Top 3 Dropship Suppliers (updated January 2014):
How to choose a product to dropship:
- Niche. The key is to find a niche product that isn’t over-saturated with competition. It makes life easier if you are actually more or less knowledgeable about the product that you are trying to sell. Lets say you are into photography, don’t just setup another digital camera ecommerce store! Maybe setup a store that specializes in memory cards or tripods! Finding a niche isn’t easy. Look at the competition and try to figure out what the demand is. If you have limited competition, strong demand and are able to undercut your competitors and still make a profit then you have a winner!
- Profit Margin Vs Volumes. This is a numbers game and isn’t always a straightforward calculation to forecast. In an ideal scenario, you really want to me selling high profit margin products and high volumes – if you can find a product and market that offers those possibilities then you have stumbled across a gold mine! Usually this isn’t the case. You either find yourself in a market where you have small volumes and high profits, or small profits which require high volume of sales. I personally prefer high profit margins that require lower volumes of sales. It feels like my marketing efforts pay-off a lot quicker and I get my ROI on advertising costs. This isn’t always the case, but if you’re a making $1 on every item you sell you are going to need to have a high volume of sales to make some decent money!
Where to sell your dropship products?
When looking at becoming a successful dropshipper, you can follow two basic selling strategies: Webstore Sales or Marketplace Sales.
Webstore Sales- What Is a Domain Name?
When you are looking to promote products on a new store, one of the first things you need to assess is your domain name. A domain name is the URL or address for your site. Since only one person can own a domain name for a site, you must order a domain from a “Registrar”. You can use any online registrar, GoDaddy.com or Register.com for example, to order your domain. You can search for the name you want and purchase it generally for less than $10/year. Your domain name is an important part of your store branding and it is what people will use to find your store. You can use a description-name style or a logo-name style or even a combination of the two.
A description-name style is something that explains your product or category ranges like huntinggear.com or cellularaccessory.com for example. If you try to use a description-name style do not use more than 2 or 3 words related to your products, so the search engines do not think you are trying to force too many keywords into your domain. Besides that, shorter addresses are typically easier for customers to remember.
A logo-name style is often easier for you to register and can be the source of your site style, even if the name on its own might not mean much, like zamboozy.com or a domain that just uses something related to your own name, like Bob-Mart.com. After all, when eBay and Amazon first got started they would not have naturally made you think of auctions or books, so do not feel like you cannot open an electronics store just because electronics.com is taken. If you need help designing a logo or theme around your brand the Inventory Source Design Team can help.
Webstore Sales- What Is a Shopping Cart Platform?
Once you have a domain name registered, you can evaluate the shopping cart platform you want to use for your website. A shopping cart or store platform just refers to the type of technology that runs your website and allows users to browse and order products. It is the application that allows you to show products from your database on your website and allow customers to purchase your products.
Webstore Sales- Are There Different Types of Shopping Cart Platforms?
While there are thousands of shopping cart platforms, we only integrate with the best of the best. If you see a cart type mentioned as an integrated platform with our services, you know it will be a good option for you and your online store.
If you already sell products online you will be very familiar with the many cart platforms available. You can use systems developed by large companies like Yahoo Stores, eBay ProStores, or Adobe Business Catalyst, or use some of the open source platforms made available by many website hosting providers like Magento, Zen Cart, osCommerce, CRE Loaded, Open Cart, and others. You will want to narrow your search by using one of the store platforms already integrated with our full automation service like these:
If you are new to terms like “domain name” and “shopping cart platform”, do not worry, Inventory Source is here to help. We also provide a Hosted Site Package which allows you to use a secure hosting account and turn-key cart platform provided by the Inventory Source team, and includes our signature full daily automation service:
The hosted account option is used by both power sellers and new resellers looking for a robust cart platform. If you are new and not sure where to start, the Hosted Site Package is your best choice for a great beginning. If you are experienced, but have struggled with other cart platforms or unsupported systems, this cart is also a great solution for you to continue on with your online sales.
Marketplace Sales- What is an Online Marketplace?
Some users prefer to have their products listed on an online marketplace. A marketplace is simply a website where multiple users are buying and selling products. Price Grabber, eBay, Nextag, Shopzilla, and Google Shopping are just a few examples. Some marketplaces like eBay allow you to list an item directly without your own domain name or website, while others like Shopzilla or Google Shopping are simply used to help customers find a product they like and the websites that sell those items, so they can go to your webstore directly to purchase the item.
Whether you sell from your own webstore or not, using online marketplaces to list your products and promote your brand is a strategy that any online seller should be using to promote products and “get found” online.
Marketplace Sales- How to Promote and Manage Marketplace Product Listings
While you can follow the listing guidelines of any online marketplace yourself, we can help automate and streamline all of these processes for you. If this is the approach you want to take, you can easily talk with us about which Custom File Service is right for you and we can create a feed for you from your supplier(s) in the exact format needed to load and update products in bulk on your marketplace. You can also use some of our account tools like the Push to eBay Tool to manage your marketplace product listings directly from your account without needing a separate product feed. Many users often use a combined approach ??? they have their own website to sell products and use a Custom File Service or the Push to EBay Tool.
If you need help deciding on a marketplace option, we strongly recommend you check Markeplacester.com for a completely free guide of the marketplaces you can sell on. This is one of the most comprehensive collections of online marketplaces available today and should be your first stop in reviewing the various sales channel options.
There has never been a better time to explore new sale channels, and with Inventory Source, it has never been easier to manage your product listings across multiple marketplaces and web stores.
In summary, there are many factors to being successful with your online sales. InventorySource is here to help guide you through this and allows you to leverage over a decade of online sales experience and tools for success. One very large factor for your success is the proper use of tools, automation, and streamlining your efforts to get the best results possible. This automation and support of your business is the core value of our tools and services, and we love to help sellers like you become wildly successful.