If you have an active blog with a decent number of subscribers and active social media accounts, you’re ready to monetize it. Start a “store” on your blog without having to worry about the fulfilment and shipment of orders, which is called “dropshipping” e-commerce.
Whether you use Divi Theme or not, you can add a new page to the blog entitled “Shop.” Use a CTA button to make it more eye catching. A good example is how Arianna Huffington’s new blog Thrive Global includes an e-commerce store on one of its pages and within the front page modules.
The “Shop” will link to your own dropshipping e-commerce store. You can sell anything related to your blog. Using Thrive Global as an example, Arianna chooses to sell relaxation and productivity-related products, like travel essentials kits, journals, pillows, and others. Depending on your blog subject, the choice of products to sell is unlimited.
There are several options to start the future e-commerce store. However, first and foremost, let’s define what “dropshipping” is and how this model is more beneficial over conventional e-commerce stores.
What is Dropshipping
Dropshipping is a business model in which the entrepreneur who owns the e-commerce store (that would be you) doesn’t need to stock any inventory before selling them online. The products are sold first before you actually purchase them from the manufacturer, wholesaler, or supplier.
This alone would save a lot of time, money, and other resources, as you don’t need to invest a large amount of stock without knowing they would sell or not. Also, you don’t need to rent a large warehouse to keep the unsold inventory.
What makes this business model even more attractive is that every order is processed, fulfilled, and shipped directly by the wholesaler from which you bought the product from. It’s much less headache for you.
You simply work to increase traffic to the store with your well-written blog, promote the online store on social media, and ensure the customers are well served. The “dirty jobs,” like keeping the stock and processing orders, will be done by the wholesaler.
Now What About the Profit
According to Oberlo statistics, on average, the typical profit margin is 200 percent.
For pricing strategy, you can approach it in two ways. First, match the price with the product quality so that you can increase the profit margin with high-quality products. Second, price your product based on the advertising cost spent. For instance, if it costs $15 to receive one order, the product should be priced beyond it to make a profit.
However, of course, dropshipping also comes with disadvantages.
Among them is the limited control you have, as the store owner, over how the orders are shipped, meaning that you must rely on the wholesaler to process, fulfill, and ship each order. Sometimes, there can be some issues, which should be able to be solved with good communication with the supplier.
Dropshipping business relies heavily on advertising, such as Facebook and Instagram ads, as it depends on “impulse buying” rather than keyword search on Google and other search engines. However, the profit margin would offset this promotion cost.
Another con of dropshipping business is the limited branding opportunity. When you open a box sent from a “regular” non-dropshipping e-commerce store, more likely you’d see a card box with its logo and slogan. Inside, you’d find flyers, vouchers, and coupons for future purchases. These branding opportunities aren’t available with the dropshipping model. Or, at least, it’s limited.
Dropshipping Business Models
In general, there are three ways to approach a dropshipping online business model.
1. Use WordPress and e-commerce plugins, like WooCommerce, Ecwid, and Jigoshop.
Using WP e-commerce plugin only would require you to upload product images and specifications one-by-one, which can be time-consuming when you intend to sell hundreds or thousands of products. The plugin doesn’t come with any feature that a dropshipping business would require to run smoothly.
Also, the WP theme must be tweaked to ensure it fits the dropshipping model. It’s probably the most common way to sell online, but not the most practical way.
2. Use WordPress, WooCommerce, and dropshipping plugins, like AliDropship, WooDropship, and Ezusy.
Using any of these dropshipping plugins with WooCommerce installed on a WP site is a lifesaver. You can upload the images, and product specs with more ease and these plugins come with conveniences like search and import, auto updating, ePacket shipping filter, pricing automation, order tracking, product customization, and others.
However, since WooCommerce and the dropshipping plugin are installed on your standalone WP site, you need to maintain the e-commerce store by yourself, including the security issue. Many people prefer using dropshipping plugins like these, due to its convenience.
Using Shopify platform frees you from worrying about the security issue, and it only takes a few minutes from registration to start your e-commerce store. Its comprehensive features include built-in themes, unlimited bandwidth, secure site, fraud analysis, discount codes, and others.
Installing Oberlo to the Shopify stores dramatically increase the features, particularly those for dropshipping, such as ease in importing product images and specifications, fulfill orders, inventory and price auto updating, product customization, shipment tracking, switch suppliers with the best price, filter products with ePacket, and more. Both Shopify and Oberlo can be tried for free.
After deciding how you’d want to develop your dropshipping e-commerce store and have it ready, you can start considering which products to sell. Most drop shippers use AliExpress as the source of products for its convenience, wide array of products, and low prices.
If you use WooCommerce and one of its dropshipping plugins, most likely it already comes with AliExpress functionality. The same also with Shopify and Oberlo, which allows you to choose AliExpress vendors’ products quickly and have them uploaded immediately. It’s recommended to buy several samples from several suppliers, to ensure you’re satisfied with the quality of the products and the services provided.
With Oberlo installed on your Shopify store, the process of scouting for products is even simpler. Thousands of pre-vetted products are already there in the Oberlo Products, which is part of the dashboard.
Now you’ve understood the process of developing an e-commerce store on your blog, it’s time for action. With this article as a starting point, carefully analyze the pros and cons of each option. Many people make a good income from selling online with their own e-commerce dropshipping store. And one of them could be you.
Image Source: Pixabay