There's certain questions that we see hear frequently at Doodle Bag regarding our bags and printing methods. So here's our answers to the top 5 questions that we get asked. If you have a questions regarding our product and what we do, just get in touch and we will be happy to help.
The Fairtrade certification is given to a product when the supply chain involved in the processes of making the cotton has been verified as paying a stable price for their products. This ensures that cotton farmers receive a fair price for their goods. By buying a Fairtrade certified product you have the assurance that the workers involved in the process are paid a fair wage and the farmers are paid a legitimate price.
At Doodle Bag we stock a Fairtrade Certified cotton tote bag that can be personalised with your own photos, logos, or create your own design using our ready to go images!
Organic Cotton is cotton that has been cultivated without the use of any chemicals including pesticides or fertilisers. It also is free from any genetic modification. This means it has a significantly lower carbon footprint, but demands a higher price because it is more difficult to successfully grow in large quantities, and is more scarce than non-organic cotton.
Tote bag is a broad term for a bag that is generally used when referring to a bag that has two handles and doesn't have a fastening. The word tote, which means "To carry" dates back to the 17th century, and word was popularised in the 1960's when tote bags emerged as a practical fashion accessory due to their flexibility and lower value than traditional handbags. At Doodle Bag, we generally refer to a tote bag as a lightweight bag in a portrait shape, but technically speaking all of our products are tote bags.
Digital printing is a very broad term that refers to any kind of printing that involves applying a print using digital equipment directly onto an end product. Common implementations of this include inkjet and transfer printing. This kind of print allows for photographic prints and an almost unlimited colour range. Unlike traditional print methods such as screen printing, digital printing doesn't require the replacement of any physical print plates and therefore usually has a quicker turnaround time between individual print jobs. This is the print technique that we use here at Doodle Bag.
We offer bulk discounts over all orders with more than 1 unit of the same product, and the bulk discount will increase as the unit quantity increases. We also do offer at different times of year, so if you are interested in keeping up to date with these sign up to our newsletter to receive updates and also some exclusive offers.
As our bags are untreated 100% natural cotton we do not recommend washing them as it could cause shrinkage. If you need to clean your bag, it is best to hand wash in cool water or sponge down the affected area. We do have a blog explaining different ways to clean your tote bag here.
Absolutely, just hit "add text" and then type your message. You will then be able to change the font, re-size and re-colour. There's also options for pattern fills. Be sure to play around with the tool to get a sense of it's full potential.
If you don't see a font you like, get in touch and we can add new fonts from the Google Font Library.
Visit the My Orders page, where you will see a list of all your previous orders with us. Then select the order you would like to repeat, and click "View Customised Product". Your previous design will then load, where you can either edit it, or check out again if you would like to keep it the same.
We offer standard delivery to the UK for free.
For international or non-standard shipping i.e. tracked or next day, there is a charge that will be calculated at checkout after you enter your shipping address.
We cannot accept returns of personalised and custom-designed products unless the item itself is inherently faulty. Unprinted/plain products can be returned within 30 days. Please get in touch or read our terms and conditions for more information.
For our full list of commonly asked questions visit our FAQs page
Here at Doodle bag we are firm believers that cotton tote bags are simply the best way of carrying your stuff, and their increased popularity further proves that our eco-friendly sidekicks are a super handy accessory. Here's our top 10 reasons why we think everyone should have a tote bag on hand at all times.
We believe in supporting the people that make our products. Our bags are made in Fairtrade Certified factories which means that the employees involved in the construction of the bags are paid a living wage and are not subject to bad working conditions or any form of harassment. If you want to find out more about our ethics, read our ethical promise. What’s more, cotton manufacturing is a process that is not easily automated unlike plastic manufacturing. So by buying a cotton tote bag you are supporting human labour and a local industry.
There is no limit to the amount of customisation you can do to a tote bag. Upload or create any design with us and create a product that you will cherish and reuse, rather than disregard and forget about. Expressing yourself through an accessory like a tote bag is a great conversation starter, and a fashionable item that is practical for every day use.
We’ve all been in that situation where we’re carrying 4 plastic bags full of shopping when a sharp item pierces the bag, causing your weekly shop to hit the pavement. Fortunately those days are gone as the demise of the plastic bag means consumers are switching to more eco-friendly options. Unlike plastic bags, cotton based bags will not split and rip and will serve you faithfully week after week. Keeping one in a handbag, backpack or in the boot of your car is no problem, and the positive shift in people’s perception towards single-use plastic waste has seen a mini revolution in the supermarkets.
Not only can you carry your stuff safe and secure with a tote bag, but you don’t have to worry about damaging your reputation or garnering raised eyebrows because you are frequenting an establishment where plastic bags may be frowned upon. Cotton and canvas bags are a simple, classy solution to an age-old problem of practically carrying things without compromise.
A plastic bag will fail you after a few uses, and most likely it will be thrown away and sent to a landfill where it will pollute the earth for years after. Doesn’t seem worth it does it? That’s where a tote bag comes in. A cotton tote will be your faithful assistant for years and will not fall apart week one.
Since the introduction of plastic bag levies around the world, plastic bag use has fallen sharply and the global population embraced a new way of thinking, and a new attitude towards plastic waste. Supermarkets no longer hand out cruddy plastic bags willy-nilly and the population understands environmental challenges we face and what we need to do to solve them.
Whether you use a tote bag as a go-to carrier, or if it’s a backup to a larger bag, the usability of the cotton tote is second to none. Using it as a primary bag can carry everything you will need for a single day out, and will fit in a pocket if no longer needed. If you’re like myself you have a tote bag ready to go in a backpack at any time, allowing you to double your capacity in a pinch. A backpack plus a tote bag can carry shopping for 2 people for an entire week, without the need to drive to the supermarket every time.
I’m no mathematician, but I reckon buying a single tote bag and using it for a couple of months will easily be cheaper than handing over 10p’s every time you go shopping. Retailers and individuals will sell a tote bag for as low as a few pounds and buying your own personalised Doodle Bag will be more cost effective in the long run.
Tote bags are one of the top merchandising items used by artists and creative types, and what better way to support them by buying a cool piece of merch. Doodle Bag is a great platform for small business owners to buy bags in small quantities and some of our favourite creators keep coming back to us to fulfil small orders so they can supply merchandise to their fans.
Is it too much to ask for a shopping bag that doesn’t kill the planet? We say no way! Using cotton based bags instead of plastic is a much more sustainable choice, made from a renewable crop and in an ethical factory. If you’re looking for a super sustainable choice we also stock a range of Fairtrade Certified and Organic Certified bags.
Nothing says beach bag like our Supersize Canvas Bag. Most of us seem to visit the beach with an abundance of brightly coloured towels, windbreakers, swimming gear and refreshments, and we need a large bag that can take care of all of this. Our supersize shopper fits the bill perfectly. As the same suggests, its bumper size is capable of carrying about as much as you can manage, and due to its sturdy heavyweight canvas construction, it’s durable enough to handle the task. This beach tote also super easy to fill up and throw in the boot of the car, and it’s off to the beach we go!
Yes it’s the most classical style in our shop, but it’s also the most popular and most merchandised bag available. The versatility of this bag is undeniable, and the it can be seen worn on the streets as some of the most fashionable bags around. Ideal for a cool piece of artwork, the simple cotton tote bag will serve you well as a daily bag throughout the summer months.
Probably one of the most practical object transporting accessories you can buy; our drawstring backpack is an outdoor activity ready bag that can safely store the gear you need for an adventure or as a kit bag for sports clothing. This backpack works well as a second in command to a full backpack, to store the items you need at access instantly, and when you don’t need it, it’s scrunch-able to a tiny footprint ready for the next time you need it.
Where there’s sun, there’s barbeques. Where there’s Barbeques, there’s a grill master. Grill masters need aprons, and we stock customisable aprons that can be personalised however you like them. You could use an image of their meat of choice, or emboss with their formal title, so everyone knows who’s the boss of the grill. Our canvas aprons are made from a sturdy heavyweight canvas and we stock aprons in natural or white, and remember, there’s free delivery on everything!
If barbeques are not your thing, picnics probably are, and our Large Jute bag is a lovely solution for a summer picnic. This is our go-to picnic hamper, as its biodegradable lining keeps your perishables safe, and the rustic styling of the jute bag will not look out of place next to the blanket, punnet of strawberries and bottle of bubbly.
At Doodle Bag we've made it easy to create a personalised tote bag, no matter what the season. Our design tool is super easy to use but still packs loads of functionality to help you create a unique and beautiful personalised bag. There's a variety of ways you can personalise your cotton bag, with no limit to the amount of elements you can add to your design. Many of our customers have a design ready, and simply upload it straight to the design tool. This is a great way to get a short print run of tote bags in a pinch. Others enjoy the process of designing from scratch, and our bag designer allows your inspiration to run wild. We recommend browsing through our design tool and explore all the features available.
You can order more than 200 bags at our sister company BIDBI
Add your own image to your bag design. There's a variety of ways you can get your favourite images onto your bag. Upload from your device, whether it's a mobile, tablet or desktop, or login to your Facebook or Instagram account to scroll through your albums. Upon loading you can resize and rotate to your liking.
Creating text for your personalised bag couldn't be easier. Just type your message, then select one of our lovely fonts adjust the layout. You can also choose any colour using a hex code to match your branding.
The Design Library houses all of our 'ready to go' images. We've got thousands of images in here, suitable for all occasions. There's no limit to the amount you can add to your design.
Manage Layers allows you to move certain elements above or below others, and lock certain parts of the design. This gives you better control of your design.
Don't forget to add a design to the second side if you want one! There's no extra charge for printing on the second side of the bag.
The price breakdown tables show the discounts available for buying more than 1 bag. The more you buy, the more you save.
Some products have colour variations available, choose your colour before checking out.
Couples-to-be love using our drawstring pouches as wedding favour bags. We've got a selection of sizes of these cute little bags available, so pick a size depending on what you plan to put in them. These drawstring pouches come with a rope tie at the top to keep little gifts secure, and with printing available you can add whatever you like to match the theme of your big day. They make for a simple and elegant solution that guests will love on your big day.
Get your bags for the girls sorted with Doodle Bag. We've made it super easy by creating some designs for you that just need your personalisation adding. Just enter your name, select a quantity, and check out! Don't forget, you can create your own hen party bags from scratch if you like, why not add a picture of the bride or groom with a special message?
We have a whole category dedicated to Christmas in our design library, and there's many beautiful images there ready to be used. Create a Christmas design from scratch with a personalised message for your loved ones or a special greeting. Christmas themed tote bags make great stocking fillers, or can be used instead of a stocking to hold presents. We recommend our super shopper bag. Why? Because it can hold loads of presents and it's extra large size means a big print area too. A personalised shopper bag stuffed with present will surely make someone's Christmas unforgettable.
One of the most important gifting events of the year, and the one event where personalisation is of the upmost importance. Creating a unique gift for your loved one will show just how much you care, and we recommend a personalised zip purse as either a gift, or to be used to package a set of gifts. We've got dedicated design categories for love & romance, and many options to add your special message. We even have a gift wrapping service available if you would like us to do all the leg work for you.
Party bags are a great addition to any celebration, and we've got the perfect solution. Our mini cotton tote bag is the ideal size for a eco friendly gift bag, and with discounted prices for ordering more, you can get one for each guest. This bag is also popular for kids parties too, we've recently added kids party designs to our design library to help you on your way.
If you need a personalised bag for each member of our sports team or club, we've got it covered. Our drawstring backpack is the environmentally conscious alternative to plastic based sports bags and is equipped with comfy cotton rope drawsting pulls. Simply decorate with your logo and add the name of team or school.
Heading to the beach? Our Jute bag has got you covered, large enough to fit in all your beach essentials and stylish enough to rock at even the most fashionable spots. Up the ante by pairing your jute with an oversized hat, chic sunglasses and plazzo pants for a glam Miami vibe.
Practical and stylish and great for when you're out and about all day. The cotton tote bag is timeless. Personalise with your own design to suit your style down to a T and be the envy of all your friends. Thanks to a resurgence in minimalist fashion, the standard tote bag is the all carrying bag. Ready to take you from work to a cinema date or a catch up with the girls. Your tote bag would look great with a less is more look, keep colours bold and silhouettes androgynous.
In the blistering summer sun, keep it cool with flowing fabrics and an air of nonchalance. The small shopper bag fits just the essentials, which is all you need when you're soaking up the European vibes in the Piazza. So cafe culture, darling! Tie the handles with a ribbon to match your outfit and customise with a slogan fitting for your holiday. Update your look with a boat hat or delicate anklet to make even the most meticulous fashionistas bow down in appreciation.
A carefree bag for a carefree look, trainers and a sundress are a staple Summer trend. Team with the small jute bag to keep all your essentials to hand, big enough for anything you might need whilst frolicking in the park or BBQing on those warm summer days. Let your creativity flow by adding badges and motifs to give your bag that eye catching edge.
A day full of lectures can leave even the most organised scholar with heart palpitations. Keep everything in order with a shopper bag, not only hard wearing, the thick woven handles will keep your shoulders unhurt and the bottom gusset means all your books will fit. A neutral colour means any outfit will be no problem for this bag. Keep it edgy with a patterned skirt and glittery platform trainers.
It's wedding season! The clutch bag is the go to chic cocktail bag. Channel your inner party girl with the Zip Purse and add an extra element by customising your purse with images and text. Big enough to fit your phone, makeup and keys. This is, hands down, a practical alternative to those other clutch bags that barely fit a lipstick in.
Travel in style with the Super Shopper Bag. Just throw in your weekend wardrobe and jet off to your destination. The largest customisable tote bag on the market, it's big and roomy and the perfect Carry On size. The neutral understated colour will go with any travel outfit and keep you looking fashion forward no matter what your journey throws at you.
Yes, we deliver to just about anywhere in the world. Delivery costs and times can be found here.
Yes, you can upload any image from your smartphone, computer or tablet into our product designer. You can also login directly to your Facebook or Instagram account and import pictures. You can add as many images as you like, and adjust their placement on the product. We accept jpg, png, and svg formats. Please note any white within the design or white background will not printed on the final product.
We don't recommend this as companies will not like you using their branding for your own product. It is illegal and you are responsible for what you choose to put on the bag. Ask permission first before using someone else's work.
We don't share your data with anyone, at all. Your sensitive payment information is stored with the chosen payment merchant, e.g Paypal/Stripe, and your account details are stored on our secured server. We will not sell or share your data with anyone and understand the importance of privacy.
Yes you can. Just add your first design to your basket, then create another. You can then check out all your products at once when your finished. Remember that design variations are treated as separate products, and are therefore excluded from our bulk discounts.
No problem, we can print as many as you like. Our bulk discounts offer substantial savings for bigger purchases, so check out the price list on each product page. Bulk discounts are automatically subtracted from your order total when you add them to the basket.
Yes, you can order as little as 1 bag, with free delivery! This covers all items, whether printed or blank. We want everyone to be able to order as many or as few as they like.
Our core range of cotton bags are all Fairtrade made, which means the labour used to create the bags has the certification, however the cotton itself is not Fairtrade. If you would like bags made from Fairtrade Cotton, we also have a range that are not only Fairtrade Cotton, but also organic cotton. This special range of bags are the most sustainable and environmentally tote bags available, and are suitable for those who are extra conscious of their impact on the planet.
We don't offer an in-house design service due to the small-scale nature of most of our orders. However it is super easy to use our design tool, and we have a library jam-packed with images that you can use on our products. From gorgeous illustrations, to simple vector icons, there are so many categories to choose from.
Yes you can! Before placing your order, get in touch with us and include your registered charity number in your enquiry. We will then issue you with an exclusive discount voucher code to be used with your order. We love working with local and national organisations, and if you are running a campaign that involves tote bags, we would love to hear from you.
Yes, we work with companies both large and small here at Doodle Bag. We cater for anyone that wants tote bags!
Absoloutly. Our entire range is also available to be bought blank. You can buy just 1 blank bag if you like; or hundreds if you need them for an event or for retail. If you're using the bags for a special project, we would love to hear from you and share it on our social media pages.
We can print full colour here at Doodle Bag, so there is no restrictions of the number of colours we can print. Note however that we do not have the ability to print white, so any white areas of the design (including backgrounds) will be omitted from your printed product.
Yes, we can offer an express service. You must place your order before 11am. Your order will be printed and dispatched within 2 days and you can expect to receive it within 2 days. So total lead time from placing your order is 2-4 working days.
Yes, gift wrap is an additional service that is available for orders for just £2.99. Our lovely gift wrap options include a modern pattern with a bow, or vintage kraft paper tied with twine. Gift wrap options are located on each product page, so be sure to choose the option before you add the product to your basket. You can also add a special note that we will hand write and attach with a gift tag.
Yes we can, just add this to the "Order Notes" box just before placing your order and we will be glad to oblige.
We love to work with people that are passionate about sustainability/fashion. If you are in the industry and have an idea of a collaboration, get in touch with us.
Our free delivery option means that your order is dispatched within 1 working day, and delivered within a further 3 days by Royal Mail second class. If you need them next day, select one of our paid courier options and we can deliver next working day to the UK. International deliveries take longer, so allow some extra time, particularly if you're in a rural area.
Yes, our design tool allows you to upload absolutely anything to our products. We reserve the right to cancel and refund any orders with designs that include offensive material.
Our Cotton Tote Bag is our bestseller due to it's low cost and versatility. It is made from premium 5oz cotton and comes in either natural or white. In second place, the canvas shopper bag is a heavier weight version of the standard tote and has a bottom gusset. We also have this in natural or white.
Search engine optimisation is the practice of making your website search engine friendly, which helps you climb the rankings of the Googles, and increasing your traffic. There's lots of facets to this practice, much of it being quite boring, but you need to get this in check if you want to be right up the top of the search pages. Here's a quick checklist of things you need to do to every page.
Blogging is the most important factor of SEO and should not be ignored. Keep putting new blogs on your website at a rate of at least 1 a month. It affects your SEO hugely and because of the flexible nature of blogging, you can write about just about anything that's relevant to what you're doing. It's not all about SEO gains though; You need to write blogs that people actually want to read, and if you are running a lifestyle business it's absoloutly crucial your blogging game is on point.
So, you need to write a blog at least once a month, but if you have time and resources, shoot for one a week. Think of as many ideas as possible and keep them in a document that you can keep adding to. You can write about your products, news about your business, industry news, or about yourself and running your business. The more the better, you can even go back to older blogs and add more words. Add pictures too, so get yourself a decent camera. A smartphone will do just fine. Link to specific products on your website ensuring every page of your site is linked up.
If you're struggling for ideas, get your customers to write blogs for you. Collaborating with other people is great for business and links between websites gives your site more authority. If your writing is particularly good, you will find that people will share your content on social media, driving more new people to your site. Make sure you do the same, sharing everything you create.
Social media can be annoying at times, but its power is undeniable. If you're new to social media, do some research on which platforms are best suited for your business type and get stuck in. Take a look at what your competitors are doing for some inspiration. You're going to need to be at least as good as them. Post every time you've got something happening, whethers it's a new product, new blog, website update, or otherwise. Take an interest in your customers' social media too, following and liking their posts. It helps build a relationship and keeps them coming back to you and you only.
It's not always easy, but getting it right can increase your views. You need something that will grabs the attention of visitors, helps your SEO and accurately represents the page too. Try to avoid clickbait as your retention rates will drop sharply if visitors are being mislead. You want people on your website for as longer time as possible, so make it sound appealing with the title, and have content good enough that keeps them there. If you're responsible for web development, use H1 and H2 tags correctly on your pages.
There's several ways of paying to get more traffic to your website. It's undoubtedly the quickest way to get the ball rolling, and more necerssary if you're unable to wait months and months for your SEO work to pay off.
Get stuck in! Don't just create a site and expect people to show up. Do everything in your power to get people to your site.
Spam or use black-hat techniques. You'll probably get caught out in the end. So do some research on what constitutes white, grey and black hat SEO practices.
Gift with purchase is a really simple way to thank your customers for their order and make them feel like they are getting real value for money. It involves simply putting an extra free item in with every order. Receiving an unexpected gift is bound to impress, and helps justify the retail price for the consumer after the fact. It doesn't need to be something expensive, but a small and thoughtful item that you can buy in bulk. This is one method that small business owners can use to distinguish themselves from larger retailers who rarely give you anything for free. It shows that you appreciate every order and you should see a spike in repeat orders if you introduce this little trick.
Another huge benefit of running a small business is the ability to interact in a personal way that can build friendship and trust, whether it be online or offline. If your customers are local, visit any events you can that involve the businesses you work with, and build affiliations with trusted partners to help promote each other's businesses. Put some time aside every few days to focus on social media, not only sharing your own products but commenting and liking your customers posts too. Even if you a social-mediaphobe, a relatively short amount of time can help immensely. Encouraging people to post with your products will spread the word to their network, where the potential is huge to grow your customer base.
Have some end of line stock, or over-stocked on a particular item? Run a competition or a % off offer to your customers. Giving them a good deal will help shift that stock, and increase your traffic. Making deals exclusive to your email newsletter list will make them feel special too.
It's up to you how much you involve yourself in your business, but one thing to note is that (for small businesses at least) having a personality at the centre of the business is very much the way things work now. If you're willing to put yourself out there, blog, post and share your ideas when you're on the go, creating a narrative about your life and how it links to the way your products are made and sold. People with common interests will follow you, and will buy more stuff from you, with each post you make serving as a reminder that you sell products.
Staying active is so important when running a business. Sitting back and expecting the orders to keep coming in is foolhardy. Whether it's an updated site, blog post, product or social media post, you need to keep it fresh. Your customers will get bored if they're looking at the same old content all the time, and your Google rankings will take a nosedive if your site hasn't been updated in forever.
There is nothing that says thank you more than a personalised thank you card. If you have the time to do this, it is highly recommended. This shows a special attention to detail that cannot be beaten and will bag you a loyal customer for life for just a minute or two of your time. Time is the main expense here, with a little card costing next to nothing to buy.
Whilst customers can be demanding, listening and acting upon their requests is a big factor in building trust and showing that you care about your customers. If there's a suggested change that can be made, do it, and tell everyone you did it. Time and time again we see companies fall foul to not listening to their customer base. With social media having the ability to ruin a reputation instantly, you need to bring your A-game and be attentive to the needs of your clients.
Cross promotion is a win-win marketing strategy and will assist you in building and keeping your customer base. Find a local company that you can trust, promote each other's products and share the spoils. It's even better if the products compliment each other. You never know what other opportunities this may present to you, but diving into it head first will build your brand.
Looking after complaints is tricky, but handling them correctly can be fruitful. Customers can be irrational and shouty sometimes, but a sorted complaint is a retained customer, and can even increase their loyalty towards you. Receiving a complaint can be daunting, as the complainant will be at their most angriest when they contact you, with choice words saved up ready to rip you a new one. This is where you must show professionalism by listening to their complaint and coming up with a solution. You can stall for time if you need to, but ensure that you have communicated that you fully understand the nature of the complaint first. Once you've decided a solution, double your efforts to make it right.
A loyalty scheme is a tried and tested methods that works. Whether your a brick & mortar store or an online store, there a ways to implement the scheme that will see your return rates sky rocket. For a physical shop, the old card and stamp method works fine, and is still used by big retailers today. Make the reward for a full house decent and keen shoppers will return. For online stores this will depend on your platform. If you're using one of the big e-commerce plugins, they will all have the functionality to be able to create a loyalty system that grants a percentage off or free products after a certain time.
Actively research new ways that can improve your brand image and build trust with your customers. It's so important when establishing a business, as building a core audience will be key to sustaining and growing in the future.
Invest in this area. Put aside a small amount of your budget, and dedicate to these tasks. Most of them are free or cost very little, and the rewards are potentially huge
Rest of your laurels. Just because something is working now, doesn't mean it will forever. You have to move forward with new ideas to keep up and succeed.
Hide away. Try and be the face of your business as much as possible and bring friendships and partnerships that will last.
Online marketing is such a broad area, so we will need to break it down into it's main facets so we can put a game plan together. After you've gained a basic understanding of the various methods and which suits your business, you can then set a budget for how much you would like to spend. The good thing about online marketing is that it is measurable, and if you set budgets, you won't spend more than you intend to. After the initial setup you can chop and change if something isn't yielding results, and with a bit of patience you will get the orders you need.
If you have an online presence at all, social media is likely to be an important marketing tool for your business. The various platforms available all have their strengths, and it's up to you to decide how many of them you want to impliment. The good thing about social media is that they are all free, unless you decide to use their paid advertising services. You can gain loyal following but simply posting something people might be interested in, announce news about your company and it's products, and interact with your audience to build trust and reputation. If you're of a certain age, you're likely to already be a whizz at social media, so make sure you use this to your advantage. If you don't have any experience, don't worry, here's a great introduction to each of the platforms. If you're struggling for time or don't want to be on every platform, a service like Hootsuite allows you to post to all your social media accounts from one place, and even schedule your posts so you can get everything done in advance and move on to more important stuff.
I would argue that writing blogs is the single most important asset to your online marketing arsenal as it greatly helps your SEO (search engine optimisation), but is also very essence of the message you want to get through to your customers. Anyone can do it and it doesn't have to be a work of art, the important thing is to constantly be adding new content to your site. We highly recommend writing a weekly blog, with most of the content being relevant to the products and sector you're in, with a splash of more personal articles for light reading. There's so many articles out there with ideas for blog writing, so definitely get to grips with it and get writing. It will help your website get high up in the Googles, and you might even find it fun!
This is a tricky one to write about in the current climate, as here in the UK at the time of writing, new GDPR legislation is coming into place that prevents companys from sending unsolicited emails to people who have not signed up for them. This change will have a huge effect as companys will need to rebuild their existing email lists from scratch using only the people that have specifically signed up for them. With that said, this is a good time for a fresh start and to figure out if using email campaigns will be an effective and worthwhile part of your marketing strategy. There are a few different ways to do an email campaign, with free and paid options available. Our current favourite service Send in Blue allows you to build lovely looking emails and send it all of your clients simultaneously. It also has built in analytics functionality, meaning you can measure absoloutly everything including who opens your email, who clicks where and who unsubscribed from your mailing list.
We recommend setting up an email service and building up a list of people that want to hear about what you have to offer. It is one of the fastest ways to get your loyal customers back to your site, and sending a new product alert is a must.
Pay per click (PPC) is probably the most tehcnical form of online marketing, as it requires a knowledge of Google's Adwords platform. Using Adwords involves placing bids on searches relevant to your business, to get your adverts featured at the top of Google's search results. There's loads of freelancers and agencys out there who will manage this for you, and will work within your given budget. The advantage of pay per click is that the monthly spend can be set, and won't be exceeded. However due to the technical nature of using the platform, it can seem opaque to a business owner that doesn't understand it, making it difficult to get to grips with. Businesses over a certain size will almost all have a PPC campaign, competing with each other to get their ads placed on the most relevant searches phrases, and we recommend beginners doing a bit of research to find out if it is necessary for your business.
Do your research. The nuts and bolts of your marketing campaign will primarily hinge on what you're selling. For instance, there's a lot of tote bags out there, so you will need to think of what's special about your bags and how to use that as your strategy.
Embrace change. Setup your campaign, run it for a few months and see what sticks and what sucks. Be prepared to change and optimise on the fly to make best use of your time and funds.
Throw money away. Figure out how much you can do yourself before hiring professional help. It can get very expensive farming work out.
Don't be afraid. Whilst there's lots to learn, you can take it a step at a time. Decide which forms of marketing you want to use and give it a go.
As the name suggests, offline marketing is anything that involves not sitting in front of a computer or using a smartphone. Whilst offline has become secondary to online in recent years, it is still important for every business. Offline marketing is the way to interact with your customers face to face, and meeting in person will always be the best method of gaining trust and loyalty. The methods are all tried and tested, but don't think there isn't room to innovate!
A sure-fire way to give people an idea of what you're all about is to get some printed marketing collateral. Whether it's flyers, brochures or leaflets, all can be useful to you as it takes away a lot of the explaining needed to convey what your product offering is. If you're not able to design it yourself, use one of the many pre-made templates available or find some local help. Also consider getting some business cards, which are still very relevant even in the age where they are technically not necessary.
Exhibiting at trade shows and other events is a serious marketing investment, but one which can reap huge rewards as it is the best way to meet face to face with the industrys top buyers. Trade shows exist for just about every sector of business, and typically run for between single day or full week events. To have your own stand at a show typically costs between £1500 - £10,000 all in, with lots of work required in the preperation and running the stand. Our advice would be to visit a show first, and see if it fits your business.
Hosting your own event can be an incredibly rewarding experience, and combined with a well written press release is an absoloutly killer way of spreading the word. Have a grand opening, a birthday party, or event just for the hell of it. Get the local press involved and look after your guests, and you can gain some friends for life. Put together a budget for the event and stick to it. It can be done on the cheap and the press you will recieve will make the event pay for itself in no time.
Get a special offer together and get yourself out there. Engaging people with the right attitude and offer cannot be understated. People are busy and impatient so keep it short and sweet, with a few lines that will grab their attention. Don't be afraid of rejection or making a fool of yourself, and give it a go!
Guerilla marketing requires out of the box thinking and creativity to put together something that won't be easily forgotten. There's no set tactic for this, nor is there is there any specific piece of advice I can give you, as how you will execute a guerilla marketing campaign depends solely on the product you are selling. Try to think of a link between your product and the public environment. It's all about breaking the norms in a visual way, but be careful not to polarize your audience. Something light hearted and fun is likely to win over the masses, whereas something more shocking may win you a smaller but more dedicated audience.
Press releases, awards and accreditations are all ways of giving your business more authority, which helps build trust is your brand and gets you affiliated with organisations that support your cause. Press releases are absolutely recommended and should be considered each time you reach a milestone or have some special news to share. All you have to do is write an article and submit it to local and/or national press. You might not always get featured, but don't worry, what you have written can be utilised for your own blog and social media postings.
Awards ceremonies, typically hosted locally, are good for establishing connections with well known business people and can work as guaranteed free press. See if there are any local business awards and submit an application, it doesn't hurt to try.
Accreditations are given out by organisations typically to company's that meet some kind of ethical standard, or operate to a high standard. This usually involves an application process, and once approved you can use the accreditation on your website or all marketing materials. Consumers are much more discerning nowadays and will gravitate towards a business that is ethical and eco-friendly. Accreditations will help bolster your position in this space and make you much more desirable than competitors without them.
Schmoozing the local business scene is the best way to get a feel for how businesses in your area operate, and establishing allies with powerful people can prove a vital lifeline. The experience and advice they can offer will help fast-track the learning curve and open doors you might never have known existed. You may not enjoy it, but it can help your business grow.
Give it a go. You are responsible for growing your business, so get stuck into some or all of the above ideas.
Be present. Know what's going on around you and exploit any opportunity to spread the word about your business.
Burn through cash. You probably won't have buckets of cash at hand when starting your business, so decide where it is best to put your money.
Don't ignore offline marketing unless you really don't need it. A face to face relationship cannot be underestimated in business.
Online marketplaces are well established websites that allow you to post your products online, paying a fee to the site when you sell items. There are plenty of options that we have all heard of, each with their own strengths. Selling your stuff online using any of these sites is relatively easy and you won't have to worry about things like getting traffic to your site, hosting, and keeping it up to date. Using one of these sites is the way to go if you don't have tech skills or the time needed to setup a more custom solution. Picking which site to sell on will primarily hinge on what kind of products you are selling. Ebay and Amazon are the best way to shift goods fast, and have the largest potential client base. We all know that you can sell just about anything on Amazon and Ebay, with Ebay geared towards unbranded, low cost goods and consumables, whilst Amazon typically sells products with a a slightly higher value. Etsy and Not On The High Street are great options if you are selling customised, or more niche products. These sites have a more discerning audience, who are looking for something more specific and are willing to pay a higher price for it. We recommend Etsy for selling your Doodle Bag's online as the setup is very easy, there's not as many T&C's for sellers as Not on the High Street, and generally has a friendlier crowd where you can establish a loyal fanbase.
Whether it's Amazon, Etsy or Ebay, each will guide you through the setup, telling you what to do every step of the way. Etsy wins the award for easiest to setup with it's user friendly interface and transparent T&C's, with Ebay a close second, although some parts of the desktop UI look like they haven't been updated since the late 90's and you may have to go round the houses to find what you're looking for sometimes.
All of these options require little to no specialist skills, leaving your main responsibility to be writing about and photographing your products in a pleasing way.
Very easy to setup and manage. These platforms are all very well established and any questions you may have are most likely to have already been answered in the past. Mobile apps are available to help you manage your shop on the go. In addition, the traffic is already there, reducing your marketing outlay significantly.
Fees! At the end of the day, your beholden to the big man, paying whatever fees they decide. This should be a legitimate consideration when doing your cost analysis, so be prepared to fork over between 5-15% of your earnings. Also, if you're trying to build a brand that people recognise, you might struggle to get your name out there.
The aim of an all in one website builder is to allow you to have a shop that appears completely custom, but without the complexities that come with making a site from scratch. Platforms such as Wix, Shopify and Squarespace exist to bridge this gap. Visually websites have improved a lot over recent years, with most startups having great looking websites that simply wouldn't have been possible 10 years ago.
All of these platforms are fairly easy to setup, with most having pre made templates to which you can drag and drop your own content into. Documentation and online help is usually excellent. It can be quite time consuming and a bit of design nouse helps, but you should be able to put together a decent looking site within a couple of hours.
Making websites in this way is the quickest channel to having your own site on it's own domain. It takes away a lot of the headaches of web development for a reasonable monthly cost. Hosting, taking payments and technical issues are all taken care of.
These platforms all have a monthly payment, but pricing is usually fair. What you end up with can be a bit cookie cutter, so consider if you're ok following the trend, or whether you want to break the mould.
Platforms such as WordPress and Magento are for building your own web store to your specification, using the plugins and templates of your choosing to get the job done. WordPress is the most popular site building platform because it is open source and has hundreds of thousands of plugins and templates that can help you build your site. It is also great for scaling, and can handle just about anything you can throw at it. It covers all bases in the medium to expert skill levels and can take custom code to modify and create whatever you like. We use WordPress in combination with a heavily modified Woocommerce plugin to create Doodle Bag!
Magento is in a similar vain to WordPress but is completely e-commerce driven. It is very customisable and will scale as you develop. It's not as intuitive as WordPress and is more developer focused so be sure to check it out in action to see if it's for you.
First you will need to buy hosting and a domain. For newcomers this really isn't as difficult as it sounds. Just check the various hosting options available and think of a great .com name to get started. You will then need to upload WordPress into your domain (think of it like installing an app). After that you will need to decide what theme you are going to use for your site, and what e-commerce plugin you will use. There are some very well developed themes available that allow for such a high level of customisation, your site will end up looking completely unique. E-commerce plugins provide all the functionality of your online shop. Woocommerce is by far the most popular and gives you most of the tools you need right off that bat. Extensions to the plugin can be costly, but in most cases worth it in the long run. Full guides are available for creating a WordPress Woocommerce site, so check them out before diving in.
The sky really is the limit with WordPress, with everything being modifiable to make an online shop that is completely unique. Once setup, your running costs are likely to be super low, with hosting being likely being your only monthly outgoing. Payment merchants like Stripe and Paypal will charge you a % of each transaction, but this is significantly lower that using one of the larger platforms like Amazon or Ebay. Once your site is complete you are left with something that will grow with your company, can be taken on by a professional web developer and can be chopped and changed on the fly to keep up with the needs of your business. If you have big plans for the future of your business, it can be worth the extra initial labour.
Due to the individual nature of your site, you may occasionally find yourself in a sticky situation that you need to code yourself out of. Support for themes and plugins is there, but problems can arise when using a combination of these. It's also quite time consuming, with some design skills preferable as you will be in charge for the look of your site.
So you've created your own beautiful website using WordPress or Joomla? So what! It's nothing without people visiting it. You will need to learn about SEO (search engine optimisation) and how to shape your website to it gets visitors. Adwords may also be in order if you are in a particularly competitive sector. You will need to think about how exactly you aim to market your shop, whether it's targeting keywords, social media campaigns, paid campaigns or any other way you can think of to get people to your site. Be prepared for it to be time consuming, but hard work will yield rewards and eventually a business that will sustain itself and be profitable.
Be prepared to enter the matrix. If you want to hit the bigtime, your going to need a completely custom solution. Everything will be coded from scratch, building the world that is your website using lines and lines of code.
First you will need to build the structure of your site using HTML and CSS. If you don't have an in depth knowledge of these programming languages and design software, retreat and find a simpler solution. HTML and CSS work by using tags, followed by the customisation in a specific order. Each element of the page will need to specify it's size, location etc from top to bottom. Running your script will show you what you have created, which is usually followed by debugging session to iron out any problems. Once you have a structure in place, a CMS (content management system) will be needed so the site can be updated when needed. Each field that you want to be modified will need to be on the CMS, so users can add products and make changes to the shop without diving into lines of code.
The end result will be the most beautiful website, made exactly how you imagined it. It will put you are the forefront of web design and will aid you massively in building your brand. Develop the CMS to include only what you need, which allows employees to run it at 100% efficiency. Change anything you like and stay ahead of the game all the time.
Labour costs. You will need skilled coders to create and maintain the site. A web team will need to be in place permanently to aid in its constant development. This solution is for businesses with a high turnover that can afford to build the very best.
We've recently added some beautiful images to our design library, making with more categories than ever available to be used in our product designer. We want to give you as many options as possible when designing tote bags, aprons and tea towels online.
Our set of calligraphic elements add an element of style and sophistication to any design. Used mainly as separators or borders, this collection of elegant lines and swirls look great added under text or between paragraphs.
Most people love coffee, and most will love this little collection of coffee related imagery. Whether you're creating a branded tote bag for your coffee shop, or making a statement about your favourite beverage, these images fit
This one's simple, every country's flag is available in this collection for those looking to represent their home nation. Just use the search bar to quickly find your flag and add it to the design.
Another beautiful set of hand drawn illustrations. Kids party bags are some of the most purchased by our customers and there's more than imagery enough here to create a personalised bag for the special occasion. We recommend the mini tote bag or small shopper bag for kiddies, and why not try creating a bag for each kid at the party?!
Another favourite with the kids, our collection of outer space designs are perfect for any astronaut to be. Create a space scene by placing the images wherever you like and add the child's name for a birthday gift they will love.
Our vintage collection is crammed full of classical items such as bicycles, butterflies and flowers. There's 8 sub-categories available at the moment, we recommend them for small business owners looking to add some brand identity to their design.
The Doodle Bag team have been very busy behind the scenes throughout March, making the site even better for our users. Whilst a lot of the changes are primarily cosmetic, we have also improved some of the core functionality of site. We first went to work on the back-end of the product design tool, implementing features that allow for higher resolution uploads. This means the printed product will look much more sharp and crispy. While we were there, we re-skinned and re-sized the tool so it's more comfortable to use on mobile devices. Next we went to work on each page of the site, starting with the homepage, tidying everything up and turning the eye candy up a few notches. This makes navigation through the site a breeze. The aim is to make the core experience of Doodle Bag easy and fun, and we will continue to improve the site in the future.
If you would like to have your say on what you would like to see on Doodle Bag, fill out a contact form and let us know!
We've tweaked the design tool and the display of the price lists to make it much more mobile friendly, so designing on your smartphone is now easier than ever. Elements will now automatically adjust for your screen size and price lists will no longer get in the way of the experience. It's now easier than ever to create a bag online.
There's also dimensions added to every product so you can get a better idea of scale when designing.
Our most popular bag is now available in a Fair Trade variant. This bag features the same dimensions and high quality construction as our standard cotton tote bag, however is made from Fair Trade Certified Cotton. All our bags are made in Fair Trade Certified factories but this product also features Certified Fair Trade Cotton, with the inner label displaying this. You can design on this bag or buy blank.
The prices of our unprinted bags have been tweaked to make them more affordable to buy either a single unit or in bulk. We want Doodle Bag to be the place to go for blank bags, as we believe in providing a higher quality product at a reasonable price. Many tote bags that are available to buy online are made cheaply and will not stand the test of time, we aim to curb this trend and provide you with a quality product that will last day after day.
We've added more lovely images to our design library, giving you more choice than ever when designing your own bag. Comic book fans will love our 'POW' range of images, reminiscent of the original Batman TV series of the 60's. We're also loving the new collection of super cute birds. These colourful cuties can be added to your design, use as many as you like in combination with your own photos.
Don't forget our introductory offer! There's 20% off everything this Christmas at Doodle Bag. This introductory offer applies to both our printed and unprinted products and lasts until 22nd December 2017. Just enter 'CHRISTMAS2017' at check out to redeem this awesome discount!
For those of you that haven't heard of us Doodle Bag has been open since 2011 but unfortunately development of the site has taken a back seat. However that has all changed as this week we proudly launch our 2.0 site.
We have rebuilt the site from scratch, with the aim of trying to make it the most fun and east to use custom bag site around. Doodle Bag offers you the chance to design your very own tote bag from scratch, with endless options available to make it your own."Design your own" Our fancy new product designer has a vast library of beautiful stock images available for you to use, with re-colouration available for many of the pre-made images, allowing you to combine and place them wherever you want to put together your design. You can also upload your own images from your computer, Facebook or Instagram. There's loads to do, so be sure to explore, especially our design tool as we've loaded it full of beautiful designs and illustrations ready to be printed. "Insert name here" In addition our Personalise It range has a selection of pre made designs, that are ready for you to insert your customisation. Need bag for each of your bridesmaids, or planning a party and want each guest to have their own goody bag? Just use our groups tool to enter each name and voila! You will receive a personalised product for each person. "More to see" Check out our blog highlighting some of the key features of Doodle Bag and familiarise yourself with the possibilities on offer.
"Just need blank bags?" We've got you covered. Our entire range is available to be bought blank. Just select your product and quantity, then checkout!"Thanks for stopping by. We're really excited to re-launch the site and seeing the beautiful works of art you create. If you have any ideas of what you would like to see on the site, visit our suggestions thread. We're also available via our live chat tool if you get stuck or have any questions.
As well as being able to choose any colour for your custom text, we also have patterns available. Simply click on the "Patterns" tab next to "Colour" and choose one of our colourful textures.
Want your face on a bag!? We’ve made it super easy to upload your own photos. Just use the ‘add image’ tool to either upload from your computer, or login with Facebook or Instagram and select a picture from your profile. Why not create a collage of you favourite pics? We also have advanced image editing options available. Just hit the button and you will then be able to crop photos, add filters, and adjust an images brightness and contrast.
There’s loads of options available to create a unique piece of text including transparency, alignment and outlines. Make it exactly how you want it.
Be sure to check out the bulk discounts available for ordering higher quantities. There’s massive savings to be had for ordering 2, 10, 25, 50 and 100 units. We also offer free shipping for mainland UK addresses!
We have hundreds of ready made images, illustrations and symbols that can be combined and created. Browse our library of beautiful images and insert onto your product, then place, resize and rotate to your hearts content. Expert Tip: Some images can be recoloured. If you see the swatch box in the image’s menu, you can customise the colours to anything you like!
Keep control of your design by using the ‘Manage Layers’ tool. Here you can lock individual items and adjust the order in which they appear on the final design. You can also easily re-colour images within the layers menu.
If you just need some blank products, then view our unprinted range and checkout. It’s that simple. There’s no minimum order quantity either.
Keep track of all your Doodle bag orders with our Account Management page. Here you can view the status of your order, re-order if you would like the same again, and edit your addresses, details and payment methods. If you need any further help then just get in touch with us for a fast and friendly response.
The launch of our new website allows us to create truly unique products together, and we want to provide you with as many tools as possible to create a product just the way you want it! We would like your input to help improve Doodle Bag to make it the most fun, functional and easy to use way of creating custom printed products. At the bottom of this page you will find a comments box where you can submit your suggestions to us, and if it's possible, we'll implement it! Here's a few examples of the kind of things we want your input on.:
Want us to stock a new product? What kind of product would you like to see on Doodle Bag? It doesn't have to be a tote bag. We're open to suggestions of what kind of personalised products you would like to see.
We've stuffed our design library with as many high quality images as possible, but if you think there's something missing, we would love to hear from you. We want our design library to be ever expanding, and if there's a particular genre of image you think would be great in the design library we welcome your suggestions.
Our Personalise It range is intended to make personalising simple. Just add your name, or even multiple names and checkout! We love creating new ready to go personalised products as this is the easiest way to create a gift, or matching set of customised bags. There's so many possibilities with this range, so get in touch with your ideas!
In addition, if you see something that's not quite working the way you expect it to, let us know below.