Do you want to know how much money clothing lines make yearly? If YES, here are 7 factors that determine the profit margin for clothing lines. In today’s economy, more people are becoming independent contractors or freelancers, or they have decided to start their own businesses. Whether it is built-up from frustration over the lack of jobs or it is a lifelong dream, many adults have chosen to take the risk and run their own businesses.

A clothing line may be a shop that sells clothing and accessories made by other designers; they may also make and sell their own designs, or a combination of both. Whether the shop sells its designs or not, clothing line owners are tasked with virtually every aspect of the business from the layout and design of the shop to buying, marketing and accounting.

Meanwhile, if the shop sells its own designs exclusively, the owner is also responsible for production and distribution. There are clothing lines scattered across the world. Their shops tend to be small and are run by one owner, a husband and wife team, or even siblings. In some cases, clothing line owners may own multiple shops locally or in other regions close to them. Many business owners started working in retail shops and learned the in’s and out’s of the business by being around it.

7 Factors That Determine the Estimated Yearly Revenue of Clothing Lines

There really is no way to determine the average revenue of clothing Lines. There are just too many variables to consider. These variables include:

  1. Location

First, you have to understand that even your manufacturing cost and business income will largely depend on your manufacturing location because of the labor fees involved which are different for each country. When it comes to small scale manufacturing, this is particularly important.

The premium for making low quantities and minimum order sizes (MOQs) are significantly higher in Western countries. Note that this is also the reason why countries such as China, Bangladesh, and the Philippines are much more common manufacturing locations compared to the US and other European countries.

  1. Manufacturing Costs

This is one of the main factors that will determine the income of any clothing line. Manufacturing cost is the main focus of every clothing line business plan and it can dictate the size of your business along with your target market. Most importantly, there are sub-factors to consider which are related to materials and the production process. Just make sure that your production cost and target price line up.

  1. Design Costs

Your designs are a crucial factor when starting a clothing line. This serves as the backbone of your products. Note that many people acquire shirts because of their print and only bother about the garment quality or comfort later. This does not mean you have to compensate for quality and comfort for design, but it only goes to express how you need to spend time on your designs.

  1. Quantity

Have it in mind that manufacturing cost decreases as order quantity increases and this applies to all manufacturing. Factories tend to charge less when you are ordering in large quantities (because they have setup cost). If you are planning to make 500 shirts you would obviously save money in terms of manufacturing cost.

Even though some custom clothing manufacturers can still realize such small quantities, there is still a premium to that. Nonetheless, the quantity you would like to produce is also crucial to the outcome and revenue of your business. When starting out, it’s still always advisable to order a small quantity. The market has to be tested and feedback collected.

  1. Labor Costs

Indeed, no one will advise you to become a one man wrecking crew when starting a clothing line. Instead, you need to have staff working with you including third-party service people (like fulfillment). You also have to pay these employees for their worth. Employees who are underpaid are the ones who will not work up to the right level expected from them. Note that these expenses will affect the revenue point of your clothing line.

  1. Material Costs

Also note that the cost of raw materials is a major factor that will affect your business income. Expenses for fabrics, packaging, labels, etc. should be summed under materials cost. Taken together with the labor cost based on the production location and the order quantity, this constitutes your manufacturing cost, and together they dictate your profit margin.

  1. Marketing Costs

A lot of businesses take advantage of the social media as a form of free marketing since it will not cost anything to sign up to social media accounts. However, if you want your clothing line to compete with other established brands out there, then you have to spend money on marketing schemes.

You have to allocate cash to ads, which can be mostly spent online in Google, Facebook, Instagram, and co. You can also give out shirt samples to a few friends and target customers to spread awareness of your brand. Spending on marketing is not necessary, but it certainly helps your how to start your venture on a sound footing.

Just like it was stated above, the amount earned by a clothing line can depend on the size of the shop, location, type of clothing, years in business, and many other factors. A number of websites have tried to determine just how much a clothing line can make, but the figures vary greatly.

For instance, some sites list the average income of a clothing line at $330,000 per year, while others estimate the range to be from $0-$1,000,000+ per year. However, these numbers can vary depending on the costing factors involved but they generally give you an idea of the amount you can make with a clothing line business.


For anyone looking to venture into the clothing industry, it is imperative to find out a specific niche and also to define what actually drives your passion. Have it in mind that business profit, especially in the fashion industry is backed by the masses, and they are what majorly dictate the success of the industry.