Tips to Build a Successful Online Dropshipping Business

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( — May 12, 2020) — Have you ever dreamt of making money online? Dropshipping is one of the smartest ways to make money online. It has become very popular with new entrepreneurs since you don’t need huge financial muscles to succeed. With limited funds and excellent Internet marketing skills, you’ll be able to sell products to clients, set your prices, and market your brand. Also, you don’t have to incur inventory costs or pay the products until they are sold to an actual customer. What are you required to do?  

To start an online dropshipping business, you need to create an eCommerce website, and buy items from a manufacturer or a third-party supplier, who then fulfills the order. With an online dropshipping business, there are minimal operational costs, which implies most of the time and resources are utilized in acquiring new clients. Starting an online dropshipping business may be easy, but succeeding isn’t easy. You see, due to the low barrier to entry, dropshipping has become so popular in the last few years, meaning that several markets are highly competitive. It requires commitment and hard work to build a successful online dropshipping business.  

If you want to build a dropshipping business, either as a full-time job or a side hustle, the following tips will help you succeed. 

Always go niche

Selling a range of products may seem like a good idea, but it’s not when you’re just starting. A range of products that aren’t focused is hard to market and build a brand. Remember, even Amazon started as an online bookstore. Some factors you need to consider when selecting a niche include:

  • Attractive profits – The key to success in dropshipping is customer acquisition. The effort it takes to market a $50 product is essentially equal to the same effort it would take to market a $1000 product. Go for a niche with higher-priced products.
  • Low shipping costs – Although the manufacturer or your supplier will handle shipping, choose a niche where the shipping costs aren’t high. High shipping costs will repel potential clients. Find products that are inexpensive to ship. It makes it possible to offer free shipping services to your customers, which leads to increased sales.
  • Products that aren’t readily available – It will be hard to attract customers if you sell products that are readily available down the street.

Pro Tip: Apparel dropshipping business is one of the niches you can rarely go wrong with excellent branding and marketing. Click here to learn more about apparel order fulfillment services and wholesale screenprinting.  

Perform competition research

Whatever niche you choose, you’ll be competing with retail giants such as Amazon and Walmart. A lot of dropshippers go for products with little or no competition, but they are wrong. There are several reasons why some products have little or no competition, including low profit margins, low demand, or high shipping costs. Choose products that have high competition. That’s an indication that there’s a high demand for the product and the business model is sustainable.

Choose the right supplier

A supplier can ruin your business, and it’s crucial that you don’t rush this step. Conduct due diligence. Remember, communication is key. If the communication abilities of your potential supplier are in doubt, move on and select another supplier.

Also, do a proper supplier audit. Check the range of products the supplier sells and their reviews. Check every detail to ensure they are credible and of high quality. Compare product prices and guarantees of different suppliers.

Create a great website

Dropshipping allows you to cut costs and corners, but don’t do the same thing with your website. This is your online store where all the items you’re selling will be displayed. A great website is a good way to build trust. Ensure your pictures are of high quality, and product descriptions are error-free and have substance. Additionally, your shipping and return policies should be clearly spelled out on your website.

Don’t underprice your products

Don’t undercut your prices because your competitors are doing so, however tempting that might be. Factor things such as staff and marketing expenses and office supplies. The secret is to offer quality products and price them fairly. Hassle-free returns and refund policy, customized packaging, and swift customer service, etc., are effective ways to enhance the shopping experience, and paying extra bucks for it won’t be a bother for customers.

Several dropshipping entrepreneurs skimp on quality to increase their profit margins. Doing so is a blunder that can cost you in the long run.

Monitor your competitors

Performing competition research before choosing a niche is important, but monitoring your competitors once you’ve selected a niche is equally important. Competition is good. It keeps everyone on their toes. Keep an eye on what your competitors are doing on their social media pages, website, and blog articles. It gives you an idea of the demographic that engages with their content, which helps you to identify your target market. Also, knowing what’s happening in the industry motivates you to push the envelope.

Shipping times should be clear

Online shopping is convenient; the reason it has become so popular. However, some factors, such as uncertain shipping and delivery times, mar the online shopping experience. Always make delivery times clear to your customers. It enhances their shopping experience. Clear delivery times and availing tracking information increases the trust customers have on your brand.

Multiple payment methods

Checkout should be easy for your customers. Otherwise, you’ll have plenty of abandoned carts. Provide multiple payment options. Familiar payment methods assure customers of security and quicken the buying process. For instance, PayPal is trusted in most countries. If you’re a global company, provide local payment methods as well.  


Automate as many aspects of your business as possible. Yes, some dropshipping tools will handle most of the automation for you, but there will still be cracks. Some of the things you need to automate include PPC campaigns, social media postings, and marketing tasks such as emails, retargeting, and advertising. 

Create an FAQ page

With a detailed FAQ page, customers won’t be contacting you for trivial queries. Make sure customers can easily find answers on your website without necessarily having to pull out their phones and dial. A comprehensive FAQ page will build trust in your brand and expedites the buying decisions.

Marketing is everything

Having an exceptional online store, quality products, and great deals is of no use if there are no visitors to your site. Here are five marketing tips for a successful online dropshipping business. 

  • SEO 

SEO is the key to success. Applying SEO best practices is a cost-effective and long-lasting way to ensure your online store ranks high on search engines. SEO ensures relevant and organic traffic to your online store. If you’re not familiar with how SEO works, find an experienced professional to help you. 

  • Add testimonials, reviews, and ratings to your site to build trust

There’s a general tendency for online shoppers to be skeptical of the products you’re offering, particularly if they have never shopped at your store before. This is why adding testimonials, reviews, and ratings to your website is a great way to build their trust. Product reviews help potential customers see the experience of previous buyers. Reviews can motivate a potential buyer to make a purchase.

  • Facebook Ads

There are 2.5 billion monthly active Facebook users, which makes Facebook a great marketing platform. But then, besides the huge number of users, Facebook has become popular with dropshippers because of the diversity and richness of the data it collects. This makes Facebook ads highly effective since you can be as specific as possible to target the right audience.

You can customize your Facebook ads depending on budget, audience, and goal. You can even choose the format of your ads and where you want them to be seen, including Audience Network, Messenger, Instagram, and recently Workplace

Plus, you can manage your ads and measure the results. 

  • Use social videos to increase engagement and traffic.

By 2021, online videos will make up over 81% of all consumer web traffic. This indicates video content is one of the most used forms of online marketing. Most dropshipping businesses will thus shift their focus to video content to market their products and increase brand awareness.

  • Use retargeting techniques

Most first-time visitors to your site won’t buy. This is a big challenge for dropshipping entrepreneurs since traffic is extremely difficult to get. You can use retargeting techniques to recapture a seemingly lost client. A retargeting strategy is a marketing technique that targets potential customers who visited your online store and made no action. Retargeting them with display ads increases their probability of converting to your online store.