No matter how many people tell you dropshipping is easy, it is actually risky to get into without preparation. A lot of people rush into it and buy a website without any thoughts on how they are going to establish their business. You might have ideas, but they may not be practical. Yet, you want to try your luck in eCommerce. A good way to deal with this would be to test out your idea without a website.
How do you do that? Read on to find out.
How To Begin?
So, one thing we know is that we are not immediately buying a website. We have some ideas on the product we are about to sell, but we need a place to try out these ideas. Or maybe you don’t have a clear idea of what product you are going to sell either?
If that is the case, don’t stress about it. Even the first product that comes to your mind is a good enough option. Mostly, you are going to test whether the product is popular in the market and at which price. You are not immediately setting up a shop.
The first product you try might not be popular in the market. That is completely fine. We are in testing mode. You can now focus on a product related to the first product and go on from there.
The only thing we would emphasize is to have a niche in mind. Do not opt for broader products as that never works out for new small businesses. For example, instead of selling hair ties, opt for scrunchies. They are more popular with a particular younger demographic. It is also easier to expand yourself within the niche as long as you do sufficient research. Another thing is that once you have mastered your niche, you can expand to broader product categories.
Also, try to think of products with certain demographics in mind. What would a young woman like to buy from online shopping? What would a man over 30 years find interest in? These questions would help you narrow down on certain types of products.
1. Test Your Product Plan
Go to any of the online shopping websites where the owner dropships. Make a purchase of only one product that you have an interest in selling. On arrival, make notes on the delivery time. Along with it, take pictures and videos of the product. Write a review for yourself. If you like the product, it would give you a good idea of whether it would appeal to your future customers.
Now, go to websites such as eBay and Facebook Marketplace. Make a free account there for selling. Now, upload the photo and video of the product for sale on the website. Type the price you had in mind for the product if you were the owner of a website. Optimize the description box with benefits that make you like the product. You can get a trial run this way.
If people show interest in buying the product despite the price point, you have solid proof that selling the product on your website with proper marketing would lead to sales.
2. How Is The Response
So, you have put the product on sale on these marketplaces. Does it sell right away? If so, time to buy the same items 2 to 3 times more. Check if you have the same success every time. If you do, you can raise the price a bit when you try to sell the product the next time. This way, you have an idea about the maximum price customers are willing to pay for the product.
On the alternative, maybe the product doesn’t sell quickly at all. Maybe it takes a lot of time before anyone shows any purchase in buying the product. Don’t get discouraged by it immediately. This is only your test drive. Work on the data you have and see if making changes raises the value of the product.
You could lower the price or upload better pictures. You can make improvements to the description. You can even give the option of free shipping. See what works and from that, you would know if this is the niche you want to go forward with, what would need to be different about your store.
Additionally, check on other sellers on those dropshipping sites. What are the reviews customers leave behind? Exactly what convinced customers to hit purchase? Study other sellers in the same niche. What is it that they are doing that is different from you?
3. Ask For Reviews
In the event, you do make a sale, have a conversation with your first customer. What made them purchase the product from you? What is it about your product that made them stop and stare? Maybe the pictures attracted their eyes? Maybe they were convinced by your description? Or were they already looking for the product and your price range made sense to them?
Market research is important. Once you make the first sell and do your second sell test, do not forget to ask that customer too. The reason this customer brought your product could be completely different from the previous one. Especially once you raise or lower the price, it is important to test the customer’s reasons for it.
If you are testing your dropshipping ideas before you have an idea, you are already built for success in the market. You are cautious but daring enough to venture on an unknown path. If you keep up your spirit and do enough research, there is no reason why your business would not be successful.
You might have to spend more than necessary during the testing period, but if it ensures you don’t end up losing a huge amount in the future, it is certainly worth it.