The concept of dropshipping sounds unbelievable to many. Normally, a conventional seller or retailer is required to purchase products physically, store this product, advertise it, and then sell it to consumers. If you just look carefully, you’ll realize that dropshipping follows a very similar concept.
Dropshipping with WordPress is an easier approach to traditional retailing business. While a normal retail business requires significant starting capital, dropshipping is an incredibly cost-effective alternative. It is perfect for startups, businesses without access to funds, or people trying to explore the hobby of ecommerce.
Although there are existing methods of dropshipping, learning to dropship using WordPress is a unique arrangement. It allows you to leverage the open CMS platform- the largest in the world right now. In addition to this, you get to enjoy the existing ecommerce benefits available for you.
So, in the midst of Shopify, BigCommerce, and the others, why should you choose to dropship with WordPress?
Hold that thought for a minute while we slowly introduce you to the basics of dropshipping itself.
Understanding Dropshipping- What is Dropshipping?
You might not fully appreciate the benefits of WordPress if you are not open to what dropshipping entails and how it is being run. One rumor you must’ve come across is that dropshipping is for large ecommerce businesses or for people who have a lot of funds to spend. Well, that’s all that there is to it- a rumor. It is a rumor that has no iota of truth in it.
Dropshipping is a kind of business in which you sell certain products on an online store without the need to have this product in your inventory. At “dropshipping with WordPress” seminars, it is not unusual to hear questions like, “Are we stealing these products?!” Well, no. Here’s the part that makes dropshipping really great.
With dropshipping, you do not incur any cost associated with handling or storing inventory. Rather, you purchase the products from the supplier, list the items for sale, and then wait to receive an order for the product. Once this is done, you send the required details to your supplier who in turn ships this item to the buyer’s address under your business. Simple enough, right?
In the history of online retail, it has never been easier to start selling online.
How to Dropship?
To summarize all that has been said, the steps are listed below.
- Create your dropshipping store online
- Select items in a particular niche (or different niches) from a trusted supplier
- List these items for sale and advertise using known marketing strategies (Facebook ads, Adwords, Social Media influencers, etc)
- When you receive an order, forward the details to your supplier who ships this product to its destination (Can be automated using plugins)
- Thank the buyer for their purchase and provide details about the itinerary of their product
- Rinse and repeat, then smile to the bank.
The benefits of dropshipping are gradually becoming obvious. Based on your understanding, we can go on to explain how you can start a dropshipping business using WordPress.
How to Start Dropshipping Using WordPress
As earlier stated, dropshipping has been hailed as the next best thing in the world of ecommerce and several entrepreneurs are getting to enjoy the ease and comfort of this business model. WordPress powers about 31% of the World Wide Web and it is undoubtedly one of the best platforms for content management.
Considering the fact that it is incredibly affordable, the majority of those who are considering starting a business in dropshipping will find WordPress cost-effective. More so, there are no hidden charges, no monthly subscription fees, and several free add-ons and plug-ins are offered.
In essence, WordPress is a great option to choose when you’re considering setting up a dropshipping business. It is also easy to use. Diving into it might seem confusing at first, however, there’s nothing to be scared of. In fact, the next few paragraphs will show you the exact steps you need to take and how to approach the business of dropshipping.
1. Carry Out Product Research
The importance of product research cannot be overemphasized. In any business, attention ought to be given to the market in order to carry out a feasibility study, identify trending products, know the products to avoid, gauge the prices of these different products, observe how consumers behave to certain items, etc.
You can hire a freelance researcher to help with this and you can also take time to surf the web yourself. The aim is to ensure that you have up to date knowledge about the market you’re going into so as not to run at a loss. Study each niche and then choose products with your passion. It’s not a rule of thumb but then, it’s always better when you’re doing what you love.
2. Choose a Supplier
Once you study the market and find out the products you’re going to dropship, you need to look for a supplier who is not only reliable but understanding. There are several factors to assess and this is an important part of the dropshipping business.
Does the supplier offer warranties on the product? How long does it take to ship? How affordable are the products? Is there a means of checking out previous reviews? In fact, if you’re starting out and you need to cut costs, you can push further and seek perks such as free shipping or discounts on bulk orders.
3. Marketing and Advertising
You would not believe how much retailers spend on their monthly advertising budget. Do you need to go that far? Absolutely not! Everything you need is readily available on the internet. You can employ Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and other social media platforms for advertisements. This is a known method of generating traffic and you’ll be shocked at how effective it is.
You can also take it up a notch and employ the services of professional digital marketers who are adept at helping little dropshipping stores burgeon. This method is generally easy, safe, and it yields results almost instantly.
There are also tons of plugins that help you connect your store to social media, making it easier to create and track ads. A popular WordPress plugin is Pixel Caffeine which lets you integrate Facebook pixel to help in retargetting your visitors and ultimately increase sales.
Now that we’re done with the basics, let’s get down to the real deal. We have mentioned WordPress more than once so there’s obviously more to it. How can you use it to create your store? Why should you choose WordPress for dropshipping ahead of Shopify and the rest?
Creating Your Dropshipping Platform Using WordPress
When you see a physical store, you can imagine the amount of work that goes into the arrangement, the aesthetics, the appeal, basically, everything that makes the store what it is. You get a chance to do that with your ecommerce store too. Remember, WordPress won’t be as popular as it is if it didn’t promise to make this easy, would it?
Building a WordPress Site
A functional and good looking website is a sight to behold (no pun intended). Thankfully, this is not an impossible task to accomplish. WordPress is open-source and several themes are made available for free. Think of these themes as the paint, furniture, and structure of your shop- a lot of thought should go into it.
Has anyone ever told not to judge a book by its cover? When it comes to websites it’s the exact opposite. Your website is your first impression. If you have a disorganized website that looks like it’s from 2010, more likely than not, visitors will leave your site. That’s why it’s important to give off a good first impression to your visitors by having an organized and good looking site design. People like to feel, shopping isn’t just about buying something, it’s the experience that you can convey to your visitor that makes them buy, so choose your site design with care.
In order to optimize the experience of your customers, you should look out for how responsive, secure, and compatible your site is. This might involve lengthy conversations with developers, chats with users, and fellow sellers. Basically, you should do a very good job and you can be sure of having a hitch-free dropshipping experience.
Configuring Your WordPress Site
Once you install a WordPress theme, getting started involves the configuration of your account. In essence, make it your own. After adding selected products to your shop, you will need to write SEO-friendly product descriptions which will increase your visibility, help customers decide on a purchase, ultimately boosting your profit.
Automating the Process with Dropshipping WordPress Plugins
No doubt, you hope to be massively successful at this and WordPress understands this too. Before the orders become overwhelming, you can automate every process. By integrating your supplier’s system with WordPress, you can ensure that they get notified whenever there’s a new order. Ideally, there are several plugins which make this very easy to do. We’ll get to them shortly.
Also, automation involves email notifications to the supplier and the customer regarding the details of their order. This will also give you information about the shipping of the product, the client’s information, etc.
Dropshipping WordPress Plugins for You
WooCommerce is a free plugin which is designed to work with dropshipping. It facilitates the seamless integration of your store with that of your suppliers and this allows you to automate orders, deliveries, etc. WooCommerce, in addition to helping you dropship easier, allows you to sell regular items. What makes this plugin superb is that it is completely free.
You can add your suppliers information so that whenever a new order is place, your supplier gets a notification from your store. There’s also the option to generate packing slips that get sent to your supplier with your information on them.
The name gives you a bit of information that it works well with AliExpress. The WooCommerce dropshipping plugin was also created by this company and orders from the platform are easily processed and shipped. In addition, this plugin makes it easy to stock your website with some of the trendiest products available without the normal stress associated with it.
With this plugin, you have access to your supplier’s inventory, the quantity available, the status of the item, and the pricing. This is done in the backend and when it is done successfully, your products are automatically uploaded to the catalog. Also, you get access to a team of ecommerce experts who are always on ground to offer the needed support.
Although these dropshipping plugins are not as seemless as using Shopify’s Oberlo, where WordPress really exceeds is in its customizability. WordPress has tons of plugins available to for retail stores and dropshipping that will help our store perform better.
Last Words on Dropshipping Using WordPress
With all that has been said and done, it will be extraneous to speak about the benefits of dropshipping with WordPress. They are in abundance. Cost-effectiveness and ease of doing business top the list. You are able to manage your daily job, invest a paltry sum, and then enjoy the ease of automation.
Shopify has a strict terms of service that prohibits the resell of certain items. It’s not that uncommon for Shopify to put a hold on a storefor selling a product they deem to beown a dropshipping store for violating it’s ToS. With self-hosted WordPress you can easily dropship products without worry of getting banned or losing your shop, granted that the item you’re selling is legal and doesn’t violate the original sellers terms.
Also, you can use readily-available tools for marketing and to improve SEO. This is the ultimate business which affords you the luxury of sitting back and enjoying the ride. Apart from the mentioned plugins, ones like Yoast SEO optimizes your website and improves the ranking on search engines. You also have the Sumo plugin which has a range of tools to helps grow your site including A/B testing, call to actions, and newsletters.
In summary, dropshipping with WordPress offers you several benefits. It makes it possible to have a fully-functional and fully-customized store without incurring stress or debt. What’s more? If you’re interested in having your fully managed dropshipping with WordPress site with storage space and premium bandwidth, you can get started here.
You have all you need to exceed your sales target, get to action!