Online dropshipping is one of the most revolutionary business models ever. It’s also true that it’s one of the easiest forms of online businesses you can build. However, some people have this idea that all it takes is a website, a few knick-knacks they found on Aliexpress, and a few Facebook ads to get started. In reality, dropshipping is just like managing an actual storefront in many ways and comes with all sorts of challenges. Here some of the things the gurus will never tell you about dropshipping.
Returns can be a Nightmare
There’s nothing more discouraging than making tons of sales only for half of them to come back. In some cases, you’ll have to pay the shipping out of pocket, and it will either eat into or completely eliminate your margins. Returns are one of the most difficult things to handle as a dropshipping store owner, and one of the most important things when starting a business is knowing the high return niches and trying to avoid them as much as possible if you’re a beginner.
One of these niches is clothing. Clothing is just something that is very personal, and people get fickle about it. Some might think the piece doesn’t look the same, the cut wasn’t as expected, or maybe they just want to try another model. Simple things like this can turn into a logistical nightmare, so it’s better to steer away from clothing or items like watches when getting started.
The Platform is Everything
One of the things gurus don’t tell you is that you are going to have to learn how to master the ecommerce dropshipping platform you’re using if you want to be successful.
You’re going to have to learn how to use analytics to improve your marketing efforts, learn how to launch and promote special offers, and manage your back end if you want to be able to compete. Profitable dropshipping sites also take a lot of time to test and retest their sites to see where they could improve customer experience and conversion rates.
Finding Good Suppliers is Not Easy
The biggest myth about dropshipping is that you can just go on AliExpress and find great suppliers in minutes. First of all, dealing with AliExpress suppliers with tons of other clients who may be much more important than you can be a complete communication nightmare. Then you have to find suppliers who will not only be reliable but will also be cooperative when it comes to dealing with returns. Finding someone who ticks all the boxes is not easy, and in this case, it would be wise to use well-known and well-rated supplier networks when getting started.
Dropshipping is a great way to make money, but the way that it is depicted is usually wrong. The most important thing to remember is that this is a business just like any other, and if you don’t treat and manage it as such, it’ll suffer the same fate as any other mismanaged business.