As an avid merchandise buyer, I know how difficult it is to find high quality merchandise at a reasonable price and buying it from a secure place you can trust. Whether it’s for your own use, as a gift from someone else or as a collectible, this guide to the best merchandise sites for your fandom should be a great helping hand to finding what you want.
There were three sites that I found that sold just Doctor Who merchandise.
www.thewhoshop.com –The Who Shop is a great place to go to find any sort of Doctor Who gear. It’s easy to navigate, split into sections so you can find what you want quickly. They ship worldwide so no worries for those of you that are from overseas (The Shop is based in London.) There is also an actual shop at 39-41 Barking Road, Upton Park, in case you want to visit the store directly. As an added bonus, there is a Doctor Who museum at the back of the shop that you pay £3 for, filled with lots of props and memorabilia, and you have to go through the TARDIS to get to it!
www.doctorwhogear.co.uk – This website is also based in the UK, and does ship worldwide however you would have to email the staff with your proposed order so they can calculate shipping charges (which is a downside because it is extra work for you) and UK orders cost £4.95 delivery, however orders over £50 give you free delivery. This website is also easy to navigate, and also has a SALE SALE SALE section so you can find things cheaper than other places.
www.doctorwhoonline.co.uk –This website’s most useful feature is it’s bestsellers list and list of popular products, where its easy to find products that other people have rated highly. Its split into 4 main sections, Action figures, character building, merchandise and stationary, although there are more products to offer. There is free postage to the UK, but I was unable to find out about the postage outside of the UK as I had to enter my billing information.
Out of the three, The Who Shop certainly receives my highest recommendation.
www.sherlockology.com/shop was the only Sherlock website I could find worth visiting for merchandise. It has links to their site www.sherlockablilia.com which has a limited amount of merchandise, but also a link to www.Amazon.com where you can find any DVD/Blu-Ray Sherlock related. However I would recommend looking at websites not-specific to one specific fandom in order to buy Sherlock merchandise (list further on in the article.) UK standard delivery is £3.20, EU standard delivery is £4.50, USA standard delivery is £7.00 and the rest of the world is £10.00.
www.everythingsupernatural.co.uk is a basic online shop with just Supernatural merchandise. Although basic it does include a sale section where you can get things cheaper than they usually would be. There are a few bits of prop replicas, apparel, jewellery and some other merchandise. There’s also a link to a size chart to help you with finding the right sized apparel for you.
www.marvelstore.com Is an American website that only ships to US locations. A high quality website, run by Marvel itself, it’s easy to navigate and sells more merchandise than you can shake a stick at. It has areas for ‘New Arrivals’ so you can get new things fast, a ‘Most Popular’ section and customer service for any queries that you might have (found at the bottom right of the page.
For UK customers, its best to go to non-specific sites, or www.superherostuff.com which sells both Marvel and DC merchandise, which again is an American site but it does ship to most worldwide countries.
www.harrypottershop.com Is a great place to find all things Harry Potter. You can search the site by house, character, or by their own categories. With prop replica’s, all character wands that are available, you are not lost for choice. The big downside is that it only ships in the US, so people from outside of the US cannot order their products. www.wbshop.com supply the same merchandise but again only ship to the US, however if in the US compare the prices of both sites in case you can get products cheaper on one.
For the UK, www.harrypottermerchandiseuk.com is one of the places you can go to, however it does not have that wide a range of merchandise so I do recommend you go elsewhere, however for certain things, such as DVD’s and books, it may be worth your time.
For DC related merchandise, the best place online to go would be www.shopdcentertainment.com however, like the Marvel websites, it only delivers to the US. It’s easy to navigate, has a sale section, and you can even search by character which makes it easier to find what you are looking for.
However, like Marvel, for UK customers I would recommend going to www.superherostuff.com to get your merchandise.
The Hobbit/ Lord of the Rings
For this sort of merchandise, the best place I can recommend is www.tolkienshop.com which ships all over the world (and is based in the Netherlands.) Simple to use, it’s easy to find what you want in this online shop. For those of you in the Netherlands, the website is linked to an actual shop which is in Amsterdam, which also has a museum within it.
Another site to use is www.lotrshop.com however this is a website more like Amazon, it earns commission by selling the products of other websites and doesn't own any itself. The shipping availability depends on the place the merchandise is coming from. Each product has a link to where its being sold from so you should find out if it ships to your country from there.
These websites do not sell to just have one specific fandom and have a range of products for all.
www.redbubble.com has products made by the fans. There are a collection of fan-made graphics which are then translated onto shirts, stickers, posters, tech cases and calendars. What is really great about redbubble is that every sale gives the designer some income; it’s basically a marketplace for designers and really helps them to get on the map. It’s easy to search for what fandom you want and what you want it printed on.
www.bbcshop.com is a great site that sells merchandise of just BBC shows and films, so the likes of Doctor Who, Sherlock and Top Gear. This particular site delivers to countries in the EU but also has an American website (www.bbcamericashop.com) and a Canadian shop (www.bbccanadashop.com)
www.officialproducts.tv sells merchandise from over 30 shows (mainly British) and ships all over the world (however the shipping prices are different in Britain, the EU and the rest of the world.) It’s easy to find what you are looking for with a drop down list of all the shows special they feature products of, and there is a size guide to help you with clothing.
www.merchandisingplaza.co.uk has merchandise for films, TV shows and animation, as well as being able to search by movie star. (It also sells merchandise for music and sports too for those of you that are interested.) Based in the UK it ships all over the world however various shipping fees apply.
www.thecollectorzone.com sells practically any merchandise from any fandom. It ships to any country, a flat rate of £3.95 for the UK and the rest of the world will be charged at cost to their credit/debit card. It has main categories but also underneath the main tabs has sections for new releases, coming soon and special offers so these may be worth checking out.
Well done to you if you've managed to make it all the way through this article to the end. So now I will present to you my favourite online store for merchandise…
The website I recommend above all is www.forbiddenplanet.co.uk which in my opinion is the best place to go. Categorized as ‘TV’ ‘film’ ‘video games’ and ‘comics’ there is something for everyone that visits our site, but also has other categories to help find what you are looking for. With a new arrivals section and quick links to the biggest fandoms, its far from difficult to navigate. Delivering worldwide, it also has shops in England, Wales, Northern Ireland, Scotland and also one in New York, and it is considered to be the best place to go for comics and graphic novels.
Hopefully this jam-packed article will be able to help you with all of your merchandising needs, so have fun shopping guys!