How To Know If It’s Time To Stop Selling A Certain Item On Amazon Merch On Demand

time to stop selling merch

If you’ve been selling merch designs on Amazon Merch on Demand as a side gig, you’ve probably seen ups and downs in your performance. The truth is that while the platform offers incredible opportunities to make some decent side money, there is no guarantee that all of your listings will succeed. And there’s nothing wrong with that. Even the Amazon gurus can’t promise 100% success.

What matters most is the ability to spot listings that don’t perform well and make a decision that will impact your overall strategy. Should you continue selling the specific merch design or is terminating the item from your Seller account a better option?

Let’s dig into this topic and reveal some valuable insights.

What makes an Amazon Merch on Demand listing successful?

The crucial question you should ask yourself when you see that a listing isn’t doing too well is whether it should be optimized or closed. In order to do that, it’s important to understand what makes a listing successful in the first place. And no, it won’t always be sales.

Here are the factors that make a listing prosperous.


The amount of traffic or views a listing receives is one of the ways to determine the success of a listing. If you’re receiving high traffic levels, this is a clear sign that the listing is optimized and ranking for niche-related keywords in a certain merch category. High traffic listings are worth keeping, even if they’re not making tremendous sales.

If you notice that a large portion of this traffic doesn’t convert into sales, there are a few elements you can tweak. For example, you can try changing the price of the listing, its images, or its description. This is likely to influence your sales.

Note: The only real way to see traffic is if you are sending it yourself from an intermediary link, or running Amazon ads.

Positive reviews

A listing that scores a substantial amount of positive reviews is also considered extremely successful. Customer reviews have an impact on rankings. Therefore, the more positive reviews you have, the higher up in search results your listing is likely to appear.

As a result, you’ll enjoy more visibility and a wider group of buyers will see your merch design. That also means bigger chances for sales.


A listing’s success can also be looked at from the perspective of profitability. Just because two different listings sell equally well doesn’t mean that they’re both equally profitable. What do we mean?

Imagine you’re selling an anime-themed t-shirt for $20 and an anime-themed hoodie for $55. They both score 114 sales per month. Although they can both be classified as successful, the hoodie listing is the more profitable of the two. Why? Because a hoodie sale for $55 earns higher royalties than a t-shirt sale for $20.


Last but not least, one of the most certain signs of listing success is sales. If your merch designs are selling, you can say they’re successful. Of course, sales volumes can always be affected by factors like seasonality, trends, changes in user behavior and more. Although there are merch designs that are evergreen and always popular, there are also those that are unbelievably vulnerable to such factors.

It’s important to consider this for your Seller strategy. A listing is successful if it’s generating the expected amounts of sales in specific time periods.

When should you stop selling a product on Merch by Amazon?

So the big question is what should you do with the listings that are not successful. Say you’ve been selling sports-themed hoodies for a year and some designs simply won’t attract any attention.

Here are some signs indicating that it’s time to either close or delete the listing (yes, there’s a difference between the two and we’ll talk about it later).

Poor customer reviews

Even if you’re absolutely convinced that you’ve hit the sweet spot with a niche merch design, it doesn’t mean that your customers will agree. If you notice that a large percentage of your reviews are negative, perhaps it’s time to take measures. Allowing the trend to continue may result in a bad reputation. The negativity can quickly spread and buyers may soon start to connect your Seller name with poor ratings and low quality.

In this case, it’s best to close the listing temporarily and search for a way out of the situation. A few useful tips for finding a solution include:

  • Try to discover the reasons for bad customer reviews
  • Attempt to solve the problems causing such poor feedback
  • Find ways to collect more positive reviews

If you’ve tried all of the above and the situation remains the same, it may be best to delete the listing completely. This means that you won’t be selling the merch design any longer, but focusing on other listings instead.

You’re too late

Let’s say you wanted to catch a trend. Imagine that Independence Day is just around the corner. You decide that you’ll launch your 4th of July merch designs on the 1st of July. However, chances are that you won’t witness much success. Why? Because activating your listing a few days before an event or holiday won’t do the trick.

The majority of Amazon merch shoppers prepare in advance. They do their merch shopping a month or even several months ahead of special occasions. In addition, it will take some time for your listing to accumulate speed and strength to make it to the first pages of Amazon search results. Put otherwise, by the time your listing becomes attractive, the holiday will have passed and no buyers will be interested in this type of merch.

In this case, our advice is to close the listing and reactivate it the following year. Remember to avoid making the same mistake and start selling when the timing is right.

Competition is on the rise

Competition on Merch by Amazon is fierce. But let’s imagine that you have powerful tools by your side, such as Merch Informer. Via detailed and thorough research, you’ve managed to discover an extremely rewarding niche, with highly searched-for keywords and low competition.

You’ve spent some time working on your designs and you’re finally ready to make an entrance. You expect to sell your merch designs like hotcakes. You watch your listing’s performance over the course of a few months to discover that your competition has beaten you to market. Your once profitable listing is now facing so much competition that it’s extremely difficult to land any sales at all.

What should you do? If you’ve tried optimizing the listing and nothing has changed, perhaps it’s time to terminate the design and move on.

The benefits of closing or deleting a listing

Earlier we mentioned that there are two ways to stop selling an Amazon listing. Let’s see what each of them is and what its benefits are.

Closing a listing

One of the ways to stop selling a Merch by Amazon design is to close the listing. In this case, the termination of the listing is only temporary. You can reactivate the listing at any time. After reactivation, you’ll still have all of the accumulated listing data. Put otherwise, the listing will still store customer reviews, prices, titles and descriptions, and other information.

There are a number of benefits that you can take advantage of when it comes to closed listings. For starters, you can use this option to pause your activity on a listing. This will enable you to have some extra time to plan a better strategy, think of ways to optimize the listing to improve its performance, and perform detailed research. In the meantime, you won’t be receiving any negative reviews, you won’t be spending money on paid campaigns, and you’ll have more money and time freed up.

Once you’re ready with a game-changing solution, you can simply reactivate the listing and carry on. Hopefully, the results will be better.

Note: This point is for all of our FBA friends. With Amazon Merch on Demand, you will need to follow the second way to delete a listing.

Deleting a listing

You can also choose to permanently delete a listing. As we noted earlier, this decision is advisable once a specific listing doesn’t perform well and you’ve explored every avenue to enhance its achievements without any results. Deleting a listing will empower you to focus all of your efforts on listings that could potentially be improved and transformed into successful products. By making this decision, you will avoid wasting time on research and planning, and reduce your expenses for promotion.

These valuable resources will be available to invest in other important listings.

The impact of listing suspension on your overall strategy for selling merch

Sometimes, leaving unsuccessful listings in your Seller portfolio can have a detrimental effect on your overall strategy. For example, a few listings could generate a negative perception of your brand. In addition, they could consume a large amount of time, money, and other resources without offering any profits. Furthermore, efforts to optimize such listings could be preventing you from noticing low-hanging fruit in the merch space.

Ultimately, choosing to close or delete certain listings can help you create an enhanced Seller strategy. It allows you to concentrate on current trends, seasonal waves, customer demand, and more.

Tips for listing management

In order to sustain a healthy and prosperous Seller account, it’s vital to manage your listings strategically and with specific intentions. Here are three core tips for listing management that can help you make the right choices regarding listing termination:

  • Check competitor saturation – make sure that you’re constantly aware of the competition in your niche. Follow how saturated the market is throughout different periods and determine whether you are capable of competing in aggressive markets. If not, don’t be scared to close a listing or delete it completely.
  • Analyze seasonal changes – keep an eye out for seasonal trends. As soon as you notice that a listing is no longer attractive due to seasonal factors, close it and reactivate it the following year.
  • Monitor performance metrics – don’t leave listing performance to faith. Closely monitor how they are doing, make changes where possible, or terminate items that are simply not worth the effort.

In a nutshell

Selling on Amazon Merch on Demand won’t always be as marvelous as you’d expect. While some listings will exceed your expectations, others will only bring your overall performance down.

By knowing when to say goodbye to a listing and terminate it, you’ll be in the position of maintaining a successful and rewarding Seller account on Amazon Merch on Demand.

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