Are you preparing to start a successful dropshipping store for passive income? More and more people are starting dropshipping businesses these days, but only a few pull off the dynamics of running a successful store. Before getting your head in the dropshipping business, a checklist might jumpstart the process easily.
With a dropshipping store checklist, you would be able to know everything about the business, which will save you tons of money on useless subscriptions throughout the year.
Why do people open a dropshipping store?
But first, let’s move forward to the most asked question, ‘why dropshipping when you have a thousand other ways to earn passive income?’
Well, dropshipping, by definition, is the process of selling products from an online store without having to invest in a warehouse or upgrading the inventory. It means that you won’t have to keep any products in your house or any other storage place. When someone orders a product on your store, you place the same order with a third-party supplier.
Running a dropshipping store is quite easy and inexpensive. Moreover, there are automation tools to help you with a large number of orders at the same time.
The third-party supplier takes care of everything; from the delivery to shipment and packaging. In short, you get to make money off the product that you have never even touched!
However, starting a dropshipping store can be a nuisance without a checklist. After all, you have to juggle between different elements of the business model.
Let’s shed some light on the importance of making a checklist before your dropshipping startup.
Why is it important to have a dropshipping startup checklist?
Opening a dropshipping store with Shopify takes a substantial amount of time and energy. A million thoughts run through your mind at the same time. How to integrate Oberlo with Shopify? How to add compelling product descriptions? How to add other extensions to your Shopify store?
A smooth launch of a dropshipping takes more than you can imagine. You must have a marketing plan in working and all of the products loaded correctly before inviting people to your Shopify store.
Instead of preparing aimlessly, you should take an organized and methodological approach to your dropshipping startup launch.
You can ease your mind with a comprehensive yet purposed checklist for your dropshipping startup.
With so much happening on social media platforms and your website, it is easy to forget a critical step for a successful yet breezy launch.
A dropshipping startup launch streamlines your tasks and reduces ambiguity about the pre-launch tasks that need to be done right away.
A research study in the journal of Medicine (New England) determines that making checklists reduce medical mistakes, malpractice, and complications in patient care.
However, there’s a format to making a good checklist. A dropshipping startup launch requires user-friendly, easy-to-read, effective, and concise checklists.
Remember that a checklist only provides a reminder for taking important steps in the process. They should be practical and approachable.
Even a professional can make huge mistakes under pressure. So, it makes complete sense to create a concise checklist for your dropshipping store launch.
But what should be included in your dropshipping startup checklist? Don’t worry as this article lists everything that you should do for a successful store launch.
The Complete Dropshipping Checklist 2021
You are just the following steps away from a successful dropshipping store launch:
Basic requirements to start a dropshipping business
In this section, we will move forward with the basic requirements to start a dropshipping store:
Every person has a reason to initiate a business or to launch a store besides his/her regular job. The reasons vary from person to person. One might want to improve his technical skills while the other one might want to earn a passive income.
However, one of the main reasons to start a dropshipping store is that people are sick of their 9 to 5 jobs. They are looking forward to exploring the online earning platforms, one of which is Shopify.
Regardless of the reason that motivated you to test the online earning platform, you can run a successful dropshipping store as long as you have the motivation.
If you have an interest in a specific nice for your dropshipping store, you are more likely to be patient than to wait for immediate results.
Get a working laptop or personal computer
You need one gadget besides an established internet connection to launch your dropshipping store; a laptop or a personal computer. Almost any laptop or PC can provide the functions to run an online business. If you are someone who likes to move while working, get a laptop. Otherwise, get a personal computer as it is more inexpensive. It all comes down to your preferences.
But, it is best to invest in modern technology as it will help you create a user-friendly, intuitive, and responsive design for your website and dropshipping store.
Establish a stable internet connection
Although you don’t need to be online 24/7 on your dropshipping store, you need a stable internet connection to access your mail, payment gateways, social media platforms, and store from time to time. Moreover, you need high-speed internet to respond to customers’ orders and queries.
Follow the steps to ensure that you have a stable internet connection at all times:
- Test the internet speed through various sites to ensure there’s no problem from the backend
- Download the latest version of your browser
- Disconnect other devices at your home from your internet connection
If your internet is still lagging, do the following steps to improve its speed;
- Remove the applications and software that you don’t use anymore
- Clear the cache data
- Scan your laptop or PC from security threats and viruses
- Turn off all background activity
Market knowledge to start a dropshipping business
Market knowledge is crucial to launching any type of business. It gives you a clear idea of competitors, market trends, sales opportunities, and thought leaders in the industry.
But what do you need to add to your checklist from this section? Let’s find out:
Understand the dropshipping business model
If you have no idea how dropshipping model works, you are less likely to succeed in the first three years. However, it is easier than before to know all about it. All you have to do is type, ‘how dropshipping works? And you’d be displayed a ton of videos and guides.
There are specific videos and tutorials which will help you set up a Shopify store and teach you all about the dynamics of the dropshipping business model.
Moreover, you can join the dropshipping communities of like-minded people and gain useful tips on how to sell hot products quickly. It is better to follow real-life examples than to go by the rule book.
Take inspiration from real-life examples in the dropshipping business
When you step into an unfamiliar road, it is common to get confused in the beginning. Luckily, many people have tried and tested the dropshipping business model. They are aware of the complex duties and responsibilities of running a dropshipping store.
Dropshipping business is not where you can run the store conveniently or sell quickly in the first year. However, there are real-life examples to take tons of inspiration from. You can listen to podcast interviews of successful dropshippers to keep going. You can earn a handsome amount of passive income and change your life by doing your due diligence.
Use AliExpress to gain experience
For obvious reasons, AliExpress is one of the safest places to find reliable third-party suppliers. Sellers on AliExpress are more than ready to collaborate with dropshipping entrepreneurs and offer millions of winning products at reasonable prices.
Besides, they also offer amazing discounts on bulk orders. Therefore, it is essential to know how AliExpress works, how refunds and exchange items are handled, how customers reach you, and how the customer orders are processed.
A good niche is your way to grow and increase your profits and sales opportunities. The products on your dropshipping store must be related in some way. For instance, if you are selling home décor items, adding chocolates would not be a good idea to utilize your space.
Experts recommend choosing a niche that interests you. This way, you would be able to handle your business in the best possible way. For example, if you have adequate knowledge about gaming laptops, why not sell them? There’s no harm in adding high-end products to your dropshipping store unless you lack background knowledge.
While choosing the niche, you’d have to keep your marketing plan in sight too. Are the products you have chosen promotable? Can you run ads of them on Facebook?
Technical preparation steps to add in the dropshipping startup checklist
Not a single business in the world can run without proper technical preparations. Whether you are a tech-savvy person or not, you’d have to have a domain name, a responsive website, a mobile-friendly Shopify store, and a hosting partner.
These terms might be confusing to many of you, so let’s move forward and make it easier for the novice dropshippers:
Decide on the domain name
In technical terms, a domain name is the address of your website that is used to highlight it among other websites on the internet. A website address directs your customers to your products and helps them to place orders.
However, a domain name should be relevant to your Shopify store and SEO optimized so that it can reach a larger audience.
You can take your domain name from various providers, like GoDaddy. It is a reliable service provider to register the domain name for your website.
Take reliable hosting service
A hosting provider allows you to place valuable information for your customers on the server. If you don’t have a hosting service, your viewers can’t see your content.
To activate your dropshipping store, you have to pay for hosting and ensure that your website is visible to the world. If you are not tech-savvy, the hosting provider will resolve all your issues and provide you with exceptional customer support service.
Build a dropshipping website
If you have paid for hosting service, have a domain name, and decided on the niche, move on to building a dropshipping website right away. A dropshipping website is the basis of your Shopify store.
In this step, you are left with two options only:
- Build a dropshipping website from scratch (on your own)
- Get a ready-to-buy dropshipping store
Ready-to-buy dropshipping stores include an established store, a custom store, and a premium store. Let’s move forward to their differences so you can decide which will fit best your needs.
Custom dropshipping store
A custom dropshipping store from AliExpress is all about personal preference and functions in mind. You can determine the functions that you want and the developers will add them for you. When the store is ready to launch, the developers hand it to you with complete ownership.
Premium dropshipping store
A premium store is fully functional to get started with your dropshipping business plan. Apart from the premium store and unlimited functions, you get a legal copy of the store so there’s no problem in the future.
Established dropshipping store
An already established dropshipping store might be for the immediate go-getters. As the name suggests, it is an already established store with a certain number of orders, a track record, and considerable traffic volume.
Buying an established dropshipping store allows you to make well-informed decisions on hot products.
Build your dropshipping website through WordPress
WordPress is one of the largest platforms to help you arrange the elements of your dropshipping website systematically. Almost 30% of the websites on the internet are owned by WordPress and for obvious reasons.
WordPress is quite intuitive, user-friendly, and easy to use. If you have zero experience in running a website, WordPress might be your lifesaver.
Here are some of the reasons why building a dropshipping website on WordPress is wise enough:
- Access to additional software
- User-friendly interface
- Free of cost
- Easy to personalize
- Easy to add extensions
- SEO-optimized website
- Gives you total control over your Shopify dropshipping store
Write your FAQ and standard website pages
Creating a standard home page, service page, product page, and the FAQ page is quite necessary for the launch of your dropshipping website. Many novice dropshippers don’t bother creating standard pages. The lack of attention to your website might disappoint your potential customers. They might not consider you a real business.
Standard pages help allows potential customers to trust your business. Moreover, the following policies allow them to understand who you are as a person behind the brand:
- Shipping policy
- Return policy
- Terms of service
Other pages include:
- Contact page
- Home page
- About page
Moreover, the content you write for these pages is not set in stone. You can always upgrade it just like your product images and descriptions.
An ‘FAQ’ page gives valuable knowledge to the readers beforehand which develops trust. Fewer people contact you for basic questions because they already know the answer is there on your website!
Action plan to add to your checklist
Now that you are done with technical preparations and content creation, it is time to build an action plan for your dropshipping store.
Don’t forget to add the following steps to the checklist before launching your store:
Find hot-selling dropshipping products
No store can function without adding trending hot-selling products. Now there is another checklist to find trending products to sell online. While experts have their own methods, you can start by using a dropshipping product research tool.
This is where Sell The Trend’s product discovery machine shines. It is an AI-Based product research tools that helps you with finding trending products to sell online. Products that are yet to be picked up by your competitors.
If you have integrated AliExpress with your Shopify store, you can explore the whole website and add hot-selling items relevant to your niche. The process is so easy, even for beginners. After all, it takes less than 30 seconds to import a product from AliExpress.
There are no limitations when it comes to uploading items.
Curate a pricing strategy
Rightfully earned income and profits come from the right pricing strategy. However, there’s no rule that you should know to gain profits: the price of your items should be more than the same product on AliExpress. The differences between these prices will decide your profit.
However, you should not overlook the satisfaction of your customers. Higher prices scare away a lot of customers. Therefore, you need to set reasonable prices at the start to lure customers.
Various plug-ins help you to set up makeup pricing rules. All you have to do is input pricing formulas and the plug-in will update the price of your products automatically.
Go with an effective marketing plan
No entrepreneur can make big sales opportunities without an effective marketing strategy. We highly recommend observing market trends to promote your products in the best way possible.
You need a way to use marketing channels and tools to your advantage. The best strategy is to attract potential customers and increase website traffic by providing value.
There are many elements of a content marketing strategy but the most important of all is SEO or search engine optimization. Without SEO, it would be hard to get noticeable on Google’s SERPs.
Here are a few ways to improve your content marketing strategy:
- Add Meta title, description, and tags to each product in your dropshipping store
- Use a keyword planner to use relevant phrases in your content
- Use effective strategies to spread your content among a larger audience
There you have it; all the important elements to create a checklist for a successful store launch. A checklist as helpful as this helps to get over the beginner phase faster. However, the checklist will stay with you always. You can always take a look at it to ensure that you are prepared before your big yet successful dropshipping startup launch.
Learn more about starting a Shopify dropshipping store here at Sell The Trend.