Dropshipping is a great way to start an online store without spending a lot. You don’t need to purchase and store inventory. You don’t need to worry about the shipping and returns. And you can easily scale your business.
But it’s not as easy as ABC. Setting up a dropshipping store is simple but getting the sales is as challenging as it can get. The biggest issue with drop shipping is the low-profit margin and customer support.
This is why you have to avoid making the biggest mistakes people make. Let’s have a look:
1. Signing up for the wrong course or training program:
It can help you find and sign up for a good training program. There are courses like dropshipping titans that will teach you the basics. But not all of them are good. Some of them can end up wasting your time and money. Courses like Dropshipping titans can also misguide you by making false promises. Most of these courses are outdated or lack actionable information. It’s better to find a forum, Facebook Group, or Slack channel where you can interact with online store owners.
2. Not doing product research:
The most critical step is product research. You will be doing this in the first stage of your journey. The impact it has on your business can never be emphasized enough.
You should always dig deeper to get more information about a certain product or niche before making a purchase decision because the profit margin differs significantly from one niche to another.
3. No focusing on a niche:
Always start from selling fewer products. Find a niche and stick to that until you are making reasonable profits. You shouldn’t be looking to start from hundreds of different products just because you do not need to purchase inventory. It’s better to drop a few products and have them all doing relatively well than having hundreds of different products making very little.
4. Working with the wrong suppliers:
You should work with the suppliers that will provide you with:
- High-quality products (with a good return policy)
- Competitive prices and shipping rates
- Fast delivery times at an affordable cost
Remember that a trustworthy supplier is better than the one with the highest profit margins. All of your efforts will be wasted if your supplier is not reliable.
5. Ending Up Doing Everything Yourself:
One of the biggest mistakes drop shippers make is not focusing on marketing and scaling their business. Having a good understanding of SEO or PPC marketing is crucial. Don’t be shy to hire an expert or outsource your work to let someone else do the tedious tasks.
6. Relying on just one supplier:
Relying on one supplier is a big no! You should always have a backup plan in case your supplier:
- Loses stock of the product
- Drops you as their customer
- Raises prices significantly or cuts down shipping rates
- Delays delivery time by more than 4 days, which is unacceptable for most
7. Starting with unrealistic expectations:
An online store can take considerable time before you are profitable. It will take at least 6 months before you get your first sale. You can get lucky but it’s going to be tough earning more than a dollar in the early months.
But if you are not selling enough and the profit margins are low, dropshipping is not for you because every online store takes time to build up an audience and earn profits.
9. Not building an email list:
It’s easier to get a second or third sale from existing customers than getting someone to buy from you for the first time. You need to focus on upselling or cross-selling. You will need to build an email list with interested and targeted customers so that they can be notified about your latest products in stock.
10. Relying on organic traffic as a primary source of sales:
Organic traffic is free but it can take a lot of time and money to build organic traffic via search engines like Google or social media platforms like Facebook.
You can get your store indexed and ranked in search engine results pages by using strategic keywords. This is what you will be doing in the first stage of your journey. But you cannot get any traction from organic traffic sources in your first few months. You need to find a low-cost source of paid traffic.
The best thing about drop shipping is that you can start a shop from scratch without having much experience in online selling and dropshipping. It’s all about doing proper research, finding the right suppliers, and making sure your website is user-friendly.