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How To Sell Clothes On Instagram Without Spending A Dime?

Instagram shop

Instagram is the new hub for selling things online… anything from caravans to plants. And evidently, to sell clothes on Instagram can be a great idea!

Plus, you need no investment whatsoever to set up your shop over Instagram. Selling clothes on Instagram is so cost-effective! Setting up a brick-and-mortar shop needs a lot of investment. Even an online website requires you to build it up and purchase a domain and hosting. But voila! An Instagram shop is free! And a super successful idea too!

Why, you ask?

Well, to put it straight, Instagram has over a Billion users!!! Yes, it is one of the most used apps in the whole wide world. With so much traction, Instagram is heaven for sellers.

And do you know what makes it sweeter? According to Instagram, 70% of the shoppers use Instagram for product discovery!

Indeed, that's a lot of sales waiting for you there. But wait, there is more news.

Instagram is termed the most 'brand-friendly' app! It is said so because almost 90% of Instagrammers follow a brand, and out of approximately 500 million story views that happen every day, a third belong to brands!

What else do you need to get started? If you have a business in mind, take it on Instagram, it is a great place for sales and gaining traction!

So, coming back to selling clothes, let's see how you can get sales on your custom clothing shop over Instagram!

How To Sell Clothes On Instagram?

Selling on Instagram is often associated with Instagram ads. But here, we have eight techniques you can use to sell your clothes without using paid promotion. Yeah, eight strategies that market your product entirely free!

#1: Explore And Exploit Instagram Shop

Instagram Shop is a feature within Instagram that lets your viewers browse your collection and purchase it then and there, without leaving Instagram at all.

So, the big question is how to set up an Instagram shop? Well, here are a few rules:

  1. You must be located in one of the following countries- US, Canada, Uk, Brazil, Italy, Spain, France, Germany, or Australia.
  2. You need to make a new account and choose a Business Account when you set up your account.
  3. Ensure you have the latest app version.
  4. You must be selling physical goods that lie within the Instagram's merchant agreement and commerce policies. Which since you are selling clothes, you need not worry about it.
  5. Your business account must be connected with a Facebook catalogue. There are three ways to achieve this- First is to use an eCommerce platform like Shopify, the second is to set up a catalogue manager, or lastly, to add a 'Shop' section on your brand's Facebook page.

Yes, you might need little research to set up an Instagram shop, but trust us, it will be a significant boost to your sales and will be worth the effort!

Once you have set up a shop, add products to it and try to use nicely clicked and edited photographs for them.

 Instagram reels for creating brand awareness

#2: Use Reels For Creating Brand Awareness

Reels are hands down the best way to create brand awareness.

And there is a reason why!

Reels work differently than posts. We already know there are billions of people active on Instagram. But different reels are shown to different people.

So, a person interested in custom t-shirts will be shown reels about custom clothing brands and maybe yours too!

So, not only are there an endless number of people out there who will consume your content, the interested ones will consume it. This makes Instagram and especially reels a great way to get the word about your brand out there!

Analytics hashtags

Instagram hashtags

#3: Hashtags, Hashtags, Everywhere!

Hashtags are what make your content discoverable. People use hashtags to find content related to that hashtag.

Thus consider a person interested in custom printed t-shirts might use the hashtag- #customtshirts. It has 937k posts as we are writing this for you. This means that any posts you add might get missed in the ocean of posts around that hashtag. But certainly, this means there is an audience for this keyword.

Next, let's say you use the hashtag #cutetshirt. It has a total of 39.3k posts. This hashtag has a much smaller, much specific audience. This is the hashtag you should target if you print cute t-shirts.

Different hashtags are helpful at various stages of the customer cycle. You use more niche hashtags, say when you want your customers to buy from you, etc.

And you can find great hashtags by using the Hashtag Expert app or a desktop tool called Hashtagify. But do you know the real treasures are found on your competitor's profile? Yes, you can get inspired from the hashtags on their profile too!

#4: Focus On Catchy Captions And CTAs (Call To Action)

With so many people trying for attention, you need to try too!

And the task is to catch that attention in 125 characters because Instagram captions get truncated after that! So, make sure you write something catchy before they scroll down. Make them hit the 'See More' instead.

Now that you have your audience's attention, write a caption that tells a story, talks about a pain point and offers a solution at the end, which is your product or service.

Write such a CTA that they can't help sending you a DM, clicking on your link in the bio, or buying from you if you have an Instagram shop setup!

#5: Learning To Use Instagram Live

Instagram Live is a crazy feature. It lets you share a live video, much like a webinar, to interact with your audience.

But it is better than a webinar. For one, it is free! You do not need to pay if a lot of people join you. And second, you can educate your customers about your products through these 'webinars.'

Let's say the most poignant question you have these days is, how to sell t-shirts online?

So, sometimes you can take them behind the scenes in your printing area. At other times introduce a new collection you have made or sometimes even a small interaction about what type of cloth material, blank apparel brands, and printing techniques you use. You can also explain what t-shirt material is good, its qualities, where you buy your wholesale t-shirts from, etc.

Basically, get them closer to your brand and produce meaningful content and take reviews, inputs, and suggestions from your viewers.

#6: Instagram Stories Work Better Than Instagram Posts!

Shocking, right?

But it happens to me all the time. I open Instagram. I swipe through the stories and close it. Usually, I don't even see the posts!

So, if this happens with me, I guess it happens with many others too! And maybe this is one of the reasons why Instagram stories work better than Instagram posts!

But there is a journey your stories must take the buyers on. And the nd point of that journey is a sale!

Let's learn more about this journey in the context where you want to sell custom hoodies (This journey is sometimes covered ina single day and sometimes in a few days):

  1. Set the scene- It is setting the context. Say you are planning to release a new collection soon and want to create a buzz about it. Then, post a story of, say, your workshop with some work going on, saying 'Something is Cooking.' This will set the scene and create curiosity.
  2. Behind the scenes-Next story could be some behind-the-scenes shots. Maybe you are designing some graphics or printing some sweatshirts. Make a story of it. You can choose to disclose that work is on for a new collection that is coming soon!
  3. Educate them-You would now like to educate them about your collection, maybe that you are purchasing blank clothing from popular hoodie brands like Jerzees or Gildan, etc. Or that you are using a top-notch printing technique and educate them on the plusses of that printing technique. Like maybe the colour doesn't fade etc.
  4. Ask For Sale!- You have built a reputation now. So, ask for a sale. Maybe shoot a video of your best hoodies and declare that the collection will be live by today 6 pm and ask them to show some love! Or grab the hoodies fast because the first fifty customers would get an off or a freebie, etc.

 Instagram DM

Instagram chat

#7: Monetize The DMs

By now, you have attracted people to your business, and people are sending DMs! And you can use these to skyrocket your sales. But be careful not to be too sale-sy. Please make sure never to start a conversation with an intent to sell.

But how do you sell then?

If the person is messaging you first, you can respond and send more messages with links to them in future.

But if you are starting a conversation, never DM to sell Directly. However, you can use many indirect ways to build a relationship and then maybe selllater!

So, how to monetize DMs?

  1. Getting Leads Through Instagram Polls- The most important thing to know about your business, whatever you sell, belts, blankets, bags, or sweatshirts, is your customer's pain point. So, make a poll around that pain point and DM those who vote with further information. Thus, starting a conversation that can later bear you fruits
  2. Customer Service- DMs are also an excellent tool for providing customer service, whether a small business or big. They are again great conversation starters, which you can later send links to.
  3. Sales- DMs allow you to have video chats, so if your customer wants to buy hoodies in bulk but would first like a video chat with you, you can have it on Instagram itself. You can send them unlimited product links and crack the deal of the month!


If you want to sell anything, Instagram is the place to be. You can set up a shop there, use reels, stories, hashtags, captions, and DMs to work in your favour and make outstanding sales.

Every part of Instagram can be used to maximize sales.

So, trust your gut and take that leap of faith.

We hope you found the post helpful and that it made your journey as a customer apparel seller a bit easier. At Northern Blanks, we try to make your journey even easier. We house a large variety of wholesale clothing for your custom apparel business, from a ton of popular brands from Adidas to Champion to Fruit of the Loom, etc.

So, till then!

And happy selling!

Frequently Asked Questions & Answers:

Q. What kind of budget should I spare to sell clothes on Instagram?

A. None! Selling on Instagram is free! You only need to invest in raw materials and printing machinery.

Q. Will I be able to make a profit by selling on Instagram?

A. Yes, sure you can. The above techniques will go a long way in helping you convert your followers!

Q. Is selling clothes on Instagram viable?

A. Instagram has a wide variety of viewers and you will find countless t-shirt enthusiasts there. Leave t-shirt. There are people who want custom sweatpants! So, selling clothes on Instagram is entirely viable.

Q. What is the best part of selling on Instagram?

A. There are many. Instagram lets you make relationships, nurture them, and has an in-house shopping system. The perfect recipe for selling.

Q. What would be one piece of advice for those starting their journey?

A. Keep patience and keep researching!