How to Retail with Rockford Art Deli!

Looking for retail advice? We got you! We’re sharing insider tips from Jarrod Hennis, Founder of @rockfordartdeli and Co-Founder of @allmadeapparel - He dives deep into tangible tools that will change the game for your retail store!

Jarrod has been in the screen printing business for about 17 years, and has been doing retail for the last 10 years. He went from selling a couple of shirts a day to thousands of shirt a day!

Check it out:



Part 1: Background Check (00:17)

Background check

Jarrod has been in the screen printing business for about 17 years, and has been doing retail for the last 10 years. He went from selling a couple of shirts a day to thousands of shirt a day!  

Part 2: Sustainable Product with a Premium Brand (02:20)

Part 2: Sustainable apparel

Jarrod's store is about 95% Allmade, which is pretty sweet! A lot of his customers want Allmade because of how they feel, how they print, and how they wear. He loves hearing his customers say Allmade is their favorite shirt! (And so do we!)

Jarrod takes great pride in aligning his personal values and beliefs with how he operates his business. He would much rather pay a little more for a shirt knowing it's ethically made than saving a couple of bucks on a lesser quality shirt. 

He's also part of the 1% for the Planet, where he donates 1% of his sales to a local, environmentally focused, non-profit. 


Part 3: Art Work Theory (04:59)

Part 3: Art Work Theory

When they first started, they were making snarky shirts about Rockford, IL, but it didn't feel right to him. So they switched things up and started creating designs with positive sayings about Rockford. And it worked! They blew up! Those positive images were printed on Allmade, and he noticed that his customers really liked the story of Allmade. (Click here to see Allmade's Origin Video.) Jarrod works closely with local artists as well as artists from all over the world! 


Part 4: Merchandising for Store Front (07:41)

Part 4: Merchandising for Store Front

You want your offerings to be a variety of different goods. Jarrod's bread & butter are t-shirts, but he also has other items for sell. Of course, the other goods align with his personal beliefs as well; ethically and sustainably made. Everyone will merchandise things differently, but Jarrod likes to keep it simple. He shows off the shirt. You should walk into a store front and be wowed. 

Jarrod uses his marketing dollars in cool displays (that are made locally!), nice hangers, fun hang tags . . . but social media has taken him to a new level! Customer's will take selfies in front of their "RAD" sign, post it to Insta, and then Jarrod will reshare it. It's really help to put RAD on the map! 

Part 5: Store Setup (12:59)

Part5: Store Setup

Jarrod has a pretty unique store setup; they screen print in the middle of the retail space. It's the same as seeing your sandwich being made at the deli counter. He encourages you to find a spot that fits your vibe, whatever that may be! When you do find your spot, focus on a couple of things. Make it have that zen feeling. Have it be open, a nice flow and no clutter. 

At he 15:12, Jarrod takes you on a tour through his store! It feels like you're really there with him! 


Part 6: Online Fulfillment (22:49)

Part 6 - Online Fulfillment

On-line sales are big right now! So invest in a good POS system. Automation is key, it will save you so much time! 

Jarrod uses social media quite a bit, and even spends some money on ads. People are always on their phone, so why not pop up on their feed!

When it comes to shipping, Jarrod has invested in sustainable packaging as well. It ties in with what RAD preaches, so he's really has created a whole experience. 

He's also invested in inventory management software. It's hard to know what's going to be popular on one day vs. another day. 


Part 7: Using the Brand to Open Up Other Doors (28:28)

Part 7: Using the Brand to Open up Other Doors

Jarrod joined the Local Chamber. It has made a huge impact! It's a win-win for the community! 

 Final: How to Retail (31:44)

Final: How to Retail

Jarrod thanks you for hanging with him and listening to his story! Stay RAD!!! 

We hope you learned a thing or two from Jarrod! Always feel free to reach out to if you have any questions! Thanks for checking our blog out and stay tuned for another "How to Retail" video coming soon!


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