How To Start A Dropshipping Business With A Shopify Store
Note: This is a guest post.
In this article am going to put us through on how to start a successful dropshipping business with Shopify. The e-commerce business is fast-growing into a big deal in most developing countries in Africa like Nigeria, Ghana, Kenya, Uganda, and more, and I’m going to tell us how we can tap from this fast-growing business with a Shopify store model called dropshipping.
But before we proceed we need to understand what dropshipping is all about and likewise, Shopify; including how we can start a successful business with it.
Ok! So what is dropshipping all about?
Dropshipping in its actual sense is a retail business where you don’t keep your products in stock. In fact, you don’t own any product. But instead, you partner with a third party wholesaler that stocks its own inventory, while you, on the other hand, transfer customer orders and shipment details from your store to them and they ship the goods directly to your customer.
Let me break it down a little bit, as a dropshipper you own your store but you don’t have stock inventories of what you are selling. You’re only partnering with a supplier. When a product is bought from your store, what you do is, you use the same money paid to you to purchase the actual product from your supplier, who in turn ships the products to your customer after you’ve sent the shipping address to them. Your profit from this is going to be the difference between how much you sold the product on your store and how much you bought it from the supplier.
Now that we understand what dropshipping is all about, I think we should move forward to what is Shopify is or who they are.
What is Shopify
Shopify is an e-commerce website that allows you to set up an online store if you want to sell your product directly or if you want to dropship. It allows you to organize your products with dropshipping plugins, customize your storefront, accept credit card payments, and track & respond to orders, all within a few clicks.
Shopify offers different payment gateway for their store based on the difference in currency, but the most commonly used is PayPal. While PayPal is not ideal in most developing countries, there are still exceptions to these; for example, countries like Nigeria can make use of Paystack as their payment gateway, while Ghana and Kenya can make use of Ravepay.
All these can be integrated into your Shopify store with a few clicks.
How to set up your business (with 5 easy steps)
- Choose a niche
- Find your supplier
- Create your store
- Market your products
- Repeat step 4&5
Step One: Choose a Niche
Before you decide to start a Shopify store is going to be easy, I would at least want you to read till the end, and after that, you can then decide its ease or not. Well, this might be the most stressful part because you have to select a product you want to sell amidst the various products and competition out there.
Think of it this way, what is that market-worthy product you can easily sell with less competition. While choosing your product, you should understand that loving a product or having a passion for it does not guarantee its sales would cause you to break even, but instead take time to study and research this product before you make your conclusion. Google trends may come in handy while choosing your product.
Step Two: Find your supplier
This part needs to be taken seriously because it is going to determine the success or failure of your dropshipping business. Suppliers are going to be the backbone in your dropshipping career, so while choosing one, make sure they are very reliable and trustworthy. The best way to do this is to order a product for yourself and test it before you start selling. Once you have the trust in what you are selling, you will be more motivated to market your business compared to when you don’t. So trust and reliability are very important here.
If you know any local supplier you can work with, good for you. But if its international products you intend to sell, your best option for suppliers is AliExpress, but not strictly exclusive. You can use your product keywords to search for suppliers or wholesalers through Google’s search engine.
Step Three: Create your store
After you’ve decided on what product to sell and the suppliers to make the deliveries possible, you can create your online store with Shopify in just a few minutes. The good thing is they offer a 14-days free trial to use an account with them, after which they start billing you on a monthly basis. Their basic plan is just $29/month and they offer various articles and tips to help improve your business.
Step Four: Market your product
Here is where your sales skills and experience are required. While marketing your business, you will have to focus on social media marketing by taking advantage of the consumers on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Pinterest, and much more. Email marketing also goes a long way because you will need to keep your subscribers informed about your new products, discounts, coupons, and much more.
Another important thing here is SEO. You will need to optimize your website to rank on Google.
Step Five: Repeat step 4&5
Finally, you need the commitment to start and consistency to see it through. When sales start building up, you could then think about expanding your horizon by investing in more niches and focus on more marketing stunts, since it is the key to success in every dropshipping business.
About The Writer
This is a guest blog post submitted by Olusola David. He is the CEO and founder of www.torchbankz.com, and is an eCommerce entrepreneur.
Note: This article has been edited for style and substance.
What are your thoughts on how to start a dropshipping business with a shopify store? Let me know by leaving a comment below.