Amit Basu is artisan furniturethe world’s first artisan market.
Dropshipping has a huge benefit for newcomers to business: it presents a great opportunity to “operate from anywhere”. Budding entrepreneurs can start anywhere with little to no investment. how the Lord.
“Geographic neutrality” is a way of describing one of the greatest advantages of direct selling, where you act as an intermediary between the supplier and the end consumer in the supply chain. You can drop ship from anywhere to almost anywhere, usually for a minimal cost since you never touch any inventory.
These are important advantages – but there are also some problems. Still, for entrepreneurs looking to save money in the current tight economy; for full-time workers looking for a useful extra income, or for newcomers who need to find a quick financial footing, dropshipping is an option worth considering .
So what are these gains? Failure is commonplace for a number of reasons – from lack of market research and limited interaction with shoppers to bland online stores with no branding and poor customer service. These questions did not instill confidence in buyers.
Dropshipping is not a “get rich quick” game as many so-called experts tell you. Getting it right takes some pre-planning, legwork, and determination. Of course, you can build your business quickly; you can trade internationally in a matter of days with a laptop, product center and visibility on e-commerce sites like AliExpress, Amazon, Etsy or Shopify.
However, as the founder and CEO of a company that supports thousands of independent wholesalers and retailers and offers a furniture affiliate program, I have discovered that financial success requires Research. In this way, you can be sure that you have tapped the relevant product segments, the right wholesale or import partners and the best route to market. In one of my past articles, I discussed ways to start a dropshipping business.
While the “geo-neutral”, work-anywhere aspect of the model gives you a lot of flexibility to adapt your business to your lifestyle and schedule, I’ll detail some practical considerations here.
One of the exciting aspects of the drop shipping business is seeing some of the surprising places orders come from and analyzing the data to understand who likes what in different parts of the world.
A customer in Germany can buy handmade rugs made in India through direct sellers in many locations around the world. The ability to facilitate connections between producers and end users has become a reality thanks to the online e-commerce revolution that is still underway. Morgan Stanley projects the market could grow from about $3.3 trillion in 2022 to $5.4 trillion in 2026.
That sounds great, but as a distance selling cog in an often complex supply chain, there are a few elements you need to be aware of. So here’s a list:
1. Size matters. There are obviously logistical issues with larger products, so it is worth asking your import or wholesale partner what percentage of inventory they can ship in Small Parcels (SP) (lighter packages) compared to Large Parcels or Freight. A high SP ratio is usually better in terms of the volume of orders you are likely to get, and it also reduces complexity, especially for first-time distributors.
2. Product Description and Description. These tend to be English or another language spoken by the majority of the population, and you should know which ones are available for your material. This might not be a problem if you’re selling chairs, china or phone cases, but it can become a problem if your product range includes electronics, anything that requires explanation or items with a list of ingredients or components.
3. Fulfillment. Does your partner wholesaler or importer have a fulfillment center in your buyer’s country? Local or regional storage can provide faster, cheaper (or even free) delivery, reducing the possibility of border holdups or damage to goods in transit.
4. Import Duties and Other Taxes. Find out which goods are subject to which duties and surcharges and which goods are exempt between the wholesale exporting country and the buyer’s location. For example, you can do this by reviewing the GSP (Generalized System of Preferences), which grants special treatment to products imported from 119 countries. Alternatively, you can use the EU’s IOSS (Import One-Stop Shop), a portal that helps businesses “fulfill their VAT e-commerce obligations on distance sales of imported goods”. Then look at the MFN (Most Favored Nation) clause, which is a leveling clause that applies to WTO members. Remember, your location doesn’t matter as the product will go directly from the supplier to the customer.
5. Transportation method. Air freight, especially for heavier shipments, will be a more expensive delivery method, but some customers may be willing to pay for the speed, so this service can be a good optional extra. For large items such as furniture, shipping and road transport is often unavoidable, and I’ve found that clients are generally happy with an 8-12 week timeline.
6. Payment Gateways. If you want to build a very international customer base, make sure your partner wholesaler or importer can handle enough currency.
If you research and master these functional aspects, your dropshipping business may be a better fit for you. It’s a lot of work at first, but being prepared and knowledgeable from the start will put you ahead of the curve. Ideally, you’ll be generating orders quickly and processing them easily, and you’ll likely be able to scale up faster than if you’d simply set up shop from day one.
The Forbes Business Council is the premier growth and networking organization for business owners and leaders. Am I eligible?