors. You’ll also have a higher overall profit using this method, though it may take a little more work.
4. Design Your Hats
Designing hats can be the easiest or the most challenging stage, depending on whether you have a type of hat and a great design in mind already. Remember that hundreds of thousands of people are selling similar products to you, so whatever you’re selling needs to stand out.
We recommend keeping things simple and don’t just throw images on for the sake of it. The biggest-selling hats aren’t completely covered in words or pictures. They tend to encapsulate a single, strong selling point. Take your time here; it will be worth it in the long run.
5. List Your Hats for Sale
Once you have that killer design, it’s time to put your product on Amazon. Depending on which service you use, you may be able to list a product on Amazon through a third-party website. You’ll need to sync both accounts to do this, which makes the whole process much faster.
However, even if you can list directly through the manufacturer, we recommend heading to your Amazon store to see how the product looks and whether you need to make any tweaks, such as using better photos or adding more information.
6. Improve Visibility on Amazon
As mentioned earlier, Amazon is a hugely popular place to shop, but this can also be a store’s downfall. Popularity means more customers, but you’d be kidding yourself if you thought you were the only Amazon shop selling hats. The reality is that there are millions of items on Amazon, many of them jockeying for attention. To get ahead, there are a few things you can do.
Include High-Quality Product Photos
One of the quickest ways to turn people away from your shop is to have poor-quality images. These images need to showcase your great product, but if they’re fuzzy and poorly framed, customers won’t even bother. Include high-quality images for all your products.
Implement Amazon SEO
With millions of pages showing up after searches, giving yourself the best possible chance of being found is vital. Search Engine Optimization (SEO) is the best way to get noticed and rank higher in search results. This includes writing clear and direct descriptions, including relevant keywords that people are searching for, and improving reviews and ratings.
Promote Your Listings
However, even with the best SEO on the planet, success still isn’t guaranteed. Promoting your listings, either directly through Amazon or with other means (which we’ll come to shortly), often gives a product that initially needs little push.
Amazon provides three different promotional tools; sponsored products, sponsored brands, and sponsored displays, each with different pricing structures. If you’re new to this, start with the sponsored products and scale up from there.
Extra Tips for Launching a Successful Hat Business on Amazon
Social Media Marketing
While Amazon might be the number 1 retailer in the world, social media platforms see far greater engagement throughout the day. Marketing a product on Facebook or Instagram can be an excellent way of getting noticed and allows you to test the product’s popularity with real-life audiences.
Patience is a Virtue
We’re not trying to burst any bubbles, but if you’re going to sell hats on Amazon, you need to go into it with a healthy degree of patience. There are certainly examples of products that sell huge quantities straightaway and new stores seeing their profits go through the roof almost immediately. Still, more often than not, it takes some time. Don’t go into this thinking you’re going to be a millionaire by the end of the year.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Much Does It Cost To Start Selling Hats on Amazon?
The beauty of print-on-demand is that you can start selling on Amazon without significant financial backing. You can get everything set up initially for under $50; from there, any fees or payments come from your profits.
Is Selling Hats on Amazon Worth It?
Selling hats on Amazon isn’t a get-rich-quick scheme, and your level of success has much more to do with you and your designs than on Amazon. For the right product, Amazon can be a goldmine; for the wrong one, a tumbleweed landscape of obscurity. It’s up to you.
Starting an Amazon Store? Work With Us!
If you’re sick of your boring 9-5 and dream about being your own boss, starting a successful Amazon store is undoubtedly one way of doing it. Or perhaps you have a few extra hours a week and simply want to create a side hustle that gives you a little spending money each week.
Starting an Amazon store and selling hats designed by The/Studio is quick and easy, with enormous benefits for those willing to put in the time and energy to make it work. Don’t expect it to rain money, but the sky can be the limit for the right product with the proper promotion and marketing. So what will you sell?