- High growth rate of the drop shipping market
- Growth rate
- Driving forces behind growth
- Online shopping - an increasing preference
- E-com trade - rising trend of cross-border trading
- Smartphones - rising market share
- Consumer disposable income - increasing
- Highly lucrative market attracts
- Growing number of merchants
- Growing number of suppliers
Drop shipping involves selling of products through online stores where the retailers do not keep a stock of goods. The retailer transfers the customer orders and shipment details to either the manufacturer or wholesaler, who then ships the goods directly to the customer.
Drop shipping can be a foundation for huge business opportunities in future
- Successful drop shipping entails
- Efficient Marketing
- Building a sustainable and scalable drop shipping store
- Start small, be focused, be consistent
- Shape a Marketing Plan - SEO, Paid Ads, Social Media Marketing, Email Marketing, Influencer Marketing,
- Affiliate marketing
- Personalized Sales Conversations – Facebook groups, Hashtags, Messenger
- Upsell strategies
- Quality, Manufacturer, Communication, Ethics
- Customer support – SMS more personal
- Incorporate your business
Building blocks of a sustainable and scalable drop shipping store
- Shopify was the best choice as a website builder. Easy to use, and fast.
- Professional design – Home Page, Visuals (Great Product HD photos, videos, creativity)
- Brand awareness – Colour, Name, Font, Logo
- Trustworthiness – Social Proof, Reviews, Testimonies, UGC, F.A.Q, Return policy
- 25-50 winning products
- Simple, catchy product descriptions
- Easy navigation, Collections
- Site to load in 3 seconds
- Additional elements - Payment gateways, About page, Customer service, Policies, Legal info, Contact info,
The major driving forces behind this exceptional growth are an increased preference for online shopping, and the rising trend of cross-border e-commerce trade. The rising market share of smartphones, along with increasing consumer disposable income, promotes the growth of the e-commerce market, and drop shipping in the wake of it.
This highly lucrative market attracts a growing number of merchants, as well as suppliers.
Drop shipping involves selling of products through online stores where the retailers do not keep an inventory. The retailer passes on the orders from the customers along with shipment details to the supplier (manufacturer, wholesaler) who then delivers the goods directly to the customer.
Prerequisites of a successful drop shipping business are Efficient Marketing, and a Sustainable and Scalable Drop shipping Store.
Meowingtons gradually developed their brand by designing a cute cat logo, expanding their cat product lists, and setting up social media channels prevailed by charming cat photos. To develop their own customized product lines they have entered into partnership with a local cat cafe and a foster home for abandoned cats.
District of Clothing is a print-on-demand success story started out as a side project in 2014. Yet in 2016, it yielded $29K of extra income. Valid messages conveyed by their products, updated product designs of late, and viral marketing campaigns benefitting influencers and story-telling constitute the secret of their success.
Launched in December 2017, HYGO quickly became one of the biggest Shopify drop shipping stores in general gadgets because they offer a wide range of products at discounted prices and frequently update and expand them. They make videos to showcase their products and a review of each product accompanied by photos. HYGO’s partnership program includes affiliates and influencers.
Warmly is a niche drop shipping store selling furniture and decor accessories for the home. Their revenue is estimated between $566,000 and $1,100,000 per month, which is remarkable for a store younger than 2 years old. It’s unique that most of their traffic comes from a less popular social media site: Pinterest. Their market philosophy is “Know where your niche is located and focus there. Don’t be afraid to invest in the unpopular channel.”
Notebook Therapy are into Japanese-inspired stationery, gadgets, and tote bags, mostly focusing on young women. Their sales are estimated between $350,000 and $700,000 per month. They massively invest in social media. Customers’ hearts are won over by their store design, charming illustrations, bright colours, free worldwide shipping and a 30-day return policy. They hold it essential to customize your store to your market’s preferences and that customer experience is key.
In December 2017, Marc Chapon quit his full time job and took a plunge into ecommerce. In less than a year, he made sales worth 60 thousand dollars per month. Here’s his tips to build a sustainable and scalable drop shipping store.
Facebook groups, YouTube videos, courses on the Internet - all to help you develop your e-commerce business.
You will need about $1000 to set up a Shopify store, and run Facebook ads.
Using the drop shipping model you don’t have to spend on inventory. Through Spocket he could find products and launch his store at no upfront cost.
There are no saturated niches. Choose one or products you are passionate about. Know everything about them. Then do an exhaustive research about your competitors, the amount of traffic they generate. Check the amount of revenue the niche produces and its profitability. A sustainable business is possible if you choose a niche that is persistently doing well.
Marc loved animals, had a dog and cat of his own and knew the needs and problems of dog owners. Products for dog lovers were trending and so, after some research, He chose dog-centred products as the theme of his store. The traffic was great, and a reasonable profit seemed viable. Once He had extensively researched the niche, He picked and chose everything dog related.
Competitor research revealed who his competitors were aiming at, and what they were doing effectively. He studied the lifestyles, characters and attitudes of his potential customers. They came from the US or Europe, aged 21-65, fancied following dog accounts on Instagram and made their purchases at PetSmart. This was perfect for a start. He kept testing and experimenting as time passed by.
He needed manufacturers from the US and Europe, with great products and fast shipping. A simple Shopify search led him to Spocket. They had a suitable collection of dog bracelets, tags and necklaces to be shipped from the US. The profit margin was also fair. He found customizable products, too.
25-50 amazing products worked well for him.
He made sure to work with suppliers He trusted entirely. Winning products are a mixture of the right product, the right audience and the right marketing.
Social media ads are the most effective tools for your store to generate sales: a large number of people can be reached relatively fast and it’s not expensive (Facebook, Instagram)
Add value through community forums such as Quora or post on Pinterest – to raise brand awareness.
Marc’s final tips:
- “Be organized and keep your finances in order.
- It was hard. But it is possible.
- I made countless mistakes along the way, admitted them, and corrected myself.
- I tried new things every day, tested new ideas and was determined to make it.
- Anyone can build a successful ecommerce store through drop shipping.”
Kamil Sattar, also known as “The Ecom King” is a British E-commerce entrepreneur. At 20, he has gathered an annual sale of $3,000,000.
Clue to his success? The keywords are resoluteness, tenacity, concentration, consistency, hard work. He decided to master drop shipping and was ready for all it took. Dropped out of college, quit his part time job, reckoned with his toxic friends, set up a daily routine and clung to it every single day until he encountered success.
One of his winning products was the privacy phone screen, and he created a one product store to market it. After 11 months of adjustments and scaling, he boxed 1 million in revenue making 24% net profit. He also ran a Christmas store selling gifts ranging from children’s toys to beauty products.
He reinvested the money into more mentors and courses, learnt different marketing strategies like YouTube ads, Bing ads, Google ads, Tik Tok ads, Facebook ads and strategies and updated his skills regularly.
Also, his ability to quickly adapt and implement solutions served as a key factor for his success.
For example, due to the pandemic, consumers’ buying behaviour has changed and Kamil changed course to sell products that suit their demand.
Kamil’s tips to those starting out as drop shippers
Break up great goals into weekly tasks and focus on them independently.
Kamil markets his products with Tik Tok influencers in a fun and entertaining way. In his opinion, Twitter and Tik Tok are the best marketing platforms right now.
He started out
Learning about e-commerce online
Opening a Shopify account
Importing products into his ecommerce store from drop shipper Oberlo platform
He made his first sale using Facebook ads and attributes most of his success to that marketing tool. However he calls the attention of beginners how important it is to balance the cost of ads with profit margins.
His quest is for winning niche products, new products in the same niche or in an entirely different one.
At the beginning of 2019 Erin quit her full-time job and built a drop shipping business on her own. Within a few months, she generated nearly $70,000 per month—per store. How did she build an extremely successful drop shipping business from scratch?
She doesn’t recommend venturing for a general store because it is extremely difficult to engage the right customers.
Using Shopify apps helped with her business a great deal. The customer support was outstanding and building her store was straightforward.
She made sure all return policies, privacy policies, contact information, legal information and FAQs are accessible on every page so that customers could see her as a legitimate business.
She had installed Spocket because was instantly hooked by USA drop shipping suppliers and branding. She found a lot of products matching her stores and with good profit margins.
Her ecommerce marketing strategy constitutes one of the clues to her success, and it can be summed up in three words: Personalised Sales Conversations. She used social media to find her target market. She initiated conversations with the people. She would research groups and hashtags on Facebook, Instagram and other media. These conversations are by all means personalised, with her individually recommending them products.
In time she gathered a team of equally passionate people around her to share the workload.
She has loved Snapchat and Instagram ads from the beginning, but nothing can be better than directly talking to people.
As a supplement to her unique, personal marketing she makes her brand stand out with freebies added to customers’ orders, notes and postcards in her own handwriting.
Additional marketing tools she uses are social proof by way of UGC, Influencer Marketing, Email Marketing, and Uniform Shipping Rate.
She highly recommends to incorporate your business - It releases personal liability, it lends your business a sense of professionalism and is a perfect tax strategy!
Make all your conversations with your customers personal—be it sales or support or marketing. Text messages has proven to be a great strategy in recovering 50% of abandoned carts.
Donating to a cause is a complete win-win. It should be something you really care about.
Shopify apps recommended
SaveMySales SMS/MMS Marketing – for abandoned cart messages
AfterShip Returns Centre
Apps that allow bulk-editing, sticky-carts, adding trust badges and creating product videos
Erin wants to help other entrepreneurs to set up a drop shipping business through conversations.
Kyle Borawski started his webstore back in his senior year of college, and had continued to develop his store after his graduation in May 2019. He raked in over $224,923 in sales from August to October 2019.
Cornerstones of his marketing strategy:
- Quality: Products you want to sell should be of high quality. Be assured of quality of goods found on Spocket.
- Manufacturer: Look for trustworthy and competent drop shipping suppliers.
- Communication: Make sure the drop shipping suppliers are good at communicating, are trustworthy and reliable. Spocket has a supplier page where you can check the order fulfilment success rate for every supplier.
- Ethics: You want to create a brand that can last forever. “You’ve got to always think about the customer.”
Kyle, Erin, Marc, Sattar and all the others in the article who have become successful drop shippers came from different backgrounds, lived in different circumstances, had different levels of knowledge of ecommerce and online marketing and different amount and quality of experience. Yet they all have a common denominator what made the difference for each one of them. These heroes made a resolute decision to acquire the knowledge and expertise that would allow them a financially independent lifestyle and make them able to pursue their dreams, come what may. They all relentlessly attended online courses, webinars, conferences, read blogs, eBooks, and books and did research. They were ready to pay the costs of their success. They did not run away when faced challenges and took on the sacrifice needed. They had no plan B. Their perseverance, consistency, hard work paid off at the end, though none of them knew how long it would take when they started out. They never gave up. And you should not either!
Make a firm decision and stick to it! Be focused and consistent! Persevere! Educate yourself continually! You will make mistakes along the way, but don’t bother! Think of Edison! He did not fail a thousand times before inventing the light bulb. He just learned a thousand other ways it didn’t work.
Online trade is not a quick fix. It’s hard but possible. Kyle, Erin, Marc, Sattar and the others are all ordinary people with extraordinary resolve. That’s the key. You can be the next hero. Take the challenge!