It is not rare to see a promising online store fall apart just a few months after being launched. If you are an ecommerce entrepreneur, you may have experienced failure yourself. Most of these failures occur in dropshipping.
Dropshipping can bring huge success to your ecommerce business when done correctly. It is preferred because the seller does not have to stock the goods himself.
This model can make your business run smoothly. However, a few routine mistakes will make you miss out on the benefits.
For those starting out your own dropshipping stores, here are the common errors to avoid.
Selecting the Wrong Supplier
Picking out a supplier is almost as crucial as picking a niche. The supplier influences everything from the quality of the product to the delivery times. Make sure you go for someone who will offer what you are looking for.
Check out testimonials and reviews from people who have worked with the supplier. In addition, place a test order. You will get a firsthand experience and know how the shipping process works. You will also know whether the product meets your standards.
Depending on a Single Vendor
Even after you get that amazing supplier, do not become complacent. He may run out of stock sometime when you have orders. Worse still, his business may fall apart. A problem like this could put you out of business too.
Look for a backup supplier to help when the primary supplier cannot deliver. Your dropshipping business will still continue to serve customers as usual. Before you do this, check your primary supplier’s terms and conditions.
Surprise Shipping Fees
Are you completely honest about shipping fees when listing your product prices? Shoppers abandon their carts primarily because of high shipping costs. Surprise shipping costs, however, are worse since they show up at the end of checkout.
Make your customers happy with clear shipping costs. A consistent flat rate would help, or better still, a “shipping calculator”.
Free shipping is powerful. Just make sure your margins are not hurt. 90% of shoppers are prompted to buy by free shipping.
Lack of After-Purchase Tracking
When a customer makes a purchase, they will want to know when the order will be at their door. Nonetheless, some dropshippers think that their work is done once the customer clicks “checkout”.
When you do not communicate with your customers, they may think that they have been scammed. Offer them a tracking system for their orders—one that is easy to use. This communication will come in handy when an order is delayed.
You cannot offer 100% customer satisfaction, no matter how much you try. Have a smooth return policy to avoid facing angry customers.
The instructions should be clear and the responses timely.
A Single Store
Your chances of surviving in this industry will be higher if you run several stores. When one store flops and you have already quit your job, you will have a plan B.