Investing in dropshipping product samples is one of the smartest moves dropshippers can make.
One of the weaknesses of the dropshipping business model is the lack of control over the quality of the dropshipping products you sell. As orders are being fulfilled and shipped by the suppliers directly to the customers, you are not certain if the items are of good quality until the customers give you feedback about their received packages.
If the customers are happy with their purchases then the quality issues will no longer be a worry for you. Yet, if you get complaints on the material, size, durability, and functionality of your products then expect to get more complaints, returns, and refunds coming your way in the coming days.
Bear in mind that when it comes to selling online, it is you that communicate directly with your customers, not the suppliers. Therefore any customer issues should be resolved by you as your dropshipping store’s reputation is at stake here. Blaming your suppliers does not redeem yourself to your customers because, in their mind, it is your responsibility as a retailer to ensure that you sell high-quality products. So how do you reduce the risks of returns, refunds, and chargebacks due to inferior quality products? Invest in product samples!
Buying dropshipping product samples is one way of eliminating potential quality issues. It will benefit both you and the customers. You can ensure that every order in your dropshipping store will be worth the money your customers paid for them and you can avoid costly consequences later on. Here’s what you need to know about purchasing product samples for your dropshipping business.
Why do you need product samples?
Regardless if you’re a beginner or experienced dropshipper, inspecting dropshipping products before selling them offers many advantages.
- Determine if the product is a good fit for your dropshipping business.
- Ensure that the product quality lives up to your customers’ expectations.
- Have a good idea of what will be the purchasing experience of your customers.
- Reduce the risks of returns and refunds due to quality and functionality issues.
- Have an insight into how the suppliers conduct their business in terms of packing and shipping.
- Determine the selling value of the product so you can set the right markup price.
- Learn what notifications/promotional materials will the customer receive when they buy it.
- Take better photos and videos of the dropshipping products you’ll be offering.
- Write more accurate product descriptions.
- Create ads, product reviews, and other marketing materials.
- Offer expert advice to your customers on how to use your products.
- Lessen the risk of acquiring chargeback fees from unhappy customers.
Whether you’re dropshipping from Chinese or non-Chinese suppliers, buying product samples should be a step that you have to take. Dropshipping from suppliers located in the US, UK, and other non-China countries does not guarantee that their products are high-quality. Thus, inspecting product samples is the only way you can confirm product quality.
Over the years, negative things are surfacing about the quality of dropshipping products from China. This is one of the major reasons why some dropshippers don’t want to divulge that they’re selling Chinese products in their stores. Many shoppers have the impression that items manufactured from China are cheap, low-quality knock-offs that would be a waste of their money.
Yet, luxury brands do not mind stamping their products as “Made in China” such as Mulberry and Armani. Other brands that moved their production in China are Prada, Coach, Burberry, D&G, and Marc Jacobs. If you are not aware yet, Apple’s iPhones and iPads and some Nike shoes are manufactured in China.
If you research all the things you own and use you’ll be surprised that most of them are made in China. This shows that there are great products in China too. You just have to do your research and buy product samples to ensure that you only sell dropshipping products with higher quality.
What to look for in your product samples?
If the product you’re interested in is being offered by several suppliers, it would be ideal to buy product samples from two to three of them. Order them in different variations if possible so you can compare product quality and shipping time to help you come to a well-calculated decision on which supplier to go for.
When you get hold of the product samples, take note of the following details:
How the items are shipped.
Are all the boxes from one supplier damaged? If yes, then you might be able to assume that the majority of customers’ orders will arrive in the same condition. However, if there’s only one damaged box, it can be caused by a shipping accident.
The condition of the product when it arrived.
Is the product new and in good condition? Does the color, quality, and product specifications match the supplier’s listing? By checking these details you’ll have an idea if the supplier is reliable or not and how the product will appear on your site.
The efficiency of all the product features or functionalities.
Are all features working as they should? You must check all the functionalities of the product to know the possible issues that the customers will encounter when they received their orders. By ensuring that your product will look and work as expected, you can make your customers happy and avoid negative reviews.
Buying dropshipping product samples is a worthwhile investment for your dropshipping business. It allows you to create custom photos and videos anytime and create a better marketing plan. You can also guarantee that your dropshipping products are of high quality and ensure to work only with reliable suppliers. By ordering the items yourself you can personally experience what the customers will encounter when buying from your store. If you know the ins and outs of the buying process, you’ll be on your way to success as a dropshipper.