What is dropshipping
Dropshipping is a common e-commerce business strategy in which you operate as a middleman between the client and the supplier. Instead of stockpiling, you collaborate with vendors who handle product storage, packaging, and transportation. When a customer orders from your Shopify store, you send the order details to the supplier, who then fulfills the purchase and ships it right to the customer. Profit can be made from the difference between the retail and wholesale prices.
Why choose Shopify for dropshipping?
Shopify is the leading eCommerce platform, with an easy-to-use interface and a plethora of functionality built exclusively for the dropshipping industry. Here are some of the benefits of using Shopify for dropshipping:
- User-friendly interface: Shopify provides a user-friendly and beginner-friendly interface that allows you to quickly and easily set up your online store.
- Extensive app store: With Shopify’s vast app store, you can enhance your store’s functionality by adding various apps for marketing, inventory management, and customer support.
- Mobile responsive design: Shopify themes are mobile responsive, ensuring that customers have a consistent shopping experience across all devices.
- Shopify handles hosting, security, and maintenance, giving a dependable platform for your dropshipping operation.
- Integrated payment gateways: Shopify seamlessly integrates with multiple payment gateways, making it convenient for customers to make purchases and for you to receive payments.
- SEO optimization: Shopify has SEO capabilities that allow you to optimize your store for search engines and boost your online presence.
Start dropshipping with Shopify in 8 steps
Choose your niche product
To start, you need to select a niche product that you want to sell. Begin by researching various markets and identifying products that have high demand and profit potential.
Conduct market trend research: You can conduct market trend research by utilizing tools like Google Trends or SEMrush keyword tools to examine the market trends of the products that interest you. If you choose Google Trends, it is advisable to analyze trends over the past 12 months to gain a better understanding of whether the product exhibits any periodic patterns. At the same time, category selection shopping, so as to obtain more accurate consumption trends.
Analyze Competitor Stores: Once you’ve found a decent product, you may analyze successful dropshipping stores in your niche market to learn about their best-selling products and marketing techniques, as well as construct SWTO models to help you outperform them.
Create a Shopify account
To start dropshipping on Shopify, you’ll need to create an account on their platform. Visit the Shopify website and sign up for an account. If you want to try it out first before fully committing, you can try Shopify for free for 3 days. You can familiarize yourself with the settings of your Shopify store during this time.
After the trial period ends, you can choose a pricing plan based on your needs. Currently, they offer three pricing plans, each with different processing fees and store reports.
Choose a supplier
When it comes to selecting a supplier, there are various ways to find one for your dropshipping business. You can use online catalogs, attend trade shows, or contact manufacturers directly. Here, I’ll recommend some of the most convenient ways to find suppliers for you.
You can work with different types of suppliers:
- E-commerce platform providers like Alibaba or AliExpress offer a wide variety of products from various manufacturers and wholesalers.
- Resellers such as DSers or CJdropshipping specialize in dropshipping services and seamlessly integrate with Shopify.
- Print on demand providers like JetPrint or Printful allow you to customize your products and have them printed and shipped directly to your customers.
Before making a selection, evaluate each supplier based on factors such as product quality, shipping times, and customer reviews. It’s advisable to order a sample to test the supplier’s reliability and compare prices to determine your profit margins. Effective supplier communication is also crucial to promptly address any issues that may arise. If you target local customers, finding local suppliers can help solve shipping time concerns.
Pick or design your products
Next, decide on the specific products you want to sell. You can select an existing product from the supplier’s catalog and add your own unique design. Alternatively, you can work closely with the manufacturer or take advantage of print-on-demand services to bring your product ideas to life. Print-on-demand suppliers allow you to create your own designs, preventing you from selling the same products as other sellers. Unique designs can attract customers and increase your profits.
About design: You can use software like Adobe Illustrator or Canva to create your designs, or use AI tools like Midjourney to get inspired.
Design your store
Create an attractive and user-friendly store design that matches your chosen niche and products. Shopify offers a variety of customizable free or paid themes and templates to help you create a professional and visually appealing storefront. Pay attention to elements like branding, layout, and navigation to provide your customers with a seamless shopping experience.
Add products to your store
Once you’ve selected products and partnered with suppliers, it’s time to add them to your Shopify store. Use Shopify’s product management tools to create product listings, set prices, and organize your inventory. Adding complete product information will help customers make better choices.
Optimize your product pages for search engines (SEO) by using relevant keywords in titles, descriptions, and meta tags. Write unique and compelling product descriptions that highlight benefits and address customer pain points. Also, optimize your URLs, image alt tags, and titles for better search engine visibility.
Manage your online store
Once you’ve listed your products and set up your store, it’s time to start your online business. Before going live, thoroughly test your website to ensure everything is working properly. Test checkout flows, payment gateways, and any other features or integrations you’ve implemented.
You need to configure payment and shipping options in Shopify’s settings. It’s important to note that the shipping cost of your store differs from the shipping cost provided by the supplier. As the store owner, you communicate the shipping cost to the consumer, while the supplier provides the shipping cost to you. Once you ensure that shipping costs and methods remain unaffected, you should proceed to edit the refund and privacy policies of your Shopify store.
Promote your dropshipping store
To increase traffic and sales on your dropshipping store, implement an effective marketing strategy. Consider the following options:
Search Engine Optimization (SEO): Optimize your website content and product pages with relevant keywords to improve search engine rankings and organic visibility. If you’re new to SEO, you can check out the Ahrefs blog or Google Search Center for tips to improve your SEO skills.
Social Media Marketing: Utilize popular social media platforms to engage with your target audience, share valuable content, and promote your products. Take advantage of platforms like Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and TikTok to showcase your products and drive traffic to your Shopify store. Create engaging content, run targeted advertising campaigns, and regularly interact with your audience.
Influencer Marketing: Identify influential individuals and reach out to them via email, asking for product promotion to a wider audience. Typically, you’ll need to pay a certain fee based on the influencer’s reach.
Email Marketing: Create customer lists based on different customer types, such as first-time buyers or repeat customers. Use Shopify’s automated marketing tools to send emails notifying customers of upcoming promotions, limited-time discounts, product giveaways, and more. Setting up automated processes can save you time.
Google or Facebook Ads: Invest in targeted advertising campaigns on platforms like Google Ads or Facebook Ads to attract leads and drive traffic to your store. Consider running paid advertising campaigns to increase your store’s visibility and reach a wider audience. Platforms like Google Ads and Facebook Ads offer powerful targeting options to help you reach potential customers interested in your niche.
Start dropshipping on Shopify with JetPrint
If you’re interested in offering custom products through your dropshipping store, JetPrint is an excellent choice, and JetPrint integrates seamlessly with Shopify. With JetPrint, you can easily create and sell personalized products such as T-shirts, shoes, watches and more. When a customer places an order, JetPrint will automatically process and fulfill the order. Customized products will be printed and shipped directly to your customer, ensuring high quality and timely delivery.
To start dropshipping with JetPrint on Shopify, follow these steps:
- Install the JetPrint app from the Shopify App Store.
- Connect your JetPrint account to your Shopify store.
- Browse JetPrint’s extensive catalog of customizable products and select the items you want to offer.
- Use JetPrint’s design tool to create unique artwork or upload your own designs.
In summary, dropshipping on Shopify offers entrepreneurs a low-risk and easy-to-use route to start an online business. By following the steps outlined in this article and implementing an effective marketing strategy, you can build a successful dropshipping store and embark on a profitable eCommerce journey. Remember that perseverance and continuous improvement are the keys to long-term success in Shopify’s ever-evolving dropshipping world.