Dropshipping is an approach to e-commerce that cuts out the middle man. The middle man, in this case, being the warehouses that are usually required to hold a business’s stock. With dropshipping, customers place an order with your business, and it is then passed on to your supplier. Your supplier will then ship the product straight to the customer. They might even be shipped directly from the production line.
From the perspective of the customer, their experience should be the same. However, for businesses, there is a big difference between dropshipping and conventional bulk ordering and warehouse storage. Adopting this model offers a range of potential benefits for businesses.
Reduce Your Risk
Under conventional business models, a business selling goods to consumers will generally bulk order as much stock as they expect to sell. This stock is then distributed to retail stores if the business operates any, and warehouses where it can be stored until it is needed. Obviously, there is plenty of scope for bad decisions here. If a business wildly under or overestimates demand for a product, then they could end up saddled with a warehouse full of goods that they can’t shift.
It’s easy to underestimate just how expensive storage can be. If a business has an excess of stock, they can’t always return it to the supplier. No one wants to stuck with a warehouse full of inventory that is just taking up space and costing money. Dropshipping removes this risk from the equation entirely.
Reduce Your Costs
Under a dropshipping model, businesses don’t have to worry about trying to gauge consumer interest in their products. Instead, businesses only need to pay for goods that are actually bought by customers. Removing the usual costs of transporting and storing these products means that dropshipping businesses can still enjoy the same low overall costs as they would when bulk-buying.
A dropshipping business doesn’t even need to have physical premises; it can be managed entirely from a smartphone. Using a quality e-commerce platform enables you to set up an online storefront. By the right platform to set up a dropshipping business, entrepreneurs can keep their startup costs as low as possible.
Hit the Ground Running
As soon as you have the infrastructure in place to take orders from your customers and pass them on to your supplier, you will be good to go. Setting up a retail business is usually a fraught process, and that’s before you’ve begun proper negotiations with suppliers. Not only is dropshipping a cheaper and less risky approach to starting an e-commerce business but there’s no need to navigate many of the usual logistical hurdles.
E-commerce is a very fast-moving field and, given how there is a new sense of urgency in the industry, it is likely that the next few years will see some radical transformations. No one can predict the future but now seems like the perfect time to invest in dropshipping. If you are considering starting an e-commerce business in the near future, make sure that you carefully consider your business model from all available angles.