Dropshipping is one of the most favorable modern business models, mainly because there are many advantages that other types of operation don’t offer. However, since anyone can start a dropshipping business, the competition is fierce. And those who implement specific strategies are likely to succeed significantly.
In this article, we’ll explore the 7 strategies that successful dropshippers adopt and implement in their businesses.
First things first, let’s discuss what “dropshipping” is. It’s a business model in which the entrepreneur who runs an e-commerce store primarily sells products that will only be purchased from suppliers after customers have ordered and paid for them.
This being said, a dropshipper doesn’t need to spend any startup capital related to stocking inventory. They can begin selling immediately after signing up with an e-commerce platform like Shopify and after having found reliable suppliers. When customers buy online, the orders will be sent directly by the suppliers, which eliminates the need to keep products in the warehouse.
The most common 7 strategies for dropshipping success are as follows.
1. Selecting lucrative and best-selling products to sell.
The right products will sell themselves, so it’s the most ideal “marketing tool.” However, it often takes several times of trial-and-error to find “the right ones.” The best items belong to certain niches, and the market hasn’t been saturated with them. It should also have some room for a healthy profit margin. You can start by checking top-selling products.
2. Choosing reliable suppliers.
The thing is, if you’ve just started, you probably have limited information on the most reliable suppliers. If you use Shopify e-commerce platform, install Oberlo, which is more than a dropshipping management app, but also provides a long list of reliable pre-vetted dropshipping suppliers along with their products, which can be accessed directly from the dashboard.
3. Implementing an integrated online marketing strategy.
Competing online requires integrated online marketing strategies, which should include a customer acquisition plan based on “organic” and “impulse buying” philosophy. The first approach is always favorable as it’s the least expensive and works in the long run, such as active and informative blog posts and social media shares.
The second approach is essential because dropshipping is a competitive business where many dropshippers also sell similar products. Make sure to have your online store stands out with a strong USP (Unique Selling Proposition) and utilizes the best practices in inbound and digital marketing.
4. Building trust with customers.
Include customer reviews, testimonials, and a rating system on your online store. The more vivid and clear the shared information, the better. For instance, you can conduct Instagram contests for existing customers. And make sure to use the right Instagram hashtags. The key is to maintain a good relationship and active engagement with customers and targeted personas.
5. Running Facebook ads instead of Google Adwords.
According to Statista, as of the first quarter of 2018, Facebook had 2.19 billion active users per month. With such a huge captive market and the richness of data it collects, dropshippers can be very specific when targeting the right audience. Also, most people who click and purchase through Facebook ads are likely to be impulsive, instead of Google Adwords users who are likely to search for price comparison beforehand.
6. Using retargeting tools.
Data reveals that 98% of visitors don’t immediately buy on the first visit, which is unfavorable because getting traffic costs money. However, if you implement retargeting, you can make sure that they see your ads on other sites, so they’ll continue to be reminded of your products. Data further reveals that retargeting techniques increases 70% of conversion.
7. Cross-selling and upselling other products.
Optimize and, even, maximize every transaction with upselling and cross-selling techniques. Amazon is renowned for using this approach successfully, which you can see in “recommended items” section. For a dropshipping online store, installing an app like Boost Stales by Beeketing for this purpose would work nicely.
In conclusion, a dropshipping business model will continue to be the favored approach in modern e-commerce, thanks to the convenience of starting, sourcing, and scaling. However, success will likely follow those who adopt the most appropriate strategies.
About the Author
Jennifer Xue is an award-winning author, columnist, and serial entrepreneur based in Northern California. She is also a digital strategist for Oberlo. Her byline has appeared in Forbes, Fortune, Esquire, Cosmopolitan, Business.com, Business2Community, Addicted2Success, Good Men Project, Positively Positive, and others. Her blog is JenniferXue.com.