Dropshipping has become one of the favourite business models among beginning e-commerce entrepreneurs. They treat it as the first step towards the big league and an effective way to make money fast. However, there’s much more to dropshipping than meets the eye.
For instance, contrary to popular belief, starting a dropshipping business is far from easy. Sure, it sounds like a simple career choice. After all, what’s so challenging about selling products to online customers and taking a cut for yourself? The reality, though, is slightly different, as there are many obstacles one must face in this highly competitive industry.
Fortunately, thanks to mentorship programs like Dropship Unlocked, you’ll be able to learn more about starting your dropshipping business right. And no, Dropship Unlocked isn’t a scam. Check out their Linkedin profile and see for yourself how they can help you as they have helped numerous dropshipping businesses.
And if you’re still wondering why you should start your dropshipping business, this article will provide you with all the answers.
What Exactly Is Dropshipping?
There are many misconceptions regarding dropshipping business model. For example, many believe that running a dropshipping online store is about selling cheap products at premium prices, which is an incredibly harmful statement. Such misunderstandings come mostly because people have a wrong idea of how dropshipping model works. Let’s clarify this matter before getting to the main part of the article.
The basic idea behind drop shipping is selling products directly to the customer without keeping them in stock. Instead, you pass on the sales order to a third-party supplier, who then fulfils the order by sending the product to the customer. That way, you don’t have to invest in inventory or a warehouse, nor deal with supping costs. You can focus on bringing in more customers and growing your venture.
Okay, but where does the profit come from? It’s simple. Suppose a customer buys a £300 product from your e-commerce store, paying the retail price you’ve set. Then, you find a supplier, forward the order to them and pay the wholesale price of £200. The supplier ships the product to the customer, and your store keeps a £100 profit.
And how to find dropshipping suppliers? There are dropshipping supplier databases like AliExpress and Dropship Direct, but the best suppliers are domestic suppliers based in your own country.. Once you have suppliers, your main responsibility is then creating a website, marketing, and establishing prices.
Many Benefits of Starting a Dropshipping Business
There are many things you need to consider before you start a dropshipping business, including:
- Setting the right prices to maximize profit margins without scaring off customers
- Finding a reliable dropshipping supplier
- Performing thorough market research
- Creating a top-quality website and focusing on marketing
It does seem like a lot, so is establishing a dropshipping business worth the trouble? It is, and here’s why:
Low Startup Costs
One of the best things about becoming a dropshipper is that there’s practically no entry barrier. You don’t need to invest in any inventory, storage space, or location store. Additionally, you don’t have to hire any additional staff to fulfil your orders. All this makes dropshipping especially attractive for entrepreneurs who want to get started in e-commerce but don’t have enough funds to work as a traditional retailer.
Of course, it doesn’t mean there’s no cost involved in dropshipping. Creating a great-looking website can be costly, and don’t forget about investing in the right marketing channels, such as Google Ads, Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), or email marketing. Still, despite these necessary investments, starting and running a dropshipping business is much more cost-efficient than owning a traditional retail online store.
A great thing about dropshipping is that you can scale your business quickly and at lower costs. That’s because dropshipping isn’t dependent on the size of your venture. Since you don’t store any products, you don’t need to worry about additional storage costs. Instead, you can focus on finding new product ideas and attracting more potential customers. This allows you to grow your online business without significant investments, like hiring new workers or renting more storage space.
What’s more, you can enter new markets much easier as there’s no need for establishing subsidiaries. The only thing you’ll have to do is adapting your website to a foreign customer, but even that isn’t always necessary. In other words, you can sell the products anywhere in the world without having to spend a fortune on the internationalization process.
That’s not all, though. With the ongoing digitalization and globalization, entering new markets has become even more accessible. That creates a great opportunity to discover emerging markets and get a share of them before they become overly competitive.
Decreased Business Risk
Low costs and scalability affect the overall risk involved in running a dropshipping business. Sure, it isn’t entirely risk-free, but it considering it requires much less investment, significantly decreasing the chances of going bust. Money is not the only reason for that, though.
Since you’re a retailer, you don’t need to manufacture the goods you sell. Your job is to resell products without even having to store them anywhere. This eliminates all potential inventory issues and allows you to exit the industry anytime you want without worrying about potential products laying in your warehouse unsold.
Starting a business usually requires a lot of time. You have to risk it all and put all your focus and resources into managing your venture, often sacrificing your free time. This doesn’t apply to dropshipping, though. Sure, you still have to spend some time taking care of your store, but it’s nothing compared to running traditional online stores.
In fact, many people treat dropshipping as their side venture. There are numerous automated tools that provide you with all the aid you need to manage your business much easier and more efficiently. Those tasks include:
- Transferring order details
- Promoting your business with plug-ins and add-ons
- Measuring your website’s performance
- And more!
Additionally, you can manage your venture from anywhere you like, sell customers any products you want, and change your offer depending on the season, demand, or market. All that makes running a dropshipping business much more manageable, and therefore, time-saving.
Lots of Products to Sell
Another great thing about dropshipping is that you aren’t tied to one product niche. Since you’re not a manufacturer, you can easily switch between niches without paying additional costs. And considering how many niches are there (with new products appearing daily), it opens thousands of opportunities ahead of you.
This freedom of choice is what makes dropshipping so attractive to e-commerce entrepreneurs just getting started. It allows them to create unique offers and explore highly specific niches. All this at a relatively low cost and risk.
If you decide to start a dropshipping business, you can be sure you’ll end up with not only a significant amount of money in your pocket but also a plethora of useful skills. That’s because running a dropshipping online store is a fantastic learning experience that will come in handy in all your future endeavours.
During your dropshipping career, you’ll be able to learn:
- How to sell products online
- Working with wholesale suppliers
- Conducting research
- Creating a digital marketing strategy (using social media, Facebook Ads, Google Ads, etc.)
- Managing customer relations
- Performing a website performance analysis
- And many more!
All this can provide you with knowledge and skills that will give you a significant advantage over your competition. Which, considering how extremely competitive the industry is, can be an invaluable help.
Last but not least, dropshipping is a business that will help you explore your passions. For instance, if you love football, nothing stops you from starting a dropshipping store related to this niche. The same goes for any other hobby you may have. What’s more, choosing a niche you’re interested in should provide you with improved sales, and there are a few reasons for that.
Firstly, working with a familiar niche will help you choose the right products and be to date with all the recent market trends. Secondly, you understand better what your customers want, which can be a great help when writing more appealing product descriptions. And lastly, when dealing with something you’re passionate about, you’ll be highly motivated to keep going and fulfil your dreams despite any potential obstacles.
Potential Dropshipping Challenges
Although dropshipping does indeed come with tons of various benefits, it doesn’t mean you shouldn’t expect any challenges along the way. Just like running any other business, owning a dropshipping store comes with both pros and cons. And now that you know the reasons why starting a drop shipping business is a good idea, let’s go through the challenges you should prepare for:
Before you start selling goods via your dropshipping store, you should prepare yourself for a lot of competition. As mentioned several times in this article, dropshipping is a low-risk and low-cost business model, and there are many entrepreneurs who try to take advantage of its many advantages, selling the same products available at your store.
That’s why it’s so vital to know how to promote your website and products effectively. Unless, of course, you work in a highly specific niche or have an agreement with a manufacturer to dropship their products exclusively. In that case, you’re in a privileged position to dictate market conditions.
Reliance on Third-Party Suppliers
Although working with third-party suppliers helps dropshipping retailers to save money on shipping costs, it does come with one significant disadvantage. If a supplier fails to fulfil the order, it’s the retailer who pays the price of a customer complaint. This, in addition to financial consequences, can also tarnish your reputation.
Narrow Profit Margin
Due to the fact that dropshipping involves outsourcing the part of order fulfilment to someone else, it lowers your store’s revenue. To manage this, you need to keep increasing your sales volume to expect the same profit as a traditional online retailer.
Complicated Customer Support
Even though you don’t deliver the product to the final customer, it’s your responsibility to deal with any issue they might encounter. Whether it’s a product defect, problems with shipping times, etc., you need to be ready to answer any questions your customer might have. And since you technically don’t have any products in your inventory, providing customer service can be challenging.
Getting Started With Dropshipping
If you want to start your dropshipping business, now is the right time to do it. The entry costs are low, there’s practically no risk involved, and there are numerous vacant niches you can take advantage of. What’s more, with a little help from online guides and training programs like the one from Dropship Unlocked, starting on the right foot has never been easier.
Before you get started, though, there are several things you ought to consider, including:
- Finding the products you want to sell
- Choosing the right platform (Shopify, AliExpress, Amazon, and eBay)
- Planning how you want to grow
- Creating quality and appealing website
- Picking the reliable supplier(s)
- Thinking of your marketing strategy
For more details, check out the Dropship Unlocked course on how to get started with dropshipping. There, you’ll find all the information you need, providing you with the aid necessary to compete effectively in the industry.
Starting a dropshipping business is a fantastic way to enter the world of e-commerce. There’s practically no entry barrier, the costs of running an online store are low, and there’s a large number of niches you can choose from when deciding what to sell. Besides that, you can expect a lot of freedom. Not to mention how easy it is to scale such a business. Considering all that, drop shipping does seem like a dream career choice.
But, of course, there are several challenges you should expect, including tight profit margins, high competition, or reliance on third-party suppliers. Still, despite these cons, getting into dropshipping is a fantastic opportunity, not only to earn some money but also to learn the skills necessary to become successful in the e-commerce industry.
What’s more, with the help of various online courses and guides, starting your online business has never been easier. Start dropshipping today, and take your first step towards serious entrepreneurship!