The season of goodwill will be upon us shortly, and consumers will quickly mutate into headless chickens spending money they don't have on Christmas presents that nobody wants. Is it possible to become a modern-day digital Scrooge and build a drop shipping business using Shopify/Oberlo in time to take advantage of their profligacy?
Or will the ghost of Marley haunt us for our greed?
The adage “Made In China” used to be a byword for poorly made, shoddy goods that wouldn't last half a day beyond Boxing day. Have things changed that much? Is a drop shipping website built with Shopify and Oberlo the wealth creation silver bullet they claim it to be?
Over the past couple of months, I've been paring down my Facebook feed by unfollowing the relentless daily posting so that I can focus more on stuff that matters.
That move has highlighted the epidemic of Facebook sponsored adverts from people claiming to have built a $1.1M Shopify business in just three months. I mean how gullible do you think we are? If it were true, you'd have no time for planning Facebook advertising campaigns and showing the masses how to replicate your success?
In my last blog post, I highlighted all the reasons why I think a pure drop shipping play is a poor business model, but the only way to find out for real is to build one!
Ready, Fire Aim!
Let's Do This!
Business Name, Domain Name, Social Media Handles
Don't get too hung up on domain names; you'll spend more time looking, procrastinating and dawdling over this step than building the site. Also, don't spend forever researching an eCommerce business idea, it's effortless to change if you want to try something different later on. The whole point of using Shopify/Oberlo is that it is flexible and quick to implement.
I've already written a couple of posts which will help you get started:
I've pressed into service an available domain name “celebrityfab.co.uk” for a niche covering beauty and health products.
Register for your free trial and create your Shopify store.
Choose Your Store Theme. There are plenty of free options here, and there's no need to go buying an expensive theme until you've proven the concept. Try and keep your theme as simple as possible so that you won't have to make many changes. Good choices are New standard, Supply and Simple.
Once you've found your theme click “Install Theme” and the job is done.
Add your logo and Install Oberlo
See This Blog Post: How To Create The Perfect Logo
Import your products from Oberlo to the Shopify Catalog and publish them!
Good Job! You are well on your way to producing a $1.1M turnover in the next three months!
But wait. There's a couple of things I haven't told you. While the process of setting up Shopify and installing the Oberlo app is straightforward, this work scratches the surface of what's needed to produce something that will pass muster and convince people to part with their credit card details.
For a start, a lot of the product photography is inferior and requires attention, there are standard terms and conditions pages missing, and the layout needs a lot of work It is a long way from being called an eCommerce store.
The other glaring issue is that to set your prices you need to use a multiplier across the board to set the retail price or use the advanced pricing rules. Either way, you'll be purchasing goods through Aliexpress and then applying a multiplier to get to your retail price. So there is nothing stopping people from going directly to the manufacturer and making the same purchase at half the price to exclude the middleman - that's you! Ignoring that minor drawback, the typical price multiplier is 1.8 - 2.
So there we have it. The bare bones of a Shopify/Oberlo drop shipping site in development. Many of the Apps in the Shopify App store require subscription payments so the monthly subscription cost could rapidly rise if we want to add a lot more functionality to the store. Let's cross that bridge when we get to it.
Here's my Day One screenshot:
Next time I'll be adding some meat to the bare bones of our fledgeling drop shipping store.