Beginner’s Guide to Starting a Dropshipping Business: A 15-Step Checklist

Starting a dropshipping business is not difficult at all. Even if you’re a complete novice with no prior experience, these 15 items are all you’ll need to get started on your highly successful entrepreneurial adventure. What are the essential items for someone starting a dropshipping business? 

To find out, go through this checklist!

Things you’ll need to start a dropshipping business in general 

1. A burning desire 

Every individual has a distinct purpose for starting their own company. 

These motivations vary greatly: some people wish to supplement their income, others are tired with their usual 9-to-5 jobs, and others are simply inquisitive to test and enhance their technical and/or business skills. 

It doesn’t matter which of these factors prompted you to take this path; as long as this motivator is strong enough, your company’s success is certain.

Take note of one item, by the way. Because you have a real interest in the subject, it’s unlikely that you’ll abandon your plans to start a business if you don’t see rapid results. 

2. Computer or laptop 

You’ll need at least one gadget to start, set up, and administer your internet business. 

You are free to use any device that can perform the functions required to run your business. If using a personal computer is more convenient for you, go for it. You can completely rely on laptops if you are a fan of them. It’s all about your personal choices and options.

Modern technologies enable you to construct a dropshipping store with a professional-looking responsive design that works on any device – exactly what you need to earn a healthy number of sales. 

3. Consistent Internet access 

This is, of course, self-evident. You don’t have to be online all the time when you manage a dropshipping company, but you will need to access your online store, mail, payment gateways, and social media from time to time. 

Follow the steps below to ensure that you have a fast and steady Internet connection: 

  • Use numerous free online services to test the speed of your Internet connection; 
  • Update your browser; 
  • Disconnect all devices from your WiFi or wired Internet connection.

By the way, if your Internet connection is adequate but your device is still not operating at the desired speed, try the following: 

  • Disable any unwanted background processes; 
  • Clear the browser cache; 
  • Uninstall any useless or rarely-used apps; 
  • Scan your device for viruses or security risks. 

For launching a dropship firm, you’ll need to have a good understanding of the market.

4. Be familiar with the dropshipping business strategy. 

If you don’t understand how dropshipping works, you won’t be able to succeed. 

Furthermore, if you require extra information, you can safely visit our knowledge base, read the extensive guidelines, or join the community of like-minded entrepreneurs who share their suggestions on how to sell things online and learn from one another’s experiences.

5. Real-life examples of how to establish a dropshipping company 

When you begin something completely new, it’s easy to become overwhelmed by all of the new tasks and duties. 

Relax and don’t be concerned! You’re dealing with a business that’s inexpensive to start, manage, and sell if you ever become bored of it. 

If you become lost, there are many instances of dropshipping firms on the Internet, and you can find a solution to meet your difficulty. Furthermore, countless interviews with successful dropshippers might motivate you to keep trying even if you’re feeling discouraged. 

You can literally alter your life if you put out the necessary effort!

6. Previous AliExpress experience 

AliExpress is regarded as one of the most convenient and secure venues to find dropshipping providers for a variety of reasons. Sellers are eager to work with entrepreneurs that run small businesses, and they have millions of products that are ideal for dropshipping. Aside from that, there are a number of things with huge discounts. 

That’s why understanding how the platform works, how orders are processed, and how returns and refunds are handled is critical. 

7. Consider a dropshipping specialty. 

Based on our experience, we believe that selecting the right niche is the key to increasing sales and profitability.

Your ecommerce store’s dropshipping products should be tied to one another in some way. This thematic consistency is referred to as a store niche: for example, you may sell various space-themed home decor items, or geeky items for those who spend a lot of time in front of their computers, or anything else. 

We strongly advise you to pick a niche that you are familiar with. You should ideally be a lover of the things you’re selling, as this will help you set up and operate your business effectively. In this instance, you have a better chance of succeeding rapidly because you have sufficient previous knowledge to assist you in running your new firm.

However, the things you plan to offer must be appealing not only to you, but to a broad audience as well. 

Check AliExpress to see whether there are enough relevant items in your chosen specialty. You should also consider whether you can advertise these things via social media or PPC ads. Furthermore, you must ensure that the competition in this segment is not excessive. 

Technical preparations for starting a dropshipping store

8. The name of the domain 

In summary, without getting into technical intricacies, a domain name is the address of your website that is used to distinguish it from others. It’s similar to a street address in that it tells your clients where your website is located and directs them to it.

Because your dropshipping website URL is based on this name, it should be relevant to your online store concept. It must also be effective in terms of SEO. 

Try the GoDaddy service – one of the most popular and trusted domain name registrars – if you want to buy an appropriate domain and make sure no one else has it. 

9. Hosting

A hosting service is a service that allows a user to store data on a server. In reality, you won’t be able to make your store’s content visible to Internet visitors unless you have a hosting account. To put it another way, you must purchase hosting (and pay for it annually) in order to ‘activate’ your online store and ensure that it is truly operational.

We understand that no one wants to deal with such technical concerns, which is why you can trust us with all of your hosting needs. We will give you with prompt client support and promise to supply you with excellent customer service as well as high-quality technical performance. 

10. Website for dropshipping 

Do you already have a specialized idea, a memorable domain name, and pre-paid hosting in place? Great! You can now begin creating a website, which will serve as the foundation for your future dropshipping business. 

You have two alternatives here: either do everything yourself (in which case, skip to paragraph 11 to learn the next step), or acquire a ready-made dropshipping store (Custom, Premium, or Established). What’s the difference between the two?

  • Personalized store 

It’s a store that we design specifically for you, based on your likes and wishes. You tell us what you want your store to look like, and we build it from the ground up for you. When the work is finished, we hand over the website to you – it’s ready to go from day one, and you’re the sole owner and boss! 

  • Store of high quality 

It’s a completely functional replica of a highly successful dropshipping store that AliDropship team members have already designed and launched.

You receive an exact (and legal!) replica of a store that has been proven to be efficient and lucrative, and you don’t have to guess or worry about the store’s success. Of course, you won’t have to wait for the store to be built: your copy will arrive in minutes.

  • Store with a long history 

It’s an established company with a documented track record, a verifiable quantity of orders, and a consistent traffic flow. You gain access to the store statistics before you buy it, which allows you to make an informed decision – and, in essence, invest in a profitable business. 

You become the sole owner of the business after the acquisition, and you’ll get advice on how to operate it better. 

11. WordPress

WordPress is a content management system that allows you to organize all of the parts of your website. It now powers 30% of all webpages on the internet. There are a number of causes behind this. The biggest benefit is that it is really simple to use.

Furthermore, it is suitable for practically everyone, including those with no prior experience in the creation and management of a website. 

WordPress is ideal for running a dropshipping online store because of a variety of factors: 

  • It’s free;
  • It has a user-friendly interface;
  • It’s simple to tweak and install any other software;
  • It provides a wealth of SEO options;
  • It allows you complete control over your ecommerce store, unlike many other dropshipping platforms.

So all you have to do is download and install WordPress, and your dropshipping store will be up and running in no time. 

12. AliDropship plugin 

You may make your dropshipping journey more pleasurable and relaxed by using this plugin. 

You may see an example of a typical set of everyday operations for a dropshipping store owner here. 

It may appear lengthy, but here’s the good news: you don’t have to do everything manually. There is a lot more convenient method designed by well-known programmers with real-world dropshipping experience.

AliDropship plugin, a semi-automated solution, can be used to add products, change their pricing and descriptions, import product reviews, transfer orders to AliExpress, monitor online shop data, and manage all of the ordinary dropshipping activities in general. 

Why not go for it if you can save a lot of time in your business (and personal life) and delegate a lot of work to the plugin? 

Action plan for starting a dropshipping company

13. Locate products that are available for dropshipping. 

Your store will not be able to function if there are no products in it. 

You can leisurely browse AliExpress, study it, and add any items from the marketplace to your own store if you have AliDropship solutions installed on your website. It only takes a few seconds to import a product. You can also post as many goods as you like because there are no limits (still, we recommend you to read this guide on choosing the best AliExpress offers). 

14. Pricing policy 

You must consider your pricing plan in order to obtain your lawfully earned revenues. 

The price of an item in your store should be higher than the price of the same same on AliExpress. Your profit is the difference between these two prices!

However, when raising pricing in your online store, keep in mind that your customers should be happy with their purchases. Ideally, you should select a low enough price to entice your customers. It should, however, be high enough to earn you some revenue. 

The AliDropship plugin includes a unique feature that allows you to create your own pricing markup rules and begin selling online at a much bigger profit margin. Your store products are automatically updated according to your rules after you apply price formulae. Furthermore, the plugin has special features that enable you to simply round your prices or define a certain cent value for your retail price.

15. Promotional strategy 

Your dropshipping store is nothing more than an unknown website that can’t even be found if you don’t market it. As a result, we strongly advise you to research the most recent online selling trends when creating your own marketing approach. 

You must know what marketing methods and channels you will employ, as well as how you will attract potential customers. Keep in mind that your choices are greatly influenced by the demographics of your target market. 

Don’t forget about SEO when creating a marketing strategy — it’s the foundation of any ecommerce marketing approach. It will be tough to reach to the first page of Google search and attract as many visitors as possible without correctly designed product pages.

  • So, what’s the plan? 
  • Add the Title, Description, and Keywords metatags to your product pages; 
  • Use the ALT attribute to describe the content of your product photographs; 
  • Use multiple tools, such as Google Keyword Planner, to find the most relevant keywords connected to your dropshipping niche; 

SEO takes a lot of time and effort, but it pays off in the end.

Additionally, you should consider your own financial resources: for example, if you are not ready to engage in paid Instagram advertisements, you may effectively employ a variety of free promotion strategies.

The same is true for Facebook: you can spend more money on carefully targeted Facebook advertisements to effectively engage with your audience, or you can try more economical social media marketing if you choose. 

That concludes our discussion. 

(Olga Lavrinovich)

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