Working from home is many people’s idea of bliss. You get to work around your family life, be home for your kids, and avoid the daily commute that takes up hours of your life every week. However, to work from home, you often have to find a business idea that doesn’t require you to have a physical business location. Dropshipping may tick that box. Dropshipping enables you to offer a range of products online but have them shipped directly to your customers from a third party. There’s no need for you to keep stock on hand or worry about shipping and handling. To get started on your new career path and start a dropshipping business, consider doing the following things.
Start a Dropshipping Business – Get Help From the Experts
Even though drop shipping can be a one-person job, it can also require the input of experts to take some of the stress from your shoulders. When you’re learning how to find dropshipping suppliers, you’ll discover that dropshipping businesses can actually manage this process for you.
They can source products, organize product storage, manage your branding, and even take care of product photography and videography. There’s very little left for you to worry about once you bring the experts onboard.
Officially Set Up Your Business
Many dropshipping companies can manage all the logistics of product selection and shipping, but there will be a small amount of paperwork you need to complete before setting up your home business. What this paperwork entails can often depend on your location, as rules and laws differ from one state to the next. At a minimum, you’ll need to decide on a business name and register it before deciding on a business structure, such as sole proprietorship, partnership, corporation, or limited liability company.
Business licenses and permits may also be necessary, as you may be selling taxable products and must have a sales tax license to charge and collect that tax.
Start a Dropshipping Business – Choose Your Niche
While you’re learning how to find suppliers for dropshipping and thinking about your business structure, you can also use your time to determine your business niche. Establishing your target market can help you work out which products you’d like to start selling now and into the future.
It’s not always easy to know where to begin, but you can start with some online homework. Use some digital marketing strategies like keyword research to find out what people are looking for. It’s also essential to choose products that you’re passionate about and have a decent profit margin to drive your business forward.
There are plenty of free keyword research tools for finding niche ideas including the Keyword Planner from Google. There are also many tools for spying on other dropshippers and finding their most profitable items. You could even check the best-selling items on marketplaces like eBay or Amazon to generate some niche ideas.
Build Your Website
The next step in starting a dropshipping business from home involves setting up an eCommerce website to advertise your products for sale. This process can take some time, but the more time you put into it, the more confidence you can have in your new business. Look at different eCommerce website themes while searching for features that allow your business to be as automated as possible. For example, some eCommerce site providers offer direct integration into dropshipping companies.
This means that when customers purchase a product, your site talks to the dropshipper’s site without the need for manual ordering. Such technology can reduce the risk of selling products that your supplier doesn’t have in stock.
Start a Dropshipping Business – Start Marketing
With your dropshipping business chosen, your products selected, and your website built, it’s now time to start marketing. This is an ongoing and multi-step process that can require your daily attention to maximize your reach. Search engine marketing is one of the most crucial marketing methods to put your business front and center. Build up backlinks on your website, add meta titles and descriptions, and focus on keyword research for content marketing. You may even like to invest in Google Ads to work in conjunction with your organic techniques with a manageable budget.
As you may have noticed while browsing Facebook or Instagram, social media marketing is also crucial for exposure. Most major social media platforms offer cost-effective advertising tools that allow you to target product campaigns to your chosen markets.
As your audience starts to grow, email marketing may end up being a marketing option you consider. Email marketing allows you to deliver specials and new products to current and past customers to generate interest and build a loyal following. You can offer a ‘sign up’ option on your website to collect as many customer email addresses as possible.
If you’ve always dreamed of working from home and starting your own business, dropshipping might be how you turn those dreams into reality. With the right experts on board and time spent developing a business plan, you could have a profitable business that gives you all the work-life balance you desire.