Is Creating a Dropship Website That Difficult?

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First lets review each step required to get a dropship website up and running.

The first thing you will need to do is research which type of products you wish to sell online. This is important because ideally you should choose a type of product that you are already familiar with. For example, if you have a passion for skate boards and you have some good knowledge about these products then this might be a good product line to focus on.

Once you have chosen a product line, in this example we have chosen skate boards, you will need to start looking for a supplier that can provide you with good wholesale prices. Here you have the option of looking for wholesale suppliers or dropship suppliers. Wholesale suppliers can offer you lower prices however they require that you purchase in bulk. This typically requires that you have large sum of money on hand to warehouse the products therefore I strongly recommend searching for dropship suppliers instead. Prices from dropship suppliers will be higher than wholesale suppliers however you will still be able to make some profit without having to come up with a large sum of money to pre-purchase products up front.

Looking for a good dropship supplier is easy as long as you know what to look for. Of course you can use any search engine to find a supplier that can supply you with skateboards however you need to apply some important criteria when doing your search. For instance you should always work with dropship suppliers that only deal with true companies and not directly with the public. This will be a good indication that the supplier is truly reserving their wholesale prices to people with a registered company only. You can also use third party services that can provide you with a list of names of suppliers that can offer you dropship services. Another criteria is choosing suppliers that are physically located in the same country where you wish to advertise your website. For example if you are located in the USA then only choose suppliers that have a physical warehouse in the USA. This is to insure that you will get fast and affordable shipping which is extremely important for your business reputation. You also want a supplier that can Blind Dropship products to your buyer. Blind Dropship means that the supplier will not reveal their name on the packing slip and they will not include any reference to your wholesale cost. This is very important because you do not want your buyers to find out the source of your products.

Once you have found a supplier that can offer you the type of products you wish to sell you need to get established with a company. Most online entrepreneur opt for an LLC since it’s very affordable and easy to setup. You will require a TAX ID when applying for a reseller account with your chosen suppliers so you need to ensure that you have all your LLC license setup before applying for a new reseller account.

Upon approval of your reseller account, you will need to request that the supplier send you their product data. This information should include data such as item number, item name, item description, retail price, wholesale price, category name, large and small images and the quantity in stock. Typically suppliers can provide this data via a CSV files or XML files or with an FTP access to their server. Please keep in mind that each supplier is different and may provide you with various ways of getting their data.

Once you gain access to their product data you will need to download this information to your computer and import it to your shopping cart. Usually shopping carts offer an import function that can read a CSV file in a specific format. You might have to edit the file using Microsoft Excel to make changes to meet the requirements of your shopping cart import feature. Remember that items can always come in/out of stock so its important to refresh your shopping cart on a regular basis to avoid selling products that are no longer available.

The next step is to build your website. I recommend that you build your website only after you have found a proper supplier that meets your product requirements because this can have an impact on the domain name you will choose for your site. At this point, in our example, we have chosen a skateboard supplier and we have successfully gained access to their product data so we are ready to proceed in creating a website dedicate to selling skateboards.

Your next step will be to choose a domain name for your website. I recommend that you include the name “skateboard” in your domain name, as this will help you in getting good results with the search engines over time. For example in this case you could choose a name such as SkateboardFactory. Once you have chosen a domain name of your liking you can register it with any registrar website.

Your next step will require that you look for a hosting service where you can build your website and import your product data. Typically you can get hosting services from the same place where you will purchase your domain name.

Now that you have a domain name and the product data, its time to build your website which will require a shopping cart software. There are several shopping cart software available and you can find many on any search engine.

Once you have installed the shopping cart of your choice on your hosting service, you will need to import the product data provided by the supplier. This will require that you take some time to understand the import feature provided with your chosen shopping cart.

Once you have loaded your site with the products, you will need to choose a payment gateway in order to receive payments from your buyers. Typically shopping carts can support many types of payment gateways so it’s a simple matter of choosing which one you want and complete the proper configurations via the admin section of your shopping cart.

Now you are ready to start advertising your website and take orders. In this business model, you will collect the payments from your buyers via your website and then pay your supplier the wholesale cost to ship products to your buyers on your behalf. The different between your selling price and your wholesale cost will be your profit.

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