Updated Jan 15 2024
Shopify leads competitor Wix Stores as the most popular eCommerce platform in the US, commanding 25% of the market with 2,918,766 sites as of February 7, 2023, according to website intelligence provider BuiltWith. This data paints a profitable potential for creative artists selling products online. But to seize this opportunity, you need to know what sells on Shopify.
Discover the advantages of a print on demand business for simplicity and scalability.
Learn how to establish a print on demand business and online storefront.
Gather actionable tips to market and expand a print on demand business.
Establish methods to evaluate and fine-tune business performance.
Let's start by considering what makes a product a good sales prospect for Shopify sellers:
How do you decide what to sell on your Shopify online store? Five main criteria can help you pick out the best products to sell online:
Popularity and demand
Your product knowledge
Popularity and profit margin helps you estimate the revenue potential of a product. Seasonality helps you estimate annual sales potential as well as plan the timing of marketing campaigns. Competition and product knowledge help you evaluate the feasibility of making sales.
Demand defines the size of your market. Your potential sales revenue is a function of your market share and the price you earn per sale. Because of this, demand is a crucial consideration when evaluating a product's profit potential to sell on your online store.
Conduct market research to verify product demand and popularity with specific target audience segments. Use resources such as your internal sales data and analytics, customer surveys, Think with Google, market research reports, and Census Bureau data.
Revenue potential is only part of the story because you must cover the cost of producing and selling your goods through your online store. The portion of your sales you get to keep is your profit margin. There are several formulas for calculating profit margin, depending on whether you focus on the cost of goods sold or other expenses such as operating expenses.
All formulas boil down to a ratio of the difference between your sales and costs divided by your sales. Look for products with low production costs relative to the selling price to earn a good profit margin from your online store.
When estimating a product's annual sales potential, one factor to consider is whether the product has any seasonal sales peaks. Seasonality affects the volume of your annual revenue from that product and when cash from sales of that product will be coming in to cover the costs of your operations.
Consider whether your product will be in demand year-round or fluctuate in different seasons. As a marketing strategy, you may wish to sell different products at different times of the year to compensate for seasonal cycles.
Even if a product has high demand, making a profit from it may be difficult if competition is intense. You should evaluate your ability to sell your product in the face of potential competition. Use your market research to identify and analyze your existing competitors and gauge how difficult it would be to break in.
Look at how your competitors position their products with their marketing strategy and which features and benefits they emphasize. Consider the uniqueness of your product and whether it brings any differentiating features or benefits.
Selling your product requires knowing it well enough to present its benefits to your market and persuade them it meets their needs. Consider your familiarity with your product and its target audience. Review your product's features, applications, and benefits, and how this aligns with your target audience's wants. Use this to gauge whether you have the knowledge to compete successfully in the space and promote the product through your online store.
So what are some of the most promising product categories for Shopify merchants to sell through online stores in 2024? In terms of demand, four of the best products to sell on Shopify are:
Fashion and apparel products
Health and wellness products
Sustainable and eco-friendly products
Personalized and customizable products
Let's see what market conditions look like for each of these categories:
The global apparel market is rebounding from restrictions implemented during the COVID-19 pandemic. The market is on track to register a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.9% from 2023 to 2028, projects market research firm Mordor Intelligence.
The growth of online shopping is driving this growth and making it easier for merchants to expand their geographic reach. Other factors encouraging the growth of the apparel market include rising per capita income, demographic trends, and preference for branded products. As millennials' purchasing power grows, many are turning toward luxury brands.
The global wall art market was worth an estimated $48.50 billion in 2021 and is projected to grow to $72.61 billion by 2028, according to strategic market insights provider Fortune Business Insights. It will grow at a CAGR of 5.9%. A leading driver of this growth is the increasing amount of time people spend at home, leading to more money invested in creating a comfortable and aesthetic space. Other factors propelling the market growth include:
The growth of ecommerce platforms like Shopify makes it easier than ever for artists to sell their designs online.
An increased demand for personalized home decor to express individuality and style.
The growth of the real estate market and an increased need for wall art to use in home staging.
Consumer demand for eco-friendly products is growing, a trend reflected in the thriving market for sustainable fashion products, also known as ethical fashion. The ethical fashion market was worth $7,548.2 million in 2022, reflecting a CAGR of 6.5% since 2017, according to The Business Research Company.
Over the period between 2022 and 2027, the market will grow at a CAGR of 8.1% to reach a value of $11,122 million. Market growth is being driven by an expanding population's demand for innovative solutions. Man-made and regenerated fashion products currently lead in popularity, while organic fashion products will see the most significant future growth.
Demand for customized products such as personalized gifts is on the rise. The personalized gift market will grow at a CAGR of 5.83% between 2020 and 2027, on track to reach a value of $38.66 billion, projects Market Research Future. Key drivers of this market growth include gift exchange's increasing popularity and demand for 3D-printed gifts.
Each of the broad categories above includes multiple product niches. Here are some of the best products to sell on Shopify in each niche market:
Men's clothing: The men's clothing market is growing at an estimated CAGR of 6.3%, thanks to greater fashion consciousness among millennial men. Men's clothing offers a profitable opportunity for Shopify store merchants, commanding a higher price point than women's clothing. Popular items include jackets, blazers, coats, suits, trousers, jeans, shorts, and sports apparel.
Women's clothing: The women's clothing market is growing at a CAGR of 3.5%, driven by demand for luxury, premium, and eco-friendly products. Best-selling items include tops, dresses, bottom wear, sleepwear, innerwear, suits, coats, jackets, and ethnic wear.
Kids and baby clothing: The kid's clothing market is growing at a CAGR of 6.8%, driven by increasing fashion awareness. Meanwhile, the baby clothing market is growing at a CAGR of 4.2%, prompted by parents' awareness of fashion trends on social media. The most popular kid's clothing category is casual, followed by semi-formal and formal. Demand for boys' clothing is growing faster than for girls' clothing due to higher birth rates. For babies, the most popular items include top wear (such as bodysuits) and dresses and bottom wear (such as trousers and leggings).
Personal care, beauty, and anti-aging products: The beauty and personal care market is growing at a CAGR of 7.7%, driven by consumer consciousness about appearances. Skincare products, especially cosmetics with natural and organic ingredients, lead this growth. Other strong growth categories include haircare products, such as shampoo, conditioner, and gel, and anti-aging products, such as anti-wrinkle and anti-stretch products.
Nutrition and weight loss products: The personalized nutrition market is growing at a CAGR of 11.48%, propelled by increasing concerns about obesity and unhealthy diets. Popular products include active measurement tools and customized foods. The weight loss market is growing at a CAGR of 7.0%, driven by growing awareness of health issues and fitness consciousness. High-demand products include better-for-you meals (such as low-salt, low-carb, and low-fat meals), meal replacements, weight-loss supplements, green teas, and low-calorie sweeteners.
Preventive and personalized medicine products: The preventive healthcare market is growing at a CAGR of 9.6%, supported by government initiatives and consumer awareness. The personalized medicine market accounts for the largest segment of this growth. While much of this market comprises services, you can sell preventive products such as herbs in your Shopify store.
Organic clothing line: The organic clothing market constitutes the fastest-growing segment of the ethical fashion market, with a projected CAGR of 40% over the next decade. Popular organic cotton products include shoes, socks, pants, and t-shirts.
Among products that lend themselves to personalization and customization, categories that stand out include:
Stationery: The personalized stationery products market is growing at a CAGR of 9.6%. High-demand items include storage and filing products (such as boxes and folders), paper-based products (including greeting cards, calendars, and notebooks), and drawing and writing instruments.
Gelato's online catalog features personalized and customizable stationery products suitable for selling online.
The success of your Shopify online business depends heavily on choosing the right products for your target market. Here we've identified some of the hottest-selling items in the fashion, health, sustainability, and personalized product markets.
To help you start putting this information to use, Gelato makes it easy to offer customized and personalized products on Shopify. We sell print on demand products in many profitable niches, including clothing, phone cases, wall art, wallpaper, mugs, photobooks, cards, calendars, stationery, and tote bags.
Gelato integrates with Shopify, making it easy for you to connect your existing ecommerce store to our site and start selling online. We take care of order fulfillment and shipping, so you don't have to worry about it. Sign up for Gelato to start selling print on demand products on Shopify and see how much you can earn.