Why Your Martial Arts School Should Sell Custom Retail

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Whenever we go to martial arts events and conferences, we love seeing all the logo gear from schools across the country. It’s fun to recognize schools in the Zen Planner family, as well as to meet people from schools we’ve not yet talked with. But without logo clothing, it’s hard to recognize students and staff from the many schools across the world. Which leads us to today’s blog post topic- custom retail gear.

We think stocking and selling custom retail gear is a smart business decision. If you’re on the fence about introducing it at your school, we’re hoping these many benefits will change your mind.

Marketing and Advertising

With custom gear, you’re able to advertise and market to people in your local community through your branded clothing. When students wear your logo gear out and about, they’re recommending your school to everyone they come across (essentially becoming a walking billboard).

krav maga seattle action shot

Community Building

Logo gear strengthens the sense of community you’ve worked so hard to build. Students who’ve been with you a while will proudly wear your first generation logo clothing because it will set them apart from your new students. New students will hurry to buy logo clothing so they can (proudly) be part of the family too.

Han Lee Kids

Differentiation

Logo gear differentiates you from other schools in your area and demonstrates that you’re well structured and well established.

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Discipline

Custom uniforms and gear reinforce a sense of discipline by ensuring all students are dressed the same and using the same equipment. As your students look down the line, they will notice this order and discipline.

martial-arts-branded-uniforms

Added Profit

Custom retail items provide an additional profit center for your school. With markups of at least 20% more than the wholesale cost, that added income can be significant.

As for the custom retail gear you should consider stocking, our friends at Revgear suggest the following:

  • Logo apparel: Whether it’s shirts, sweatshirts, sweat pants or hats, logo apparel is a smart investment and a good place to start.
  • Gloves and protective equipment: Gloves and protective equipment are also great because selling these things assures safety and quality for your students. Sure, your students could find some of these items cheaper on Amazon, but by selling them, your students know all items are instructor recommended and approved.
  • Gym bags: Since many of your students change clothes before and after class, gym bags meet a need for your students and serve as are another opportunity for advertising your school.

When you’re ready to get started selling custom gear, make the jump by ordering a few of each size of each item you want to carry. Then restock as you sell out. If you use your student management software’s inventory capabilities, you’ll be surprised at how easy the whole process is. Check out this case study featuring Seattle Krav Maga to learn more about how they manage their retail with student management software.


Retail is an excellent way to bring additional revenue into your school. If your looking for additional ways to increase revenue and tighten up your finances, get your copy of our guide Six Building Blocks to Financial Health for Your School.

martial arts financial guide

Shilo Lucyk

Shilo Lucyk

In her spare time Shilo enjoys teaching yoga classes, doing CrossFit® and reading anything she can get her hands on.

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