Dropshipping is a world teemed with heartaches and failures. Only those who have the grit can survive.
Being an active member of forum communities related to marketing and dropshipping for years, I got to see posts from newbie drop shippers asking for tips about how to handle issues they encounter on their stores like finding winning products, increasing conversions, and so on.
What concerns me is that about more than half of the posters are seeing dropshipping as a quick get-rich scheme. They perceived dropshipping as a profitable way of earning money with less work and cost. One can just invest a small amount on building a shop on Shopify and running ads. They believed that the process is simple: look for products to sell, go live, and a little bit of marketing, money comes pouring in. Later on they found out that it’s more than that and they have already made mistakes that they cannot solve on their own.
Days after launching and they don’t get a sale, these newbies go to forums to find answers or solutions to their predicaments. Some ask for reviews of their stores to know what’s lacking or where did they go wrong while others would just post questions hoping they could find something useful from those members who bothered to answer. I saw that most of them haven’t done their research before they started dropshipping. This I can tell because their stores got any of the following signs that these were set up in a hurry without taking time to consider all aspects of dropshipping:
- Bad website design wherein products, menu, and pages are not organized to make navigation easy.
- No product descriptions or incomprehensible product descriptions.
- Incomplete pages (no About Us, Shipping Policy, Returns Policy, etc.) or if this information is available, it was copied from other dropshipping stores.
- The colors used in the design do not complement the products or do not inspire the right reaction from the viewers.
- Pixelated or blurred product images or images carrying the suppliers’ branding.
- No social media proof or linked to social media pages with little to zero content.
- All products have discounted prices or on sale.
In my opinion, dropshipping is like going to war. One must come prepared and armed to his teeth. You’re there to beat your enemies and come out alive. Therefore you should research and plan out your strategy. Don’t expect other people to save your ass because, at the end of the day, it will only be your skills and wit you can trust to survive.
Is Dropshipping a Lucrative Business?
Dropshipping can be profitable, yes, but it will take more time and effort before you can see results. Failure is imminent as risks lurk in every corner. Even those who found success with dropshipping failed so many times before they got it right. Students, part-timers, and unemployed individuals have tried their hands on running dropshipping businesses. Some of them succeeded while some just gave up after failing a few times.
What I want to emphasize here is, dropshipping is not for everyone. It’s not a get-rich scheme either that can bring in lots of money in a matter of days, weeks, or months. There’s no magic recipe that will work for anyone. You have to craft your own through learning from your mistakes and testing different methods to find what works or you. You’ll have to sacrifice some things that you normally do in favor of your business.
Here are questions to consider for you to tell if dropshipping is not right for you.
Do you have the patience and persistence to run a dropshipping business?
Do you expect to earn profits sooner to pay your bills and buy food?
Do you lack the resources to finance your marketing efforts to acquire customers?
Do you want to get high markups to earn more by just selling a few products?
Do you have no time to learn new skills and techniques to ensure that your business will run smoothly?
Do you see dropshipping as a seasonal side hustle that you can end once the demand for your product is gone?
Are you looking for a business model with low competition?
Do you want a different career and want to do dropshipping while waiting for the opportunity?
If you answered “yes” to any of the questions then move on to find other means of generating income. When you set your expectations too high in dropshipping, you will likely fold when challenges hit you. You would lose motivation and give up easily if you don’t sell anything weeks after your business started running. Selling dropshipping products is not easy so if you don’t have the grit might as well quit.