One of our most frequent feature requests is for a standalone merch section, so you can list t-shirts, posters and so on, independently of albums. Plenty of you have done clever things to work around this deficiency, creating, for example, one-track “albums” titled “t-shirt,” or painstakingly adding dozens of merch items to whatever is your latest release. Ridiculous, we know, and we’ve been eager to do something about it forever. So today we’re launching the merch page, a dedicated section of your Bandcamp site that allows you to present your merch side-by-side with your music, all in a single, beautiful, unified storefront. It’s easily customizable, integrates with the same great shopping cart, and you can even bundle any of your tracks or albums with any of your merch items. Want to give fans your latest single when they buy your new hoodie? Include an album with one of your posters? Doing so is trivial. Here’s how it works:
Up at the top of your Bandcamp site there’s a new command, “add merch”:
Clicking that launches the merch editor, where you describe the item, set its pricing, add images, and if you like, pick a track or album to bundle with it:
Items are added to your spiffy new merch page, where you can drag and drop things around however you like (if you have existing merch, you’ll notice it’s already there too):
Clicking any merch item navigates to its page, where your fans see the full description and can view more images:
The new navigation bar, located just beneath your header, lets fans move between your music and merch sections. You can easily modify the bar’s colors from the design dialog, or edit it to change the link text or hide it entirely:
If you already have your site navigation in your custom header (using an image map), just hide the navigation bar and use yoursite.bandcamp.com/merch to link to your merch section, and yoursite.bandcamp.com/music to link to your music:
And that’s about it. While many of you are now thinking “Awesome, finally!,” we suspect some may be wondering why you’d put your merch up on Bandcamp. There is, after all, a 10% revenue share, and perhaps you’ve got your merch on another storefront already. The simple answer is that you’ll earn more money. Here’s why:
- Having your music and merch side-by-side means your fans can purchase any or all of it in a single transaction. If half your store is on a separate site with its own checkout flow, you’re losing out on sales.
- Fans buying through Bandcamp are more likely to complete their transaction. Our checkout completion rate is 75%, far higher than most stores where this is the typical fan experience.
- Offering an immediate download of an album or track is a strong incentive for a fan to make a purchase. If you’re instead asking that fan to wait for their record to arrive in the post so they can redeem an included download card, or for you to email them a download code, you’re missing out on more sales still.
- Though we only launched it a few months ago, Discover is already making more money for artists than all sales driven by links from Twitter. Fans can browse by merch type, viewing, for example, the best-selling ambient vinyl this week:
Still more reasons to list your merch on Bandcamp include the fact that we handle the inventory control (tricky business when it comes to limited edition items and shopping carts), you can integrate with a fulfillment partner, and we report your sales to SoundScan every week (and merch items that include albums do count).
A few questions we anticipate you may still have:
I already have a bunch of posters, buttons, and t-shirts on my album pages. What should I do?
They’re already on your merch page too. You can leave them on your album page, or you can remove them by editing the album and clicking “detach” next to the merch item.
I’m one of the people who made one-track albums for my posters and t-shirts, what should I do?
Double-check that the item is on your merch page, and go ahead and delete the album.
How does this work for music-related merch, like vinyl, CDs and cassettes?
We automatically show your vinyl, CDs and other music merch on both your merch page and the page of their associated albums. If someone clicks your vinyl from the merch page, that will take them right to its album page.
I don’t see my merch section.
That means that you either don’t have any merch yet, or that all your merch is music-related (e.g., vinyl, CD, etc.) and on a single album (in which case we display it on that album’s page).
I want another picture.
We can do no better than The Oatmeal.
Thanks, be sure to check out your Bandcamp site, verify that everything is dialed in how you like it, and drop us a note in the comments if you have any questions.
Update: Ben cooked up a little tutorial, check it out here: http://bandcamp.com/merch_how_to