1. How long does it take to be accepted into Merch By Amazon?
Lets start off by answering one of the most commonly asked questions found all over the internet. As a write this post the “average” wait time is between 3 weeks and 3 months, but to get a little perspective I’ve included two examples regarding my experience.
- I was accepted within 3 weeks back in May 2017, but why I was accepted so quickly is still a bit of a mystery. The only thing that might have contributed to it, was at the time of my application I was selling mugs on amazon. In my application I included a link directly to my listings.
- With the above being said my partner has now been waiting almost 2 and a half months to be accepted, so there really is no consistency on when they will accept you, just hang on in there!
2. When and how will I get tiered up?
Another question I see all over multiple Facebook groups and reddit threads are “how and when will I get tiered up”? So firstly a quick break down on how the tiering system works, you are initially given 10 Slots that you can fill with designs, then 25, then 100, then 500 and so on. At each tier you have a different daily submission limit for example at tier 10 you can submit 2 designs per day and at tier 1000 you can submit 20 per day. I currently know a handful of people who are currently in tier 4000 with over 2000 designs live!
Although Amazon has not released their exact criteria which makes you eligible to be tiered up you 100% need to have the following ticked off.
- Have sold the same amount of shirts in your current Tier.
- Have at least 80% of your slots filled.
For example if you are in Tier 100 you must have sold at least 100 shirts and have at least 80 of your 100 slots filled before you can be considered to be tiered up to Tier 500. Once you have the above criteria it generally takes amazon a week or two to tier you up, which they do in batches.
3. What to do if your design gets copied?
One big concern I see from many new merch by amazon members is what to do if their design is copied? A lot of people jump on the bandwagon and tell them to report the “copy cat” and send an email to amazon. In my experience this is a complete waste of time, the fact is there will and always will be people out there that will copy your designs. The actual time and energy spent on getting the duplicate design removed is much better spent researching and creating designs to grow your merch account. Finally what’s stopping your design being copied again the day after the old duplicate is removed, nothing…..
4. Trade Marks and Design Removals
I know this is going to sound a bit extreme but this is the mentality you NEED to have!
Would you risk the life of your child for a few extra $$$, no I did not think so. Once you have been accepted into Merch By Amazon treat your account like it’s your newborn child. You are literally sitting on a potential gold mine and why risk losing the keys to the gate? If you have not already identified the potential Merch By Amazon has its time to wake up. Currently there are people out there (myself included) making $1000’s a month whilst being limited to only selling t-shirts. What do you think will happen when one day Amazon allows you to place your designs on hoodies, sportswear, mugs and pillows? That $1000 you are making today is going to multiply exponentially, so play it safe a carefully read over the next two bullet points.
- First of all when doing your research filter the brand name / title and as many key words as possible through trademarkia.com. This website searches a database and will notify you if the term you have searched is trademarked. If it is scrap the idea and go back to the drawing board, no questions asked.
- Secondly stay well away from parody designs, although they might make it through the upload stage they will be taken down and you will have a mark associated with your account. Last month my best selling t-shirt was a Back To School “Just Do Math Tee”.
after being live for about 3 weeks I was issued with a removal notice and asked to please provide amazon with information proving I had the rights to use one of Nike’s trademarks. It was a big wake up call for me, I ended up removing ever single listing that might be considered a “parody”. So learn from my mistakes and stay away from parody shirts. I now approach all my design ideas with the mentality of “could this design even slightly resemble something that is trademarked”? if so in the bin it goes.
The below points are well worth a read if you want to see rapid growth with your Merch account.
5. Maxing your daily uploads
If you are looking to maximize your monthly profits and grow your merch account you must be maxing out your daily submissions with well researched and quality designs. You cant expect exponential growth if you have 10 available submissions a day and your only filling 2. It’s like going to work for two hours a day and expecting to be paid for 10, it doesn’t work like that.
6.What to do whilst waiting to be tiered up.
The best piece of advice I have received from a fellow MBA member was whilst I waiting to be tiered up to continue to create designs and upload them as drafts. If you follow this piece of advice you will be thanking yourself later. As soon as you are tiered up you will have stacked up multiple designs ready to go live for at least a few days if not weeks!