A drop shipping business is a fantastic way to make money on your own time. Whether it’s a full-time career or a part-time supplement, it’s an easy way to make some cash. For those new to the concept, drop shopping is when a seller orders products straight from the wholesaler. This is less risky than traditional sales practices, which requires the seller to buy a bunch of products from the wholesaler then hope to sell it. Instead the seller is buying only what they know they’ve already sold. Here are three steps to starting your own successful online drop shipping business.
Finding the Right Wholesaler
There are many suppliers out there waiting for you to do business with them. To find a local wholesaler flip or click through the Yellow Pages. This will give you a sense of what items are locally available to you. This can keep shipping costs down. On the flip-side, searching the Internet for a wholesaler will point you in the direction of products that may not be easily available in your area, giving you a competitive edge.
Any business is built on its reputation, which means you need to check out the reputation of the wholesaler to ensure it’s up to your high standards. Check the company’s history and make sure they understand the ins-and-outs of drop shipping. Before signing any contracts check out their shipping rules, such as cost, shipping time, and refund and return policies.
Creating Your Online Storefront
The beauty of drop shipping is that you don’t need a brick & mortar store front. Although, many drop shippers do have brick & mortar stores where customers can check out the items before ordering them. This can be great for building customer relations, but will eat into your profits. Your storefront is of the digital kind and there is no shortage of platforms to display your goods. The more known ones are eBay or Amazon.com. These are great sites, but the down side is that they tend to be over-saturated. If you are specializing in a certain kind of product, such as used books, make up or electronics, then try selling your products through specialized online auction sites. This could boost your reputation, because these sites tend to have dedicated repeat customers.
Managing your Products and Merchandise
So you’ve set up shop on an online auction site. You’ve slaved over getting the right photo to show off you fantastic merchandise and you’ve carefully detailed the wonderful features of your gear, including where it is coming from (many sites need to know the location of the wholesaler). Whether business picks up quickly or slowly it is important to stay on top of your orders. Your reputation depends on it. Putting orders to the wholesaler right away, managing any complaints quickly and professionally and paying your wholesalers on time will ensure that you build a strong reputation. The anonymity of the Internet is not kind to shady business practices. Bad reviews and low grades will not only lose you repeat customers. It will also scare off potential new customers.
There you have it: three easy steps to starting a successful drop shipping business. Good luck and remember, the toughest part is the first few months. Once you get going, things will move more quickly!
This post was written by the team at Drop Ship Strategy, the experts at developing online drop shipping websites and businesses. Thanks for reading!