If you’ve ever tried to search for online businesses or ‘how to start an ecommerce business’, then you might have come across the term drop shipping. A lot of sources tend to make drop shipping appear unattractive or cumbersome.

However, this would depend on your understanding of the major concepts of the retail business model. Also, it might be quite difficult to get all you need to start a drop shopping business from a single source.

Drop shipping is probably the easiest form of online retail business for ecommerce beginners. Still, this article provides you with a deep insight to what drop shipping is. It explores the basic information about drop shipping so you understand the concept before ever getting into it.

So, what is drop shipping? It’s simply a retail fulfilment method that does not require a store owner to keep products in stock, package or deal with delivery. Instead, the retailer sells by transferring the customers’ orders to a third party (manufacturer or supplier) who ships directly to the customer as if it were from the retailer’s online store. The package will usually have the store owner’s contact and logo on it so customers are not even aware of the product manufacturer.

Basically, all you have to do is market the product, make sales, take orders and make your profit. You make profit in form of the difference between the wholesale and retail price. Sometimes in drop shipping, retailers make profit as a percentage on sales as commission depending on agreement with the drop shipping wholesaler. There is nowhere you cannot possibly launch your webstore and start your own drop shipping business except a place without internet connection.

Drop shipping, however, is not as easy as batting one’s eyelashes and like any other business that brings reasonable income, drop shipping has its ups and downs too. A very crucial factor is picking your product. The first step to starting your drop shipping business is choosing the niche to specialise in. Most drop shipping newbies make the mistake of selling products based on passion. This is not entirely a bad idea but it is more advisable to combine this with a thorough market analysis.

Yan, a medical student in France who ventured into drop shipping chose a niche he was passionate about. Although he was able to make modest profit in his first month of sales, he agreed it’s important to choose based on market analysis and not solely passion.

Another important factor is the creation of a webstore. You need to have an online store which will be your point of sales. This is where you showcase your product and interact with potential customers. A webstore that is accessible and interactive will most likely help your brand and market. You can find existing drop shipping websites for sale on dropshipforsale.com and Exchange.

Your choice of supplier is probably the most important decision you will have to make to start and run a successful drop shipping business. Drop shipping wholesalers or suppliers form the third crucial part of the drop shipping model after the retailer and the customer. Dealing with suppliers who make too many order errors or have defective products may cause you a lot of trouble as a retailer.

There are drop shipping supplier directories available online. World Wide brands is one of the popular supplier directory where retailers can find their suppliers. Trendosaur was also built to help you gain access to the best suppliers.

Drop shipping has become quite popular so it’s easy to come across fake or dishonest wholesalers. There are drop shipping companies where you can bypass such occurrences. By signing up with these drop shipping companies, you do not need to partner with different suppliers to get your product shipped to customers. Simply add the products you want to sell, they contact the suppliers and get your products delivered so you do not have to manage drop shippers.

With some perseverance, consistency and smart marketing, you’ll be on your way to building a thriving and profitable drop shipping business.

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