If you are wondering: “What is Dropshipping?”, you are in the right place.
Get comfortable and get ready to read the definitive guide to dropshipping, discover all the secrets to start a successful business in 2022.
Is it easy to start an online ecommerce business in the 21st century? Absolutely not, but that doesn’t mean it’s impossible.
- Identify the platform on which to dropship
- Choose the dropshipping supplier that suits your needs
- Identify your target and do market research
- Look for dropshipping products that will make you earn money
- Focus on marketing
What is Dropshipping?
If you are trying to make your way into the world of ecommerce and you don’t know where to start, dropshipping is the business model for you. The benefits are countless but only if you decide to seriously commit to this path.
Dropshipping offers you the opportunity to start your business only thanks to a computer, an internet connection and a small investment.
It is a business model thanks to which you, the online seller, sell a product to an end user without physically owning it in your warehouse, avoiding any risk on the goods and you won’t even have to worry about shipping the products sold. The wholesale supplier you have relied on will take care of all this.
Basically it is an almost totally automated method of order fulfillment, your task at this stage will be only to supervise the success of the sale and provide assistance to the final customer.
Do you know why so many people have already started their own dropshipping business? Because it’s incredibly easy and many have started just like you, thanks to a desire for redemption and a desire to engage in a profitable but equally demanding business.
No, it is not a dream. You won’t have to worry about storing items in a warehouse, or about packing and shipping products. In addition, all products are purchased on request with no minimum order quantity, so there is no risk of having unsold product stocks.
How does Dropshipping work and what business model is it based on?
The dropshipping business model allows you to sell directly to the final consumer without the need for a warehouse. When your customer buys a product from your dropshipping ecommerce, your supplier automatically ships it.
The customer will therefore pay the retail price you set, but you will only pay the wholesale price, the rest is profit.
I’ll give you a practical example: after a lot of research you finally choose your dropshipping wholesaler and you sell t-shirts on your ecommerce site. A customer orders a t-shirt directly from your online shop and when the item is paid for, your supplier sends the t-shirt to your end customer. But what costs do you have to bear?
The supplier will charge the wholesale price of the t-shirt, the shipping cost and any fee based on the agreements made. But be careful, the nice thing is that you will only have to pay for the products once they have been sold, not in advance. Furthermore, you’ll pay wholesale prices even if you won’t be buying in large quantities.
Is dropshipping legal?
When you discovered dropshipping you probably asked yourself “But is it legal?” and the answer is: of course it is!
You may have seen dropshipping as an easy way to make money, but not all that glitters is gold. In fact, dropshipping can be a great opportunity if you want to top up your salary, or combine your part-time job with a new business managed entirely by you, but we assure you that you will have to invest time and dedication to obtain satisfactory results and make it your main business.
Dropshipping is a completely legal online business, as long as you have a reliable supplier and an accountant by your side to guide you throughout the tax process. If you get all the necessary permits for sellers like a traditional ecommerce store you won’t have problems. After all, a dropshipping business is like any other online store, except that a third-party supplier handles the shipping and you only manage the orders.
Is Dropshipping the right business for you?
Now you are wondering if starting a dropshipping business is the right choice for you. The answer we can give you is: “it depends”!
Dropshipping is worth the time and money you decide to invest in it. If you don’t invest your time in online business you will never reap the fruit of your labour. On the other hand, if you use all your savings early on, your business is bound to collapse due to lack of balance.
One of the main reasons why people stop dropshipping is the lack of consistency and perseverance. Dropshipping takes time as you need to set up a store, import products, decide on your pricing and marketing strategy, and start selling.
Nothing happens if you don’t commit day by day, be wary of people who make you believe you can get rich without effort, but the good news is that your success will be directly proportional to your dedication and, once you understand how your business works, expanding it will be as easy as pie.
Pros and cons of Dropshipping
Nobody likes bad news, so we will immediately start listing the cons of dropshipping. There is no online business without risks or downsides.
LOW QUALITY PRODUCTS
If you don’t choose the right products to dropship, your profit margins may be below your expectations. Selling low-quality products, of unknown brands and of which you don’t know the supply chain, could be counterproductive in the long run. Remember that a sale is never closed when your customer buys a product, the real victory is when they’re so satisfied with the item bought on your online ecommerce, that they recommend it to friends and go back to shop again. You know that if you sell poor-quality products, a customer will never go back to your shop for a second purchase.
Do you know that in the BDroppy catalog you will only find original top fashion brands? It is a perfect catalog if you want to start your own business: you will be sure to sell only high-quality products known worldwide.
The competition is high, despite the fact that dropshipping is considered a recent business because there are experienced entrepreneurs who will use the low-cost technique to establish themselves on the market.
Basically, the bigger a company is, the more its strategy will be likely to reduce profit margins and offer lower prices. To put it simply, their business will be quantity > quality.
The tool you can use to your advantage? Market analysis.
Do some research and identify your market niche. Thanks to tools such as Google Trends you can analyze interesting data on the search volume of some terms, on their locations, in this way you will always be updated on the interests of online users.
Since your task isn’t that of managing or storing your inventory, the overload of work is considered lower and so are the earnings.
Most dropshipping suppliers require a very high percentage of each product sold, which means that despite the difference between the wholesale price (which you pay) and the retail price (paid by the user who is buying on your site), your earnings will be minimal. What can you do to get higher margins with dropshipping? First of all, choose high-quality products, second of all, rely on a supplier who requires an affordable fee to have their entire catalog available.
Thanks to BDroppy, you will be able to choose the subscription that best suits your needs. Moreover, the policy of this provider is based only on a monthly or annual payment and doesn’t deduct a percentage from your sales, all that you earn (net of the cost of the product and shipping) is yours.
When you decide to start the dropshipping business, you will have to take into consideration the problems related to logistics and order management, if you don’t rely on the right supplier.
If you were a customer and had to wait 3 or 4 weeks to receive your order how would you feel? Probably extremely frustrated. We are in the era of immediacy and waiting more than seven days to receive a product purchased online is not an option.
When you are looking for the perfect supplier, remember that you are a customer before being a seller, so invest in the best possible dropshipping wholesaler that can guarantee the shipment of the goods in a short time. Alternatively, get ready to spend a lot of time in front of the computer or on the phone talking to angry customers waiting for their package.
A reliable supplier like BDroppy will in turn rely on serious and famous partners for each shipment, from national to international ones, always guaranteeing the traceability and the speed we got used to with the great ecommerce giants.
DIFFICULTY TO BECOME KNOWN ON THE MARKET
You may think that nowadays it‘s impossible to emerge with a dropshipping ecommerce and you are absolutely right, as you’ll have to use the notoriety of these brands to make your dropshipping online shop stand out.
What will your added value be? Efficient customer care, customer enhancement, and an unforgettable shopping experience are all aspects that help build customer loyalty and obtain regular traffic, necessary to support your online business.
Now we’ll analyze the pros of starting a dropshipping business with the right supplier.
We’ve learned that by experience, we’ve seen many people like you who have managed to start their own online business alongside their main job and over time have managed to grow steadily, this is because dropshipping is an easy business to start, to manage and also to grow over time.
You don’t need great businessman qualities or even great entrepreneurial experience in the sector, the characteristics you need are adaptability, curiosity, patience and dedication.
Remember that you won’t have to manage a physical warehouse, label shipments or pack the goods, your supplier will do all of this for you.
Once you have started an online business such as an ecommerce dropshipping, everything is managed smoothly, almost on its own.
By choosing BDroppy as a supplier, you can always rely on a serious and established partner who will accompany you step by step since the opening of your ecommerce store. But don’t worry, a serious partner will never abandon you at any stage of your journey.
MINIMUM INITIAL INVESTMENT
To start this new satisfactory adventure, it won’t be necessary to invest a lot of money. Actually, the fixed costs to start are very low.
You can start your ecommerce with a very small expense, your whole world will be accessible thanks to a computer. Remember that you‘ll never have to buy the goods in advance and there is no minimum order for the dropshipping products you want to sell on your online shop.
BYE BYE UNSOLD GOODS
You know the fear of not being able to sell a batch of purchased goods that seemed very promising? With dropshipping you will never have to be afraid of unsold goods!
The inventory will be a bad and distant memory, you will never own the goods, the warehouse risks will be borne only by your supplier and on your online shop, you can sell even only one piece per product because you will never have a minimum order for bulk purchases.
WHEREVER AND WHENEVER YOU WANT
Your world in a computer: all you need is a computer and an internet connection and you can manage your online business from wherever you prefer, from a mountain chalet or during a holiday in some heavenly location.
You can choose the place to work from but also the time to dedicate to this activity, and during these years living with a pandemic, we know that flexibility at work is the most important thing, so that you can focus on other aspects of your life as well.
The 5 fundamental steps to follow when starting a Dropshipping business:
1) Identify the platform on which to dropship
You will have to carefully choose the sales platform to launch your dropshipping business, each one is different and has strengths and weaknesses, it’s up to you to find the platform that fits perfectly with your needs.
When we talk about marketplaces, the first name that comes to mind is Amazon. One of its main advantages is the traffic in this sales channel, millions of users pour into Amazon every day.
Furthermore, the appreciation for Amazon in recent years makes it one of the places where people buy without even thinking about it too much, so it won’t be difficult to sell to your target.
On the one hand Amazon showcase is very interesting, but on the other hand, Amazon’s commissions on sales are very high and you have to add the cost of the monthly subscription to be able to sell.
Another downside could be the high competition, in fact many sellers have decided to land on Amazon, so most sectors are saturated. Moreover the platform pays sellers every 14 days and not instantly.
Our advice is to weigh all the factors well before starting dropshipping with Amazon.
Another interesting marketplace to take into consideration is definitely eBay. With its millions of users every day it is very similar to Amazon and the strengths and weaknesses are the same, in fact many sellers decide to start their dropshipping business on eBay.
One downside is that it is less easy to use than Amazon, but accepts PayPal as a payment method and this gives you an extra tool to acquire new customers.
The rates for sellers are high and the percentages of commissions on sales go up to 10%.
eBay works mainly on the basis of auctions and unfortunately they are enemies of dropshippers, they take away the right attention from the products.
If you decide to sell on your ecommerce site, we have good news for you, in fact, selling on your terms will be extremely tiring but also rewarding.
Don’t worry, you won’t have to create everything from scratch, there are in fact many sites that offer the possibility to create an ad hoc site for your dropshipping sales.
Choose a prestigious and recognizable domain, and include as many payment methods as possible: the more choices your buyers have, the easier it will be for them to buy from you.
When you choose to create your ecommerce you have the freedom to decide how to set up your site; you can customize everything by choosing the best techniques in order to differentiate yourself from your competitors.
You have no fees or percentages to pay, what you earn goes straight into your wallet.
Obviously there are also negative sides: if you start from scratch you will have to create your audience day by day and you will have to work harder in the marketing, communication and promotion part.
If the idea of having a personal site on which to start your dropshipping ecommerce appeals to you, but at the same time you don’t know where to start to build a site including ecommerce, you need to try BDroppy’s innovative solution: your turnkey site.
You don’t have to worry about anything, BDroppy will build a site made especially for you with the best technologies and all the necessary integrations! Obviously when your ecommerce is delivered to you, it’ll be ready to welcome your first customers.
Choosing the right platform for your ecommerce is the most important decision to make after identifying the best products to sell in dropshipping.
Before listing the best ecommerce platforms, I want to remind you that each platform has its own characteristics with their own advantages and disadvantages.
WooCommerce (open source)
WooCommerce is one of the most used ecommerce platforms in the world. There are several reasons for that: you can have total control, you can customize your online store in many ways, there are many free or affordable plugins that you can easily configure with WordPress. In fact, it was born as a native WordPress plugin and is totally free.
Although many basic features are free, the costs for purchasing themes and apps can be very expensive, as you need to keep an eye on the security, operation of the site and continuous updates.
Shopify is probably the most popular paid platform worldwide, especially in the U.S. Even if you are not familiar with programming, you can build your online store in an easy and professional way. On the other hand you will have a fixed monthly payment, however justified by the level of service offered. In fact, the platform is safe, has many free themes, and there’s no maintenance, which makes it the perfect tool for those with little experience with programming.
WooCommerce vs Shopify: the differences
Shopify requires a fixed monthly payment while WooCommerce doesn’t.
Shopify doesn’t allow you to have total control of your store, while WooCommerce does: for geeks, the latter is certainly better, but the less experienced people may appreciate the fact that there’s someone who controls security, a very important aspect for both the seller and the users.
Having less control also means having to settle for more limited features, but not having to worry about every aspect can make up for those.
Shopify is less customizable than WooCommerce, but also requires less technical expertise, while WooCommerce requires more experience to start a store. These are the main differences between the two ecommerce platforms.
Prestashop (Open source)
The PrestaShop platform includes more than 300 sales and management features making the portal extremely complete and it also offers you the possibility to completely customize the platform as you wish, thanks to almost 6000 free theme templates.
The payments accepted by the platform are numerous and even the checkout page is completely customizable in the processes and summaries. As a tool for your marketing strategies that’s not bad!
If you want to open up to international sales, this platform offers specific features such as the ability to set different currencies, use a multilingual product sheet, manage multiple stores from a single interface and ensure a regular and legal payment process.
After this overview, what is the best platform for dropshipping? Well, we don’t have the magic wand, so you have to understand the fundamental features that cannot be missing on your platform, and it also depends on the time and money you intend to invest.
Do you know that with BDroppy you can dropship with all the platforms we told you about? We will help you insert the integrations you want in order for you to start your dropshipping business on the platform of your choice.
2) Choose the dropshipping supplier that suits your needs
Choosing the right supplier to start your dropshipping business is perhaps one of the most delicate phases; after analyzing the market and selecting which product sector(s) you want to enter, it is correct to identify the best possible partner to start your dropshipping journey in the best possible way.
There are no precise rules to identify the perfect supplier, but you can consider several factors:
- The quality of the products.
Having well-known, well-made and original products in your catalog is an indication of seriousness and reliability.
- Shipping times and care.
We recommend that you rely on a supplier who prefers fast and tracked shipments, you too will gain credibility in front of your end customer, by offering excellent shipments. If you put yourself in the buyer’s shoes, would you ever buy an expensive sweater without a tracked shipping?
- Right value for money.
A high cost is not always synonymous with quality. An expensive supplier is often chosen to avoid problems, but you must also take into consideration your profit. Would you be in line with costs? Then consider all costs and beware that often a fixed monthly cost is better than a fee on each product sold, as it will be easier to create a business plan of your activity and have a greater margin.
The last factor to keep in mind is the assistance service, in fact every serious supplier will assign you a contact person for each process. They will present you the news in the catalog, will help you solve any problems and will be completely available to provide you with support through it all.
Remember that an excellent supplier will never ask you to work with them, but if anything, you will have to contact them to receive the assistance that best suits your needs.
3) Identify your target and do market research
This phase of the process actually takes place in parallel with the choice of the supplier and the dropshipping products to sell, as they are three interrelated factors that must go hand in hand.
Identifying the target is not an easy process, but we are sure that thanks to the right mindset you’ll be able to find the right market niche for you.
When you are looking for your target audience, trace the personality of a real person in the flesh and imagine a typical day: what do they do? Where do they live? What do they like to do in their spare time? What kind of music or movie do they watch? What are their shopping habits?
The more precise you are with the questions and answers, the more your target will be well defined: you will have identified your buyer personas. Often when we talk about buyer personas we think about extreme stereotypes, outlining the types of customers who would buy on our site, in line with our communication and marketing strategy.
4) Look for the products that will make you earn
As anticipated, the choice of products to sell in dropshipping is closely linked to this triangle formed by: supplier, target and customer.
All three fit together perfectly, but an essential thing is the quality actually perceived by the customer.
If you identify high-quality products and communicate the pluses well through a precise marketing strategy, your profit margins could be much higher than average.
5) Focus on marketing
Without a correct marketing and communication strategy your business will never take off, and you don’t need to be a digital marketing guru, remember that the internet always rewards simplicity and your customers love to see authenticity.
The channels we recommend you to use for your marketing strategy are mainly three:
We are sure that your target audience will be present on social networks. The main ones we strongly suggest are Facebook and Instagram.
Facebook is the preferred channel of all dropshippers, it is very intuitive and if used constantly guarantees you greater visibility.
Don’t talk about products and work only, but try to address side issues that may be of interest to your target audience. Do you dropship clothes by famous and trendy brands? You might think about creating a weekly column where you give style advice or analyze new trends. Is your shop full of products for children? Talk to moms and try to empathize with them by talking about the challenges they face on a daily basis. I assure you that if the content you create is loaded with value for your users, building a fanbase will be a breeze.
Don’t forget, however, that not everything can run only on organic content, you will also need to invest a small monthly budget on Facebook Ads, the native Facebook platform that allows you to advertise directly on the platform. Do you know that you can target your audience very precisely? You will be able to show the advertising of your ecommerce to users with well-defined characteristics such as: age, place of origin, job, interests, romantic relationship, gender etc.
Instagram is an instant social network, and in addition to being able to use the Facebook Ads functions here too, you can make yourself known to your users in a natural and genuine way. Take advantage of this platform to interact with your customers at their level, let them peek behind the scenes, share upcoming news with them and make them feel special by sharing their content when relevant and always asking their opinion to make business choices for the future. It is a very useful and free tool if you know how to use it in a smart way.
Interact with influencers and maybe choose to collaborate with some of them, use the stories to create captivating content and use a language suitable for the platform, be friendly and smart.
Google Ads is a very useful tool for advertising, but for the most inexperienced users, it could be harder than expected.
The great thing about Google Ads is that you only pay for clicks and results, other than that it’s free.
Don’t invest too much budget right away, decide on a budget and respect it constantly, in this way Google Ads will learn about your dropshipping business and position you more and more precisely.
Start with simple things, don’t get involved in the thousands of options that Google offers, you must have patience and be consistent to get results.
In short, Google Ads is structured like an auction site. If you want to advertise, you have to make an offer to gain a certain position and reach the desired audience.
Online you can find many low-cost courses that will introduce you to this very powerful but somewhat complex tool for beginners.
Once you’ve built your customer database, use email marketing to maintain constant communication with them. Reward their loyalty with exclusive discounts and show them previews of upcoming products. Create a plan and fix an appointment with them, maybe you could send an email every Tuesday evening, presenting the news or remembering the active promotions, so you will create a dedicated moment and they will always wait for your email on a certain day.
Is dropshipping profitable? How to make money with dropshipping and how much?
Successful dropshippers can earn hundreds of thousands of euros in their first year of business. This depends on their great selling spirit, their showcase, the size of their business, the time they dedicate to their dropshipping business. Since no income is bound by inventory, stocks or shipping, profits are maximized.
When we talk about low-cost dropshipping, we mean the creation of a digital store with the main intention of selling large quantities of low-cost products. These kinds of dropshipping businesses are very common, they can be very profitable, but they have a short lifespan as customers are unlikely to return to your shop.
In high-cost dropshipping, you focus on acquiring high-quality products instead. This business model may seem slower to grow, but it has longer longevity which means greater profits year after year.
How much do dropshippers earn on average? On average, dropshippers earn between 20% and 30% from each sale. This turns out to be between $1,000 and $5,000 per month.
Companies that sell high-quality products (which often means higher prices too) naturally have a higher dropshipping profit margin. However, they also sell fewer products. Finding a balance between price and demand is key to maximizing revenues and growing your business.
Is dropshipping worth it? What are the risks?
Yes, it is worth doing dropshipping if you want to create your own online store, investing minimal amounts and testing quality products firsthand.
However, the requirements for being a profitable dropshipper haven’t changed much. It’s still essential to sell great products, have fast shipping and handling, and offer top-notch customer service. Nowadays, you also need a brand and customer care that make you stand out from the competition.
If you have read this far, you will have understood that the great thing about dropshipping is that the risks are almost non-existent. The initial investment is minimal, you won’t risk buying goods that will remain unsold, you won’t have to pay the rent of a warehouse or a physical store and above all if you don’t succeed you will not have spent large sums. We assure you that with the right supplier everything will be easier; you will have to put in perseverance, determination and time and they will take care of all the rest.
The concrete advantages of having a partner like BDroppy
BDroppy is the right supplier for you if you want to start your dropshipping business in total safety. BDroppy has been operating in the ecommerce sector for more than ten years and helps entrepreneurs like you achieve important goals with their digital business.
Choosing to work alongside a partner with many years of experience means having greater certainty at every stage of the process.
As you can see, the BDroppy catalog has got more than 100 major fashion brands, many of which are internationally known, which means greater research and proportionately greater demand.
Afraid of long and uncertain shipments? Not with BDroppy! If you choose it as a dropshipping supplier, all your shipments will always be traceable and fast, thanks to reliable selected partners tested over years of experience.
If you want a supplier with low fixed costs you are in the right place, in fact with BDroppy you will only have to pay a small monthly fee to start your dropshipping business, you will never be deducted a percentage on each product sold. Having a fixed monthly cost will help you better evaluate the income and expenses of your online business.