What is Drop Shipping Business All About?
You could see dropshipping as business where you work as virtual retailer, but still have the right to sell products any price you wish. To help you understand dropshipping better, I have broken the entire steps down:
- You setup an online store where you will market products. Another option is to join a popular online market place.
- Decide which products to sell and advertize in your store.
- Meet suppliers who agree to supply the goods at wholesale price.
- Market and advertize the product on your store.
- A customer places an order.
- You forward the order to your supplier and pay for the product at a wholesale price.
- The supplier ships the product to the product to your customers on your behalf.
Note: You both have to agree on how to settle the shipping fee.
Dropshipping is not a new online business idea. Most online store dropship. About 30% of online retail stores use dropshipping as their primary business model.
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How to Start a Successful Dropshipping Business Online – Steps
Choose Profitable Products or Niche to Sell
Here comes the stressful step that looks easy. You need to carry out research in order to find products with high demand. An advice for starters is to choose products that are in a particular niche. A niche could be seen as a little sector or category of a market. As dropshipping business becomes more popular, spotting profitable products becomes a bit harder. Some products and niches which sale all year round with up to 40% profit are Fitness, fashion, jewelry, beauty, tech, purses, phone packs, etc. The secret to the profitability of these products are that they are light in weight and are not costly. This means that their shipping fee will be very small.
Create new Business Ideas
Creativity makes a difference in any business. Your ability to develop and try out new ideas will determine how successful you will be in the business. Don’t be afraid to try new ideas, but at the same time, don’t check the depth of a river with both feet.
Another smart way to make money through dropshipping is to buy products with little fault at a very cheap price. Then ask the seller to help you repair it. You pay for the repair cost together with the product wholesale price. Then advertise the product and sell it as a sound product. You will make huge profit. For instance, assuming you bought an iPhone with a damaged screen for $150 and the repairer charges you $50. Then a customer buys the repaired iPhone for $450. You will make a profit of $250. That is smart business! But it is not “must gain” business idea. Sometimes you will lose.
Find other products whose fairly used versions are also valuable and apply the above technique.
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Study your Successful Competitors
One of the business success tips is to discover successful competitors in your business niche. Use tools like SEMRush or Ahref to get information about any niche competitors search results in different locations across the world.
Once you have identified these competitors, check their products and study how they setup their products, the type of images they use. Then look for a way to make your own a better version. Also read their customer reviews and know their product lapses.
Find a Dropship Supplier
You can only succeed in dropshipping business if you find nice suppliers. Good suppliers stock quality products, will ship your customer’s product on time and also help you with referral services.
Note that not suppliers are dropshippers. So make sure the supplier is an experienced dropshipper. They usually charge an extra small fee for their services. Make sure your suppliers do not charge huge amount of money for their services as this will affect your profit.
Apart from stocking quality product, they should also provide you with quality images you can use when listing the products in your store. This is because quality most customers believe that images you upload in your listing is a picture of the actual product.
To find reliable dropship suppliers, you can search directly on search engines like Google by typing your product name plus “suppliers”. Then check the search result sites. A quicker way to find trusted suppliers is to use a wholesale directory like SaleHoo.
Choose a Dropshipping Business Store
Decide whether to build your own eCommerce store or to sell on already established market places like Amazon, AliExpress, eBay, Etsy, etc. Each option has its advantages and disadvantages. For established online stores you are restricted by their policies, but you can start selling faster as there are huge traffic to the sites already. If you consider the other option, you are free to use your own marketing strategy and utilize social media.
The only downside is that you will build everything from scratch and it may take you a little more time to start making profit. But once your store becomes popular, you know you have got a brand. You can weigh them and decide on which one to go with. But the truth is that you can be successful in any platform if you plan your strategy well.
Another option is to buy an already built eCommerce store from sites like Exchange. This is a marketplace where people sell already built online stores to those who wish to skip the pains of building from scratch. But you need to be careful when buying a already built online store. There are few things you need to check about the site, like the Site age, design, SEO and niche. Also make sure the domain name is not banned by any search engine, especially Google.
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Market Your Dropshipping Business Store
Utilize social media (especially facebook ad), paid search or even use content marketing. You could write an article on how to use those products on your store. Another great marketing strategy is influencer marketing where you pay influencers either a flat rate or affiliate commission. I recommend the latter because you only pay influencers only for sale that comes through them. The more sales that come through them, the more money you and the influencer make. It will also make them put more effort. You also need an active email marketing contact list.
Optimize your Products
Product optimization matters a lot. After choosing a dropshipping platform and setting up your product, you need some touches that will keep you above your competitors. Always keep an eye on your competitor’s products and listing strategy. You may adjust your product price. There are 2 pricing strategy you can use. One option is to use a lower price and make more sales. This will increase your rate of turnover. the second option is to add values that are lacking in your competitors’ products to your products and increase your price. Make sure you add the difference in your product listing.
If you are selling from your own online store, drive more traffic to your store through social media or paid ads. Also make sure your site is search engine friendly because traffic from search engines converts most. You can use some of these free SEO tools to optimize your ecommerce blog. Here are some SEO tips that will your site rank high on search engines.
Some FAQs on Dropshipping Business
How do I know the best dropshipping platform to join and which tools do I need?
There are many online marketplaces for dropshipping business like Amazon, eBay, AliExpress and Etsy. Each platform has its own policies. Check them out and know the one that has the most favourable policy for you.
Amazon is the most popular online store with millions of buyers. Dropship sellers fee vary a lot. But many sellers on the platform make over $100,000. eBay is a very similar platform, but charges listing fee, less than 10%. They have a strict policies and will quickly freeze defaulting dropshippers account until they provide the required proof. Etsy is popularly known for women fashion and homemade goods. AliExpress offers very low shipping, sometimes free, though it takes a longer time.
There are many other platforms and tools.
Do I need money to start dropshipping business?
It all depends on the platform you choose. For most already established marketplaces, you don’t need money to start dropshipping. You register in the platform for free and only pay your suppliers when a customer places an order. But if you are creating your own online store, you will need money for domain name and hosting plan. For both platforms, you need money to run ads social media like facebook ads and on search engines like Google. Here are some of the ways you can raise money for your businesses, both online and offline.
You have learnt all the tips you need to be successful in drop shipping business. Simply apply these tips and follow the steps listed in this article and make money all year round. There are special groups on social media like facebook created by professional dropshippers where they share novel ideas. Search for these groups and join. You will surely learn a lot from these experts and also share your ideas. If you created your own store, check out these easy ways to increase your site traffic and engagement. You can also get Google AdSense approval with the help of these site content optimization tips.
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