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Dropshipping with Shopify: Here’s How You Can Do It Too!

sahil bajaj

Sahil Bajaj

Senior Specialist - Marketing @ Shiprocket

December 29, 2023

13 min read

Dropshipping is an emerging business model for entrepreneurs as it does not involve holding any inventory. Suppliers directly deliver orders to customers, simplifying the eCommerce process significantly. One of the most successful eCommerce platforms promoting the dropshipping business model is Shopify. Entrepreneurs can become successful when using dropshipping software, as the various processes are automated for smooth business flow. For example, Oberlo, a Shopify-based dropshipping software solution lists over 50,147 products. This gives every entrepreneur an opportunity to test new products and strategies or expand into new markets as an eCommerce business.

Start dropshipping with shopify

What is Shopify Dropshipping All About?

Shopify dropshipping is a business model that involves selling products on your online store without actually holding any inventory. As a shipdropper, you will buy the products directly from the supplier after a customer orders them from your storefront. The supplier will directly ship the order to the customer, thus making for more efficient online commerce. The benefit of dropshipping is that you don’t need to invest a lot of money upfront to purchase inventory, which is a common problem for many entrepreneurs. This business model also allows you to offer a wider range of products to your customers since you are not limited to the inventory you hold.

Shopify: An Entrepreneur’s Companion

Shopify has recreated the physical process of shopping, from digital window shopping to payment carts, fulfillment and even marketing. The transition has been successful as businesses are able to launch their own eStore and promote, sell and ship products. It also helps these businesses to integrate their offline shops with their online stores through retail Point-of-Sales ( POS) software. Nearly 10% of the world’s leading brands like Netflix, Decathlon, and Fashion Nova use Shopify to host their online stores.

Shopify Dropshipping: Learn About the Business Model

The entire concept of dropshipping is developed around the idea of ensuring the least risk of losing money as an eCommerce business. Shopify’s dropshipping business model allows entrepreneurs to sell physical products that they neither produce nor store(warehouse). They can source these products from diverse suppliers using the services of third-party dropshippers from their online storefront. 

Hence, entrepreneurs are at no risk at any point in the business flow.  When a customer places an order via the Shopify storefront, the business orders the product from the wholesaler and requests it be shipped directly to the customer’s address. The business owner does not have to struggle with managing, storing or moving inventory, at any point of this business model. Instead, he is able to provide customers with products on demand. 

Besides, the business owner is able to save money. Even in extreme cases, if a specific product does not sell, there is no loss of capital, which is common in pre-purchased inventory.

The way Shopify Dropshipping Operates

For new entrants into the world of business, dropshipping with Shopify has emerged as the ideal business model. 

Here is how the Shopify dropshipping business model works:  

  • Stage 1: At your Shopify storefront, your customer orders a product via online payment.
  • Stage 2: You will then have to reach out to the supplier of the listed product for which your customer has paid. You should then provide all the shipping information of your customer to the supplier. Since you will not be responsible for choosing packing or shipping the products yourself, you have to ensure that your supplier is trustworthy to deliver quality products.
  • Stage 3: As soon as the supplier receives your order,  you will be billed for the products.
  • Stage 4: At this stage, you will need to pay your supplier. There are two components to the amount you send the supplier. The first is the product cost, which is usually a wholesale price originally negotiated with your supplier. The second is the dropshipping fee.
  • Stage 5: The final stage is delivering the products. The supplier follows pre-determined timelines and processes to pack and ship the product directly to your customer.

Some of the most selling dropshipping product categories on Shopify are apparel and footwear, kitchen and dining products, home interior products, pet supplies, beauty and personal care products 

Advantages of Dropshipping on Shopify

Let us look at why you need to have your dropshipping with Shopify:

  • Single point solution: Shopify combines all of the stages of eCommerce and eases your dropshipping business. The platform allows you to integrate third-party applications for customisation and enhancing the performance of your store.
  • Easy-to-use solution: Shopify is an easy-to-use solution whether you are an expert or a first-time user. The platform offers user-friendly services and extensive customer support.
  • Zero initial investment:  The advantage of Shopify is that it helps you launch your dropshipping business without making any upfront investments. You can start or launch your store within hours of registering with Shopify.
  • Inventory is no longer your worry: The biggest struggle for every business is the cost of inventory and its management. With Shopify dropshipping, you do not have to worry as products equal your customer demands. There is no requirement for holding or storing products. 
  • Zero shipping cost: The primary advantage of dropshipping is the absence of shipping costs. As you only order the wholesaler to ship, you do not suffer shipping fees. 

When you are dropshipping with Shopify, you not only save time, money and space but are left with a lot of ideas to focus on growing a business. 

Step-by-Step Guide on How to Start Shopify Dropshipping Business

Step1: Choose a Niche 

To start your Shopify dropshipping business the very first thing to do is to choose the category or niche. This involves selecting a specific category of products that you want to sell. Ideally, you should have an in-depth understanding of this niche. You will be able to plan your marketing campaigns better and be able to provide customer support if you have knowledge of your products.

Step 2: Enlist Suppliers

After identifying the niche, you need suppliers who will fulfill your customer’s orders, and you need to find them before you can start your business. Take care to choose providers who are reputed and can scale production to meet your orders. Where can you find such suppliers? Try marketplaces such as SaleHoo or AliExpress, and even Oberlo has many suppliers from whom you can import products.

Step 3: Customize your Store

The next step is to customize your Shopify store to reflect your brand. You can choose a theme that matches your niche, add your logo, and customize the colours and fonts to match your brand identity. 

Step 4: Integrating Payment and Shipping Options

In this step, the payment options you want to offer your buyers have to be created. The shipping options and payment options Shopify offers include credit card payments and third-party payment options like PayPal. The advantage you have on this platform is that the shipping rates are automatically calculated using the weight and location.

Step 5: Create Product Listings

Once you have customized your store, it’s time to create product listings. This involves writing product descriptions, adding high-quality images, and setting prices.

Step 6: Bringing in Buyers to your Store

The final step is to get buyers to your freshly created Shopify store. The best way to get the attention of potential eBuyers is to use a mix of marketing strategies. The top-of-the-funnel buyer reach-out should begin with paid advertising and a strong social media presence, followed by email marketing campaigns.

Step 7: Optimize your Product Listings

Another area you have to focus on is optimizing the product listings of your store for search engines. How can you do that? First, identify the various keywords associated with your products. Then use them as per search engine protocols to optimize them in product descriptions and titles.

Step 8: Provide Excellent Customer Support

Since you are not holding inventory, it’s important to provide excellent customer support to ensure that your customers are happy with their purchases.

Step 9: Test your Marketing Strategies

In this step, you can check the market conditions to see what works best for Shopify dropshipping business. This will help you to understand buyer and market sentiment for the products you have in your store. The results of the test will give you an idea of what to change or tweak your campaigns to ensure your store is optimized for the search engine. 

While these 9 steps will guide you to set up your Shopify Dropshipping business, you need insider tips that help you make a steady source of income. 

9 Tips for Successful Shopify Dropshipping

For a successful dropshipping business, here are some tricks and tips to follow:

  • Pick a Specific Market: Picking a niche is critical to building a successful dropshipping business. It is simpler for you to focus on particular products since you will be able to differentiate yourself from the competition and make it easier to target your marketing efforts. 
  • Maintain open communication with vendors and suppliers: Although you will be relying on dropshipping software platforms to run your business, there will be occasions when you need assistance from vendors and suppliers. In such cases, you should be able to access them easily. For this to be possible you must have open business communication with them. It will make the process of seeking an additional custom logo, or different photographs for your products quite easy.
  • Offer Quality Products: Offering quality products is crucial to building a successful dropshipping business. Test the products before listing them in your store, and check customer reviews to ensure that the products have positive feedback. 
  • Provide a working policy  for product returns and refunds: It is highly recommended that you launch your store along with the necessary ribbons and returns policies in place. This essentially provides a refined framework to deal with suppliers or vendors in accepting returns and managing refunds.
  • Provide customer support: One of the most important tips for successful dropshipping with Shopify is to provide customer support. Since multiple third parties are involved in the process of buying products, branding and shipping,  a number of issues are likely to arise. Therefore having an in-house customer support service will enhance connection with your buyers. Sales are lost if customers are not engaged and their grievances are resolved.
  • Stylize Your Store: Optimize your Shopify store to ensure that it is mobile-friendly, user-friendly and visually appealing. Use a clean, modern theme, write clear product descriptions, and use high-quality product images.
  • Promote your store: After launching your Shopify store you will need to promote it across all social selling platforms and other modes. In order to market your business you will need to spend on Search Engine Optimisation (SEO), content marketing, social media marketing, influencer marketing, email marketing, paid ads, etc.
  • Brand building: Build your brand and promote your business to drive traffic to your website and increase sales. The trend is to optimize your online presence and be visible on social media with paid advertising in the initial days. Once visitors to your store begin to increase, optimize your email marketing. Another trend is influencer marketing, as it allows a personalized target engagement avenue. 
  • Improve financial management with automated software: Dropshipping with Shopify does not require an initial investment from you as a business owner. Still, it is always crucial that the finances of your store are maintained in compliance with regulatory needs. It is highly recommended that you switch to automated accounting software or dropshipping software for error-free processes.

It is important that you use only a secure payment platform and integrate it with Shopify for quick results. For example, financial automation software such as Synder improves the finances of merchants on Shopify. It also provides a  clear overview of the inflow of capital and outflow.

Why Consider Shopify for Dropshipping?

Entrepreneurs exploring dropshipping with Shopify have found that: 

  • No technical background is needed to start your business
  • Can start a dropshipping business from scratch by creating a store and listing products for sale
  • A strategic expansion into a full-fledged eCommerce business can be made
  • Test new products and different strategies

However, the true value of Shopify is its proprietary dropshipping software.

It simplifies the entire online business strategy by automating processes such as product listing to social selling. Dropshipping software creates entrepreneurial opportunities as owners do not have to worry about the functioning of their platform. Instead, they can focus on expanding their business. 

Conclusion

Dropshipping with Shopify gives a good opportunity to entrepreneurs. With the help of dropshipping apps, they can find suppliers and efficient logistics. Always research your products well and suppliers efficiently, before venturing into a business.

Who are the best shipping services for Shopify dropshipping businesses?

There are many shipping services available for shopify dropshipping businesses, and the best one depends on your needs and preferences. Some popular shipping services for Shopify dropshipping businesses include USPS, FedEx, Shiprocket, DHL, and UPS. You can also consider using third-party shipping services like ShipBob, ShipStation, or Shippo to streamline your shipping process and offer faster and more affordable shipping options to your customers. 

How can I offer free shipping to my customers without hurting my profit margins?

Offering free shipping is a great way to attract customers and increase sales, but it can also hurt your profit margins if you’re not careful. To offer free shipping without hurting your profits, you can consider increasing your product prices slightly to cover the shipping costs or offer free shipping only on orders above a certain amount. You can also negotiate discounted shipping rates with your shipping service provider or use a shipping calculator to determine the best shipping rates for your business.

How can I ensure that my products are delivered on time to my customers?

On-time order delivery is very important in retaining customer loyalty. To ensure that your products are delivered on time, you can use shipping services that offer reliable delivery times and track your shipments using a tracking number.

How can I handle returns and exchanges for my shopify dropshipping business?

Handling returns and exchanges is an essential aspect of running a shopify dropshipping business. To handle returns and exchanges, you can set up a clear and easy-to-understand return policy on your website and offer a hassle-free return process for your customers. You can also work with your shipping service provider to ensure that returns and exchanges are processed quickly and efficiently. It’s essential to handle returns and exchanges promptly to maintain a positive customer experience and build trust with your customers.

Can the Oberlo app be used on other platforms?

Although Oberlo software is a third-party app, it can be used only on Shopify and not on other platforms.

Can Modalyst’s network of suppliers be accessed free of cost?

As of now, Modalyst’s comprehensive network of suppliers is accessible as an add-on service. You will need to upgrade to a business premium or pro plan for unlimited access to its supplier network.

How to get clients for dropshipping?

The primary strategy should be to market your store and follow up with customer reviews. For this, create aesthetic product pages, offer coupons or run a contest.

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One thought on “Dropshipping with Shopify: Here’s How You Can Do It Too!

  1. I am not sure where you’re getting your info, but good topic. I needs to spend some time learning much more or understanding more. Thanks for magnificent info I was looking for this information for my mission.

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