Tutorial to Start Shopify Dropshipping with Oberlo APP

Reading Time: 11 minutes

This tutorial will teach you how to dropship with Shopify. Tohis tutorial can be viewed as a roadmap. This tutorial will show you how to go from aspiring entrepreneur to business owner.

I won’t drive you to the destination, but I will show you the way. This is Oberlo 101’s lesson-by-lesson overview. Oberlo 101 is our detailed step-by-step guide to creating your first online business, and since we’ve launched Oberlo 101, it’s been amazing to hear all the actions that you have taken after enrolling in the course.

You’ve sold, made friends about the course and sat down for seven hours straight. Oberlo 101 was free at the time we were filming in April 2020.

Simply enter “learn at home” at checkout. Sign up now and get the discount code to receive unlimited access for the rest your life. You can check the description below to see whether you are still eligible for discounts if you are watching this video later. We have a lot to cover so let’s get down to the dropshipping tutorial.

Oberlo 101: How to Get Started

Let’s get into the dropshipping tutorial. You are now at the Oberlo 101 dashboard. You can see that this course is divided into five sections.

  • Oberlo 101: How to get started
  • Sell great products
  • Create your online store
  • Advertise on Facebook
  • Scale your business
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If you look at other ecommerce courses, I’ll point out that this dropshipping tutorial is a bit different from others. A lot of ecommerce courses have you sign up for Shopify first and then start researching products.

I’m kind of a bad Shopify employee for telling you this, but I recommend that under normal circumstances when you only have a 14-day free trial of Shopify, you do your product research first so that you don’t run the clock on your free Shopify trial while you’re still figuring out what to sell.

Let’s dive right in, and I’m literally going to open up every lesson for you so you can see what is inside this course and get a better idea of the steps you need to take to build your first online dropshipping business with Shopify and Oberlo.

Dropshipping: Introduction

This tutorial will not cover how to make dropshipping profitable. It’s all about how the course is setup on the website. You’ll see this throughout the tutorial. We’ll go into a brief introduction to dropshipping.

This is how our lesson pages look. The video player is a guide to the lessons in the section to the right. The key takeaways are always listed below. This is sort of our way of taking notes. You can also find helpful links and downloads here. In a few moments, you’ll find some amazing downloads.

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In this first section, we break down what dropshipping is, and it’s really important that you understand that dropshipping is a business model. Dropshipping is not a product by itself. This chapter is the best introduction to this channel if you are new to it.

Maybe you already know what dropshipping is and you’re ready to explore the three basic models of dropshipping stores. This is the moment where you can apply the next lesson.

Three Dropshipping Business Models

In that lesson, as you can see here, we go over the three different kinds of dropshipping business models and those are one-product stores, general stores, and niche stores. Each has its pros and cons. As you become more confident as an entrepreneur, you might decide to open a general store or a one-product shop. If you are just starting out, I recommend a niche store. I discuss this in detail in this lesson.

You’ll notice one thing on the lesson page: we have a list listing merchants that are featured in this lesson. Oberlo 101 featured interviews with dropshipping merchants who gave their insights on the topic.

So in this case, we asked Paul Lee what he thought about building a niche store versus a general store and he had some really interesting things to say. To see it, you will need to sign up for Oberlo 101. After you’re done with the Getting Started with Oberlo 101 section, you’re ready to move on to the next section, and it is all about finding products to sell.

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Find great products to sell

Brainstorming Ideas

This tutorial is an excellent part of starting a dropshipping company. This is something that many entrepreneurs really love. This is a great lesson because we brainstorm 20 products in real-time. Then we use the criteria I have listed in the key takeaways for product research spreadsheet. The product research spreadsheet can be downloaded here.

In key takeaways we outline the criteria that make a product a winner. Then, in a link section we give links to all the sites where we are looking for winning products. So that includes best-seller lists, it also includes product research pages like Ecomhunt, and it includes Google Trends and Facebook, and we break down how to use those sites in this lesson.

This is the product spreadsheet in action. I am listing products I find and keeping track of whether they meet or not the criteria. Important to remember that not all products need to meet every criteria in order to be valuable.

Once you have a long list of products you can sell, it is time to narrow it down and focus on the products you will sell. This is the next lesson.

How to Choose the Best Products for Your Store

This lesson is called “Choosing Winning Products For Your Store”. In this lesson we expand on the product search spreadsheet by defining the criteria products must meet to be successful at the idea stage.

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For example, these products have to comply with Facebook ad policies and it’s best if you’re passionate or you know something about these products.

Here you can see that we’re kind of filtering our list of product ideas by whether they meet these additional narrowing-down criteria and that helps us choose a niche for our store and that niche in Oberlo 101 is actually a reusable kitchen accessories niche.

Look for trustworthy suppliers

Once you’ve decided what you want to sell, it’s time to find trustworthy suppliers for your store. This is a crucial lesson because at the moment I am filming, many suppliers are returning to China. However, some are not. This is a very uneven situation. It takes communication and trusting suppliers to get it right.

Okay? The criteria we gave in the lesson about how to identify trustworthy suppliers still apply. Use the supplier research spreadsheet to compile a list with potential suppliers and data about their reliability.

This list is important to you. You’ll still have the other suppliers that you’ve researched and gathered in this spreadsheet in case one of them goes out of business. After you have identified your products and suppliers, it is time to create your Shopify store.

Create Your Online Store

If you’re completely new here, Shopify is an ecommerce platform, and it is the platform on which you build the actual storefront where you’ll sell your products. This is the first lesson. Let me just walk you through the Shopify sign up process.

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It’s really fun to learn the second lesson about branding. This is all about choosing a name for your store. This lesson will show you how to create a business name brainstorming sheet. There are two resources that you need to know, even if Oberlo 101 is not available for you.

The first is Oberlo’s business name generator. This is the generator I used to create a name for Daybreak Leggings, one of my first dropshipping shops. It was a cool, feminine, rising at the dawn to do yoga aesthetic that I would never have imagined without the business name generator.

So check that out, and then go to namechk.com, there’s no E in there, but it’s kind of like namecheck.com. There you can see not only if it’s available as a dot-com, but also if it’s available across social media sites. It’s really helpful.

Shopify: Connect Oberlo

After you have created your brand, it is time to link your Shopify store with Oberlo. Oberlo is the connective tissue. You’ve done your research on AliExpress, you’ve built a Shopify store, but how do you get those products from AliExpress into your Shopify store and sync them so that every time a customer makes an order, you’ll know to buy that product from the supplier?

Oberlo, an app that allows you to do this with Shopify, is called Oberlo. This lesson will walk you through how to set up Oberlo. We also share the golden rule of product pricing in this lesson.

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This is the place to start if you are just starting out and want to know how to price AliExpress products for your customers.

It’s possible to round it up or decrease so that you get an even number. However, 99 cents is the most common price you should start with. As you become more skilled, you can increase or decrease the price and experiment as much as you like. However, if you are just curious, this is a good rule of thumb.

Design high-converting product pages

Next in this dropshipping tutorial, you’re going to create high converting product pages. Don’t copy and paste the AliExpress description. Then, ask me why you aren’t getting sales. If you don’t speak the language of your customer, then you aren’t being an entrepreneur.

It will be easy for me. We’ve got a product description template in this lesson that you can download, and it literally gives you the starts and ends of sentences that you can just fill in to create really compelling product descriptions.

You shouldn’t be too concerned about your homepage. Even if you run ads, or just build your social media presence organically, traffic will drive to product pages. Your homepage is not likely to attract a lot of traffic. However, even if they do, it’s important that your homepage looks professional. This lesson will help you to do just that.

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Again, I have two resources that I give away during this lesson. But I am going to give them away now. The Hatchful is the first. Hatchful is a logo creator, and it’s an amazing tool if you just want to get something really polished off the ground without paying a Fiverr graphic designer to do it for you.

Burst is another tool that I want to let you know about. Burst is a stock photography website made specifically for ecommerce entrepreneurs.

Configure Shipping and Payment Settings

Once your homepage looks great, you’re gonna move on to set up shipping and privacy policies. Isn’t this a lot of fun? It doesn’t. We don’t spend much time on this and give you language you can use to cover all bases.

Oberlo 101 is a great option if you want to save time and not spend so much time figuring out how to create a privacy policy. Although it’s easy, you need to have it in place.

Create Facebook Ads

A brief introduction to Facebook ads

Now that you have set up your online shop, it is time to launch Facebook advertisements. We will be introducing Facebook ads briefly in the first lesson. You need to understand how these ads work. Facebook ads are a favorite tool for ecommerce entrepreneurs around the globe.

Facebook ads are confusing for beginners. They spend money, but they feel like they’re wasting it. Do not fall for this trap. It’s possible to decide to stop spending money on advertising, but not because you feel you are wasting money. This is a common misconception of the platform. Learn from it.

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Register for a Facebook Ads account

We will create a Facebook ads account in the next lesson. This sounds trivial, but the important thing to note here is that you’re going to create something called a Facebook pixel, and you can only create one pixel for every store that you have, so you don’t wanna mess this step up, and as long as you’re taking this course, you won’t.

Research Your Target Audience

Next, you will conduct research on your Facebook ads audience. If you don’t want to spend money on ads, this is a worthwhile step. You’ll see that this lesson has an audience research document.

This doc can be used to ask key questions about your target audiences and to use that time to research those answers. For example, you wanna know, who does your target audience see as an authority figure? What magazines and books do they read? What are their favorite places to live? Which are their top websites?

These questions can be answered slowly. Then, take the time to write down your thoughts and begin to learn how to communicate with your audience. It’s language training, yes, but it will teach you how to speak to your audience when you run ads or build organic social media presences. That’ll help you attract them to your brand.

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Campaign Goals

Now that you have a better understanding of your audience, you can start setting up your Facebook advertising campaign. There are many options and variables to choose from. This guide will show you how to launch Facebook ads for beginners.

Although it’s simple, we explain the variables so you can become more proficient in your ad abilities.

Make eye-catching video ads

Next lesson will be about creating captivating video ads for Facebook ads. Hear me. Now, I understand that it’s early April and you might have a hard time ordering a test product, and then using that test product to create a video, I get it.

I would advise you to order the test product regardless, wait to create the videos until you are able, and take it slow. This is a strange situation. Don’t rush. There’s so much we can do to help the world right now.

Save eye-catching Facebook ads that catch your attention. Click them, then go to the product pages. If a Facebook advertisement is receiving tons of engagement and views, it is probably a good sign.

You’re now in student mode. Learn from the advertiser and note down what caught your attention about that ad. You’ll be prepared when you make your first video ads. This will allow you to use all of the best techniques and practices in your first video ad.

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This is a unique advantage that few people have who jump into advertising. This course was unique because we actually ran ads for eco-friendly kitchen accessories and then analysed the results.

Analyze Facebook Ads Data

Even if you don’t have the skills to run ads, this course will allow you to follow our steps and learn from them. We show you how to create a dashboard to analyze Facebook ads data. This will give you all the information you need about your ad performance.

There are many ways to learn about your ad performance. It can be confusing to know which numbers you should pay attention to.

Retargeting and Lookalike campaigns

Next, we will discuss retargeting and lookalike Facebook ads. These ads are powerful. Here are some brief definitions. A retargeting ad is an ad that is targeted to people who have already taken some action with your previous ads or in your store. You can, for example, retarget people who have clicked on your ads and visited your store. The ad will only be shown to people who have already been to your store.

These audiences look like but aren’t the same as the ones who visited your store. These audiences may have similar buying habits, or they may share certain demographic characteristics. Whatever the reason, they will likely take the same action as the audience they look like.

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Optimize Ads to Increase Sales

We will be covering how to optimize Facebook ads for sales in the last lesson about Facebook ads. This lesson on Facebook ads is crucial because it shows you how to critically evaluate your ads and your ad performance.

After answering these questions, you can tweak your ads to increase the likelihood of them generating sales. We also give you some tips on Pinterest and Reddit to help you get sales.

Scale Your Business

You are now a Facebook ads expert. The last few lessons will help you manage the sales you bring in. We actually provide a code in the track shipping and fulfill orders section that you can copy and then paste to send tracking numbers to customers.

This is a great advantage because customers will feel more relaxed if they have tracking numbers and won’t need to email you constantly to check the status of their package.

How to manage returns and refunds

In the next lesson, you learn all about how to manage returns and refunds. Online business is not without its challenges. In the current COVID-19 crisis, it’s likely that customers will need refunds, such as if a supplier can’t ship on time.

We have the answer for you. This chapter will show you how to refund your customer and get your money back from your supplier. While returns and refunds are part of business, they don’t have the right to cost you any money.

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How to scale your business

The final chapter focuses on how to scale your business through managing cash flow. This chapter could be described as the “best” because it is so helpful. We even provide a budgeting spreadsheet to help you keep track of how much money you have coming in and going out.

Many dropshippers don’t keep track of their expenses and are surprised when they realize that they actually spend more than they make.

This section also covers apps and other tools you can use to grow your business. The Shopify App Store is an amazing resource for adding bells and whistles basically to your store, and those bells and whistles can help convert a lot of browsers into customers.

Oberlo 101 Live Q&A

The archive of Oberlo 101 live Q&As is the last section. Each month, Oberlo 101 students are invited to join us for a live Q&A. In that Q&A we answer any questions you may have. This is a great opportunity to ask any questions you might have as you go through the course.

Register in Oberlo 101 to ensure you don’t miss any of the next Q&As. After you have enrolled, you will receive an email letting your know when the next live Q&A will be.

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To make sure you are aware, you don’t have to wait to ask questions live. You can leave a comment on the YouTube channel, or send us an email at hello@oberlo.com. Our team is ready to assist you in building your business.

This Shopify tutorial for beginners on dropshipping gave me an idea of what steps to take and in which order.

We hope this tutorial will give you an idea of the inside of Oberlo 101. Only one question. Oberlo 101 will be updated in the coming months and we want your feedback. We want to know what lessons we should include in the future courses for ecommerce entrepreneurs such as you.

Please let me know your thoughts in the comments section below. I will keep track of all entries. Thank you so much.

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