• Dropshipping

    What to Know Before Getting into Dropshipping

    A dropshipping business is a low-risk, low-investment business model. You simply open an online store, accept orders from customers, forward those orders to your fulfillment partner, and they ship it to the customer. You profit on the difference between what you sell it for and what you buy it from your wholesaler for.

    You keep your costs down by not needing to rent warehouse space, stock goods, or worry if inventory is selling. Shopify is one of the biggest sites for dropshipping and has nearly half a million online stores to brag about. Here are some reasons why you may or may not want to consider dropshipping with Shopify.

    Dropshipping with Shopify: The Good

    Easy Setup

    It’s easy to set up shop on Shopify. They have a library of pre-made storefront themes for you to choose from. And if you don’t like any of the prefab content you can pay to unlock more.

    Apps

    Shopify has a huge stockpile of apps that are convenient and effective. There are apps for everything like customer service, shipping tracking, report creation, and social media management. You can even pay to have custom apps created just for your store’s needs.

    Social Media Integration

    Shopify makes it easy to link from a Facebook page, Pinterest, Instagram, or Twitter. That means that you can sell items across many platforms. You may already have one or more of these pages and you can link them up right away. This really helps you get your product in front of more faces.

    Great Customer Service

    While it is easy to set up and get started, things don’t always go according to plan. That’s ok because Shopify has around-the-clock customer service support either by phone or webchat. Many tutorials can be found on the site to tackle common issues and there’s even a forum where you can search for posts that fit your needs.

    Built-In SEO

    Shopify integrates search engine optimization into your site. You can add tags and descriptions of your products to help them link up to google searches. Increased search links means your store will come up more often during searches and drive more traffic to your online store.

    The Bad

    Dropshipping is VERY Competitive

    While you think you’ve had a one-in-a-million idea for your dropshipping store, chances are somebody’s beat you to it. This is where you’ll have to get creative with your storefront, your marketing plan, or your products to give you an edge. It also means that you’ll have to keep margins thin to compete with other sellers.

    Payment

    While Shopify doesn’t require that you use their payment system, they do add a 2% fee to use other payment platforms. This is on top of whatever your other process charges you. PayPal is the largest payment solution worldwide and charges a 5% fee to use its service. You’re looking at a 7% fee on an already tight margin this way. Sadly, you can’t ignore PayPal, they account for nearly a third of online transactions.

    Costs

    You can try it out for 2 weeks free, then the fees for a basic setup will set you back $29/month, which is not unreasonable. However, this still cuts into the profits. The lower-end plans incur higher transaction fees for payments. Once your business takes off you can reduce these fees by enrolling in a higher tier but it’ll cost you anywhere from $79/month all the way up to $2,000/month to do so.

    Limited Customization

    They do offer several created themes for your store, but if you really want to make it your own, you’ll understand why squarespace and Wordpress rule the roost when it comes to blinging out your site.

    Once They’ve Got You

    It’s tough to leave. Because Shopify hosts all your content and data, moving on is near impossible. You’ll drop on google searches, you’ll lose a ton of traffic, and getting your data out manually could take a lot of man hours.

    The Last Word

    Shopify is certainly not a bad choice for your dropshipping business. If you lack the experience or know-how, you can get up and running in no time. Despite this, it’ll take some hustle and some creativity to make it worth your while. If you think you can cut it on your own, get a domain, create a website and let it rip. Otherwise you can always let Shopify do the heavy lifting for you.

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