Dropshipping is one of the fastest growing business models for digital entrepreneurs all around the world. With about 23% of 2017 eCommerce sales being fulfilled by dropshipping, it’s obvious that it is here to stay (and growing every day). Rather than handling your own stock, processing orders, and preparing them for shipment by yourself, a third party handles much of the process for you – you just need to sell. This is why tech savvy entrepreneurs are flocking to dropshipping.
With dropshipping, you’re eliminating just about every expense that comes with owning a business. Paying employees, storing inventory, and shipping orders are unnecessary for dropshipping because you never even see the product – it heads from supplier to customer directly (with your name on it!). This leads to a low cost of entry & low operating costs, making WooCommerce dropshipping an attractive business venture even for those with minimal budgets.
Whether you’re considering getting started with dropshipping or are just looking for ways to make the most of your business, keep reading for some tips to increase your dropshipping success rate.
1. Secure Reliable Suppliers
Dropshipping relies more heavily on your suppliers than any other aspect of the business. Your inventory, pricing, and shipping all are controlled by suppliers – tasks that make up the majority of your operations as a dropshipper. This means that securing reliable & affordable suppliers is the first and most important step to a successful dropshipping business. If you can’t rely on your supplier, your customers can’t rely on you.
A reliable supplier means that you don’t need to worry about unhappy customers nearly as much. Item quality & shipping speed are incredibly important when it comes to dropshipping, so working with someone who sells real products and ships effectively ensures your customers won’t be complaining. You’ll also be able to invest your marketing wisely because the supplier will be able to meet your business’s needs.
To find these sources, look at supply marketplaces like AliExpress or supplier directories like SaleHoo to link you up with trustworthy supply sources for your dropshipping store. Be sure to ask questions if possible as well so that you can get a better idea of their trustworthiness & legitimacy.
To learn more about securing trustworthy suppliers, visit our guide on avoiding fake dropshippers.
2. Master Digital Marketing
As an entirely online business, you’ll have to create an effective marketing campaign that separates you from the hundreds of other similar sites that you’re competing against. Digital marketing is an entirely different beast from traditional marketing – SEO, social media, and email are going to be about 90% of your traffic, so you need to make the most of your platforms to ensure traffic, sales, growth, and overall success for your dropshipping store.
Search engine optimization (SEO) involves maximizing your website for visibility on search engines like Google. Implementing smart SEO practices ensures that your website ranks higher than the competition’s when someone looks for your niche, allowing you to earn more traffic (and potentially sales). This will likely be the majority of your marketing expenses, but with the low cost of operation you can afford to get a solid SEO team on your side.
Social media is an unconventional way to sell, but if done correctly it can be another method of organic growth & traffic just like SEO. With 37% of people using social media as inspiration for purchases, you can’t afford to miss out on social media marketing. Not only does being visible on social media enable more people to find you, a web presence adds trustworthiness to your website – and it never hurts to have more qualifications. Consider giveaways, promotions, and contests to build up your following in the short term. Once you’ve amassed an audience, you can post ads on your pages for free – the best price you could ask for.
Finally, email marketing allows you to get your message in front of people cheaply, easily, and quickly. Whether you gather your own mailing list through newsletters & contests or buy an email list from a list seller, sending a well-crafted email with a great offer can be a solid way to earn some cheap new customers.
3. Maximize Your Store for Conversions
If you’ve ever visited a website with a bad user interface, broken links or graphics, no mobile responsiveness, or just about anything that makes the shopping process inconvenient, you probably thought twice about your purchase – regardless of how good of a deal they offered. Sure, you can promise the world in order to get customers to your website. But if you’re not offering an enjoyable shopping & checkout experience, you may as well not even spend the time on marketing – you’ll lose more sales than you secure.
One of the most effective ways to make your website convert better is to ensure you’re mobile-friendly. As of 2019, about 45% of eCommerce sales have come from mobile devices (tablets, phones, etc.). That means that you’re alienating almost half of potential buyers if you’re not mobile responsive – a death sentence for your dropshipping business. Thankfully, many WooCommerce dropshipping themes are designed to work on all devices so that you can support all potential customers.
You’ll also want a website that is enjoyable (or at the very least not a chore) to navigate. Simple designs that emphasize your products with call to action buttons, media & interactive content to show off your catalog, and an easy to use menu bar will help prevent people from getting frustrated when looking for products on your store.
Finally, your checkout system is the often-forgotten but incredibly important anchor to your eCommerce store. You don’t have a completed sale until you actually capture payment, and with 27% of carts being abandoned at checkout because of a poor checkout experience, you can’t afford to slack on it.
Handsome Checkout helps to combat this with product-specific WooCommerce checkout pages that make checkout another selling point. Through customized testimonials, reviews, and other content that is embedded on checkout, you’ll increase the chances of keeping their interest long enough to complete your short, customized checkout form.
4. Foster Loyalty with Exceptional Customer Service
Trust is one of the single greatest selling points available to businesses – online or offline. While physical locations have the benefit of an identity and store, online stores are a dime a dozen with faceless, often anonymous identities. In the age of eCommerce, everyone is looking to make money online, but not everyone wants to do it fairly. With scams around the corner at every turn, your dropshipping success depends more on your customer service more than you may think.
According to a study by Aspect Software, approximately 76% of all shoppers treat a business’s customer service as the indicator of how important they are to the brand. Providing fast, readily available, and effective problem solving helps to alleviate any concerns customers may have about trusting your particular site. It also ensures that any pre-sale questions can be addressed so that you don’t lose out on a sale because someone wasn’t informed enough to buy.
To provide this support, consider using integrated live chat on your site with representatives available to help in real time. Email support (plus customer management software) can also help keep response times down and customer satisfaction up.