What You Need to Know Before Starting a Drop Shipping Business in Four Steps
Many individuals are looking for a side hustle that offers extra income, while offering them the chance to work on their own schedule. Enter drop shipping, the perfect business for people of all ages. From moms and dads, busy college students, and those who need extra income, but don’t want to take on a job outside the home. Starting a drop shipping business sounds complicated, but it can be broken down into easy steps that anyone can accomplish. As you get started, here are some of the factors to take into consideration for each part of the process.
Determine What You Want to Sell and Who’s Supplying It
This might be the hardest step of all. What products do you want to offer? Before you make a quick decision, think about these factors:
- If you can sell it at a markup that your customers will still find attractive
- How readily available it is in most stores
- Where the product is shipping from
Think about products that interest you. Since you’ll be dealing with this as you run your business, make sure it’s something you can tolerate. You want your drop shipping business to be as enjoyable as possible. You can offer just about anything from baby equipment, fine home furnishings, or items made specifically for pets. The more specific you are, the better. This narrows down your customer niche.
Select items that offer you the best return for your money, and are the most in demand. This changes over time. Be ready to change your products or shake things up a bit, if you want sales to stay upward, rather than decrease. If you sell baby monitors, and notice that there is a new and better brand outselling your current model, adjust accordingly.
Take Care of the Financial Side of Business
When starting your drop shipping business, you should have a tax ID and a bank account that is separate from your personal one. If necessary, apply for an EIN. This is used in place of your social security number, giving you protection from having your identity stolen. Keeping the earnings from your business separate from your own personal account allows you to see how much revenue is produced. This is just a starting step as you open your own business, but keeping a careful record of how much you make is an important start.
Pick Out a Platform to Sell On
When searching for a company to sell your products on, there’s no shortage of choices. Some folks stick to the old-fashioned route, and use eBay as their primary platform to sell items on. Others find Amazon gets their product before a wider audience. Some would rather have a platform they can customize and make their own, complete with graphics and images of their storefront logo on the page. You may find yourself debating over which to pick, such as Shopify vs. Woocommerce. Look at what each has to offer, and weigh the pros and cons. Make sure you pick something that is user-friendly, and allows changes to be made easily as you update your product.
Begin Marketing on Various Platforms
Marketing on various platforms might seem time consuming, costly, or both. Thankfully, you can get around this issue with a little help from social media. Many folks find Facebook and marketing on Instagram to be instrumental in their product’s success. Begin by creating a company account, and highlighting your products with clear pictures and useful hashtags. Those who are searching for your product (or one like it) will stumble upon your posting.
For promoting on Instagram, keep these factors in mind:
- Include a link to your store in the bio
- Update content anywhere from once a day or at least a few times a week
- Use hashtags to connect with followers and help them find your product
- Use this data to build an email list through Instagram followers
After you see more revenue on your site, you can use paid advertising on Facebook to increase visibility among your target audience. This leads to further sales, and talk of your company through word of mouth, including tagging in social media posts.
Starting a drop shipping business takes a little bit of time and forethought. Once you have the pieces in place, you’ll get your company off the ground floor and see sales. This makes drop shipping an ideal job for folks of all ages. It takes a few steps, and can be easily replicated with a variety of products for maximum results.