Expanding in the Industry – Embroidery
Adding embroidery to your existing business is a great way to upsell to your existing customers, giving you more revenue without prospecting! SPSI’s embroidery product manager, Nancy Copenhaver, outlined a few of the benefits of embroidery in your shop.
Embroidery is a particularly good addition to your business for a few reasons – it takes up a small amount of space, margins are very high, you have an established customer base to draw from, and embroidery is a fad-free decoration technique.
The ZSK Sprint 6, SPSI’s one-head embroidery machine offering, is about 3 feet square. You can fit this machine into a small space without issues. The small size of the Sprint 6 also allows the machine to be moved from event to event, if you want to do farmers markets or other events.
Embroidery also allows for great margins. A 5000 meter cone of thread at $7 can do approximately 150 left chest logos – that’s 5 cents a shirt! When you think of all the polos, baseball caps, towels, and so on that you can now offer to your customers, the cost of entry into the embroidery market seems a lot lower.
Probably the most important thing to consider is that embroidered logos don’t go in and out of fashion. Brands and companies around the world rely on embroidered designs to exude professionalism. No matter what, there is going to be a market and a demand for embroidered garments.
What do I need?
If you are just getting started out, the ZSK Sprint 6 is the best single head embroidery machine on the market. With German engineering, you can expect years of reliable service from your machine, along with a plethora of great features.
If you are currently outsourcing your embroidery, you should sit down and do the math to see if you should start off with a larger machine, like the ZSK Racer 4 head or 6 head. Your SPSI sales representative can also help out with the math.
You will also need supplies – bobbins, needles, backing, and thread are the big four. SPSI offers a wide variety of these supplies at competitive pricing. We are a distributor of both Madeira and Isacord threads, Fil-Tec bobbins, SPSI label backing, and Groz-Beckert needles.
Finally, you are going to need to have digitized files. Many shops when starting out will outsource their digitizing to a number of companies that can easily be found online. If you want to keep your art production in-house, SPSI offers Wilcom digitizing software.
What are the shortfalls?
Embroidery is a relatively slow method of decoration, so you need to make sure you set your pricing so that you are making money. The Sprint 6 can run at up to 1,200 stitches per minute, which means a left chest can take 5 minutes if it is a complicated design.
The cost of starting is around $15,000, which is relatively high. But with financing, the monthly payment can be made in about three hours of stitching – the rest can go to overhead and profit!
Embroidery can be a very lucrative add-on to your business. If you are already screen printing, you probably have logos that only need to be digitized to be ready for production. With a low supply cost, you can sell products at a very high margin and start making money in no time. ZSK machines have many great features, such as the smallest tubular arm in the industry, and maintain their value for years. SPSI has customers who have had their machines for 10-15 years and are only now starting to upgrade to newer equipment!