Monthly Archives: January 2018

7 Tips to Creating a Successful Shopify Store|Guide - image  on https://blog.delusionmfg.com

7 Tips to Creating a Successful Shopify Store|Guide

Online sales can be confusing, there are so many platforms to choose from! All these outlets are unique in their own way. But in this post, I will offer tips to help you create a successful, well-rounded, marketable and popular Shopify Store!

Red neon light saying "open"

Weighing Your Options

Everyone orders things from different sites, for example: eBay, Amazon, Wayfair, Overstock, and thousands more. But the thing that makes Shopify unique is the capability to use this set up on your existing website. Instead of customers having to dig through pages and pages of products, searching all over to find your stuff, it is all right there. This is what makes Shopify one of the most popular selling platforms for small to big businesses around the world. It does not matter if you are selling art or custom apparel and everything in between. The Shopify Platform and Plug-In are extremely valuable in many ways. No one wants to have to dig, this is your chance at an all in one website and store. Things like this make this option a no brainer for owners everywhere!

But How Can I Make My Shopify Store Unique, Active, Marketable, and User Friendly?

Since now you have a little background on what Shopify can offer for you, it is important to go through some steps to make sure that you are getting the most from your potential store.

I will offer some insider pro-tips that will make you experience much success in your sales and the look / user friendliness of your Shopify Store!

(1) Set it up! Setting up your account with Shopify is obviously your start to the new venture, but doing it correctly is extremely important. As this platform offers different tiers of services, it is important to choose what level of coverage and options that you want. There are price points that you will be browsing through with different types of expanded coverage (such as types of payment accepted, premium themes, storage space, etc.). We will get into these later! Don’t be afraid to start off slow, learning the features will allow you to make better judgements down the road. We all need to start somewhere! It is key to choose what is right for you, your brand, and customers!

(2) Design, Design, Design! So, you officially have signed up for your account. It may have been a big decision, but you made it. Now you may feel in over your head! Something great that Shopify offers are pre-made Themes. Some of these are free, some you will have to pay for. But there are endless options that are available to you. The styling of your site can make or break the way someone views your brand. So, it is always important to not over do it, but show what your brand stands for via it’s look.

(3) Make it your own! As there are many themes available, there are so many different customizations. You want to put efforts forth in matching your branding that you use for products or ads directly into how your store will look. The simplest things like coloring, fonts, logos, etc. can make or break how everything comes together. A seamless, professional, but unique look is what will make you stand alone (in a good way of course!).

(4) Do your research! My job is to help you guide you on this journey, but there are many other outlets in which you can acquire information. Whenever I am feeling lost or confused, I will check out articles, blogs, information, etc. to get myself on track. The internet is a great tool and is the base for your store so don’t be afraid to educate yourself. Knowledge is power, especially when it comes to making important decisions regarding the brand that you have built. Looking at other brand’s Shopify accounts or stores is a great way to see how things are set up and give yourself an idea or plan to execute. Again, the overall look, feel, and ease of use of your store will sell your products for you. This is a very important aspect.

(5) Add the swag! So, you have your general theme and look set up, but somethings missing. Oh yeah, the thing we made this for in the first place, your products! There are endless ways to display your products on the page, and awesome features to choose from. But none of this means much if you do not have proper photos and descriptions. These are again, two important things to be considered when going through this process. Professional photos of products give the vibe of professionality with your brand, so you should explore this option. Studio style photography with a backdrop can make all the difference in the legitimacy of the look and feel of your site and products. Something that I feel like goes hand in hand with this is showing your products being used, worn, etc. After you cover the bases for taking detailed photos (showing all aspects), it is a plus to have a few lifestyle type photos, so customers can see your product in a real-life situation. Whether this involves showing how clothing fits, or simply displaying your product in an environment that is related can make a huge difference. People always to see visually what they are reading about, which we will get to know. When adding details of your products, it is important to be very short but very detailed. For example, if you are selling a hat, some things you would want to cover is fit, material, color, branding, etc. These types of things can be accomplished with little information that is precise. Sometimes when you get too in-depth describing something it can become confusing, so simplicity and exact are your best friends here!

(6) The customer is always right! Involving your clients in this whole operation is very effective. From having a solid Customer Service sector, to getting advice from your audience for ideas and looks. It is key to listen and allow your customers to part of your journey because without them, there would be nowhere to go. Setting up means in which customers can contact you with questions, concerns, issues, and suggestions is a great tool for them and most importantly for you. Using the feedback, you get will only help you improve your site, brand, and store. There are options for contact forms and even live chat with the Shopify account so taking advantage of these are a plus. Also making sure that things work correctly and are user friendly makes things much easier for people to navigate and distinguish. Another cool thing to do is to personalize each experience for your customer. You can do this by emailing them after a purchase, personalizing their name and product, and given them more information about what is to come with your company and your appreciation for their business. Doing things like this makes your customers feel like a true part of your brand, that is where we gain success.

(7) Always look for more! Like I have mentioned there are so many different options, plug-ins, themes, and much more associated with your Shopify account. The industry is everchanging to include new trends, looks, and technology gets better every day. So, staying on top of things both from a design and tech standpoint is huge in keeping up with competitors. Constant interaction and slight changes as you learn more about the direction you want to go in really show the clients that there is a team behind the site that is striving for the best. Changes can be small, or big, but when people notice that updates are occurring it leaves them confident they are in good hands.

Secret Pro-Tip

This could be the most important thing you will learn today. Your site is complete, everything looks amazing, everything works great. But how do I market it? There are endless tools that can be used to boost your site traffic not only from just current customers but building a base of customers from around the world. This amazing transformation and expansion can occur by doing some simple things! As we all know, social media is king now. Creating, evolving, and maintain your social media accounts from Snapchat to Facebook and everything in between can be the difference in low to high sales for your month. People want to see the activity of what is going on, how you do things, and what you have to offer. Constant activity on social media again shows your legitimacy and care for your company. It by no means must be elaborate, just effective. Another important aspect of gaining attention for your site is using SEO tactics, these essentially boost search engine hits and bring more traffic to your site. I will be discussing more marketing techniques and going deeper into this soon!

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Why Believe Delusion MFG

Because we have seen the results firsthand. We have been involved in the custom apparel industry since 2008, with previous experience in the brand apparel sector and hospitality industry. That’s almost 10 years of experience! We have seen how not only has society and technology continued to change but the growth of the small business. Delusion MFG can proudly can say that we continue to team up with business (from big to small) around the world! We gladly lend our hand in helping businesses grow and succeed on the custom apparel spectrum.

Want some inspiration to get you started?  Feel free to check out our Instagram page. Our page shows just a fraction of the products we have created working with our customers.

Also, make sure to browse our wide selection of products from hats to leather patches and everything in between on our website.

7 Tips to Creating a Successful Shopify Store|Guide - image  on https://blog.delusionmfg.com

9 Things to Remember When Designing Custom Hats

The industry is always changing with creating or designing custom hats and/or beanies. With new advances in techniques, branding, fabrics, and materials, options may seem overwhelming.

In this blog article, I will be discussing 9 things to remember when you design custom hats that we use to help clients make important decisions during the design process.

“Where do I start?” This is a common question, and an important one. This leads us into the discussion of key tips that will help you, your company, your designer, and manufacturer in creating your custom hats.

1 – Artwork for Custom Hats 

When designing artwork, it is important to focus on the essentials. As we look at successful brands and companies, they all have one thing in common: a simple yet distinguishable logo or text.

Brands are noticed by their logo. If I showed you distinguishable icons used by major companies, you would be able to identify then right away. This is important when considering how you want to follow this trend yet separate yourself from others.

“Simplicity is not simple.”

Some may believe that going over the top is the best idea, sometimes this is correct. Most of the time, we identify key ideas and stances based on text or a simple icon.

It is ideal to tie in the nature of your company or brand into your artwork as this will allow for easy recognition. For example, if you own a coffee company, you would want your artwork to somehow visually show this in one shape or form.

When creating artwork, it is important to visualize your brand as a whole, and narrow that down into a creative outlet. You may ask, how can I incorporate so many ideas into one thing? This is not the easiest of tasks but achievable.

2 – Include Your Customers in the Decision

You would not be where you are without the support of others, let them help! I find that drafting multiple ideas regarding artwork is a helpful tool. These can be used in small focus groups, or simply asking your customers which one they prefer.

This tool is not only helpful but important, when you realize that these patrons will be the ones choosing to buy your merchandise, so you want that demographic to relate and enjoy the appearance of your design.

3 – The Right File Type for Custom Hats

While there are many different outlets to create artwork, it is important to focus on the highest quality. During the manufacturing process, companies want the best possible file type for your logo so that it will be produced with the best details.

In this industry, most manufacturers would prefer Illustrator based files or something with a high DPI. You could have an awesome design, but if it doesn’t translate well into a branding element, these things are lost.

4 – The Style of Your Custom Hat  

There are so many options of different styles of hats now. This will continue to grow as companies and individuals have new and exciting ideas. There are many ways to choose where to start or what would work best with your brand.

Some styles Delusion MFG offers are 5 panel hats, snapback hats, trucker hats, beanies, toques, bucket hats, unconstructed hats, dad hats and more. (Yes. There’s more).

Some Pro-Tips for this include: demographics, type of company, location, weather / climate and general style preferred. It is also beneficial to observe your customers to take mental notes on what styles they seem to lean towards. This is important because they will be the audience you are selling too.

5 – Hats Have Always Made a Statement

People wear headwear like hats and beanies or clothes to reflect their themselves. This could relate to their ideals, personalities and overall style. Whether it’s beanies, 5 panel hats, snapbacks, bucket hats etc.

These items of clothing are important not only to the business or person selling them but the people that want to wear them, customers. It is important to produce at the highest quality while incorporating your own ideals.

6 – Can you Hear the Audience

Your audience will guide you in more ways than you know. The customer base that you have worked so hard to build has given them a voice in helping you grow and expand. (Especially in the market of custom headwear or clothing).

I know I touched a little on this before but, observation and communication are key. The success of a brand is directly related to its care and attention to those involved on the business level and customer level. These two lines overlap. It is never a bad idea to listen to ideas, share ideas, and collaborate with customers.

7 – The Spectrum 

Colors are so important in designing a hat. From the artwork down to the base of the hat fabric to even the stitching. Don’t be overwhelmed that there are literally millions of color shades to choose from! Sorry to scare you but it is the truth! Most designers and manufacturers use the Pantone Color Scale to help match the best colors to the ones you intended.

To avoid any issues, using this guideline from the beginning would be very helpful! Colors invoke moods and emotions, so when choosing colors that best relate to your brand and the headwear fabric, it is important to gain a feel of the mood that this style is portraying.

There are some important questions you can ask yourself when choosing colors. How does this make me feel? How does this make me look? Does this portray the trend or style that I am going for? Would people be drawn to this? These questions relate to every element of the hat. Should you stick to a neutral or vibrant base? These should be considered when drafting ideas.

8 – Can You Feel It 

Hat materials are so important to not only the look and style, but the environment in which these will be worn. Each type of fabric has its advantages and disadvantages.

I will be covering this in the future, but making these decisions helps with some research. Do not be afraid to ask or do your homework. Even go to your local clothing retailer and feel the fabrics yourself. There is nothing you should be afraid of or avoid doing in your journey to creating the best possible headwear product.

7 Tips to Creating a Successful Shopify Store|Guide - image  on https://blog.delusionmfg.com

9 – Trust the Pros

When working with graphic designers, fabric companies, and hat manufacturers; it is important to listen to their feedback and suggestions. Ask them questions, that’s what they’re there for.

The knowledge that is gained over the years from reputable custom hat manufacturers is key not only to your success but their success as well. If someone is unwilling to listen to questions or concerns, it would be in your best interest to look elsewhere. It is important to find a manufacturer that will pay endless attention to detail and steer you in the right direction.

True professionals will not suggest certain things that would be counterproductive. Do your research when finding a custom hat manufacturer, this is VERY important. As there are many to choose from, it is key to find one with a proven track record of success from both the customer service / artwork side, to the actual manufacturing side.

Many manufacturers are happy to send samples to help you see their work up close. Having a great experience with a company who is helping make your hats as well as going above and beyond are the types of things you want to see. You are trusting someone to deliver on your vision.

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Because we have seen the results firsthand. We have been involved in the custom apparel industry since 2008, with previous experience in the brand apparel sector and hospitality industry. That’s almost 10 years of experience!

We have seen how not only has society and technology continued to change but the growth of the small business. Delusion MFG can proudly say that we continue to team up with businesses (from big to small) around the world! We gladly lend our hand in helping businesses grow and succeed on the custom apparel spectrum.