• Harriet Goodings

Creating a line sheet: Ultimate guide

Updated: Oct 27

So you’ve worked tirelessly to create a clothing line that’s just like you imagined it would be. What happens now? Time to sell the idea and everything your brand represents by creating a line sheet. A clear and concise document that makes ordering collections easy for buyers.


What is a line sheet?

Line sheets are an industry-standard marketing and sales tool used by brands and designers to present their products to prospective buyers and retailers. Line sheets form an essential part of the sales funnel, often being the final step prior to a purchase being placed.



The benefits of using a line sheet

Why should you bother creating one?

  • Easy to distribute

  • Increase sales

  • Increase brand awareness.


When do you need a line sheet?

Line sheets make it easy for buyers to get all the information needed quickly without having to spend time asking questions back and forth with brands.


Here are 4 common scenarios where a line sheet is required to help boost your sales efforts:

  • You're ready to begin selling

  • You have new products being launched

  • You're updating product pricing

  • You need to make changes.


How to make a line sheet that sells

Covering all these areas creates a lasting impression about the longevity of your brand and reassures them that you're worth their time and investment.

  1. Complete information

  2. Structure

  3. Quality imagery

  4. Trustworthiness

  5. Distribution


1. Complete Information

Basic information

  • Brand/logo

  • Your name

  • Contact details (put on every page).

Wholesale information

  • Recommended retail price (RRP)

  • Minimum order quantity (MOQ)

  • Deposit required

  • Payment terms

  • Payment types

  • Returns policy

  • Shipping policy (responsibility)

  • Lead times

  • Order by

  • Cancel by

  • Return by.

Product information

  • Product imagery

  • Product name

  • SKU

  • Pricing

  • Product descriptions (optional)

  • Available sizes

  • Available colours.


2. Structure

What pages to include

Here’s a breakdown of the core components needed to create the perfect line sheet experience.

  1. Cover

  2. About the brand

  3. Product listing

  4. Wholesale information

  5. Order form.


Guiding principle - organise your visual hierarchy

When designing the layout of your line sheet, you’re going to want to focus on the needs of the end user. It’s unlikely that you’re going to be the only brand on a buyers radar. As a result, you have a limited amount of time to persuade them to place an order.




There’s a vast body of usability research using eye tracking technology that show online users scan webpages particular pattern. For example, the F-shaped scanning pattern (Figure ?). In a nutshell:

  1. Users first read in a horizontal movement (top of the F)

  2. Then, move down the page and read across in a second horizontal movement

  3. Lastly, they scan the content’s left side in a vertical movement.

Notably, user behaviour rarely makes a perfect F. For instance, users may become interested in a following section, resulting in a pattern that resembles an E.


Nevertheless, if you’re planning on distributing your line sheet in a digital format, you’ll want to:

  • Include your strongest looks in the first two rows

  • Visually group related information together

  • Use headings and subheadings

  • Bold important words and information

  • Cut unnecessary content.


Product listing page

The product listing page can broken up into two core content sections. The header and the main body.



Header section

The header block is where we’ll start, this is where you’ll place the:

  • logo

  • collection title

  • contact details.


Header wireframe

Main Body

Our main body block is broken down into a grid; we recommend 2 x 3 (six clothing item cards per page). This will give you enough real estate for each item to make sure the quality imagery you use carries maximum impact, and the product details remain visible. Notice that our grid approach compliments user scanning behaviour.



Clothing item cards

Each page will have six clothing item cards. At the bare minimum, each card should feature a quality image, product name and code, available sizes, RRP and wholesale price.


However, too much information and important details will become illegible.


I’ve provided two example item cards for you, both championing user experience:

  • Images large enough to identify a known item and show differences between items

  • Consistent and comparable product details

  • Promotes scanability.


Grouping

Once again, we need to put ourselves in the shoes of the end user, the buyer. As such, we need to group our clothing item cards in away that is useful. I’d personally recommend grouping them by styles, such as, tops, bottoms etc.


First impressions

You’re going to want to create a good first impression. Therefore, you’ll want to put your strongest category first - place these in the first row.


Primary real estate

3. Quality imagery

It’ll be worthwhile investing in good-quality imagery - we want to create a good first impression.

  • Keep it simple

  • Keep a neutral background

  • Keep lighting consistent

  • Keep dimension and orientation consistent


4. Trustworthiness

Retail buyers are taking a risk by buying from a new brand. As a result, you’re going to want to make sure that your line sheet indicates trustworthiness. Here are some simple ways to signal that your brand is trustworthy.

  • Tell retailers who you are - provide an about us section

  • Include information about your returns policy

  • No spelling mistakes - get somebody else to proofread

  • Use a professional email address (@yourbrand.com NOT @outlook.com)

  • Provide up-to-date and complete information.


5. Distribution

Once you have put together your killer line sheet, you’ll want to come up with a distribution strategy. Here are a few channels that you can use to distribute your line sheet.

  • Email

  • Tradeshows

  • Meeting with buyers

  • Your website

  • Social media.


Download our free line sheet template

Mac users

line-sheet-template
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