In the world of print on demand, you’re either first or last. There’s very little wiggle room here because if you’re not providing the latest, must-have designs, then someone else will be. You constantly need to think about what your buyers want and how to maximize sales.

One of the best ways to do this is to explore trending topics online. By exploring trending topics, you might be able to create, clever, unique, relevant, funny or on-point designs around them. However, there’s a problem.

Trending topics don’t last forever. One day it’s the Marvel announcements at SDCC and the next it’s a challenge going around Twitter. This can change on an hourly basis and you want to make sure that you find out what’s hot as quickly as possible.

This will allow you to strike while interest is at an all-time high and gain the biggest benefits for your level of sales. But how do you do this? Well, you need to make sure that you are keeping a check on the trends. There are a few tools that allow you to do just that.

Twitter Explore Feature

With Twitter explore, you can quickly find out what’s trending worldwide the minute you click. You can also search for different topics and categories to find if there’s anything interested connected to the type of designs that you create. For instance, you could check what’s happening in the world of politics or perhaps Hollywood.

There’s an advanced search option too which ensures that you can pinpoint what you’re looking for and potentially find a specific target niche. 

Use Google Trends for Inspiration

With Google trends, you can find out what people are searching for right now or perhaps in the past seven days. You’ll be able to discover what people are looking at and how many people are interested in a particular topic. You can completely customize the trends that you are interested in.

For instance, you could discover why Taylor Swift is currently being searched so frequently right now. Swift has been building up a storm with LGBTQ singles and more info from her latest album that’s on the horizon. When you understand a topic, you can create a design around this.

You might also want to consider using Google Insights. It’s quite similar to Trends but provides related search terms as well as points of regional interest and searches that are currently on the rise. That last one is particularly important as it will enable you to get ahead of the curve. 

NowRelevant

NowRelevant This is a fairly new search engine. It provides info on every subject that has been mentioned across the web over the past two weeks. You can also utilize a slider to control exactly how many days back you want to go. You can even search for specific companies and brands.

Youtube

 Five billion videos are viewed on Youtube every day and Youtube gets 30 million visitors each day too. This just shows how popular video networks like this have become. The big benefit of Youtube is that you can quickly check which videos are trending and what topics people are currently interested in. There’s usually quite a wide variety here too. It’ll just be up to you to recognize trends that are going to last and videos that will be gone from trending before the end of the day.

Big Benefits

Once you start utilizing these tools, you’ll find that they can offer tremendous benefits in your small business model. You will be able to focus on current events and create merchandise around these hot topics.

Since people are searching for these topics frequently, you will have more chance that your products will appear in the searches. People might even be searching for merch and printed designs around topics that are popular. You can get their attention first, particularly if you notice trends before competitors.

A key way to ensure that you do use this option to boost sales would be to find the tag for a trending topic. You can then add it to your own promotion post. This will help amp up your products across social media. Suddenly, your product is linked to a tag that is already being frequently used across social media. If you get this right, then the impact can be beyond anything you might imagine.

We hope this helps you see the advantages of staying on-trend and using current events when creating, designing and selling your printed, custom merchandise. It’s a fantastic tip and the best part is, not many designers have latched onto this idea. It can give you a winning hand against your competitors in what can be a very crowded market space.

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