One of the most important steps towards business success is getting started. You’ve done well to get your dropshipping business off the ground, so what’s next?
Dropshipping is an incredibly lucrative business and if you’ve garnered some sales and have proof of concept, it’s now time to set your sights for the big leagues. Of course, like anything worth doing, it takes an incredible amount of work to scale a business and take it to the next level.
However, we’ve done the legwork for you and collated top tips and practical ideas on how to scale a dropshipping business, all of which you can begin to implement right away and take your eCommerce store to the next level.
At the end of the article, we’ve also recommended a proven dropshipping tool that can supercharge your eCommerce store and accelerate growth.
But first, here are a few important questions you must first take into account before:
Have I turned a profit or near turning a profit?
Sales, and more specifically, profits, are good indicators of proof of concept. Before trying to figure out how to scale a dropshipping business, you must first establish a proof of concept. This is the foundation of any business’s growth strategy.
Can my suppliers scale with me?
Growth means you will have to push more sales volumes or at times, switch your product offerings. Dropshipping suppliers are one of the most important elements of the business, if not the most important. Ensure they can supply more than your projected sales volumes or identify ones that can guarantee projected sales numbers.
Will I need a team or more personnel?
With the right dropshipping automation tools and management software, you may be able to run the store on your own at the beginning. However, building a team can help you push your store’s growth limits.
Determine if you need more personnel to scale your dropshipping business to your desired levels. You can opt to hire full-time or part-time employees from freelancing platforms to handle certain tasks.
Tips & Best Practices
Closing sales in the millions certainly won’t happen overnight. But with the right tactics, practices, and execution, you can begin to experience exponential growth. Start with these few tips to get your eCommerce store started on a journey towards the big leagues:
1. Automate What You Can
Similar to many online businesses, dropshipping is made up of several moving parts. It can feel like you are doing so many little things at the same time just to keep it running. As you grow your eCommerce store, time is going to be the most valuable asset and you’ll have to prioritize the most important tasks.
Of course, this is often easier said than done. But with automation, things could run smoothly without you having to do the legwork and getting rolled up in the day-to-day mundane tasks. Automation isn’t just about managing data anymore but also integrating all your business processes.
Automation will save time, cut down labor costs, improve your customer service, minimize human errors, and give you better control of your business. So what can you automate?
- Marketing (email marketing, ads, etc)
- Customer service,
- Order fulfilment,
- Accounting and bookkeeping,
- Inventory management
- Product importing,
- other operations.
With proper dropshipping automation software, you’ll be surprised at how much you can accomplish even as a one-person operation. You’ll have more time on your hands to deal with the most important aspects of your business.
2. Conduct Routine Competitor Research
Because of the low entry barriers to dropshipping, you’ll often compete against many other eCommerce stores, including the big boys such as Alibaba and Amazon. Therefore, you’ll have to become a great product researcher. Luckily, this isn’t as difficult as it sounds.
Many new eCommerce store owners tend to begin by looking for products that have little to no competition. Of course, there are plenty of reasons why a product may not have a lot of demand. It may have high shipping costs, supplier and manufacturer issues, or just poor margins.
However, products with high competition often mean they have good profit margins and huge demand. This means that you have a higher chance of building a successful business model around such products.
Your research shouldn’t only be limited to products. Shoppers are the lifeblood of your eCommerce store and having a basic, surface-level understanding of your target shoppers just won’t cut it.
Get in your shoppers’ heads and learn more about their shopping habits, pain points (and match your products as the solution), how they find you (your sales funnel), how they navigate your website, and other aspects. Don’t just stop at demographics but also get into psychographics and try to understand why they buy from you. The goal is to ultimately be a step ahead of any potential friction points and ensure a great customer experience.
2. Create Compelling Branding and Product Marketing Material
Just about every psychological, anthropological, and relevant marketing research study will tell you that human beings are visual beings, wired to respond to images more than anything else.
Remember that video ad, social media post, or text on your timeline that made you instantly pause your scrolling? Visuals are integral parts of online marketing, particularly when coupled with great copy. The key challenge, however, is grabbing your shoppers attention online.
With so much content competing for your potential shoppers’ attention online, you practically have a flashing moment to stop a potential shopper on their tracks to look at your product offering. To generate more traffic to your store, more leads, and ultimately more sales, create visually compelling and eye-catching branding and marketing materials for your website, your ads, and social media posts.
The right branding and marketing material will entice potential shoppers, generate leads, and help make your store more publicly known. In the past, businesses relied on printed material such as flyers and brochures, all of which required direct contact with potential customers. But the digital world has opened endless opportunities and you can reach as many shoppers as you want without needing face-to-face interactions.
3. Monitor & Optimize Marketing Campaigns Across All Channels
When it comes to eCommerce marketing, you will always have to meet your potential shoppers where they are. Therefore, you’ll not only have to determine the right marketing channels but also optimize and track your marketing campaigns.
This is absolutely critical for two reasons:
Monitoring your marketing campaigns gives you live or real-time feedback which you can use to pivot or adjust your tactics rather than having to go through a potentially wasteful marketing cycle.
For instance, if you are running a 6-month marketing campaign that gives you real-time data every day or week, you can collect enough data within, say, a month, and decide if you need to adjust or overhaul your plan.
The data and metrics you collect will allow you to more accurately determine your customer acquisition costs. You’ll be able to determine marketing attribution and ultimately, which channels and activities give you the most ROI.
Your marketing channels include, but aren’t limited to:
- Email and text messaging campaigns
- Social media pages
- SEO campaigns (content creation)
- Influencer marketing
- Your website
- In-store merchandising
- Ad campaigns
While creating your marketing campaign, think of it as a marathon, but a unique one that also comprises a series of short sprints. Online ad campaigns and influencer marketing would fall into the short-sprints category since they’ll give you a short term boost in traffic and engagement.
4. Offer Unmatched Customer Service
Customer service takes an enormous amount of time, but it’s often worth every minute. In dropshipping, the manufacturer or supplier will never have direct interaction with the consumer. This is entirely your job and also one of the best ways to differentiate your eCommerce store from the competition.
A great customer service experience need not be complicated and can be as simple as:
- providing super quick responses to enquiries,
- dealing swiftly with returns or botched orders,
- providing quick and easy checkout experiences,
- providing discounts and incentives,
- being friendly and professional at all times,
- ensuring your store is mobile-friendly
Other tactics that can deliver a great shopping experience include cross-selling and upselling, both of which will also boost your sales.
Ready to Grow Your Dropshipping Business?
Now that you are equipped with practical tips, it’s time to roll up your sleeves and turn your dropshipping business into a profitable venture. One other way to accelerate your growth is to use Sell The Trend.
Due to its vast dropshipping experience and expertise, Sell The Trend’s dropshipping software will allow you to be “as hands-on or as hands-off” with your store as you like. There’s virtually no limit to what it can do for your store, not least of which is to take the humdrum everyday activities off your hands so you can focus on crucial areas of your dropshipping business.
Sell The Trend’s all-in-one dropshipping platform takes the legwork out of product research with AI-powered Product Explorer that constantly analyzes competition and market trends. You can instantly discover millions of products from more than 80 eCommerce niches, and easily add them to your store through its 1-Click Push-To-Store feature.
It’s worth pointing out that Sell The Trend goes beyond store management and also provides other features that can quickly scale your dropshipping business, including:
- Access to a huge database of nearly 1,200 trusted and verified dropshipping suppliers
- A one-click product importer and automated order fulfillment to ensure you never miss an order
- A full suite of dropshipping marketing tools
- Store intelligence and product research feature so you can stay updated with what your competitors are selling and how they price their products
A Success Academy where you can learn the most advanced dropshipping techniques and stay ahead of your competition.