How to Sell on Merch by Amazon Part 1: How to Find Creative Ideas for Merch By Amazon

Wouldn't you like to start a T-shirt business and start profiting without having to buy a silk-screener or the materials themselves? Well guess what…  you can!  In this series you'll learn step-by-step how to sell on Merch by Amazon, a platform that lets you just create the designs and Amazon does all of the hard work selling your designs to their millions of customers around the world!

It's easy and one of the best ways to make passive income with very little upfront cost.

All Parts in the How to Sell on Merch By Amazon Series

☐ 1. Find Proven Ideas and Look for Word-based Designs

Note: Skip this if you have existing designs unless you want to come up with more variations.

If you choose to proceed, open an idea file for your own tracking. You can use notepad, sticky note, excel sheet or other tools you deem is helpful to track your creative designs ideas.

It is important to know that you don't need to overthink and just let your creative juices flow. Ideas will come continuously so don't be afraid searching ideas that comes to your mind.

☐ 2. Option 1: Google Images

Note: Word based designs are very easy to come up with, are easiest when learning how to sell on Merch by Amazon, and are inexpensive as it costs you nothing. Once you get sales on those, you can get more complex designs.

There are different options you can try to get word-based designs:

Option 1: Google Images

Note: Google Images might be the most commonly used tools as it's so much easy to look things which will lead you to zillion of ideas.

Go to and type whatever niche you want to start off with. 


Look for different things that might work really well for a T-Shirt 


Collect as many interesting word-based design as you can until you create a compendium of ideas.

Note: You can also search for word- based design written on shirts, mugs, walls, etc. (again, you have infinite sources you can use to get results related to what you're looking for.



☐ 3. Option 2: Pinsearcher or PinterestSort

Pinsearcher or PinterestSort is a chrome extension we use to find creative ideas from Pinterest. It finds products that have the most pins and people using Pinterest put them on their Pinterest board. They shop in there so definitely, you can search for what is trending.

To start, make sure you have the Pinsearcher or PinterestSort chrome extension saved in your system.

Go to and on the search bar, key in your search string.


Click on the icon of the added PinterestSort extension on your browser, choose a sorting category and click on “Sort”. This will automatically sort the pins of the results showing you the most trending.

Note: Don't forget to update your idea file.




☐ 4. Option 3: Keyword Inspector (Preferred)

The advantage of using Keyword Inspector when looking for creative ideas that we can use on our shirts, is that it provides us keywords that people are actually using – more or less proving that products listed with those keywords are most likely to sell. It also provides the monthly search volume of a particular keyword and allows us to view products that are listed using those keywords.

Navigate to Keyword Inspector. Go to your browser's address bar and type in


Click on “Login” on the upper right hand corner of the screen. You will be directed to the Keyword Inspector login page.


Click on “Trending Keyword Search” on the left side bar of the screen to open the Trending Keyword Search tool.


☐ 5. Find Ideas from Great Keywords

This is if you've already done Keyword Research. Basically, we're going to find ideas from great keywords and making stuff from that idea.

Note: An example of a great keyword I found in Keyword Inspector is “ugh mug” with 82k searches per month, at the time only 4 people have that exact keyword in their listing, good BSR, and it gets about 58 sales per month.  Even though this is for a mug, the same goes with T-shirts.  I use Gearbubble too so I like to find phrases that work well with Merch by Amazon as well as other print on demand platforms.


Next, go to, paste the keyword into the search bar and press Enter, and see if it actually brings up relevant stuff.

Note: In this example, you can see different types of “ugh” mug.


Remember, you don't want to copy or make it exactly like the ones on Amazon but we could change it to something that is very similar or do different memes.

You don't have to do just 1 T-shirt. You could do 20 T-shirts that have different variations of “ugh” on it. Doing that allows us to dominate that particular keyword.

☐ 6. Go Through your List and Start Making Slight Variations

After getting sets of ideas, go through your list and start making slight variation.

Note: Never use trademarked or copyrighted names or phrases (these are very rare). To check for trademarked or copyrighted names or phrases, try checking on this:

And that's the first part of how to sell on Merch by Amazon… you are on your way to creating some amazing designs!

About The Author

Dean Soto

Founder of the Online Empire Academy and creator of