PDIP 15 - Setting up a PDAO Merch Store

PDIP 15 - Setting up a PDAO Merch Store

  • Author: Tricky
  • Support: UselessCrypto69


This proposal requests US$10k for building, loading, and supporting the setup of a PDAO ecommerce store, to be completed in 4 weeks and including six months of support for the same.


The store would use Shopify on the backend, a leading SaaS ecommerce platform that supports many payment gateways and integrations.

The PDIP would be implemented in the following three (3) stages:

  1. Building: generation, payment gateway(s) and vendor integration(s), theme configuration, and ui/x customization
  2. Loading: product loading, product detail page population, product landing page organization, and general troubleshooting
  3. Support: standard operating procedure development and documentation


Selling branded merchandise is a no-brainer. It strengthens community bonds, boosts brand visibility through community members proudly displaying the logo, and serves as a versatile marketing tool for events, rewarding engagement and fostering collaborations with other games, DAOs, and web3 projects.



Shopify would provide the means for worldwide drop-shipping via integrations with one or more print-on-demand (POD) apparel and accessories suppliers.


Print-on-demand is a business model where products are produced only when an order is received. This eliminates the need for inventory management and upfront costs. Media include all-over print, direct-to-garment printing, and embroidery. Shopify is the leading ecommerce platform, powers over 40 million businesses worldwide, and has award-winning support. Gross Merchandise Volume in 2023, i.e., the total dollar value of orders they facilitated, was $49.6 billion. All major credit card payment processing gateways can be integrated directly and merchants can accept crypto via Coinbase Commerce, BitPay, or CoinPayments.net. POD vendors are motivated to provide seamless integrations with Shopify to service merchants expediently.

Technical Specification

It is worth noting, at this point, that this PDIP does not include the product line/capsule design but would facilitate the process(es) required to get to market. The actual designs, sample generation, approval, etc., warrant a separate PDIP or internal processes.

Funds would cover the following 3 stages as detailed below:

1. Building

Initial Shopify development/trial store generation and general settings configuration will lead quickly into the following:

  • Domain DNS/SSL settings and config., inc. email/mx
  • Payment gateway integration(s)
  • POD supplier(s) integration
  • Shipping and tax zones config
  • Frontend theme design and customization
  • Integration of any analytics tools or frameworks used by the product team

It should go without saying that some of the above will require working closely with technical and financial stakeholders that have access to sensitive information and credentials. In those cases, we will not request the specific information but rather their time to provide them with the specific access and guidance they need to perform critical setup tasks.

Frontend theme design and customization would include matching the look and feel of the storefront to the current Paragons website, including but not limited to global header/footer nav, logos & branding, fonts/typeface, colors, etc. We must work closely with the PDAO design/product team here.

A standard ecommerce store has individual Product Detail Pages (PDPs), grouped Product Landing Pages (PLPs), e.g., “Apparel” or “Accessories”, as well as a Home (or Index) page, Cart, Checkout, and Customer account pages, as well as static pages for legalese such as terms and conditions, privacy. Much of the UI/X for these pages can get quite granular and laborious to design specifically. Shopify has many free and budget-priced themes to bootstrap a store that is easy to use from both a customer and admin perspective. They are easily customizable, with a drag/drop WYSIWYG interface, regular HTML, and a specific templating language for accessing ecommerce database objects.

2. Loading

Once PDAO has adopted a specific line of products for an initial capsule, loading and further customization required to merchandise the items for retail will be completed. Images, descriptions, and options (sizes, colors, etc.) must be configured at the PDP level, and items will likely need to be merchandised into collections or bundles. Pricing and fulfillment options, shipping weights, tax codes, etc will be set.

3. Support

We are ready to launch after the store is set and the product is loaded. Then come the questions! FAQ and standard operating procedures are often unique to a particular store and its configuration. Stakeholders responsible for e.g. risk assessment, refunds, and general customer communication must be determined and trained. The finance team is likely to want reports. The marketing team may want to know how to order promotional items internally. Documentation will be written in whatever format or place is deemed most useful/appropriate for the PDAO team.


Tricky has been the owner/operator of a small Shopify agency for almost 15 years, operating primarily in the apparel space, working with solopreneurs, ui/x designers, and on behalf of larger agencies for their clients. He is currently the lead front-end engineer for a private equity company, working within a direct-to-consumer men’s apparel brand portfolio.

Cost Breakdown

hours days months price/hour total
Build 4 3 1 $250 $3,000
Load 4 2 1 $175 $1,400
Support 2 4 4 $175 $5600

Payment Schedule

  1. Build: 50% to kick-off and 50% upon sign-off from PDAO finance and product teams
  2. Load: 100% on 1st order placed
  3. Support: 50% to kick-off and 50% upon sign-off from PDAO finance and product teams

Additional Costs

Shopify Small Business Plan US$105/mo or $79 when paid annually

(As of writing, there is also an offer for the first 3 months at $1/mo.)

Example POD Costs (via Printful)

  • Tees $13.25 + $4.69 shipping
  • Hoodies $42.75 + $8.49 shipping
  • Bucket Hats $15.95 + $3.99 shipping

These can be marked up as much as you see fit!


  • $25 one-time fee for each embroidery design digitization (free DTG design upload)
  • Costs quoted for Tee and hoodie are for Organic Cotton versions by Stanley/Stella. Other fabrics/weights/brands are available and worth ordering for comparison
  • Shipping prices quoted are to the USA

Uptake required to cover costs

Currently, there are approximately 2000 Hodlers of PDT.

The table below details back-of-napkin math for how many tee/hat/hoodie bundles would need to be sold for PDAO to cover the initial outlay on this PDIP

Cost 50% margin 60% margin 75% margin
Tee $13.25 $26.50 $33.13 $53.00
Hoodie $42.75 $85.50 $106.88 $171.00
Hat $15.95 $31.90 $39.88 $63.80
Total $71.95 $143.90 $179.88 $359.75
Net to PDAO $71.95 $107.93 $215.85
Bundles required to ROI i.e. $10k 139 93 46
% of ~2k PDT Hodlers needed to commit 7% 5% 2%
1 Like

Killer prop—love to see community members participating in this process!

Personally, I wonder if we should begin by creating a small collection of limited-run merch and using for community engagement via giveaways, sharing with top partners/content creators, etc. as we continue building our userbase with our lending solution etc.
I think a storefront idea is great, but we don’t yet have products to sell. Wouldn’t it be ideal to first trial vendors, fulfillment, materials, quality, appetite etc. and ensure we’ve got it right before we go selling it?

Could the Shopify experience be integrated directly into the existing Paragons site, or does it truly require a fully third-party page with theme design/customization etc. to match look and feel?


Hey @flapjackson1 :hearts: Thanks for your comments and questions, I really appreciate it.

The POD vendors I was looking at have direct integration with the Shopify admin and storefront, so it’s super easy to import and merch the products for subsequent distribution, whether that is at “retail” price to customers, “cost” price to core contributors/stakeholders, or free of charge (items and/or shipping) for any reason. Creating the capsule and loading the store will be a valuable learning experience for everyone and a great way to iron out issues (pun intended!) with both the store UI, UX, administration of orders, and the merchandize itself (especially apparel.) A couple or more rounds of refinement is likely needed for each.

Regarding Paragon’s site implementation, the detail required to design and implement ecom functionality is tedious. Multiple templates (PLP, PDP, Cart, Checkout) are unique to the purchase process and have a lot of granular input and object manipulation needs. It’s much more expedient to customize a stock theme (and we can do that pretty deeply) than bake ecom directly into your existing web app. It’s not impossible. Shopify has a bunch of APIs, but for a small merch capsule, it’s better to keep things simple. Their standard hosted checkout handles all the security needed when dealing with PII, and I believe across their ecosystem, it processes upwards of $3 million in sales per minute!

Ooga Booga, and furthermore, Henlo.

Janitooor here. Resident performance autist priest @berachain and founder of 0xhoneyjar.xyz. The Honey Jar is about to roll out our own Merch Infrastructure which will use NFTs as the tickets to acquire the merch. The merch itself is produced out of LA and shipped globally from there. Once the high end, high quality has been rolled out we’ll then add cheap and cheerful.

From reading this proposal it looks like this would not be a replacement for the approach you are taking for a self hosted shopify+POD solution but a collab would certainly add a distinctly different tier of merch available for your community with the perk of partnering across ecosystems.

Is this the right thread to explore such a potential collaboration? Let Jani know if another channel is more appropriate.


Thank you Ser Jani!

I think this collab would be a little more than the PDIP for Merch outlined here. Lets bring this into the discord for visibility to those that would be keen to add some input to see if we can enhance the current proposal.

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