What Is Dropshipping?

  • By Darrel Wilson
  • Last Updated: November 2, 2019
What Is Dropshipping?

By now, you’ve probably heard the term dropshipping quite a few times. But, you might be wondering what exactly dropshipping is, how it works, and how you can get started with it.

In this post, I’ll answer some of the most commonly asked questions about dropshipping and provide you with a list of helpful resources so you can start your own dropshipping business. I also have a video at the end that explains the basics of dropshipping business.

What Is Dropshipping

Put simply, dropshipping is an e-commerce business model where you don’t actually stock any of the items you sell in your store. Instead, when someone buys a product on your site, you buy it from a third-party who then ships the product to your customer. This means you never have to worry about your inventory or shipping and handling fees as all of that is taken care of by the third-party who carries the products for you.

Benefits of Dropshipping

There are several benefits of dropshipping:

  1. Requires no startup capital – since you don’t have to worry about carrying inventory, stocking it or producing it, you don’t need any startup capital that is usually associated with launching a standard e-commerce store.
  2. Easy to get started – a dropshipping business is a lot easier to get started since you don’t have to deal with the headache of carrying physical products. This means there is no need to pay for a stocking warehouse, shipping and handling fees, item tracking, and more
  3. Low overhead – this one ties to the previous two benefits but since there is no products to deal with, the only fees you have to worry about are your hosting fee and marketing expenses
  4. Location-independent – a dropshipping business can be started and run from anywhere in the world.
  5. Wide selection of products – there is no shortage of third-party websites that make it easy to sell their products. The products also range from common items like women’s clothing and watches to tools and appliances but you can also find more obscure items like pig head masks and car wheel caps.

How to Start Your Own Dropshipping Business

To start your own dropshipping business, follow the steps below.

1. Create a dropshipping website

The first thing you need to do is create your dropshipping website. I recommend WordPress as WordPress is free to download and use and you can create a feature-rich store even if you have no coding knowledge. WordPress has thousands of themes that will make your store look great and thanks to numerous plugins, you will have all the tools you need to create a successful online store.

2. Import products from AliExpress using the AliDropship plugin

AliDropship plugin

Once your store is set up, you will need to purchase the AliDropship plugin so you can start importing products from AliExpress into your store. AliDropship also comes with a browser extension so you can easily pick and choose which products you want to import. What’s more, the plugin allows you to control the prices for the products and customize product titles, images, and more.

3. Market your dropshipping website

Next, you need to market your dropshipping website so people can find your store. A few ways to market your site include:

  • Write and publish blog posts that are related to your products. For example, you can write a gift guide for the holidays about the best products to buy for your girlfriend or you can create a roundup of top 10 products.
  • Be active on social media – places like Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest make it easy to promote your products and you can even create promotional posts that allow your followers to shop your products on Instagram or Pinterest. If you have the budget for it, you can also use Facebook Ads or Pinterest Promoted Pins.
  • Install a live sales pop on your site to build trust and show recent purchases made on your site

4. Customer buys a product from your store

Once you start getting more followers and fans on your social media profiles, make sure you link to your store in the website section of each and every social media platform you’re active on. This will make it easy for your followers to visit your store and make a purchase.


5. Purchase the product from your supplier

As soon as your customers make a purchase, you can then purchase the product from your supplier and they will package and ship the product for you. You can send a notification to your customers that their item is on the way and sit back and relax as the entire process is automated and taken care of for you.

6. Make money by marking the product up

The way to make money with dropshipping is to mark the product up. For example, you get the product for $10 and than RESELL it for $30 making a 20 dollar profit.

Dropshipping Tutorials and Resources

Now that we’ve covered how dropshipping works and how to get started, here are a few additional resources that will help you get started on the right foot.

How to Create Your Own Dropshipping Website With WordPress and AliExpress

In this tutorial, I walk you through the entire process of setting up your first dropshipping website using WordPress and AliExpress. We’ll cover the following topics:

  • Getting ready with domain and hosting
  • Installing the WordPress platform
  • Installing the Flatsome Theme
  • Importing products and Marketing your dropshipping website

The post includes both video and text tutorial so it’s easy to follow along.

How to Create an eCommerce Website Using WordPress 2018

If you’re a complete beginner, you can also follow along with this tutorial that walks you through a step-by-step process of creating an e-commerce website with WordPress.

AliDropship Plugin Review

If you’ve never heard of AliExpress or AliDropship, then this article is for you. In it, I go over the features and benefits of using AliDropship plugin and show you how to set it up.

Dropshipping Basics Video

This video is the companion video walkthrough to this article which explains the basics of dropshipping and answers some of the more commonly asked questions about the dropshipping business model.

How To Setup Google Product Listing Ads (Adwords Shopping Campaign) – Google Merchant Tutorial 2018

In this video, I show you how to set up your Google Merchant account and go over the benefits of using it.

Dropshipping Websites

Lastly, here’s a list of the best dropshipping websites that you can use to start your dropshipping business:

  • AliExpress – one of the biggest dropshipping sites. The biggest pro is that they have a wide selection of products. The downside is that all the products are getting shipped from China which means your customers might wait longer for the products to arrive
  • SaleHoo – SaleHoo is an American dropshipping company which means no long waiting period for your customers. The site is based on relationships which means you need to establish a relationship with a vendor first and you can then negotiate better terms for your store
  • WholeSale2B – this website makes it easy to choose products for your store, pick a suggested plan, and then start selling the products in your store. The site even gives you suggested prices which makes it easy to see how much your profit will be.

Final Thoughts

As you can see, dropshipping can be a lucrative business and a great source of income for complete e-commerce beginners. Use the tips in this article to set up your own website and start your dropshipping business off on the right foot. Happy selling!

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