4 Tips for Getting Your Dropship Store Up and Running

If you want to know how to make money from home fast, you have probably come across the term “dropshipping” in your internet searches. It’s an easy business model where instead of manufacturing your own products, you purchase them from vendors at wholesale and sell them back to the public under your own brand for higher prices and keep the difference. This way, you never have to hold inventory, so you can work from your laptop in your pajamas if you so wish.

Do you believe dropshipping is for you? While it is marketing-intensive, getting set up is simple. Here are a few tips for getting your online retail store up and running:

Develop your brand

Due to the nature of dropshipping, you might find yourself selling the same products as other stores from the same suppliers. If consumers can purchase the exact same products from either of you—and they are already paying more than you bought the same goods for—why should they decide to do business with you instead of your competitors? The answer lies in branding: while you and the competition may even offer the same prices, you can give customers an experience.

People prefer to transact with businesses that make them feel comfortable doing so. Pay special attention to your brand’s visuals, tone of voice, slogan, and other elements. Double check that your name is unique and does not infringe on any existing company’s copyrights. Compose a logo (or hire a graphic designer) that is easily recognizable and you would be proud to print on a package.

It’s also wise to sell to a niche audience. You’ll struggle to sell products if you attempt to seem appealing to too many people. If you specialize in a particular field, however, you can establish yourself as an authority in your industry and provide resources outside of your products for people to take advantage of. Find a balance between selling products you are passionate about and products that people need.

Set up shop

Decide which platform you are going to use for your store or start from scratch (if you choose the latter, you’ll need to hire a developer if you do not have experience building websites). Popular drag-and-drop options include Woocommerce and Shopify. Shopify, for instance, makes the process easy because you can pick a pre-designed layout and customize it how you desire before adding your products.

Find suppliers

While some dropshipping platforms make it easy to put products on your website, it’s imperative that you consider where they are coming from. You and your suppliers are entering a partnership, so it will be in both of your interests to cultivate a legitimate relationship. One of the caveats of dropshipping is that when things go wrong, it is your responsibility to fix it, even if it’s not your fault. Customers will turn to you because they purchased items under your brand name. Life will be smoother if you and your vendors can work together quickly over a phone call.

You also do not want to partner with just anyone. Look for dropship suppliers that are reputable: are their materials high-quality? Do they ship on time? Are they prone to mistakes? If you have doubts, contact other dropshippers who have worked with them, or try ordering products from your own site to see what the buying experience would be like. Many dropship vendors are also international, so double check their locations so that you can factor in potential shipping times or language barriers.

Focus on marketing

Dropshipping is remarkably marketing-heavy. Because you are not creating your own products, you should direct most of your energy towards reaching customers and keeping them around (entrepreneurs often underestimate the importance of customer retention). So, how do you drive traffic to your store? One of the best ways is through social media and SEO.

Post compelling content on platforms like Instagram, Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter. Ideas include photographs of people using your products (because people cannot hold items in their hands and imagine the role they would play in their lives the way they can in physical stores, it helps to give them visuals), how-to videos, infographics, and interviews with influencers in your industry. Interact with your followers, too: respond to comments, answer questions, and like other people’s posts. As for SEO, make sure you optimize your site so that search engines like Google can index your site more efficiently and improve your rankings.

While running a dropshipping business is not effortless, it is a convenient business model for people who want to work at home or travel the world. How soon will you get your store up and running?