6 Steps to Building a Successful Online Drop Shipping Business
For new entrepreneurs, drop shipping is an extremely popular business model, especially Gen Zers and Millennials. This is due to internet marketing skills far outweighing financial capacity. Since you don’t need to stock or handle the items you are selling, it’s possible to start a drop shipping business with limited funds.
DIGITTO media is a vendor for SEO / marketing agencies and web development firms. They deliver websites at the most affordable price points. When marketing is needed, you can be set up with their exclusive cost reduction marketing. This is a new program DIGITTO began to help new startups scale on a very tight budget.
An e-commerce website that operates a drop shipping model purchases the items it sells from a third-party supplier or manufacturer, who then fulfills the order. This not only cuts operational costs, but it also frees up your time to focus all of your efforts on customer acquisition.
If you are ready to start a business that can compete with retail giants, and do so on a limited budget, then follow the six steps below. While it doesn’t take a lot of startup funds to launch a drop shipping business, it will require you to hold off on a few episodes of your favorite TV shows.
STEP 1: Select a niche
The niche you select needs to be laser-focused and something you are genuinely interested in. A product range that isn’t focused will be difficult to market. If you aren’t passionate about the niche you select, you will be more apt to becoming discouraged, because it takes a lot of work to successfully scale a drop shipping business. Here are some points to consider when selecting your niche:
Seek attractive profits. When you are running a drop shipping business model, your focus is on marketing and customer acquisition, so the amount of work required to sell a $20 item is essentially the same as it would be to sell a $1,500 item. Select a niche with higher-priced products.
Low shipping costs are very important. Even though your supplier or manufacturer will handle the shipping, if the cost is too high, it will act as customer repellant. Find something that is inexpensive to ship, as this also gives you the option of offering free shipping to your customers and absorbing that cost as a business expense in order to attract more sales.
Make sure your product appeals to impulse buyers with disposable income. When you are focused on driving traffic to your website, you want to experience the highest conversion rate possible because most visitors will never return. The products you are selling should trigger impulse buys and appeal to those with the financial ability to make a purchase on the spot.
Make sure people are actively searching for your product. Have a team run keyword research on some common search terms related to your potential niche. If nobody is searching for what you are planning on selling, you are dead in the water before you even begin.
Create your own brand. Your drop shipping business will have more value if you can rebrand whatever it is you are selling and pass it off as your own. Look for a product or line you can white label and sell as your own brand with custom packaging and branding.
Sell something that isn’t readily available locally. Pick something your customer can’t find down the street. That way, you become more attractive to a potential customer.
STEP 2: Perform competition research (we can help)
Remember, you will you be competing with other drop shipping operations as well as retail giants like Walmart and Amazon. This is where a lot of potential drop shippers go wrong, because they look for a product that has little to no competition. That’s a sign there isn’t demand for that particular product.
There are many reasons why a product might not have a lot of competition, like high shipping costs, supplier and manufacturing issues or poor profit margins. Look for products that have competition, as it’s a sign that there is a high demand and the business model is sustainable.
STEP 3: Secure a supplier
Partnering with the wrong supplier can ruin your business, so it’s important that you don’t rush this step. Conduct proper due diligence. Most drop shipping suppliers are located overseas, making communication extremely important, both in terms of response speed and the ability to understand each other. If you are not 100 percent confident in the communication abilities of a potential supplier, move on and continue your search.
Alibaba has become one of the largest online resources to identify and communicate with potential manufacturers and suppliers. Make sure to ask a lot of questions and learn what their production capabilities are in the event that your business grows exponentially. You want to be certain they have the ability to scale with you.
Try to learn from other entrepreneurs who have walked this path in the past. There are plenty of information sources available, from business and tech blogs to this subreddit about drop shipping. It’s a popular topic that can help you avoid costly supplier mistakes.
STEP 4: Build your e-commerce website
The fastest way to launch a website that supports a drop shipping business model is to have a professional development company to build you an e-commerce on a WordPress plaform. Shopify is okay too, but WordPress will allow your company to be more flexible and scale quickly.
WordPress will also save you time and money in the long run and is a great platform for SEO Marketing. If you have a dropship business, you will need customers. You don’t need a tech background to get up and running, DIGITTO media is a vendor and they will help you scale your company at the most affordable cost and help you increase sales.
Even if you don’t have a sizeable budget DIGITTO can make it happen. Once you are established and the revenue is coming in, then you can explore additional website customization options.
STEP 5: Create a customer acquisition plan
Having a great product and a website is great, but without customers looking to buy, you don’t have a business. There are several ways to attract potential customers, but the most effective option is to start a Facebook ad campaign.
This allows you to generate sales and revenue right from the start, which can contribute to quick scaling. Facebook allows you to place your offer directly in front of a highly targeted audience. This gives you the ability to compete with the largest brands and retailers immediately. The best platform to use also depends on the product. Sometimes it’s best to run an SEO campaign with a complementary service like Google Ads if the product has a higher price tag. This is because people are actively seeking your products on Google, rather than Facebook where they are trying to see friends and family.
It is important to think long term. Search engine optimization and email marketing should also be a focus, or you can supplement email marketing with Content marketing. DIGITTO media like to set up turn-key items for customers so email marketing can be set up and ran by the client (you) at no cost. You then collect emails from the start and set up automated email sequences that offer discounts and special offers. It’s an easy way to leverage your existing customer base and generate revenue without additional advertising and marketing spend.
If it is a pricier product you are selling then content marketing might be a good way to earn your customers trust. This is a great way to educate people about your product and re-educate those who are interested in your product. DIGITTO media does this with affordable marketing copy.
STEP 6: Analyze and optimize
You need to track all of the data and metrics available to grow your business. This includes Google Analytics traffic and Facebook conversion pixel data, if that is your main customer acquisition channel. When you are able to track every single conversion — to know where the customer originated from and what path they took on your website that eventually led to a sale — it enables you to scale what works and eliminate what doesn’t.
You will never have a set-and-forget advertising or marketing solution. You need to constantly test new opportunities and fine-tune current campaigns, which allows you to know when to optimize or shift campaign spend.
You may not have time for this…but with DIGITTO, you will realize that you can go a lot farther than you think.