Are you new to the dropshipping world? If so, you have probably done your research about how it’s simultaneously flexible while demanding. You can work from anywhere in the world you want and determine your own hours, but the business is hugely dependent on marketing, and you need to be available to solve problems when they occur.
It’s essential to be prepared, but it’s also to overwhelm yourself when dropshipping or not work enough. Striking a work/life balance that keeps you happy while making enough money to support yourself is a delicate task. It is indeed possible, though, so while there are countless resources out there for you to learn about the technicalities of dropshipping and how to maximize your profit margins, here are a few pieces of advice for getting the most out of your endeavor:
Sell products that you are passionate about
How motivated would you be to sell furniture if your passion lies in plushies? Probably not very—which means it’s good to pick a niche that you love. Your excitement toward your industry will come across in your marketing and customer service, so if you want people to notice that you care about your niche and their experience with you, it helps to be passionate about what you’re selling.
You do, however, need to sell products that are in demand, especially when you are first starting out. It might take a long time before you can gain a competitive advantage over other dropshippers who are sharing a tiny audience with you. It’s a fine line to navigate, but do what you can to sell products that a high number of people want and you are excited to talk about.
Don’t sacrifice your productivity
Dropshipping’s flexibility sometimes means that people get trapped in a cycle of, “I can do that later,” something distracts you, and then you never do it. Why would you want to spend time on Facebook ads when you could browse the internet aimlessly? If you are a digital nomad, why would you want to sit down and work when there are endless exciting cities to explore? Work-from-home jobs are also advantageous for parents, and while their children should take priority, they won’t get much work done if they don’t devote enough hours to it.
Discipline yourself to sit down and work. It might be in one sitting with a small break or a few hours in the early morning, a longer break, a few hours in the afternoon, and a few more before in the evening. Compose a schedule that allows you to focus and not feel restless while allowing you to tend to the various other tasks you have on your plate. It’s also helpful to have a dedicated workspace, such as an optimized home office or a public co-working space.
You’ll save yourself a great deal of time and headaches if you are proactive about accomplishing tasks and ensuring mistakes don’t happen. Regarding the latter, sometimes tracking numbers don’t work, your suppliers are late with shipping, an order is lost in the mail, or something else goes wrong—which means that, even though it’s probably not your fault, it’s still your responsibility to fix it for the customer. Double check tracking codes and invoices (for details such as correct quantities, product descriptions, and addresses) before products leave the warehouse so that customers never know they almost did not get what they ordered.
Automate where it makes sense
Dropshippers spend a significant amount of their time marketing, and social media is one of the best places to do it. It is not enough, unfortunately, to generate content (no matter how enticing), post it on your various feeds, and hope it converts a few viewers into customers. Attracting attention means you need to like other people’s posts, follow them, respond to comments, optimize your profiles, and more. Thankfully, there are automation tools that can perform the more tedious aspects on your behalf—so, if you want to get real followers on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest, it’s helpful to look into resources that allow you to focus on other aspects of your business. Never underestimate the power of social media marketing for small businesses.
Don’t forget that you’re an entrepreneur
Though your business is entirely online, don’t forget that you are part of the global entrepreneurship game. As an entrepreneur—or anybody in the working world—you need to take care of yourself. Get plenty of sleep. Eat nutritious meals. Learn as much as you can through books or other means. Steer yourself toward specific goals that will give you clear direction and keep you from losing interest in your endeavor.
Dropshipping is a flexible business model, but it’s still essential to strike a healthy work/life balance. Besides financially, how do you plan to get the most out of your online store?