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If you’re new to dropshipping, this will give you an overview of what it is and how you can use it to start a great side hustle or a home-based business with minimal startup costs.
The general idea:
Dropshipping is an increasingly popular way of doing e-commerce. It’s simply a way of shipping physical products that you sell to other people online. Here’s one way it works:
- A customer visits your website.
- They buy a product.
- Money gets transferred to your bank account.
- You place an order with your product supplier.
- Your supplier sends the product to your customer.
- You keep the profit.
The neat thing about dropshipping is that you don’t have to stock any products. You do the selling – marketing and taking orders – and then you pass the order information to a supplier to pack the products and ship them to your customers.
Dropshipping is not a business.
There’s a lot of confusion about this. Dropshipping is a method of order fulfillment and is only part of a business model. However, it is a good way to start selling things without having high upfront costs.
Dropshipping isn’t new.
A lot of online retail stores use the dropshipping business model, and it’s completely legitimate.
Have you heard of a “fulfillment center” before? These are warehouses full of products. When you place an online order through a website like walmart.com, target.com, bestbuy.com, wayfair.com, and many others, your order gets shipped out of a warehouse. This is dropshipping.
Some companies like the ones listed above are big enough that they own their own fulfillment centers. But what if you’re just doing it on your own? It works the same way, but you have to find a supplier who will ship products out of their warehouse(s) to your customers.
None of the stores listed above sell products that they make. Instead, they buy products at wholesale and sell them for a profit.
So how do you get started?
The easiest way to get started is by selling someone else’s product(s). There are many ways to do this, but on this website, I’m going to focus on two options: selling items from China and print on demand. Here’s why:
- Products made in China are often affordable enough to sell at a fair price and still make a reasonable profit.
- There’s lots of low-cost software to help you easily create an online store and fulfill orders through Chinese suppliers.
- Print on demand suppliers make it easy to sell items with your design work on them.
Stick with me. I’ll walk you through building a store from scratch.