Patrons earn merch after they complete a required number of consecutive payments to any tier that contains that merch item. The number of payments patrons are required to make varies based on the type of merch programme the item is offered in. The total length of time it takes a patron to complete the required number of payments can vary based on whether the patron is new or existing, whether you charge your patrons up-front each month, and whether the patron has any declined payments that are later resolved.
If a patron cancels their membership or switches to a tier that does not include the item, any progress that the patron has made towards earning that merch item is lost. The patron can rejoin a tier that contains that item again later, which would restart their earnings progress from the beginning.
Let’s look at some examples to understand when patrons typically earn merch! For this example, we’ll use a merch programme that delivers an item once after 3 months.
Charge up-front example:
If a creator who charges patrons up front adds a merch item to a tier on 15 May, existing patrons with a valid membership in that tier will immediately earn their first payment toward that merch item, since they have already been charged for the month of May. On 1 June, those patrons would process their second payment towards earning that merch item. On 1 July, the patrons would earn the merch item. If a new patron joins on 15 July, they would be charged immediately upon sign-up and earn their first payment towards their merch item. The new patron would earn their second payment towards their merch item on 1 August, and then earn the merch item on 1 September.
Non-charge up-front example:
If a creator who does not charge patrons up-front adds a merch item to a tier on 15 May, existing patrons with a valid membership in that tier will earn their first payment towards that merch item on 1 June, eventually earning the item on 1 August. A new patron who joins on 15 July would earn their merch item on 1 October.
As a reminder, you can always find what benefits your patrons have earned, including Merch for Membership benefits, in your Benefits
Editing an item’s design
Editing the item design or description does not affect when patrons earn merch. Any new orders sent to patrons after you edit the design will use the new design.
If you’ve removed an item or loyalty programme from any tiers, all earnings progress for those tiers will be stopped.
If you’ve added an item or loyalty programme to any new tiers, patrons of those new tiers will begin earning the items when you click the “Publish merch” button. You can find when each item or loyalty programme was added to each tier on your merch tab