As with any business venture, learning how to start a dropshipping business can be difficult. However, it is a good first step for entrepreneurs. And you may find it a cost-effective and risk-free way to make money online as a dropshipper rather than stepping in other types of online businesses.
Let's see how to start:
With no inventory to hold, you can sell directly to your customers. Products don't have to be purchased in advance. You can invest in a new project and build a sustainable income over time if you're persistent about it.
A dropshipper is a retailer or store owner who sells products online but doesn’t have a stock. Once an order is made by the customer, the dropshipper will place that order to its suppliers who ship the products to the customer directly.
As a dropshipper, dropshipping is the practice of making purchases for your customers without having to keep any inventory. It involves customers purchasing goods from you at a retail price. Once you have received the order, you will forward it to your supplier for which you will pay the wholesale price.
Upon receiving the order from your supplier, they ship the items directly to the customer in your business name, leaving you with the profit margin. You simply need to create an online store, find customers, and provide customer support.
Manufacturers, retailers (you), and customers make up the dropshipping business model. In a dropshipping business model, manufacturers create products, maintain inventory, dispatch products on behalf of retailers, replace defective products, and replenish stock. Wholesalers supply merchandise to retailers at wholesale prices, risking unsold inventories.
The store owner (you) sells the products of the manufacturer on his or her website. It is your responsibility to choose and market these products. Furthermore, you'll be responsible for setting profit-making prices and keeping track of their shipping costs.
As a retailer, you are the one who sells the products directly to the customer through dropshipping. Questions or issues related to the product are directed to the retailer.
Despite its hype, dropshipping is viewed by some as a risky business model and some people are wary about investing in it.
This information on dropshipping should help you to feel at ease (and hopefully, to make you feel excited, too).
- Dropshipping is the primary business model for 40% of online retailers.
- By 2025, USD 557.9 billion could be generated from dropshipping.
1. Make a commitment
Dropshipping requires long-term planning and significant commitment, like any other business. Sadly, you won't be able to earn six figures from six weeks as a part-time work. But it’s possible to make more than USD 5,000 in eight weeks.
To succeed with your business, you should have realistic expectations regarding both the investment and the income potential.
Though starting a dropshipping business doesn’t require a vast investment, you will still have to plan it with time or with money.
2. Choose your niche
You must select a niche that you are passionate about and that is laser-focused. Marketing a non-focused product line will be challenging.
Dropshipping businesses require a lot of work to scale successfully, so it is easier to get discouraged if you aren't passionate about your niche. Dropshipping niche stores might include:
- Bow ties for dog lovers
- Cases for iPhones
- Camping equipment for campers
- Exercise facilities for fitness enthusiasts
3. Carry out competition research
Once you know what you will sell in your store, you should look at your competitors and learn how they do business. Dropshipping competitors may hold a great deal of insight into success and gain insight into how you can improve your marketing strategy.
Dropshipping markets often have many competitors (which is a good thing), but be careful that you restrict your research to five other companies, including at least one or two big ones like in your niche. It will help you stay on track and make plans for your next step.
4. Find a reliable supplier
Your business can suffer if you partner with the wrong supplier, so don't hurry over this step. Do your homework before choosing a supplier.
Communication is crucial because the majority of dropshipping suppliers are located overseas, meaning they need to deliver results as quickly as possible and understand each other. In case you are not completely satisfied with a potential supplier's communication skills, move on and continue your search.
As one of the top online resources for identifying and communicating with potential manufacturers and suppliers, AliExpress has become one of the most valuable online resources. If you plan for your business to grow exponentially, be sure to learn their production capabilities. They should be able to grow with you. AliExpress dropshipping is the most popular product sourcing platforms for its cheap prices and high-quality among worldwide dropshippers, therefore it should also be your choice.
It can be helpful to learn from entrepreneurs who have gone before you. You can find a lot of information about dropshipping on blogs, tech blogs, and on this subreddit. You can avoid costly supplier mistakes by learning about this topic.
5. Create your eCommerce store
An eCommerce platform such as Shopify is the next thing you'll need to start your own dropshipping business. The website will be your central hub for sending traffic, selling products, and processing payments.
Your eCommerce website can be easily built and launched with Shopify. With it, you can sell online, in more than one currency, and manage products and accept payments easily.
Shopify doesn't require you to be a designer or developer. Shopify doesn't require you to have any coding experience either. In addition to domain name suggestions and logo design, you can easily customize how your store looks and feels using the Shopify themes and store builder.
6. Market Your Dropshipping Business
Having found your products and built your store, the next step is to market your dropshipping business as aggressively as possible. You need to do this if you want to be successful.
Do not continue to tweak your store design and claim that you're making progress. You should not be afraid to let people see your work. It's a great feeling to get your first sale.
As a first-time entrepreneur, your budget is likely very limited. In those frugal moments, below are some of the best marketing ideas:
- Facebook advertising
- Retargeting Ads
- Influencer marketing
- Free media coverage
Keeping an eye on which channels work for your online business is essential, especially if you're paying for ads. Throughout your business's growth and improvement, you can increase revenues and lower costs by continuously adjusting your marketing strategy.
You can begin to analyze the results of your hard work once you have finished creating your website, brand, and marketing. In some marketing activities, you may have incredible success, while in others not so much. It may be possible to change your pricing slightly to make it more competitive by looking at what competitors are charging.
Analyzing your website traffic with tools like Google Search Console or Analytics will help you ensure that it is growing, not decreasing. Make sure you set up automatic reports so that you are reminded to analyze this information regularly if you use third-party tools for email marketing or social media reporting. If a campaign is working or not, a glance at data from the tool can prove that.
Ultimately, you must test and optimize your online store to generate more revenue. In addition to maintaining your website ahead of your competition, it makes sure it doesn't fall behind best practices.
You can start a dropshipping business no matter what level of eCommerce experience you have, regardless of your goals.
Using marketing automation tools such as those provided by DSers service makes it more convenient than ever to run your business online. You can achieve financial independence through this dropshipping guide, just as many other eCommerce entrepreneurs have done.