Our years in the t shirts business have taught us among many things the marketability of each category of t shirts. Graphics t shirts designs evolve over time and we often follow the trend that moves t shirts in terms of sales.
When you're in this line of business in the Polynesian islands and I'm sure this holds true for most regions, you'll find that country t shirts is one category that guarantees sales independent of trends. You can have these tees with the simplest of graphics associated and slap it on the cheapest garment available and it will still sell.
Most of the biggest names online which prints and sell garments are capitalizing on this piece of marketing fact as it pay dividends. Don't be surprised if you Google for a t shirt bearing your country's name and get results from companies with locations half world away. Why are these kinds of designs selling?
Country pride. One of the most obvious reasons would be pride of home and nationality. With more and more islanders gaining access to the outside world, the one simple thing one can do to represent your home is wearing that shirt bearing the name of your country of origin. In most cases when you find yourself in a foreign country, donning such a shirt can easily get you friends with the same nationality as this can be very difficult in certain places. Imagine if you were a Chinese in Japan, this shirt will definitely single you out.
International Competition Support.
Sports fanatics go crazy when it comes to most international sports events. We have seen the recent soccer world cup in Africa and reports showed a record spike of sales on team's merchandise during and prior to the event. This is the same in the islands but only in a smaller scale. With the pacific islands dominance in the rugby sport, we are anticipating a similar attention to country t shirts among other merchandise from their respective fanatics.
Last reason is one that everyone can identify with is more of sentimental value. T shirt printing and designing is not a traditional skill to Polynesians and all islanders for that matter. The fact that a product such as a t shirt bears ones country's name is in itself a great accomplishment. Samoan t shirts are not your conventional handicrafts if you're from the islands and the urge to buy such a product is crazy even if the garment is of a cheap quality.
We can't come up with a better word to describe this but in Samoan its called "lotonuu." Samoantshirts.com does not capitalize on this enough as we believe in quality in both shirts and design.