So You Think You Can Write Your Own Website Content?

So you think you can write your own website content huh? Let my tell you the number one reason that’s a mistake for any business: It’s because….you cannot be objective about yourself.

You cannot step outside yourself and your business to see it from your customer’s point of view or anyone else’s for that matter. You are too close to it, too immersed in it, to see it for what it really is. In other words, you are biased, prejudice toward your business, and that reduces your ability to be even remotely effective at writing something directed toward your customer’s needs, desires and interests. And without being able to do that, you will not succeed at gaining their interest, their trust and ultimately their business.

Let’s get one thing straight right off the bat: writing a blog does not qualify anybody to write website content – they are two entirely different types of writing with two very different purposes.

Anybody can write a blog – as you and I have witnessed on the internet on a daily basis. Blogs are very informal and can be written about anything, anywhere, by anybody. Don’t get me wrong, blogs have a good place in the business world, but only if you know the correct way to use one. Nobody cares what you made or ate for breakfast unless your blog is about eating, cooking or food. Over and over I see bloggers – usually business people who give it a try for about 6 months before they run dry of topics and get too busy to do it – that think their blog is just the cutest thing going on the internet. To them, I’m sure it is, but in 95% of all cases, they are the only ones who think that.

Every business owner thinks their business is the Cat’s meow; otherwise, they wouldn’t be doing it. But what if it’s not? What if you are the only one that thinks pink bobby pins (or whatever you are into) are the greatest thing since sliced bread? And you know what else?  Most business owners are rarely ever objective enough to even realize when they are failing.

This article is not to discourage you from starting a business or thinking yours can make it; this is about giving you a little slap in the face, a wakeup call of objectivity, and a dose of reality. You think nobody knows your business better than you do. And you are right, but that doesn’t mean you know how to make it attractive to somebody else: someone who is not you. If you were a good writer, marketer, advertiser, you would be doing that for a living. But you are not a writer, you are a business owner, and your business is what you are in the business of. Therefore, you are not the best person to write about it or promote it. You are the best person to run it, and maybe not even that. Some business owners just have a good idea, but no clue how to implement it or how to run it. Hopefully those people have the insight to delegate those areas they are weak in to someone who can do the job better for them. Being successful in business is also having the ability to know when to hand off a task to someone who can do it better and make you look better. Not many people are really good at writing. Stringing sentences together enough to not sound like an illiterate idiot does not qualify as being a good writer, and when it comes to content writing, there is a whole lot more to it than just writing coherent sentences. To be an effective content writer, you have to have some advertising / marketing experience or background. First of all, you have to know how to work an audience (the reader). Secondly, you have to know what it takes to bring it home. In the case of website content writing, you have to know what it takes to compete with billions of other websites in a venue that is oversaturated daily with garbage nobody pays attention to. You have to know how to write in such a way as to be competitive, alluring, generate a response and ultimately, gain a following. All of these qualifications for good content writing can only be achieved if you do it professionally, have studied the market, the competition, the target market, effective writing skills etc.

In a nutshell, as a business owner, you don’t have time to be a good writer too. I do it for a living, and I can tell you, it’s a full time job just keeping up with the latest market trends, ad gimmicks, consumer fads and the competition.

How to Achieve Insane Productivity

How to Achieve Insane Productivity.

by Redstone Promotional Communications

“The higher your energy level, the more efficient your body. The more efficient your body, the better you feel and the more you will use your talent to produce outstanding results.” – Tony Robbins

Sources of Productive Strength or Weakness:

1. Emotions

2. Health

3. Mindfulness

4. Spirit Connection

business_woman_pinching_foreheadEmotions: I’m sure you are all well aware that if you feel depressed, you are not going to accomplish much that day. Some people have the amazing ability to “leave it at home.” Whatever is bothering them, they are still able to focus on getting their work done. The key word here is “focus.” We all have problems we are dealing with in our personal lives, but you know what, they will still be there when you get done with your work and then that is the time to focus your mind on those parts of your life.

Health: Physical health can make or break your productivity mostly because your physical health affects your mental well-being as well. The two go hand in hand. So to function at your maximum ability level, you have to have a healthy mind and body.

Mindfulness: Is the practice of staying in the present moment. In terms of productivity, it means focusing on one task at a time. Finish the task in front of you before moving on to the next task on your list. Prioritize in the morning which tasks have to be done that day and which can wait. So much for multi-tasking. People are actually starting to realize that when you multi-task, you end up getting less done and what you do get done you don’t do very well because you are always thinking 2-3 steps ahead of yourself.

Spirit Connection: This means being in tune with your inner self. What your strengths and weaknesses are, finding peace and being at peace with who you are and what you have to do will clear your mind and be the greatest tool you have to accomplish productivity. A clear mind, a mind that is at peace, can accomplish incredible tasks because it is free to look at a situation and instantly figure out the best solution. You can be so much more efficient with your problem solving and task management if your mind is clear. Try it, you will be amazed.

Tools for Insane Productivity:

1. Prioritize

2. Schedule

3. Efficiency

4. Down Time

stack-of-papersSchedule and Prioritize: There are only a few things in a day that absolutely MUST be done that day, the rest can wait. We tend to defeat our productivity levels right off the bat by letting the feeling of being overwhelmed prevent us from moving forward and getting anything done. What task management is all about is prioritizing. If something you have to do gets pushed back a whole month, so be it, it must not be that important anyway. So for the moment, let it go so you can focus on what absolutely has to be done today.

Set up your work week. On Monday, make a physical note, either write it down or put it in your smartphone, of what you plan to accomplish each day of the week. With all of today’s handy gadgets, take advantage of your electronic and digital tools to really make your life more efficient. Make a “to-do-today” list for yourself. Once you write down your task schedule, you can forget about it, and your mind is freed up to focus on accomplishing those tasks instead of trying to remember everything you have to do. Trying to remember things takes up a tremendous amount of brain power and effort.

Being Sidetracked: Being the manager of a busy graphics department, I was bombarded with interruptions all day long. It was extremely difficult not to get sidetracked and to stay focused on what I needed to get done rather than fixing everybody else’s problems. If you have a job like this, where distractions and interruptions are constantly a factor, keeping a cool head is the only way to accomplish anything. If you get frustrated by the constant interruptions, get easily sidetracked from your daily goals, and part of your job is handling such interruptions, then you must find a way to tell yourself, “Okay, what’s more important? What I have to get done, or dealing with these other issues? Again, even in this situation, prioritization will be the only thing that keeps you sane. If you get overwhelmed with everybody coming to you with their demands, you will get that sinking feeling again of not being able to accomplish what you set out to. And if your plans get foiled, you have to ease up on your goals for that day. You have to tell yourself you may not get everything on your task list done today. And that’s okay. It will be there tomorrow. Just prioritize every interruption or demand as it comes to you, and focus on what needs to be dealt with that moment, and then move on.

Being Efficient: You’ve heard the saying, “Work smart not harder?” Well it’s true for efficiency as well. If you work efficiently, you will automatically be working smarter not harder. The key to being efficient is what we already mentioned above about scheduling and prioritizing as well as finding a rhythm, your grove, to instill a set of steps that work for you. People hate to do the same thing over and over again, but the fact remains, this is the most efficient way to do things. The very principle behind the assembly line invented by Henry Ford was to make the worker more efficient, by only giving him/her a few tasks to do, that had to be done in a certain order, in certain steps, with certain procedures. You find a pace and method of completing your work tasks that allows you to do them the quickest and best way possible; then you keep doing it that way. This may involve some trial and error, until you find a routine that is the ultimate way to accomplish what you need done. But once you experiment and find that niche, you will eventually be able to do it blindfolded; which makes you the most efficient person at doing your job. If you start to get really bored and find yourself zoning out because your job is a little too routine, find other things in your life to mix it up a bit, but don’t mess with your routine that works. Because, this stead-fast and efficient routine will allow you to have the time to focus on and do other things in your life that are more important to you. If you complete all your morning tasks, treat yourself to going out of work for lunch, or a walk, or to sit and relax in a park.

Down Time: Is an important part of effective up time. You must have time to recharge your batteries, this is a crucial part of being more creative, more efficient, more productive. Once you start to work more efficiently and productively, you will find work life so much more pleasurable and you will automatically start to implement the same attitudes and work ethic into your personal life as well. Eventually the goal is to set up a lifestyle you don’t feel you have to take a vacation from, just to enjoy 2 weeks of your life a year. You will have more free time, more relaxation time, more contemplative time throughout the year. Then…reward yourself for a job well done. Use that free time from your insane productivity to do the things you love on a daily basis: Sit and have coffee with a friend, or lunch, read a book, take yoga, listen to music. Whatever floats your boat.

How to Make the Internet Work for You: Change Your Bait.

Internet Marketing Advice from a Company With Over 30 Years in the Promotion Industry.

Your business can no longer afford to be mediocre, because you are no longer just competing with the local businesses in your town, but global businesses online, and unless you have a great deal of money to throw at it, the internet will never make you rich. Oh sure, everybody says, “But Amazon did it, and Google did it, and Facebook did it….” Again, look at the big picture. The Big 5 got that way by not only falsely representing the internet, and themselves a wee bit, but by being in a position to throw a ton of money and time at doing it. Something the average business owner does not have.

We will apologize for all the clichés about to come, but they happen to be the best way to describe the false euphoria that has always surrounded the internet since its inception. Of course, the BIG 5 (Google, Facebook, Yahoo, Twitter, Amazon, and now we can add Pinterest to that mix) all want you to think that the internet is this wonderful LaLa Land of fantasy where all you have to do is slap up a website and the money will fall into your lap by the millions. This get-rich-quick notion is what spawned the internet in the first place. It was all clever marketing, and, somewhat deceptive, as many people are now realizing. The Big 5 started launching the internet by spreading all these stories of businesses that had become million-dollar successes because of the World Wide Web. And of course, millions of people with their heads in the clouds bought it, and wha-lah, the internet took off, but now that they have had time to experience the reality of the internet, business owners are left spinning their wheels trying to figure out why it isn’t working like The Big 5 said it would.

Regardless of all the false hopes and dreams trumped up by internet promoters, the internet has now become the basis for all our communication these days, so how can a business or individual actually compete against all that stiff competition in a hugely over-saturated market?

There is such a thing as too much of a good thing. Everybody has jumped on the internet bandwagon making it ineffective for everybody because it is now so flooded with “wanttabees” that nobody stands out. It’s like putting a worm on a hook and throwing it out into the ocean expecting a hit in 5 minutes or less. You may get lucky with a one in a million shot, but there’s a 99% chance your worm won’t even be seen by a fish for miles and miles.

The customers that come to Redstone for advice the most are the Mom and Pops who are finding that the internet is not working for them. Or at the very least, it’s nowhere near meeting their expectations as the Big 5 internet promoters promised them. Just how does a business compete within the enormous internet? You don’t. You can’t “compete” with it, and thinking you can is like beating your head against a brick wall. Do you really want to keep doing that? Therefore, you have to change the way you look at the internet pond.

How can a small fish in a big pond ever do anything other than just get eaten alive? First, you must start thinking of the internet as nothing more than a tool, a resource, and stop thinking you are ever going to be one of those internet success stories.

So, as a tool then, how can you make the internet work for you instead of against you? Realize that it is just another medium for your business; another location or storefront if you will. If you literally built another location or store for your business, you would not simply slap up a building and expect people to just show up to buy your product now would you? Yet people do that very thing daily with the internet and their website. Just like any business location, you first build it, then you promote the heck out of it to get customers to know it is there. But with the internet, even this strategy does not work for the majority of websites. Smart businesses have learned to use the internet as an extension of their already existing business, but by no means is it their primary target or their main strategy. If you are an internet-only business, then you really have your work cut out for you, but as a retailer, many are learning to use the internet as just another business tool or location. They offer their website as nothing more than an online shopping convenience for that anti-social consumer market that would rather click a button to purchase than drive to a store. Really savvy business owners have discovered ways to use their website above and beyond just another place for consumers to order stuff.

Some retailers have even started to use online shopping to their advantage to drive traffic to their physical stores by offering a solution to something most online shoppers abhor: shipping fees. You are probably seeing more and more retailers offering “in store pickup” to avoid the ever-increasing cost of shipping for online shoppers. Even online retailers are trying to address this issue by offering free shipping over a certain purchase amount. This is extremely smart, because it offers a solution to the consumer to the one big problem of internet shopping which is paying for high shipping costs, and, for businesses with local store pickup, it gets consumers coming back to a physical store location: the ultimate goal for retailers, and, they offer something to consumers the internet will never have – security by ordering from a more trusted, local, supplier with a physical location shoppers can relate to.

shutterstock_124904114-1We offer a few tried and true alternatives below:

What Would You Do if the Internet Didn’t Exist?

You would find some other way to promote yourself. Exactly!

For some reason, now that the internet has become our way of living, people have forgotten that there was ever any other way. The most direct way to go about becoming a big fish instead of a small fish is to reduce the size of your pond – promote yourself locally and stop wasting money trying to compete globally online.

There has been a sudden increase in promotional product companies in the last 2-3 years. This is because savvy small business owners are going back to promoting themselves by any means other than the internet because they remembered that is was once a tried and true form of promotion that everybody dropped by the wayside to go online, and that by going back to other forms of promotion, they will stand out among the crowd (become a bigger fish in a smaller pond). Direct mail, believe it or not, is making a small comeback for this very reason. So is the use of visual communications or promotions like T-shirts, hats and jackets with a business logo on them. Putting something physical in the hands of your consumer instead of expecting them to remember you in a 2 second encounter on the internet is a much better ROI (return on investment). Businesses that are dumping the internet advertising and going back to the old-fashioned promotional methods are discovering it is much more rewarding, efficient and successful.

Go Back to Your Local Roots.

So…take advantage of the latest “go local” craze and do more with it as a business and you will get better results. In other words, you have been fishing with the wrong bait. Even though the internet has become a popular means of consumerism, it is only one form of it, and not a very trustworthy one at that; for consumers or businesses.

Going as local as you possibly can makes your pond considerably smaller. It’s better to be a noticed fish in a small pond than a small fish lost in oblivion in the enormous internet pond. Boost your business locally instead of globally. A small business will never be able to compete with the huge global chains, and your small business is just falling through the cracks on the internet. By all means, keep your internet presence, because you can use it and a large percentage of your market still prefers to click a button to get what they want rather than actually getting into a car to do it. But,  stop wasting your advertising dollars on pay per click (ppc) ads that generate very few real sales and attract mostly spammers. Everybody tries to use the internet for advertising because it’s so much cheaper than any other form of advertising out there; but, it is not effective either, thus you are wasting your money on something that is not producing effective results. Your ROI is rarely ever met with online advertising because the traffic you get is 90% from spammers just looking for ways to solicit your business, not shop it.

Become More a Part of Your Community Rather Than the Internet Community.

If possible, hold or sponsor local events. As big as Whole Foods is, and REI, and a few other rather large, successful retailers, you will see them still offering or sponsoring a great many community events. I was at REI the other day getting very frustrated because they were swamped and didn’t have enough staff to handle the extra traffic they were getting from holding a mock garage sale at their store. In their back parking lot (which just increased congestion for parking around their store unfortunately) they had a “swap” whereby anybody could bring in their used sports gear and trade it with somebody else at the swap. The only unfortunate part of the success of this store event was that REI did not make sure they had enough staff scheduled to handle all the extra traffic generated by this successful community gathering. Or maybe, they failed to realize just how successful it was going to be. However, I’m betting they continue this event for years to come and will improve the parking and staff situation greatly the next time.

Whole Foods constantly holds in-store events, or in their parking lot, and they will sponsor many local events. This not only keeps their name out there in the community but goes a long way toward their branding and improving their local image.

If nothing else, and at the very least, go back to promoting yourself locally by sending out direct mail (brochures, flyers, special discounts etc) within your community. Yes, people still use the mail, and you can take advantage of that fact locally whereby most global businesses cannot. Locally is where you have an advantage over the global competition.

If You’re Gonna Have a Website, Make it Work.

“If you build it they will come” is the WRONG philosophy to have when it comes to your website on the internet. When you realize that out of the billions of websites on the internet only a handful are really popular, that leaves a lot of small fish swimming around in a big pond and getting nowhere.

Again, you wouldn’t slap up a store location and do nothing to make sure people knew it was there. Too many businesses slap up DiY websites then sit back and just wait for the money to start rolling in by the bagfuls, then later start to wonder why it isn’t happening that way.

It’s because your website is just sitting there DOING nothing. It’s just a pretty face with no brains. Nice to look at, it gives the illusion of a website, but it doesn’t really function or benefit your business. People try to save money by building their own websites, but what they don’t realize is that any money you spend on having a website built professionally, the right way, will pay for itself ten times over (and usually more.) 70% of our website design business at Redstone comes from DiYers who finally came to realize that they didn’t really save themselves any money, and wasted a ton of their valuable time, trying to set up their own website. Oh sure, you may have a DiY website that you’re getting a few sales through, but it’s not producing nearly as much as it could be for your business, and that is wasteful time and money you are throwing away.

Just to be clear here, we are not suggesting you give up on the internet entirely. If you really cannot bring yourself to give up on those nasty, ineffective ppc ads, then try to be savvy about it. What we are suggesting here is that you don’t make the internet your business focus. Make your business your focus, which is using every means possible to promote it successfully and effectively; and that is not by using the internet.

If you have any doubt that what we are saying is true, just take note of what the Big fish are doing. Even Amazon, Twitter, Google and Facebook do not rely solely on the internet for their advertising and promotion. Twitter has managed to get their name dropped constantly by the NFL during televised football games. Amazon advertises their Kindle on television. Facebook uses “Likes” to get their followers to do their advertising for them and even Google, the King of the internet, advertises their latest toys on television on occasion. So there, even the Big 5 do not rely 100% on the monster they created to stay big. And remember the Yahoo commercials when they first started out?

Most small business cannot afford to promote themselves on t.v, but there are so many other ways to promote yourself that business owners seem to have forgotten about.

This all leads us to our next article which is “What Makes One Promotional Product Company any Better Than the Rest.”

Looking for website design, maintenance or updating? See here.

Vehicle Wraps / Decals

It used to be that if you wanted your vehicle to look this awesome, or unique, you had to pay thousands of dollars for a custom paint job. But, automotive decal materials have come a long way in the last 5 years, and now you can give your vehicle a custom look for as little as $100 to $200 dollars. If you could make your car look this unique and awesome for $100, would you do it? Heck yeah. Not only because it is the coolest thing ever, but because vehicle decals are a very effective and inexpensive form of advertising with a huge return on investment. In essence, they are a roaming billboard, and you would be hard-pressed to advertise anywhere for $100 these days, so why not take advantage of them? Plus, if it turns out you don’t like it or you are selling the vehicle, you can always remove decals, you can’t remove a custom paint job.

Our vehicle wraps and decals are weatherproof, high quality vinyl and ink with a UV protective coating added. On average, a vehicle decal can be expected to last about 5-6 years before it starts to fade or gets scratched up from weather. Depending on the climate where you live, and if you keep the vehicle in a garage, park it in the shade most of the time or not, will also determine how long your decals last. Sun is the most damaging force when it comes to decals.

2003mintVWbeetlePartial Vehicle Wraps vs Full Wraps:

You’ve probably seen them; cars or trucks that are one big decal, with the entire vehicle being covered with advertising, art and logos. We don’t necessarily recommend full vehicle wraps simply because they tend to blend into traffic more. Partial vehicle wraps tend to actually have more impact than full wraps because the design stand out from the vehicle more and the vehicle’s body shape is used to accentuate the artwork. In other words, when it comes to vehicle wraps, less is more. Automotive sign shops tend to go overboard with wraps and then they have the opposite effect of what is intended: to get your business noticed.

Also, we don’t usually recommend full vehicle wraps as they tend to crack over time.

How do You Get Started with a Vehicle Wrap?

First, you have to contact our design team and tell them what you are thinking about having done. Once a budget is set, that will determine how much decal work you can have done. If you do not have any ideas in mind as to how you want your vehicle to look, our automotive design team can certainly come up with some for you. Just send us copies of your logos and business information and we can send you 2-3 custom design ideas to choose from. Once your design is decided on, it will take at least 1-2 days to complete your vehicle wrap depending on how detailed the project is. So be prepared to be without your vehicle for at least 1-2 days.
vehicle decals

We will also require that you drop your vehicle off at our shop, so please arrange for transportation back to your home or office after you drop off your vehicle. To get started, please contact us with your vehicle decal project ideas and we can email a bid to you.

New Promotional Products for 2016

Here’s just a few of the HOTTEST NEW promo products we are offering for 2016.

storage water bottle

 

Water bottles with storage compartments.

How many times do you need some place to put your keys and phone when jogging, in class or going for a day hike, walk or drive?

This sports bottle is waterproof too, so if you drop it in the lake while boating, it will float and protect your valuables.

Businesses can put your logo imprint on it as well.

We have many styles at many price ranges. Contact us if you are interested and we can email you some product pics and pricing.

Get one for your kid for school with their name on it. Great for college kids.

 

exercise resistor strips and bandsExercise resister strips and bands.

Put your business logo or slogan on something fitness people use all the time. Resister bands and strips are the latest rage in portable exercise equipment people can use in the office or at home.

 

 

cell phone stand,wallet, earplugs

 

Cellphone stand, wallet and ear plug storage in one. These are so inexpensive you won’t believe it. Just 3.99 with your logo imprint. Give them away as promotional gifts. They will be used by your recipients for everyday convenience and they may even ask you if they can buy more from you. We’ve had people ask us where they can buy these handy gadgets.

If you are looking for something cheaper yet, we have several cute varieties of cell phone stands that make great give-aways as well.

Honey Labels

Honey jars can come in all shapes and sizes. If you are a beekeeper looking for labels for your honey jars, we have several designs already created to choose from that specifically fit various sizes of mason jars or canning jars, just add your personal information. Or, we can create your very own unique branding look and feel.

Contact us for a custom design, or order our pre-designed labels here.

Responsive Web Design

Is your website mobile-compliant?

Last year Google announced that any website that does not meet their standards for being mobile-friendly will be at the bottom of their search results. Website designers everywhere have been scrambling ever since to redesign all their old website. Us included.

Google is really being assholes about this. If a person doesn’t want their site to be mobile-friendly, they shouldn’t be forced to do so, but….Google is the ruler of the entire internet kingdom, so what choice do we have?

For a site to be being mobile-friendly, it has to be built as a “responsive” site. Meaning it will respond and adjust itself no matter what device it is being viewed on. Of course, even a responsive site will lose a great deal at the size of a cell phone screen, but again, what can a person do? The entire world lives on mobile phones these days. So it’s comply or be dumped, basically.

For more information on our website design and updating, see here.

Farmer’s Market Promo Kits

We give special pricing to farmer’s market vendors as a way to show we appreciate what they do and to offer them our support to help their farming business grow.

Our farmer’s market kits make great starter packages or replacement packages. You can even customize these for your needs.

9637996290_NwvXwFarmer’s Market Starter Kit:

  • 500 business cards for $9.99
  • One custom designed 2′ x 4 ‘ full color vinyl weatherproof banner for $11.99
  • 500 Custom printed paper shopping bags for $0.59 each

Farmer’s Market Deluxe Kit:

All of the above plus…

  • Medium size custom printed tablecloth with logo on the long side that hangs down for $69 each.
  • Full color trifold brochures or price lists to hand out. 500 for $0.25 each.

Or….Make up Your Own Kit:

Mix and match the options above, or tell us what you need and we will give you a good price.

To qualify for farmer’s market special pricing, you must provide us with your vendor name, the market you participate in and what days you are there. We will verify this information with the market manager.

To order your kit or customize your own, contact us.

Polo Shirt Buyer’s Guide

Types of Polo Shirt Fabrics and How They Perform

Since 1933 the polo shirt (originally “tennis shirt”) has become so popular it is now the largest category of apparel besides t-shirts. And, in the 1990’s it became the standard for informal business attire. As its popularity grew, so did the number of styles. Today there are thousands of polo shirt styles on the market. Consumers can find themselves confused and misinformed as to which style of polo shirt is best for their needs.

Performance Polo Shirts:

Performance polo’s (also known as Dry Blend) are all about comfort and style under extreme conditions. They are popular with golfers, athletes and employees that want to maintain a business casual appearance when active in hot conditions.In other words, they do not show sweat stains as much as most fabrics.

The performance polo shirt category tends to be dominated by higher end brands such as Nike, Adidas and Bobby Jones. As a result you will tend to pay more for these shirts. From a decoration standpoint, performance polo’s are an excellent choice for embroidery but are not suitable for printing. Popular performance polo’s include the Nike 203690 Dri-Fit with UV sun protection rated at SPF 30 and The Adidas A21 Climalite golf shirt with anti-microbial treatment to reduce odor.

Jersey-Knit-495x400
Jersey knit
All-Cotton-Pique-Knit-Mesh-1500x896
All cotton pique knit

Blended Polo Shirts:

Blended polo shirts are a tradeoff between cost and performance. Blended polo’s make excellent work uniforms due to their reasonable price point, resistance to stains, and their durability. Like performance polo shirts they embroider logos well but are typically not suitable for printing, although it is commonly done with mixed results. A favorite blended polo recommended by our food service customers is the 438M by Jerzees its reasonably priced, looks great, and is stain resistant starting at around $12!

100% Cotton Polo Shirts:

Cotton polo shirts look great and provide the most comfort of all your options. Cotton polo’s do have some disadvantages over blended and performance polo’s. Any shirt that is 100% cotton can and will shrink. Manufacturers will ship them both preshrunk and a bit oversized to accommodate any additional shrinkage, however the shrinkage may not always be predictable. A customer that washes in hot water and/or dries in high heat will likely shrink almost any 100% cotton knot polo shirt. Cotton is also prone to wrinkles and is not very stain resistant.

There are several different types of cotton and a few different fabric styles. Interlock cotton shirts have a soft, smooth texture. Pique knit shirts are the most common and many customers call it “holey” or “bumpy”. Some pique fabrics are heavier and some finer but this is usually determined by the type of cotton. Combed cotton is the most basic and cheapest cotton. Pique polo shirts with combed cotton tend to be heavier. Pima cotton is usually finer as it is a finer thread. Pima cotton tends to have fewer imperfections/impediments so it is a finer softer thread than just combed cotton. Our most popular 100% pima cotton polo style is the D100 by Devon & Jones.

Jersey Knit Polo Shirts (T-Shirts with a collar):

Jersey knit polo shirts are the most cost effective shirt you can buy. From a style standpoint they are a small step up from a t-shirt thus the description “T-Shirt with a collar”. These shirts typically do not hold up well to repeated washing cycles and are not particularly stain resistant. Jersey knit polo can be decorated with embroidery, DTG Printing, or silkscreening with DTG printing or silkscreening providing the best looking result.

Polyester Polos: While they don’t wrinkle or shrink, appear very light and are resistant to staining, they also offer very limited breathability meaning you will sweat a lot, and they look quite cheap. They also cannot usually be printed or embroidered.

Linen Polo Shirts: In recent years, linen has become more popular for all kinds of knitwear and some offer linen for polo shirts. With its crisp look and sophisticated wrinkles, it certainly adds another dimension but it is also much rougher than cotton. As such it is only recommended in blends if you want the crinkly linen look.

Silk Polo Shirts: Light, comfortable and shiny silk seems like a great fiber for polo shirts at first but pure silk is not a good fabric for polo shirts because it loses its color when it gets hot and wet. Sometimes you can find cotton-silk or linen-silk blends that can work for polo shirts but pure silk is not recommended.

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Knits vs Fabric:

In terms of breathability, and open pique knit is superior to any Jersey knit. So, what is knitting? Knitting is the process of interloping yarns, and there are many ways to knit but for the purpose of this article, we focus on just two basic knit categories that are the most relevant for polo shirts.

Pique Knit, also known as piquee knit, this is not to be confused with marcella pique fabric which is woven. The reason it is called pique is because of the characteristic, three-dimensional waffle look, also found in the marcella pique weave. Pique knit is not only flexible but also breathable, and, therefore, the most popular polo shirt knit. The scale of the waffle can differ tremendously, and different kinds of knits are in existence. For more breathability, you want bigger holes, and for less weight, you want a smaller knit.

Jersey Knits have a smooth surface that is similar to a t-shirt or fine sweater. Often this knit is used for less expensive polo shirts but it can also be used for higher quality polo shirts. It simply creates a different look, and at the end of the day it all depends on your taste. In terms of breathability, and open pique knit is superior to any Jersey knit.

To order polo shirts, see our print shop under apparel.

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