How Does Merch By Amazon Work?

Merch by Amazon

Merch by Amazon is an on-demand t-shirt printing service. It allows sellers to create and list t-shirt designs on Amazon for free. There are no upfront costs and you get paid royalties when a customer buys your shirt. Simply, upload your design, choose colours and set a price — then let Amazon will take care of the rest.

Many experienced sellers are predicting Merch by Amazon will become huge and now is the time to get involved if you haven’t already.

How can I join?

Here’s the landing page where you can apply.

You fill out a short form then wait to be approved. This can take somewhere between three weeks and three months so if you’re interested, it’s best to get your application in soon. Once you’re approved, Amazon will ask for some basic information, then you can get started.

Merch by Amazon

The Merch dashboard is where you can upload designs, promote your t-shirt and analyse sales. To begin with, you’re limited to 25 designs, but once you sell 25 shirts, you’ll be upgraded to Tier 2 where you can have up to 100 designs.

The more designs you have, the more opportunity there is to make money. The tiered system helps reward those who create quality designs and prevents spammers from flooding the program with loads of designs.

Here’s a popular Merch by Amazon t-shirt from the Animal Lover Collection.

Sloth t-shirt

Photo credit: Amazon/Animal Lover Collection

You can identify Merch by Amazon t-shirts by the plain white label and the listing will also include a sizing chart similar to the one shown below.

Sizing guide

Photo credit: Amazon

You can use the Amazon Best Sellers Rank to see what designs are popular. Remember, you can use these for inspiration but you should never copy a design.

And, if there are multiple listings already using the same quote, you may want to go with a different design with less competition.

Creating your first t-shirt design

You can use any graphic design software that you are comfortable with. Photoshop is the most popular but there are alternatives out there such as Pixlr and GIMP.

Download the Merch by Amazon t-shirt templates


You create a high-quality image in the space provided. Your design shouldn’t be stretched or pixelated and it’s worth checking the Merch by Amazon best practices for further tips on designs.

Another option if you don’t want to design something yourself is to buy ready-made designs from companies like Kustom Express. You can download these and upload them to your Merch account straight away.

Photo credit: Kustom Express

Print on Demand process

The Merch on Amazon process can be simplified into five easy steps.

  1. Upload your design as per Amazon’s design specifications.
  2. Set a price.
  3. Amazon will create a product listing for you.
  4. People see the listing and buy your shirt.
  5. Amazon will print it, pack it and ship it for you.

Related: A list of the best Amazon Seller Tools

Amazon Merch Tips

  • Research is the key to success. Use the free MerchResearch tool to search your phrase with the Amazon Merch category.
  • Avoid copyright infringement. Check relevant websites if you’re unsure. If you use a copywritten term/image/quote then you risk having your entire account being shut down without warning.
  • Use bullet points and well-written descriptions in your listings. This resulted in a 40% increase in sales for FBA seller Jason Wilkey.
  • Find a niche market and come up with new ideas.
  • Partner up with a local business.
  • Use Google Trends to see what keywords are trending on the web. Plus, keep an eye on any major events happening.
  • Promote your t-shirt designs by creating Facebook and Twitter posts in the portal promotions section within Merch by Amazon.
  • Analyse your sales.

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