The DTG Column

DTG printing boosted by massive growth in online shopping

Online shopping opens up a whole new world of opportunity for the grab and go type shopper and is ideal for those that enjoy browsing for those special deals. Here Charlotte Darling, director at Amaya Sales UK, looks at how online shopping is providing a boost to the DTG market.


o matter the audience, all have the privilege of browsing and shopping from the comfort of their home, a perfect solution these days when COVID-19 and social distancing is transforming our shopping habits forever.

In fact, purchasing online has become such a natural alternative for buyers as deliveries arrive next day, on your doorstep, and if you change your mind about an item or it doesn’t fit, there is always free returns.

Given that e-commerce retail is made to last, the time is right to take a bite of that growth potential pie and invest in tailoring a hassle-free online store, the kind that your target customers cannot resist. Now, here is another piece of advice: shoppers love uniquely tailored deals – like a birthday or special occasion discount, and even more unique items that are personalised just for them. We’ve all been on social media platforms when suddenly a T shirt pops up with ‘It’s a Charlotte thing’. This is generated by the clever AI (artificial intelligence) that all platforms are using, but if you are offering personalised products, then you can truly cash in on this unique marketing option. In other words, make your shop personalised to get a competitive edge and use the latest technology out there to work for you.

Why DTG printing?

What does this have to do with DTG printing you ask? Well it is simple – personalising leads to one off prints, and these are easier to manage with a digital print on demand system – simply load a design, select your product and press print.

DTG printing has seen an unbelievable increase in sales through the past six months with some of our top clients who offer a print on demand service experiencing growth on last year of over 300%. Every customer we serve that has an online presence, be it Esty, eBay, Amazon or industrial fulfilment have seen growth as a result of online shopping – they all offer DTG of some level because it’s quick, easy to manage and truly the most cost-effective printing method out there for one off production.

| 44 | October 2020

If you are not selling online, chances are business was tough through lockdown and now is the time to start. Invest in a well-constructed site that is easy to manage and for your customers to navigate through. Whether you are offering your own designs, an online designer tool or fulfilling orders for a third party and drop-shipping, the best way to print is digitally.

DTG works best on cotton-based garments and the easiest garment to manage is of course the T shirt. But don’t stop there, hoodies bring with them a higher price point, tote bags offer an environmental edge, and cushion covers take you into the home furnishing market. Oh, and let’s not forget the latest fashion accessory – the face mask. DTG, whichever machine you buy, provides you with a cost-effective, easy to manage system for print on demand. Printing on light coloured fabric, which does not require pre-treatment will give you a print cost of as little as £0.15 and if you are printing on darker fabrics with pre-treat and white inks then your print cost can be as little as £0.40. Make sure your website will allow your customer to personalise their item. You can charge extra for this with no extra cost to you, and the personalisation element can be handled by many workflow systems linked to DTG printers. A recent report of the global market for customised T shirts is it is expected to exceed sales of over $10 billion by 2025,

so it’s a pretty large pie for everyone to have a piece of.

One last thought is the development of DTG printing on polyester. Traditionally light-coloured polyester can be printed with DTG inks, but no-one had developed a way to make the pre-treatment and white ink work on dark shirts. One major supplier launched a solution in 2019 which is a one step process for digital printing on all coloured polyester. The global sportswear market is massive and is expected to reach around $109 billion by the end of 2025. Being able to customise these garments, football shirts, running shirts and gym wear will give you an even bigger edge over your competition.

If you already have an online T shirt printing business, then you can relate to this development in the market. To attract more customers, you have to provide them with what they are looking for and now more than ever that is an easy to navigate website, the opportunity to express individuality by personalising and creating their own designs, with a super-fast turnaround, ordering one evening and seeing their creativity frankly within a matter of hours. DTG is by far the easiest, most efficient and cost- effective printing option out there. If you have or are establishing a business model outlined above, let me assure you the time is right and you can invest in the business confidently, expecting high profits.

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