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Dropshipping is a great method to get started in ecommerce without having to worry about inventory or shipping. It’s as easy as posting a product for sale on your website and instructing your supplier to ship the item on your behalf whenever an order comes in.
While beginning a dropshipping business is a terrific way to get your ecommerce business off the ground, finding a dependable supplier can be difficult. However, Oberlo has millions of products that you may drop ship, including AliExpress products.
What is AliExpress?
AliExpress is a massive marketplace with a diverse product variety. Because the majority of AliExpress merchants are foreign manufacturers, their prices are extremely low. You’ll find anything from women’s clothing and jewellery to gadgets and home decor on AliExpress.
What is AliExpress dropshipping?
Without worrying about inventory or shipping, AliExpress makes it simple to locate things to sell on your website. Add the AliExpress products you want to sell to your store, set a price with markup, and when you get an order, you pay wholesale for the product and the AliExpress seller ships the orders directly to your client.
Why AliExpress for dropshipping
While AliExpress bills itself as an online retailer, most AliExpress sellers are well aware that most buyers are resellers who are more interested in dropshipping.
AliExpress also makes dropshipping relatively simple. There is no cost or fee upfront, so you can try out things without making a large financial commitment. By utilising Oberlo to search and add AliExpress products to your store in only a few clicks, you can start dropshipping today for free.
Many AliExpress sellers have already product photographs that you can utilize in your store, as well as basic product descriptions. When selling a commodity product, though, don’t overlook the value of differentiation through positioning and how you polish the minor details—better images and handwritten product descriptions are usually well worth your efforts.
Finally, dropshipping using AliExpress is as simple as placing an order for a product on AliExpress and entering the customer’s address.
We’ll go over what to look for in a product and seller in more depth below, as well as how to position yourself for success, but it’s no more complicated than what I just outlined. Once you’ve got everything set up, dropshipping through AliExpress is a terrific method to start selling online.
Why would someone buy from your store if they can buy the same products on AliExpress?
Your competitive edge with an AliExpress dropshipping business will not be your low prices or unique original products. Instead, your competitive edge will come from being able to reach and serve your customers faster and better than your competitors—in other words, marketing, operations, and support will be key to your success.
Good marketing is a competitive advantage in and of itself. Marketing is the process of assisting customers in finding, evaluating, and purchasing your goods; it is intended to enhance a customer’s experience with your store while also driving income. Marketing also covers a wide range of activities to establish a brand, such as generating useful and entertaining content.
Last but not least, your customer service is a critical distinction, particularly if your present competitors give poor service or a terrible buying experience. You can dramatically increase your level of service by promptly responding to customer questions and making it a point to assist them in thoroughly resolving any problems they encounter while shopping at your store.
Setting up your AliExpress dropshipping store
Let’s start setting up your store now that we know how AliExpress can help you source products as a dropshipper and why it’s crucial to position your store effectively.
How to choose which dropshipping products to sell
The first step in creating your store is deciding on a niche or the type of things you’ll sell. If you’re unsure where to begin, start with AliExpress’s product categories and list possibilities depending on what interests you the most or what you’d feel most comfortable selling.
It’s time to start selecting a few things to resale on your site once you’ve decided on a niche. In this case, I chose running shoes as the focus of my store.
There is a large selection of products to pick from, as with many categories on AliExpress. It might be daunting, and if you don’t choose a high-quality product from a reputable seller, it might cause issues.
While it isn’t perfect, I’ve come up with a set of criteria to use when selecting a product. There’s no science behind it, but it’s helped me find trustworthy dealers in the past. So when I’m looking for a product to dropship on AliExpress, I check for a few things:
There are no brands, fakes, or knockoffs. To avoid mistakenly reselling fakes and knockoffs, I avoid products with any current branding. Even if the product is authentic, the danger of selling a product with someone else’s logo on it is not worth it because you won’t be a licensed reseller unless you work out a formal arrangement with the company in question. Yes, this will limit your options in the end, but it will save you a lot of time, so stick to product categories where a recognizable trademark isn’t as important, such as electrical equipment or apparel.
Free shipping with ePacket delivery. I try to resell products that offer free ePacket shipping wherever possible. Because the bulk of AliExpress products are made in China or Hong Kong, ePacket shipping is the most cost-effective and one of the fastest ways to ship small items to the United States.
It’s worth noting that even if a seller offers ePacket delivery, but it’s not free, I’d prefer to choose a seller who does then one who doesn’t. It’s simply the most cost-effective and dependable way to deliver things from China to the Americas and Europe right now.
Over 300 orders have been placed. A product with a large number of orders reveals a few things to me. First, there must be a market for the goods. Second, it indicates that the provider is more dependable than the average, as the amount of orders indicates that at least a few are likely to be repeat purchases. When I’m looking for a new product, I’ll sometimes start sorting things by how many orders they have.
A rating of more than 4.5 stars is given. I also prefer to make sure that the things I’m planning to resell have a good product rating (at least 4.5 stars) and that the seller has largely good feedback.
I use a Chrome add-on called AliExpress Seller Check to get a second view of sellers on products.
Using a third-party service, I can get a more candid and unbiased evaluation of a seller at a look.
This has shown to be far more dependable than relying solely on AliExpress’ rating system.
Low cost with a big profit margin. I prefer to purchase things in the $1-$20 price range, depending on the thing I want to resale. Because these products might range in price from $20 to $50 or more, this provides me greater leeway for spending marketing expenditures to gain a consumer. For example, I can buy running shoes for roughly $20 on AliExpress and sell them for $50, giving me a 60% profit margin before marketing charges.
There are a lot of fantastic product photos that aren’t labelled. Do your homework to make sure the photographs are from your manufacturer and not from another online merchant. A fast Google image search will reveal whether the product photographs belong to a legitimate brand, merchant, or manufacturer.
A seller who is both communicative and helpful. Before placing an order, don’t be scared to ask the vendor questions. A trustworthy seller will promptly respond to all of your inquiries. Conversely, it’s a significant red flag if a seller doesn’t react to your messages.
Adding products to your store
It’s time to start adding products to your Shopify store once you’ve set up your account and decided on a product category and supplier. This is a crucial step to go over in-depth because it’s not as simple as copying and pasting the images and information from the AliExpress listing onto your website.
Instead, there are a few things to consider if you want to set your store for success.
Make up your product descriptions. If you want to be more creative. Many of the product descriptions on AliExpress were not created by copywriters or adequately explained the products’ merits. Having your original content will benefit your business in the long term and aid in converting visitors to consumers on your product pages. Finally, if you write unique copy for all of your store’s pages, you’ll eliminate the chance of duplicate material.
Inform customers about delivery schedules. It’s a good idea to mention on the product page (or elsewhere in your store) that depending on the supplier; your consumers may have to wait up to 20 days for their order to arrive. Because most of AliExpress’s suppliers are based in China, shipping delays may be longer than usual.
Use a tracking tool to keep track of your orders. You may receive emails from clients questioning their order due to the longer shipping times that most people are used to. Keep your clients informed about the status of their orders by using an order tracking tool from the Shopify App Store.
Tracktor is a Shopify Software Store app that allows you to track orders in real-time and look up their status.
Offer free shipping. Competitive shipping prices can become a competitive advantage for you, so I strongly advise you to give free delivery to your consumers by taking advantage of the free/low-cost shipping offered by many AliExpress vendors.
Price products appropriately. Consider charging nearly twice as much for your goods. A 50 per cent profit margin will make it worthwhile to run the firm and cover critical expenses like marketing and support.
Oberlo allows you to add products to your store. For example, you can use Oberlo to swiftly add products from AliExpress to your website rather than manually uploading them.
How to use AliExpress to dropship
What do you do now that you’ve got your store ready to sell and dropship, and you’ve received your first order?
AliExpress dropshipping works in the same way as any other dropshipper. Purchase the item on AliExpress and input your customer’s name and shipping address when you receive an order. The AliExpress seller handles the remainder.
If you wish to handle this manually, a spreadsheet with a list of all the products on your site, the price you’re selling them for, the price they cost on AliExpress, and a link to the AliExpress listing might be useful. This way, every time you get an order, you’ll be able to quickly locate the supplier and keep track of pricing fluctuations on AliExpress.
Alternatively, you may utilize Oberlo, which will take care of everything for you, including making it easy to place orders on AliExpress and keeping track of pricing fluctuations. This method is not only simpler, but it also saves you a significant amount of time, which is your most precious resource. Moreover, it allows you to expand without manually ordering dozens (or even hundreds) of products on AliExpress.
What is the mechanism behind it? It’s as easy as installing the Oberlo app in your Shopify store, going to Oberlo, and clicking Order Product next to each pending order. After that, Oberlo takes care of the rest. It will purchase the item from AliExpress on your behalf and enter your customer’s information.
Oberlo will also notify you when a supplier on AliExpress changes their price or runs out of stock, as well as recommend other providers.
Oberlo may also serve as a dashboard for your AliExpress dropshipping business, allowing you to track orders and check the delivery progress.
It’s a good idea to let the seller know you’re dropshipping when ordering on AliExpress. The supplier will not include any invoices or promotions in the bundle sent to your customer in this manner. You can leave a message for the seller during the checkout process. “We’re dropshipping,” for example, is a good message to leave. Please, no advertisements or invoices!” When you’re shopping on AliExpress, Oberlo can help you with this.
If the provider is in China and offered as a shipping choice, as I said earlier, attempt to use ePacket shipping. Many suppliers will provide this service for free. For all AliExpress orders, Oberlo allows you to choose ePacket shipping immediately at checkout.
You’ll receive an email quickly informing you that your order has been sent, depending on your seller’s processing time. To view the order, click the link in the email, and you’ll be able to see the tracking number.
What about refunds and returns?
Many AliExpress vendors do not accept returns. As a result, you’ll have to deal with returns and refunds in one of several ways. When a customer places an order on your website, it’s usually because the order never comes or the consumer is unhappy with their purchase.
For the first scenario, an order that never arrives, you’ll need to contact your AliExpress provider. In this case, contact the supplier or use AliExpress’ Buyer Protection to resolve the issue.
When a customer is dissatisfied with a product, it’s frequently due to a misalignment of expectations—what they received was not what they expected. I recommend issuing a refund and determining whether any adjustments to your marketing are necessary to satisfy their concerns (in many cases, the customer may not have fully understood what they were ordering). If the goods is broken, have your customer take photos of them and email them to the AliExpress seller. From there, you can proceed.
Growing your AliExpress dropshipping business
It’s time to start thinking about how you can expand your dropshipping business and make more money once you’ve made your first few sales.
You’ll eventually figure out which are the trustworthy and high-quality vendors and who isn’t. It would help if you thought about forming bonds with those who are trustworthy. You’ll be able to get cheaper prices and faster order processing as a result of this.
I’ve discovered that the majority of AliExpress vendors use Skype. So if you find yourself shopping from the same vendor regularly, it’s a good idea to ask for their Skype username so you can build a business relationship. Some merchants will let you put your branding on products or include personalized invoices and branded inserts in shipping packages once you’ve proven you can bring in recurring transactions.
Start dropshipping with Oberlo.
The nicest aspect about dropshipping on AliExpress is that you can immediately test and confirm shop concepts and products. Are you unsure if you can sell a certain product? Add it to your shop and give it a try! And if it doesn’t work out, you can take the item out of your store and try something different.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I set up dropshipping on AliExpress?
Yes, AliExpress makes getting started with dropshipping a breeze. First, you can find things to offer in your ecommerce store without having to worry about stock or delivery costs. Then, using the Oberlo app on your Shopify store to search and upload the products you want to sell, you can start dropshipping on AliExpress for free.
Is dropshipping from AliExpress profitable?
Yes, AliExpress dropshipping may be profitable. Despite the increased competition, many dropshipping business owners are profitable.
Which is better, Oberlo or AliExpress?
AliExpress has a variety of suppliers selling the same or comparable products. Each supplier’s rates and delivery schedules will be displayed on the platform. Oberlo allows you to switch a product’s supplier, resulting in lower cost and faster delivery. To be successful, you must provide a positive shopping experience for your customers, which necessitates selecting a reputable provider.
Do all suppliers on AliExpress dropship?
Unlike other markets such as Amazon, eBay, and Etsy, AliExpress features a drop shipping infrastructure. The majority of AliExpress suppliers are experienced with dropshipping and offer to dropship products. This simplifies the process of beginning a dropshipping business.