How You Can Start A Profitable Dropshipping Business In 2019
A great first step into entrepreneurship and/or ecommerce for your business is to start a dropshipping business.
It will be possible for you to sell a variety of products to your customers without holding any stock. It is not even necessary to pay for any inventory before being sold to the customer.
If you are willing do the work, you can build a successful business with very little start-up money. In this article, we will show you how to start your own dropshipping business.
It will explain what a dropshipping business is, how to come up with great dropshipping business ideas, how to set up your own dropshipping business, and provide you with some cost-effective marketing strategies for your first step into the world of entrepreneurship.
What Is a Dropshipping?
Dropshipping is a type of business in which you can operate your store without having to hold any inventory.
After making a sale, your supplier will simply ship your products from their own warehouse directly to your customer. You won’t ever have to worry about storing, packaging, or shipping any products.
How Does a Dropshipping Business Work?
There are three main ingredients in a dropshipping business: the customer, the manufacturer, and the retailer (you).
The manufacturer’s role includes making the products, carrying the inventory, and shipping the products to customers as well as replacing defective units and restocking.
They sell products to retailers at wholesale prices who assume the risk of unsold inventory in their stead.
The retailer, you, market and sell the manufacturer’s products on your website using your own brand. You will choose which products to market and how, and you will also be responsible for responding to customer’s questions and complaints.
Finally, in a dropshipping business, the customer buys the products from your, the retailer’s website. If any questions or issues arise, the customer will contact the retailer who they purchased the product from.
Why Is It a Good Idea To Start a Dropshipping Business?
A dropshipping business carries a low amount of risk. As for product costs, you only need to pay for products after selling them to paying customers.
You won’t get overburdened with costs associated with making products, holding inventory, maintaining unsold inventory, or employing people to package and ship products.
This makes dropshipping a great way of getting into entrepreneurship since you can start your own business alone during evenings or weekends.
There is daily work needed in order to process orders coming in each day, but most of this process can be automated and will need only the click of a button.
The opportunities are endless in the world of dropshipping: you simply need to make the first step.
Get the edge over your competition – by fully understanding how to utilise the power of your website.
The 4 Step Plan for Starting a Dropshipping Business
Step 1: Choosing a Dropshipping Business Idea
What you sell is important. You should first take the time to find the right kind of products to market and sell.
Many people will tell you to pick a niche market that you are passionate about. But this alone is not enough.
It’s better to go after a combination of passion and profit that leans more to the side of profit.
In reality the best business ideas are the most profitable ones.
It’s much more difficult to be passionate about a business that makes no money, after all. If you would like to come up with your own idea for a dropshipping business, here are some things to consider:
Checking Google Trends is a great way to find out if a niche market is on a downward or upward trend. This alone, however, is not sufficient to completely determine if a niche will be viable.
Some niches, though they are on an upward trend, still won’t have the search volume to match its popularity.
So use this in conjunction with Google’s Keyword Planner to find the search volume of a keyword.
If you use the free version of the Keyword Planner you will yield a very wide range range of results, making it much more difficult to know if the keywords for your niche are worth taking up.
Try asking a friend or your boss if they use the pay version of the site to get a better idea of the competitiveness of your chosen niche keywords.
This will help you to understand the real potential of your idea for your dropshipping business.
You can also try hunting around on social media. I’ve come across a number of great dropshipping business ideas simply by doing a competitor analysis.
Browse Facebook ads pertaining to a certain niche, or other media pages to find top brands. How many followers do these pages have? How do they market their products?
What can I do better or differently to stand out from the rest? What are these pages doing right that I should make use of as well?
You can also browse popular websites related to your chosen niche.
For example, if you check out a book retailer’s site, you’ll see they they often organize their storefront by using major trend categories.
Taking note of these categories can help you understand what trends you need to add to your own digital storefront. Another idea is to browse a store’s best-sellers in order to help you find the most sellable products. Also check out a product’s order volume.
Using Ali Express you can browse based on order volume which helps you to see how popular certain products really are.
It is important to realize the the most profitable dropshipping business ideas are no based merely on trends. Rather, they make use of trends within a larger business.
For example, denim clothing is a trend within the fashion market, artificial eyelashes are a trend within the beauty market, and marble phone cases are a trend within the phone market.
But you will not want to base your entire store on these alone because of the ever-changing nature of such trends. Keep this in mind when putting together a solid plan for your own dropshipping business.
Step 2: Building Your Dropshipping Store
There are a number of different components for establishing a successful dropshipping e-commerce business, including:
Domain name – Your domain name is important, especially if you intend to establish an enduring brand. You can make use of free name generators for your business to make things easier for you.
Make sure you always get a .com domain name, as this is important.
And if you want a keyword in your domain name then make sure it’s something broad like fashion or hardware; if you are too specific then you might need to change your domain name later on down the road.
Also, never use your own name as the domain name since if you end up selling your business one day you could lose the right to legally use your own name.
We recommend signing up for Woo Commerce as it’s the most comprehensive e-commerce platform out there.
Is has new features being added regularly, so you’ll also find that it’s very easy to use and to run a business from. Moreover, if you run into a thorny patch you can contact a Woo Commerce guru who can help you through it for free.
Woo Commerce themes – we recommend as a starter the Minimal Vintage theme: it is easy to navigate, uncluttered and just overall a great starter theme for new entrepreneurs on a tight budget.
Themes can always be changed over time.
At first, you may as well simply try out the free themes to get things moving. Once you start to generate some income, at that point you can decide to invest in newer or better themes to evolve your store design.
AliDropShip – AliDropShip lets you find products online that can be sold on the very same day. You will come across products from a variety of popular niche markets.
Aim for roughly 10-25 different products to start out since it will be overwhelming to come up with product descriptions for any more than that.
Step 3: How to Find the Right Dropshipping Suppliers
As for choosing the right dropshipping supplier for your business, there are some definite advantages to choosing products from Ali Express Verified Suppliers.
Ali Express Verified Suppliers will be aware that you are dropshipping. That means you won’t have to worry about any suspiciously foreign promotions or invoices being included in the shipments. This saves you from having to contact other suppliers in order to request this.
Step 4: How to Market Your Dropshipping Business
If you’re just stepping into the world of dropshipping, then you are probably on a tight budget.
Nevertheless, some of my own best marketing ideas originally came from a need to be frugal.
Here are a few budget ideas to get you going:
Facebook advertising: Though it may be tempting to throw away $500 on Facebook ads, as many new entrepreneurs think this will magically rain immediate money, be careful.
For my very first ad I spent $50 and simply lost all of it.
Actually I cried because of this.
But in retrospect I actually didn’t risk that much. So I got back on the horse and made a second ad which ended up converting at five cents per click.
It is advised to keep your budget low at the start so you can afford to play around and see what works. You won’t even know what your best selling product is going to be at the start.
Try creating several different ads so you can figure out which product is the best seller. As for targeting, you can create a World ad while removing the U.K., Australia, Canada, and the United States, which will keep down your ad costs.
As your business becomes larger and you have a larger budget, then you can create individual ads for those countries. For example the U.S. will have one ad of its own, and so on.
If you are on an especially tight budget, try retargeting ads to keep your costs low.
This can work well if your store has a lot of traffic. Perhaps you’re already marketing for free on Pinterest and you are getting a lot of traffic from this. Or maybe you are writing blog posts on your site with featured influencers, and perhaps even influencers are sharing your blog with others for free.
With a retargeting ad, you can take that already-existing free traffic which is a lot more likely to translate into a paying customer. This is even better than a Facebook ad, and moreover, much cheaper.
To start a dropshipping business you will need to be frugal at the start. If you cannot afford to pay influencers the rate they ask for, this is actually a good thing as you can offer to pay them an affiliate commission.
Why is that actually a good thing?
I unfortunately learned this the hard way: sometimes even a influencer related to a specific niche doesn’t in fact convert. It can be nearly as random as taking a shot in the dark sometimes.
If instead of the up-front fee you pay a commission for each sale, you greatly lower the risk for yourself.
Find free media coverage:
By using the HARO tool (for free) you can subscribe to a three-times-per-day email list whereby journalists will reach out to you for stories.
Some of them might be trying to find influencers in a certain niche, while others might be trying to find product recommendations.
In either case, if you have a retargeting ad already running, this free traffic leading back to your site has the potential to bring in sales.
Rather than adding a link to your own homepage, you can send it to a collection of products or to one specific product in order to create a more targeted focus. However feel free to still use your own brand name in the hyperlink.