You followed all the steps:
Step 1. You opened your own shop on Threadless.
Step 2. You made sure to set your store to Published.
Step 3. You added your designs.
Step 4. You made sure to publish your designs.
And yet, when you go to Threadless main page and search for your designs you can’t find them. You search by title, or by tags, or just browse all the designs, and you don’t see your designs anywhere. Why?
Your Artist Shop is separate from the Threadless main store. Your design can be added to the Threadless Marketplace but they are not added by default.
If you don’t see your designs on Threadless then the first thing to do is to make sure that you allowed your products to be visible in the Threadless Marketplace. Go to your Artist Shop settings and set “Allow my shop’s products to be considered in the Threadless Marketplace”:
However, even if you set that option and allow for your products to be visible in the Threadless Marketplace it’s still possible that your shop won’t be visible in the Threadless Marketplace and that your designs won’t be available in the Threadless site search.
Why? Because Threadless doesn’t show all the designs from all artist’s shop on their main page. They explain it best in their FAQ:
While each Artist Shop is separate from the Threadless catalog, designs may or may not automatically be included in the Threadless marketplace and search. Inclusion into the Threadless marketplace and Threadless search depends on a combination of design quality and commercial viability for the Threadless market, marketplace and Artist Shop sales and activity, product tagging, and search relevancy.–About the Threadless Marketplace
So, if you want people to find your designs on Threadless, you need to create designs that Threadless customers might be interested in. If Threadless decides that your designs might interest people visiting the website then your designs will be visible to them. This is because Threadless is a curated store. If all the designs from all the artist shops were visible there, then it would be a mess.
It might be discouraging not to see your designs in the Threadless Marketplace — you added your designs, and yet the customers who visit the site don’t even see them and can’t buy them. But, if your designs are good, then Threadless will most likely add them to their Marketplace and then customers will see them.
My store is visible in the Threadless Marketplace. I wrote some advice that will help you get your designs noticed by the Threadless team: