Dropshipping has been on the rise for the past 5 years. Search volume has risen steadily over the last 3 years.
Why is dropshipping an interesting ecommerce model?
Who doesn’t like to earn money without doing the heavy lifting? The great thing about having a dropshipping business is that you can concentrate on the online marketing stuff and not on the fulfillment part of the store.
That’s also the biggest downside. You can’t differentiate with fulfillment and you’re more dependent on others to make your online store successful.
Drop shipping tip #1: clearly communicatie delivery time
Communicate your delivery time clearly. If you’re shipping from China you won’t be able to promise next day or 2 day delivery. With Amazon and other big retailers offering free next day delivery consumers are getting spoiled but also getting accustomed to quick delivery.
Your customers might go next door if they see they’ll receive their product a lot faster. Give them an option for faster shipment!
Drop shipping tip #2: always order the products you want to sell
Don’t assume the products your supplier has in stoke are all great quality products. Always order them. You can simultaneously check the delivery time. Ordering the items yourself will let you experience what your customer experiences.
Did the product arrive on time? Undamaged? Well packed? As you’d expect? Try the product. Does it do what you say it does on your website?
This process will also allow you to come up with new ideas to market your product. New ideas to add to product descriptions and in marketing your products.
Drop shipping tip #3: don’t use stock product photography
Once the products arrive, make pictures yourself. You can use a Photography Lightbox to create high quality photo’s of your products.
Only use stock photo’s if 1) they really look great and 2) creating your own doesn’t add anything (as in angles, details, etc.)
Remember this though: always think with the end in mind. If you want to be successful online, whether that’s with drop shipping or any other online presence… You have to build a brand.
Brands are visual and photography can be a big part of building your brand. You can add your watermark to your photo’s. You can add your “avatar” to your pictures. You can really stand out with your store with unique pictures.
And because you can’t really differentiate on the fulfillment part of the business, you HAVE to choose different parts of the business to really differentiate on.
Drop shipping tip #4: once you get a taste of drop shipping start a private label
Don’t start a private label on day one (unless you have at least 10k in the bank and confidence in the products you want to sell).
In the end, if you really want to be successful online, you need to create your own branded products. You can’t sell someone else’s products. Everyone can do that. You’ll get competition on price. Competition on every single angle you can think of. To start with you’ll be operating in a nice small niche. You won’t have a lot of competition with the standard stuff you can buy from the supplier(s), but once you start growing you also start seeing more and more competitors.
To own the market as a drop shipper you NEED to differentiate on your brand and products.
You’ll need to think about this from the beginning of your store. What will the URL be? Something like: best[insertproductname].com or CrazyUniqueBrandName.com? The latter will allow you to build a product brand on top of your store URL. It might be a little bit harder to rank in search engines in the beginning, but once you start to get some traction, having your own branded URL will only make it more easy. Plus you’ll be taken more seriously by your customers and (potential) suppliers.
Drop shipping tip #5: don’t start your shop with 100+ products
Because you want to see and feel all the products you’re selling as a drop shipper, you shouldn’t simply upload a feed with hundreds or thousands of products and see what happens. You need to know what you’re selling. You need to check the quality of the product. You need to write unique product titles, descriptions and other product details.
We already talked about photo’s. While I wouldn’t call it mandatory to create your own unique pictures I would definitely put it in the top 5 of todo’s.
There’s such an abundance of online stores out there. The products you want to sell are likely already in dozens of stores around the globe. You’ll have to differentiate yourself sooner or later. Rather start a bit sooner…
Drop shipping tip #6: don’t ask other people what you should sell
If you have to ask other people what you should sell, you’re starting in the wrong direction. Don’t be persuaded by someone else to sell something. You have to be really passionate about the products you’re selling. You should be the biggest fan of your own store. You should be constantly thinking how you can improve your store and your products. What information you can add so your conversion rate will increase. What other products can be added to your store. Where the market is going and what people would also like to buy besides your main products.
- Be passionate about what you sell
- You should be your best customer
- Your products and your market should be on your mind all day long
- This way you’ll be able to improve your store every day, by:
- Adding products
- Creating more appealing product descriptions
- Giving the best answers to customers’ questions
- Knowing where you can target your customers
You can follow my guide on ranking a website from scratch. You can use these tips as a drop shipper too. Good luck starting your business!