If you are an entrepreneur who wants to venture into an online business, you probably thought of dropshipping. As you try to weigh the pros and cons, you may ask yourself, “Is dropshipping worth it this year 2022?” Well, the short answer is YES. Dropshipping is not dead – it is continuously growing!
Dropshipping is a business model that suits small entrepreneurs who do not have enough finances to invest. This allows their store to thrive without spending money on inventories. All they need is a functional website, a partnership with a reliable supplier, and a marketing strategy.
The Future is Online
Nowadays, people can shop online from the comfort of their sofa. Thanks to technology and e-commerce platforms, consumers can buy and sell products without the commute and hassles.
According to Statista, 87% of UK consumers make purchases online and 34.5% of total retail sales are accounted for internet sales. This means that the online shopping trend is going up. Consumers find it more convenient to shop online because it can save time and effort and ensure their health and safety (especially in times of pandemic).
Is Dropshipping Saturated?
“I want to start dropshipping but many are now doing it.” Well, almost all businesses have competition. The recipe for success is not just about being unique but being able to manage and grow your business the right way.
Dropshipping is an easy business model that one can easily start with. But here is the truth – not because it is easy, success is also easy. 80% of dropshippers fail. The reason is not about dropshipping being saturated but lazy entrepreneurs who don’t put any effort into their dropshipping store.
Is Dropshipping worth it?
The richest man in the world is from online shopping, Jeff Bezos – founder of Amazon. Dropshipping will remain popular and profitable in 2022 and onwards. The e-commerce market is growing and there is no sign of it slowing down.
Physical stores and small retailers are seeing a 30% increase in sales through smartphones. People are becoming comfortable making purchases online and this growth is a good indicator for entrepreneurs to start an online shop.
A dropshipping business offers you a ton of benefits. You can do it full-time or as a side hustle. With low investment and nothing to worry about inventory, you can easily adapt to the market trend. All you need is to research winning products and keep an eye on what is trending in your chosen niche.
Another advantage of dropshipping is you can manage your online store anywhere in the world. It gives you full control in running your business. You can also reach a wider audience through social media and interact with your customers. With solid marketing and creative advertising, you can increase sales and bring in more profits.
Is Dropshipping Scalable?
Like any other business, dropshipping demands patience, planning, and determination. Once you successfully build your online reputation and get consistent traffic and sales, you can expand your product and customer service.
Dropshipping is scalable. Unlike traditional business models where you have to buy more stocks and hire more people for the increased workload, dropshipping can be automated. With the use of CRM integrations and apps, you can streamline the work process smoothly.
You can just hire a virtual assistant who will help you with administrative support and customer service as well as a social media person to help with advertising.
Dropshipping will continue to rise in the next 5-10 years. It is easy to set up, low risk, and profitable. As most businesses are shifting to the digital platform, it’s time to make a jump to e-commerce. Do your research, study the market, find the right supplier, choose the best e-commerce platform, and set up your store! If you want a business with low capital, dropshipping is the perfect option.
The times where you have to drive to your local convenience store or to a city mall to buy products you need are declining. As technology advances, online shopping is on the rise.
Many entrepreneurs are taking advantage of this market trend. With most products and services available in just a click of a button, it makes the buying and selling process easier and more convenient.
While physical stores expand their business online and other business owners create their own products, some entrepreneurs are riding the dropshipping model in the e-commerce business.
Because dropshipping is easy to start and requires less capital, millions of people are interested to try it. But even though you can sell items without dealing with products stock, it is not as easy as you think.
To make the most profit, you have to learn how to operate a dropshipping online store properly.
Below are ten essential tips that you should know:
1. Find the Right Supplier.
All successful dropshipping businesses start with a reliable supplier. No matter how good your marketing is, if the quality of your product is poor, you will not get any customers and sales.
The problem is there are thousands of supplier options on the internet. Finding the right one can be a daunting task. It is crucial to find the right supplier who will help build your brand image by delivering high-quality products with good packaging and shipping time.
Drophippo is a reliable supplier which deals directly with manufacturers and takes the pain out of sourcing products from China. Their quality control and customer support are top-notch, leaving you without worries about your orders.
2. Avoid selling the same product.
Not because a certain product is trending, you will immediately want to sell it too. It’s a simple law of supply and demand. If many businesses and online sellers are selling the same “hot product”, the prices will go down because of the growing competition.
As a result, your profit margin will become slim; and you waste valuable time and energy. Instead of jumping to the hype, pick a more sustainable strategy like a niche item with low competition and a decent profit margin.
3. Price wisely.
Not because your products are lower in price than your competitors, customers will flood you. Underpricing your products will lead you nowhere in the long run. Consider your profit margin when pricing your products.
Calculate marketing expense, staff, overhead, and other relevant factors. If your competitors are lowering their prices, don’t try to imitate them however tempting it might be. Also, don’t price ridiculously high as it will turn away your store visitors.
Pricing your products fairly by keeping them within the market value is the right way to go. Providing an excellent customer experience is also crucial to increasing sales. Factors such as swift customer support, hassle-free returns and refund policies, and personalized packaging lead to an enhanced customer journey.
4. Focus on Niche Products.
One common reason why online business owners fail is they sell a wide variety of products. To be successful at dropshipping, it is important to research and study your niche. Instead of selling many products, try narrowing them down to the products that you are interested in.
Sell products that you are knowledgeable of. Let’s say you’re a mom who loves cooking. You can pick home and kitchen appliances as your niche. Since you understand your products, you can market them well.
Then, conduct market research on your niche and find products that have a good profit margin. A focused niche can give you an edge instead of products in random categories.
5. Use an e-commerce platform for your Dropshipping Store.
If a physical store is made up of brick and mortar, an online store is built on an e-commerce platform. Some of the popular options are Shopify, WooCommerce, BigCommerce, Magento, Wix, and Squarespace. Each of them differs in pricing, features, and capabilities so make sure to do your research before deciding on one.
When choosing an e-commerce platform, keep these factors in mind:
Integration with distributor’s product feed: It allows you to automatically import products from your distributor to your store.
CRM Integration: It allows you to connect important software to ensure a seamless workflow and process.
Freight and Taxes Automation: It allows you to automate order checkout and guarantees trust and transparency to your customers.
Support: Whenever you encounter a problem or issue, the platform should be accessible for support 24/7 and be contacted through phone, email, or webchat.
Scalability: As your business grows, the e-commerce platform you choose should also grow. Does the platform charge more fees and additional costs as you expand? If so, consider other options.
Mobile-friendliness: Your e-commerce platform should be responsive to multiple devices as mobile shopping is on the rise.
Security: Data security is one of the biggest concerns in online shopping these days. Make sure that your e-commerce provider has strong data security to safeguard customers’ data and information.
6. Optimize Product Descriptions.
A good product description makes use of high-quality images and detailed information about the product. To make your listing effective, use clear photos with a clean background.
When putting product descriptions, avoid copying the text provided by the manufacturer. Duplicating content affects SEO so if you want your website to rank higher in search engines, creating unique and relevant content is advisable.
7. Create an amazing Offer.
Offers and deals can help your store stand out from the crowd. Special deals and bundles affect consumers’ buying behaviour. Saving motivates them to buy and the price advantage makes you shine out from the competition.
This fundamental marketing strategy makes your customer see that you’re offering a great bargain and they’re getting more value from it. Utilize promotions and deals as well as upsells and cross-sells – anything that can persuade people to pull their credit cards out.
8. Create a Marketing Plan.
Most dropshipping business owners fail in this part. They found a reliable supplier, set up their online store, and just left it there – assuming that customers will magically come and buy their products.
Magic doesn’t happen in any business. You need to have a solid marketing plan to get your first order. Advertising drives your customers to your store so it’s vital to promote effectively.
In this digital age, you can take advantage of social media and online directories. Successful dropship merchants do not stick to one selling platform but utilize all resources available.
You can market directly through your website or other channels such as Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, eBay, and other marketplaces. Create strategies on how you will reach your potential customers. You can try organic SEO and paid advertising to spread the message and let the world know that you exist.
9. Provide Excellent Customer Service.
Bear in mind that people buy online for the convenience it offers. This means that they expect a satisfying shopping experience from you. The best way to retain and attract customers is by providing customer interaction.
Offer tracking information and be clear about the delivery times. Not being transparent to your customers and not addressing their concerns can lead to negative feedback and bad reviews.
Always meet your customer’s expectations. Keep them up to date with what’s going on with their order, confirm shipping dates, receipts, etc., and build trust. Excellent customer service reflects your brand image, encourages repeat business and puts you on top over your competitor.
10. Don’t give up too early.
Dropshipping is not a sprint but a marathon. Starting an online business requires patience, dedication, and hard work. Many entrepreneurs enter the e-commerce business thinking that it is the easiest road to wealth yet most of them quit when bombarded with challenges.
If you want to succeed as an online entrepreneur, you must learn how to face failures and disappointments. Dropshipping involves a lot of trial and error and only the brave ones with realistic goals succeed.
When facing adversity, figure out the solution, learn new skills, and understand how the business works. Don’t throw in the towel early – all big businesses start small.
The power of the internet impacts our lives in many ways. Not just for research, work, and communication, we also use it for shopping. As people continue to use technology and shop online, e-commerce will continue to grow.
This is why most physical stores are expanding their presence online to reach more audiences and cater to their customers. If you are an entrepreneur who wants to ride the e-commerce wave, you need to have an online store.
An e-commerce website is your marketplace – just like an attractive window display in the mall. A well-built online shop is a gamechanger – it builds brand recognition, attracts buyers, provides a great user experience, and facilitates customer service.
What are the essential elements of an effective e-commerce website?
1. Choose the Right Platform
The initial step is to choose a proven platform for your e-commerce business. There are a lot of e-commerce options out there but some of the most popular choices are Shopify, BigCommerce, Wix, WooCommerce, Squarespace, and Magento.
When choosing a platform, consider these factors:
Payment gateway options
Limitations around product numbers
CRM and App integrations
Before you sign up, you can do quick research, read customer reviews, and even take demos to find out which platform is best for you.
2. Choose the perfect theme
Visual appearance is extremely important. The first impression lasts. Pick a theme that matches your e-commerce vision. Themes or templates are ready-built pages that you can customize without the need for design or coding skills.
Pick a theme that complements your brand. When designing your website, keep it clean and professional-looking. Too many elements and pop-ups can turn away your web visitors.
3. Keep it Simple and Easy to Navigate
If your site has too much going on, it can confuse your customers. To provide an excellent customer experience, smooth website navigation is a must. The texts, fonts, and product information should be easy to read and not distracting.
Is your homepage reflecting your brand and telling a story? Make sure that the images, slideshows, and videos are placed properly. The navigation bar should not be complicated to access.
The font, colour scheme, and buttons should match your branding. It is also vital to have a search feature that allows customers to filter results to easily find the product they are looking for, instead of digging through hundreds of products.
4. Add Your Products and Content
Product pages are the most important pages of your website. Customers come to your site because of these items and if they are not presented well, it can lead to a lost sale.
Take the time to add eye-catching images. Whenever possible, use high-quality pictures and perform product photography. You may want to grab the generic images from the product manufacturer but that will not work out great. Showing the products from all angles make your products stand out.
Although writing your own product descriptions take time, it is better than copying the information given by the supplier. Duplicate content affects SEO and your customers will find you at the bottom of search pages.
Describe the product and detail its features, benefits, textures, measurements, and the value it provides to your customers.
5. Set Up Payment Methods
You need payment methods to close a sale and receive payments. Your customer’s data and information should be kept safe and secure when they process payment. In the competitive online marketplace, having multiple payment options gives you an edge.
Your website’s checkout process can make and break a sale. A good payment option should be simple, making the purchase process fast and convenient. The last thing you want is to lead your customer to a checkout page that takes too long to process payments.
6. Sort out your Shipping and Fulfillment Policies
Expensive shipping costs make customers leave your site or abandon their cart. This is why it’s best to find a reliable logistics and fulfilment service to partner with. Customers want a seamless shopping experience and they expect to receive their orders promptly.
Are you shipping locally or internationally? What types of shipping fees are you offering: flat rate, variable rate, or free shipping? Inform your customers about these details and offer a tracking option so that customers can get updates about their orders. Integrate a shipping software that automates the workflow so that your customers won’t be frustrated upon checkout.