There are numerous ways to make money online. If you have a specialized skill, you can open up shop on a creative marketplace like Etsy, or you can set up your own freelancing business if you have a talent for client management and web entrepreneurship.
However, one of the easiest routes to making your own income is opening up a dropshipping store.
For those who have never heard of ecommerce before, read on. This post will tell you how to set a Shopify dropshipping store in just one day.
What is Dropshipping?
Dropshipping is an arrangement whereby you advertise another supplier’s products on your site — but to the consumer, they look like the same as any other stock. In fact, they may never know that you don’t have a big warehouse somewhere, filled with products. Instead, you only pay for inventory when someone actually physically put an order in for it.
One of the advantages of dropshipping is that you have no upfront costs for inventory. The third party supplier stores the goods and when an order is made, the third party ships it to your customer on your behalf.
The obvious downside is the potential for miscommunication as the dropshipping cycle has multiple potential points of failure. That’s why it’s important to invest in a quality dropshipping/store integration that won’t let you down.
How Much Freedom Do You Have As A Store Owner?
The answer is, ‘plenty.’ When you run your own dropshipping store, you can change goods whenever you please. You can also set your own pricing, alter the text in your product descriptions and, in some instances, customize the products with your own designs. You can also brand packaging to enhance the customer experience.
Step One: Sign Up For A Shopify Store
There are several options for choosing your ecommerce hosting. Shopify, however, is great for absolute beginners, as you can access help and support 24/7. Subscription as a Service (SaaS) ecommerce hosts offers you affordable ecommerce hosting and a range of store templates to work from. This will allow you to get set up quickly and easily, with minimal delay. Click here for a free trial period, use it wisely and prep everything that can be prepped beforehand so that on the day you can just upload the assets and get going.
Step Two: Choose Your Products
Picking a profitable product niche is key to making a success of dropshipping. Make sure you know your industry well. Choose products you would buy and build the kind of site you would trust. This is often the best starting point. If you find that a particular set of products isn’t selling well, you can switch and try a different combination of goods.
Audience research can also make the task of choosing products easier. Head to a competitor site that sells medium to high-quality goods in your selected area. Find suppliers who sell similar products and who have dropshipping agreements (but don’t fully replicate someone’s inventory).
While it may be tempting to opt for cheap, bargain basement products, you may find that online competitors can sell these products at a better price. You need to ensure you are maximizing your chances of making a profit, so choose your stock wisely in the first instance.
Step Three: Build Your Brand
Once you have chosen your industry and picked out some products, it’s time to develop your branding as a store.
Get a logo and imagery for your products. You can hire some help at this stage of the store building process. Look for a graphic designer on a freelance site, or get a web savvy friend to help you tweak images, logos, and social media banners. It’s not hard — the main thing will be getting the sizes right.
Think about fonts, color schemes, product and promotional photographs, etc. You want to create a compelling store brand that complements your products, but you can always reach perfection at a later date. For now, just focus on getting launched and use shortcuts like templates and design tools to get you there faster.
Step Four: Advertise Your Store
Once you have set up shop, picked your products, and got a strong brand under your belt, it’s time to start advertising your wares. Set up a Facebook business profile under your store name and consider setting up some paid Facebook advertising campaigns — the quickest and best route to market for any new store owner. It’s literally the work of an hour or two to set up multiple profitable campaigns!
- Use audience research on common likes and dislikes to help you target your promotional posts to interested audience segments.
Aim to target your ads to around 100,000 Facebook users. For example, if you are running a dropshipping store that sells movie memorabilia, head to Facebook’s custom audience segments tab and add to the list of common interests until you reach your key 100,000 fans. For instance, if you were looking for fans of sci-fi films, you might include fans of Comic-Con (international sci-fi convention). Also, fans of movies like Star Wars, Marvel Comics, Stan Lee and so on.
2. The types of paid promotion posts you can make also vary. You can opt for simple product promotion posts, videos, galleries, etc. Experiment until you find an ad combination that works for you.
Step Five: Automate Your Processes
Once you have set up your store, started advertising, and are processing dropship orders, it’s time to build on your success and keep up the momentum.
Automated apps can help you achieve ecommerce success effortlessly. Another critical advantage of Shopify is the range of tools you can download to help you run your store (many of them free).
For instance, you can set up social media campaigns automatically; you can calculate sales tax (for easy recordkeeping). You can even set up things like automated chatbots that run from your online storefront. These can help your customers with specific product queries.
Use tools to help you scale your store and order processing faster.
Step Six: Moving Onwards And Upwards
Finally, your online store, with all the right tools and profitable products, should be earning you quite a bit of additional income every month. If you find that your shop and your marketing is doing well, but you want to cut back on the ‘gruntwork’ — hire virtual assistants to help you process orders and serve customers.
Alternatively, you can even choose to ‘flip’ your profitable shop on an online store selling marketplace. You could, potentially, make a lot of money from a buyer looking to jump in on a lucrative business.
If you have a passion for a particular industry, why not consider becoming an online merchant in that niche? With just a bit of groundwork and a smidge of working capital each month (plans start at $29 a month), you can soon get your dream business on the road.
Start the journey to becoming financially independent today.