Are you looking into having your own potential dropshipping business but do not know where to start? You have come to the right place. Let's dive in!
What is dropshipping?
Dropshipping is the process of selling products without having to carry any inventory. This means that dropshipping is a retail fulfillment method where the store owner does not physically keep inventory.
When a store owner receives an order from a customer, they simply contact the supplier, who will then ship the products directly to the customer’s door. This means that the store owner transfers customer orders and shipment details to a third-party supplier, who then ships the order directly to the customer.
The dropshipping business model
Dropshipping is the perfect business model for new eCommerce entrepreneurs. It’s simple to set up and manage, and it doesn’t require a large up-front investment. Some say that it is the easy way to have a successful business, however, do not be fooled, it still requires a generous amount of time and energy to have your own store.
The rumors goes that you can run your dropshipping business in your spare time – you don’t need to quit your job to start a successful store. However, dropshipping is not necessarily simply a 'get rich quick scheme'. It requires research, determination and execution.
How does dropshipping work as a concept?
If you want to have your own eCommerce store that follows the dropshipping business model, then you need to follow some steps:
- You first need to choose a dropshipping business idea, if you don't have one already. Try to make this as in demand as possible with as little competition as possible. There are plenty existing dropshipping business ideas out there, so be sure to make yours as bespoke as possible.
- Do your market research! Make sure you know which suppliers are charging what for their products and choose one that delivers to the countries you wish to supply products to. You can have different product ideas that are supplied by different dropshipping suppliers. You are not limited to only one.
- Once you have done your research, choose your dropshipping supplier. This supplier is crucial and he will be responsible for the latter end of the dropshipping process i.e. preparing, dispatching and arranging delivery of your products.
- Now, you can finally build your own eCommerce store using Shopify.
- When you're live, be sure to market your dropshipping store. You can have the most fantastic dropshipping eCommerce business, but if you are not getting out there, then you will struggle to keep afloat.
- Shopify offers first class reporting through which you can analyse and improve your offering. You will have access to key information like traffic and revenue data.
Oh yes, and don't forget to choose a catchy store name!
How does dropshipping work when it comes to a customer placing an order on Shopify?
As you can see from the illustration above, you need an online store. So you create an online store on Shopify and then a customer places an order.
The next step happens without any needed human input – your online store sends this order to your dropshipping supplier.
This dropshipping supplier is now responsible to have good inventory management and have your product in stock. They need to package it within a timely manner and then send it for dispatch.
Your dropshipping supplier then also takes responsibility for arranging the delivery directly to your customer.
Finding the ideal eCommerce platform to build on – Shopify dropshipping
If you want to have a dropshipping business where you sell online, you will need to have an online storefront.
Part of your business model needs to be visibility to your potential customers. In order for a customer to do some online shopping on your dropshipping operation, you'll need to have an online presence.
Shopify drop shipping is the most popular dropshipping providing platform out there. You can create your dropshipping business in a short amount of time and just a few clicks.
Why choose Shopify dropshipping specifically?
Let us take a closer look at Shopify
Shopify is a mighty and powerful eCommerce platform. Shopify offers a wide range of features to make setting up and running your dropshipping business easy.
They make it incredibly simple for you to start and open your own dropshipping business in no time! To start a dropshipping business on Shopify, you’ll need to create a Shopify account and install the Shopify app. Once you have installed the Shopify app, you’ll need to create a Shopify store. The next step is to choose a Shopify theme for your store. You can then add products to your store by importing them from suppliers using Oberlo. Simple as that!
Furthermore, Shopify has one of the largest app stores out there, which means that you can link all your dropshipping suppliers to your store, making it easy to manage. The Shopify app store will be able to sync with your dropshipping suppliers, so you can keep an easy overview of your online store.
These apps are crucial to the success of your business. Dropshipping apps make it easy for store owners to manage their dropshipping businesses. Dropshipping apps connect store owners with suppliers, and they automate the ordering process so store owners don’t have to manually place orders.
Having a strong and reliable eCommerce store and linking this with a reliable dropshipping supplier means that you will have more time to see to it when customers complain or just ensure a stellar customer experience as you won't be bogged down by tech, inventory management, order fulfillment or shipping issues.
Lastly, they have incredible customer support, should you run into any issues. They are there for you 24/7.
Getting started with Shopify is easy. Sign up for a free 3 day dropshipping trial to see how you fare.
There are several dropshipping suppliers available to you, which we have listed below.
You can add their services and inventory to your eCommerce online store and start using their dropshipping services with just a few clicks.
Each of these dropshipping suppliers runs on a slightly different dropshipping model to the next, as they're each unique businesses. However, their general service stays the same across the board. They manage the order fulfillment and the product is shipped directly. They take that off your hands completely.
There are naturally certain things to consider when choosing the best dropshipping supplier out there for you.
- You might want to see what shipping fees they charge. Shipping costs that are too high will have a negative impact on your business.
- Do they offer high quality products?
- Do some market research concerning if other businesses mention any inventory issues this dropshipping business has had before?
- Can they prove reliability and manage inventory well?
You can have multiple suppliers within your eCommerce online store, so see which one the dropshipping companies stand out the most below.
The below list are all dropshipping companies who you can use as one of your dropshipping suppliers.
The benefits of dropshipping
1. Low-risk and low-investment: Dropshipping is an inexpensive way to start your own online business.
2. No need for physical inventory: You don’t have to invest in or store any physical inventory, which reduces your overhead costs.
3. Wide audience potential: An online store has the potential to reach a much wider audience than a brick-and-mortar store.
4. Shopify offers multiple apps and options to easily integrate dropshipping into your online store.
5. Automated ordering process: Suppliers take care of shipping products directly to your customers, so you don’t have to worry about manual order processing.
6. Easily scalable: You can grow your business at your own pace by adding more products or expanding into new markets.
7. Low shipping costs: Since you’re not handling any physical inventory, you don’t have to worry about high shipping costs.
8. Supplier variety: There are thousands of suppliers available through Oberlo and Shopify, giving you access to a wide range of products to sell in your store.
9. Quick setup time: It takes less than ten minutes to set up a Shopify Dropshipping store, allowing you to start selling quickly and easily.
Disadvantages to dropshipping
1. Low-profit margins: Because you’re selling a product for more than what you paid for it, your profit margin is typically low.
2. You’re reliant on suppliers: When you dropship, you’re reliant on your suppliers to fulfill orders promptly and without errors. A delay or mistake by your supplier can mean missed sales and unhappy customers.
3. Limited control over inventory: Since you’re not storing any products yourself, you have little control over your inventory levels and stockouts could mean lost sales. You are dependent and limited to what the dropshipping store sells.
4. Competition from large retailers: It can be difficult to compete with big retailers when they offer similar products at lower prices than you do.
5. You need to generate traffic: Shopify Dropshipping stores rely on traffic from Google searches, social media, and other online channels to make sales.
6. There may be less control over shipping times and product quality since you’re relying on third-party suppliers. It is important to thoroughly research potential suppliers and carefully track your inventory to avoid errors or unhappy customers.
How to make your Shopify dropshipping store even better
Here are several dropshipping tips you can apply to drive traffic to your store:
- Use high-quality images of your products
- Write product descriptions that are helpful and engaging
- Create a strong brand identity
- Design attractive product labels
- Set up a blog and write blog posts about your products
- Participate in online discussion forums and communities relevant to your niche
As Shopify is such a strong platform, it will easily accommodate the above mentioned tips that are sure to improve your online presence!
It has never been this easy to start dropshipping.
With a Shopify dropshipping store, you can have the possibility of being one of the most successful dropshipping stores, as Shopify is a strong and reliable eCommerce platform.
Shopify dropshipping can be a successful avenue for income but it does come with some risk and the need for careful planning and research.
In the end, the benefits of low initial investment and potential for reaching a wider audience make it worth considering as an option for starting your own online business.
Use Shopify as your eCommerce platform on which to sell products.
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Natalie MillerMarketing Manager
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