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Amazon Merch on Demand: A Guide to Getting Started


In your mind’s eye, I want you to imagine meeting Alex, an aspiring entrepreneur with a knack for graphic design.

Alex had always dreamed of starting his own business but was wary of the risks associated with traditional inventory-based ventures. Then, he stumbled upon Amazon Merch on Demand, an innovative platform that allows individuals like him to sell on Amazon without inventory, and this includes custom-designed merchandise like t-shirts.

Filled with excitement, Alex set up his Merch account and got down to business. While he didn’t have any prior graphic design experience, he was determined to learn the ropes. Backed with free graphic design software like Canva and online YouTube and Helium 10 tutorials, he quickly honed his skills. His first T-shirt design drew inspiration from a trending topic he found on Google Trends, and he couldn’t wait to see how it would perform.

Navigating the Amazon Merch dashboard with some effort, he uploaded his designs and selected the products he wanted to offer. While he decided to start with T-shirts, the platform provided a variety of merch products for him to explore in the future.

To give his merch business a boost, Alex started promoting his designs on social media platforms, especially Twitter. He shared his own creations and actively engaged with his growing audience. Some of his Twitter posts even went viral, driving a surge of traffic to his Amazon listings.

With time, Alex continued to upload new designs regularly. While some designs skyrocketed in popularity, others didn’t quite hit the mark, but he saw each experience as a valuable lesson. The best part was that he didn’t have to grapple with inventory or fulfillment logistics; Amazon expertly handled all of that for him thanks to FBA.

Soon enough, Alex’s merch business gained momentum. He felt thrilled to see his unique designs striking a chord with customers, and his income from Amazon Merch on Demand steadily grew. With his newfound passion and a budding income stream, Alex transformed his graphic design skills into a thriving online business, all thanks to the opportunities offered by Amazon Merch on Demand.

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What Is Amazon Merch on Demand?

Merch on Demand

Amazon Merch on Demand is essentially an Amazon-operated print-on-demand platform launched in 2015. Through Amazon’s online marketplace, it allows designers and content creators to sell custom-designed merchandise, such as t-shirts and hoodies.

Sellers upload their designs to the platform, and Amazon handles printing, packing, and shipping to customers. Sellers earn royalties for each item sold, without the need for upfront costs or inventory management.

Alex’s journey above serves as a shining example of how aspiring entrepreneurs and creative minds can harness the power of Amazon Merch on Demand to turn their ideas into profitable ventures. This avenue of starting an Amazon business empowers individuals to monetize their creativity, reach a global audience, and sidestep some of the usual challenges associated with inventory-based businesses. However, participation in the program is by invitation only, and sellers must adhere to Amazon’s guidelines and policies to maintain eligibility and ensure a positive selling experience.

How Does Merch on Demand Work?

Here’s how it works:

Sellers on Amazon Merch on Demand, known as “merchers,” engage in a straightforward process to bring their own designs to the market.

These quality designs can span a wide array of themes and niches, from t-shirts to hoodies and beyond. Statistically, novelty t-shirts do well with this route of making a passive income stream online so for now, let’s pretend you have unique t-shirt designs crafted and ready for sale.

Your job would then be to upload them to the Amazon Merch on Demand platform using your Merch account.

Be careful in associating each t-shirt design with specific product types, colors, and sizes ensuring that your consumers will have a variety of options to choose from when making a purchase.

Camping shirt

You will also need to suggest a list price. Researching keywords related to your merch products using a tool like Helium 10’s Cerebro will help you optimize discoverability.

After the designs are uploaded, Amazon would take the reins to create individual product listings for each design. These listings would showcase your t-shirt designs on a diverse range of products that they can be printed on, making them easily accessible to Amazon’s massive customer base, comprising hundreds of millions of prospective customers.

From my perspective, that is part of the charm of Amazon Merch on Demand. When a customer discovers a t-shirt design they fancy on Amazon’s page, they have the freedom to choose the t-shirt type, size, and color that aligns with their preferences. Once the customer finalizes their choice and makes a purchase, Amazon seamlessly manages the printing, packing, and shipping processes. Similar to Amazon KDP, sellers benefit from royalties or a percentage of the sales price for each item sold.

What Are the Benefits of Merch on Demand?

Whether Amazon Merch on Demand is worth it for you depends on your goals, expectations, and how well you can leverage the platform to generate income. Here are some benefits that you can look forward to when evaluating if Amazon Merch on Demand is worth it for you:

  • Passive Income Potential: Amazon Merch on Demand offers a passive income opportunity, as Amazon handles production, shipping, and customer service. Once designs are uploaded and listed, you can earn royalties on sales without the need to manage inventory.
  • Low Startup Costs: When starting your Amazon business, there are no upfront costs or subscription fees to join Merch on Demand. As an invitation-only platform, you don’t need to invest in inventory or printing equipment.
  • Exposure to a Massive Customer Base: Amazon has a large customer database, providing any seller with instant access to a broad audience that is ready to discover and purchase your designs.
  • Design and Niche Quality: Success on Amazon Merch on Demand hinges on the quality and appeal of your designs, as well as your ability to identify profitable niches. If you’re creative, it can be a great move for you.
  • Enhanced Marketing Efforts: While Amazon handles some important aspects, successful sellers often engage in marketing and promotion on Instagram and other social media sites to drive traffic and increase sales. However, this holds true for just about any business.
  • Royalty Rates: You’ll be able to receive royalties (money that Amazon pays you) per sale, as they change based on product type and marketplace. Additionally, you should always work backward from your intended income goals to set reasonable expectations for your business.

How Much Money Can I Make?

The profitability of Amazon Merch on Demand (in the form of varying royalty rates) changes based on a few key factors including account tier, design quality, niche selection, marketing efforts, and competition. While some sellers so achieve significant profits, others may expect more modest earnings. Above all, success with Merch on Demand requires dedication, creativity, and adaptability to market dynamics.

Merch on Demand Requirements

  1. Invitation: Amazon Merch on Demand operates on an application-only basis. You need to sign up to join the program, and not everyone may be approved. Amazon may review factors like background, goals, designs, etc. before extending an invitation.
  2. Account Eligibility: To participate in Amazon Merch on Demand, you must have an active Amazon seller account. If you don’t have one, you’ll need to create a seller account and provide the necessary information to get started.
  3. Design Guidelines: Your designs must comply with Amazon’s content policy and design guidelines. These guidelines ensure that the designs are original, high-quality, and meet Amazon’s standards.
  4. Intellectual Property Rights: You must have the necessary rights to use and sell the designs you upload. Using copyrighted or trademarked material without permission is not allowed.
  5. Tax Information: Sellers are required to provide tax information to comply with tax regulations. This is typically done through Amazon’s tax interview process.
  6. Product Upload Limits: As a reminder, sellers start with a tier that determines how many designs they can upload. As sellers make sales and meet specific performance criteria, they can move up to higher tiers with increased product upload limits.

Merch on Demand Fees

So profits = royalties, but what about the upfront cost?

Maybe you’re wondering “What will it cost me money to sell on Amazon Merch on Demand?

The good news is it does not cost any money to sell on Amazon Merch on Demand.

Joining the program and creating an account as a seller is entirely free. There is no investment capital required nor subscription fees to participate.

Just to reiterate, as a print-on-demand platform, Amazon Merch on Demand operates on a revenue-sharing model. When a customer purchases a product with a seller’s design, Amazon deducts its production and distribution costs from the sale price. The remaining amount, which is the royalty or earnings for the seller, is then paid out to the seller.

This model makes it accessible for content creators and designers to start selling their custom merchandise without the need for any initial investment. It also means that sellers do not have to worry about inventory management, printing, or shipping costs, as Amazon handles these aspects.

How to Sign Up for Merch on Demand

The process to join Amazon Merch on Demand involves submitting a request for an invitation. Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to apply:

Begin by logging in. Go to the official Amazon Merch on Demand website and log in with your current Amazon seller account.

If it’s your first time with Amazon Merch on Demand, you’ll be asked to fill out a series of logistical information (whether you are applying as an individual or LLC corporation, your address, your banking information, tax information, etc.). Fill this information out truthfully as it will contribute to their evaluation of whether or not you can sell online.

Merch account

Use the additional information field to differentiate yourself, share a little bit about who you are, and validate why you’re qualified by sharing your successes if you have some experience on other platforms or other avenues and how you plan to bring external traffic to Amazon (even if you just plan to promote on your socials). After all, what company doesn’t love expanding?

Perhaps you are a designer in the real world. Tell them that and do your best to present to Amazon what you have to offer and why you are becoming a “mercher” will prove valuable for them.

Sign up form

If you are just starting to dip your toes into the proverbial print-on-demand pool and don’t know what to choose for “industry type,” a lot of people have success with novelty t-shirt business so that is a good place to start. Of course, if you’re an artist or already fall into one of the other branches, that is okay too. And in the case you are in the boat of reapplying, avoid mentioning that in your application.

Read through the terms and conditions presented, which summarize your understanding of not infringing on trademarks or copyrights of other parties you and agree to the Amazon Merch on Demand terms and conditions.

Make sure you understand the policies and guidelines for selling on the platform and ensure you are using proper grammar and professional language in your ask.

After you’ve completed your application and agreed to the terms, submit your request application and wait for Amazon’s review. Approval times can vary, and not everyone may receive an invitation immediately. Some sellers might receive an invitation shortly after applying, while others may need to wait for an extended period or reapply at a later time.

Types of Merch That Sell Well

Even though the best-selling Amazon products featured on Merch on Demand can change depending on the way the winds of the current market are blowing, the most popular items on the platform are usually fairly constant. These include:


One of the most popular items on Merch on Demand, shirts (and especially t-shirts) are classic items that can be customized with a near-infinite number of designs, colors, styles, and sizes.

Hoodies and Sweatshirts

Perfect for the fall and winter seasons, hoodies and sweatshirts are popular since they can easily feature many different designs (in addition to being incredibly comfortable).

Phone Cases

Available for nearly all phone models currently on the market, phone cases are another item that can be uniquely customized to appeal to many different customers on Amazon.


Another highly popular phone accessory, PopSockets can attach to the back of a phone and serves as both fidget toys and a handy way to hold your phone up to watch a video. With a PopSocket holder, they can even be used in the car to make GPS navigation way easier.


The ever-popular sticker, in addition to being cheap to make, is a great way to show off your personality and can be applied to backpacks, scrapbooks, laptops, and much more.

Merch with Trending Topics

By staying in the know regarding popular national and international topics, you can then apply them to your products and create designs with them in mind.

Merch for Niche Interests

Since there are many niche interests in today’s world, you should definitely create merch that caters to these specific areas (such as a particular sport, videogame, or other activity).

Merch with Humor

Funny sayings, designs, or images will always be popular no matter what, so don’t be afraid to incorporate them into your merch.

Merch using Different Fonts/Typography

It’s a fact that different fonts suit different demographics or audiences better than others. For example, you may want to use a ‘powerful’ font for masculine products and a beautiful, ‘flowing’ font for feminine-oriented products. However, the ultimate choice is up to you.

Merch with Inspirational Quotes

Everyone loves inspirational quotes that serve to show off a facet of their personality while, at the same time, helping them continue to steadily move toward their life goals. Conduct some research into popular sayings and make sure to choose ones that resonate with your target audience.

While selling Amazon Merch on Demand, you should remember that a product’s popularity can rise and fall, sometimes dramatically. Because of this, it’s important to conduct effective product research using Helium 10’s Chrome Extension. This powerful tool will help you easily identify the products that are most likely to remain popular long enough for you to comfortably sell them.

Tips for Success

Success in business is like shooting to find all the right puzzle pieces and putting them together. The best advice we can give is to test and try different things based on the data you collect over time. Some puzzle pieces you’ll want to spend time on:

  1. High-Quality Designs: Create original, eye-catching designs that resonate with your target audience. Invest time in refining your skills and producing unique artwork.
  2. Niche Selection: Identify profitable niches with dedicated audiences. Focus on specific themes to attract passionate buyers.
  3. Optimize Product Listings: Write compelling titles, informative bullets, and keyword-rich descriptions. Use high-resolution images and offer appealing product color options. If this sounds difficult, we offer a useful tool called Listing Builder that helps do all this for you.
  4. Promote Your Designs: Leverage social media and other marketing channels to drive traffic to your product listings. Engage with your audience and build a loyal following.
  5. Research Trends: Stay updated on design trends and customer preferences. Create designs that align with current demands.
  6. Pricing Strategy: Set competitive prices that balance your royalty rate and customer expectations. Consider offering discounts during promotional periods.
  7. Request Reviews: Encourage customers to leave reviews for your products. Positive reviews can boost credibility and attract more buyers.
  8. Monitor Performance: Track sales data and analyze trends. You can also use Helium 10’s Profits tool to help make data-driven decisions and optimize your offerings.
  9. Expand Product Range: Diversify your portfolio with a variety of designs and product types. Offering a broader range appeals to different customer preferences.
  10. Adhere to Guidelines: Comply with Amazon’s content policy and design guidelines. Avoid violations that could lead to listing removal or account suspension.

Consistency, continuous improvement, and adaptability are key to success on Amazon Merch on Demand. It may take time to build momentum, but by focusing on quality, marketing, and customer engagement, you can increase your chances of thriving on the platform.

Examples of Successful Merch

While discussing successful merch is important, it’s also crucial to see popular, live merch in action. Take a look at these three examples of products that are being sold right now with Merch on Demand:

Ghostbusters shirt

This t-shirt is currently being sold by the official Ghostbusters store on Amazon and has a fantastic star rating of 4.6. From a Merch on Demand standpoint, this item is using a combination of 5 different types of merch that sell well. These are: shirts, niche interests, humor, and different fonts. Try to blend as many of these as possible as you create your own product to achieve success.

Rugrats shirt

Moving on, the item above is from a popular children’s tv show (Rugrats) on a popular tv channel that many, if not all, Amazon customers are aware of: Nickelodeon. Already, the brand recognition is strong which no doubt helps the product sell. The specific combination of categories this item is using only features two, those being ‘shirts’ and ‘niche interests.’ Why, then, if this item is only using two, is it succeeding? Factors that may be responsible include nostalgia and images.

Starry night shirt

The last Merch on Demand item is the Starry Night shirt with a cat added in. This unique take on a classic painting is a recipe for success. However, the product listing has a low Helium 10 Listing Health Score which is getting in the way of its success. If this listing were optimized, then the combination of both shirts and niche interests would make it fly off the digital shelves.

Is Merch on Demand Worth It?

While it’s true that you’ll need to know what designs look good and which ones don’t, how to research the right products, and select a pricing strategy that works for you, it is still possible to succeed here. Keep in mind, though, that competition in this area has only increased in recent years, so think about this Amazon selling option carefully before you go all in.

However, a positive thing to note about Merch on Demand is that it is a relatively low-risk option to enter the world of e-commerce. There are always many new entrepreneurs who are learning day by day (and some who even choose to sell on Amazon without approval). Many of them may even have difficulty finding the funding to expand their business rapidly and become number one overnight.

Of course, simply having the capacity to invest a huge sum of money in the beginning isn’t a surefire way to find success on Amazon. Rather, real dedication, hard work, and the ability to make wise financial decisions work, too!


As the biggest e-commerce platform out there, Amazon is an amazing place to sell print-on-demand products because there is already such a large pool of people who are very comfortable with the process of shopping on Amazon.

With such name recognition and success, Amazon tends to be one of the more exclusive platforms in terms of who they accept and the hoops you will have to jump through to sell on their site. It will require serious dedication, innovation, and a deep understanding of your target market.

But in my eyes, it is absolutely worth it.

Amazon Merch on Demand offers an opportunity and outlet for artists, designers, and sellers alike to turn their creative passions into a thriving online business.

Take action on the steps outlined in this excerpt and you will be well on your way to navigating the invitation process, creating captivating designs, and optimizing your product listings to attract a broader audience.

Happy selling!


Frequently Asked Questions

Technically yes. Though, they’ve changed the buttons on their page from “Request an Invitation” to “Sign Up,” you do need to apply and wait for approval before gaining access to the platform.

Yes, it is possible to get rejected for Amazon Merch on Demand. As an application-based platform, not everyone who applies will be approved to join as a seller. Amazon reviews each application and considers various factors, including design quality, adherence to guidelines, and other criteria.
Some common reasons why an application may be rejected include:

Poor Design Quality: If the designs submitted do not meet Amazon’s quality standards or content policy, the application may be rejected.
Violation of Guidelines: Failure to follow Amazon’s design guidelines and content policy can lead to rejection.

Lack of Originality: Amazon looks for unique and original designs. If your designs are deemed too similar to existing ones or are perceived as copying others, the application may be rejected. Incomplete or Inaccurate Information: If the application lacks essential details or contains inaccurate information, it might be rejected.

Limited Demand: If the niche or designs you’re targeting have limited demand or appeal, it may impact the chances of approval.

Overly Saturated Niche: Applying in a niche that already has many sellers and fierce competition may reduce the likelihood of approval.

To delete your Amazon Merch on Demand account, you can follow these steps:

Log in: Go to the official Amazon Merch on Demand website and log in with your Amazon seller account credentials.

Access Account Settings: Once logged in, navigate to your account settings. You can typically find this option by clicking on your account name or profile picture in the top right corner of the screen.

Choose “Account Information”: Look for a section in your account settings called “Account Information” or a similar option.

Click on “Delete Account”: Within the “Account Information” section, you should find an option to delete your Amazon Merch on Demand account. Click on this option to proceed with the deletion process.

Confirm Deletion: Amazon will ask you to confirm the deletion of your account. Read through the confirmation message carefully and ensure that you want to proceed with the deletion.

Provide Reason (Optional): Amazon may prompt you to provide a reason for deleting your account. This step is often optional, but you can choose to provide feedback if you wish.

Complete the Deletion: After confirming the deletion, your Amazon Merch on Demand account will be scheduled for deletion. Amazon may require some time to process the request.

No, Amazon Merch on Demand is limited to one account per user.

Brand Evangelist

With an affinity for people, Shivali is passionate about industries centered around delivering authentic, helpful tools others can use to grow and succeed. She has offered strategic guidance to tens of thousands of sellers at all levels and is currently a Brand Evangelist at Helium 10 and the founder of LIVIVACE, a mind & body wellness company.

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