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Tips for Selling Merch at Shows | Merchop

Tips for Selling Merch at Shows

1.       Accept credit cards. Sign up with Squareup or Paypal. All you need is a smartphone.

2.       Have something inexpensive to give away. Stickers, buttons, can huggers etc. Encourage people to come by and pick one up. While they are at your merch booth, they can sign up on your mailing list. Or even buy something! It gives you an excuse to engage them.

3.       Have a designated person to sell stuff all night if at all possible. Not as easy to sell stuff during set breaks and after the show. That being said, it isn’t a bad idea for a member or two of the band to gather near the merch table after the show if it gets folks over that way. Then your merch person can sell them stuff.

4.       Plan ahead and make sure you have a reasonable amount of change. Nothing worse than losing a sale because you couldn’t break a large bill. If you do find yourself in such a situation, encourage them to use a credit or debit card.

5.       Encourage your merch person to wear one of your shirts while they are selling. Live models are effective.

6.       Know your inventory and the sizes and styles you have available. Take some time before the show to count and organize your stuff. It looks pretty unprofessional to go digging through a cardboard box full of wadded up t-shirts, especially to come up empty handed. You never want to see a customer stick their money back in their pocket all because you didn’t have the size they wanted after they waited for you to find it.

7.       Keep one or two shirts out for display but don’t have your entire stock out in the open. Most folks aren’t thieves but there are some out there.

8.       Display your shirts at eye level on a garment rack if possible. You want folks to see your stuff from across the room, not have to hover over a folding table just to see what you have.

9.       The performer/s from the stage should call attention at least a couple of times to the merch table and encourage folks to go check it out. Don’t overdo it in an annoying way, but mention it at least a couple of times during the show, probably once per set. Keep it fun as in “Make sure you go see our merch girl/guy for a free sticker and check out our new shirts while you’re there.” Or, “It’s our merch girl’s birthday so go say hi.” Even if she has a birthday 5 nights a week, it’s fun and calls people to action.

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