2021 Team Store Success
Time to talk merchandise! Here's what works, what hasn't been so successful, and what we (your friends at VC) need from you, the teams, to help make your merchandise stores a success.
First and foremost, it's about having great gear. We've looked back at what sold well in 2020 pre-shutdown, and compared it to 2019. Here are the league-wide results:
*Non-replica sublimated apparel
As you can see, the most successful styles to offer are cotton t-shirts and sweatshirts, replica jerseys, hats, Neckies/masks, and spot sublimated white jerseys.
Considering that thousands of fans received a Player Sponsorship Program (PSP) jersey, the fact we sold so many replicas in both 2019 and 2020 is astonishing - and very cool!
Within the casual apparel category, crewneck sweatshirts are the strong winner, followed by a tie between hoodies and t-shirts.
Hats in order of popularity: Five panels, meshbacks, bucket hats, and snapbacks. There is no cost implication for us to offer all these styles in each store, so it does make sense to have them all listed.
In terms of performance merchandise, our Revolution hoodie was the leader, followed by short sleeve jerseys, long sleeve jerseys, and finally tanks.
There was one item offered that we can't justify continuing to carry.
Duffle Bags - cool idea, but only 21 ordered (13 in 2019, 9 in 2022). We have removed this option from the store, in part because supply has become unreliable.
Bucket Hats - only 15 sold in 2022, but this may be due to so few ultimate players spending full days on hot fields last summer. We will keep offering these for 2021.
2019 vs 2020 Results
Only two of the returning teams saw an increase in revenue from 2019 to 2020, although there were another three teams that were less than $200 off.
The reason for this growth was simple: 1) effective use of newsletters/email marketing, and 2) a great Pride design and fundraiser campaign.
2020 was a difficult year for so many reasons. Let's not dwell on stats but instead remind everyone of the tools that we know do work and will result in strong merchandise sales, whether you're offering branded apparel through VC or on your own website.
2021 Team Store Plans
While every PUL team is welcome to work with VC for your 2021 team store, we will ask for a commitment to work with us on the promotion of new items and the store in general before we commit to investing in new/additional products for your team.
We promise to invest in each team's store in the following ways, even if your team is not able to increase promotional efforts:
- New and/or more colours available for any of your t-shirt, crewneck or hoodie offerings
- Repleneshing discs and patch inventory if required, including updating your designs if desired or necessary.
These two updates will help maintain and drive a slight increase in revenue, but I know we can do more if we work together.
Fresh New Merchandise
We have many ideas for new PUL team merchandise, including:
- Team Neckies (and Face Masks, which sold well for the teams who made them last year)
- Sublimated performance socks
- Team-matching colour Revolution hoodies...
Plus two new AMAZING styles that were suggested by two teams (stay tuned...).
We Need Your Help
We reviewed each team's store sales and compared them to social media exposure/efforts related to merchandise; there is a direct correlation between promotion and sales performance.
- Review and make a plan to implement suggestions in the Social Media & Marketing Examples post - and please share any other ideas!
- Increase visibility for your team's store link on your website. We can help design a team-specific ad image for you to add to your site, as well.
- Use a Linktree app to help your fans find your merchandise store from social media.
- Introduce the VC crew/Jess to your players and help us spread awareness of your team through our social channels.
Questions? Let's talk! Email firstname.lastname@example.org to get started!
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