Best Drop Ship Suppliers for 2021
Starting a business can be overwhelming and may even drive you crazy sometimes. For instance, if you’re unfortunate enough to work with an irresponsible and unreliable supplier, then you already have a good understanding on how problematic it is to work with some people or businesses. Lucky for you, we’ve created this guide for aspiring drop shippers on how they can easily spot the right suppliers to work with and how to work with them.
In dropshipping. There are so many things that you need set up prior to launching your business. One is of course, selecting the right products to sell and another is finding reliable suppliers. When you successfully accomplish these two tasks, then you can be sure that you have a solid foundation for your dropshipping business.
Many individuals prefer dropshipping not only because it is convenient but also because it’s more economical than other traditional businesses. The reason is because it doesn’t require you to have a physical inventory of your items. Dropshipping also proves to be the best option for digital nomads who want to run and manage their business from anywhere in the world. These are just the basic benefits that one can get from dropshipping.
Dropshipping offers ultimate flexibility, requires minimal capital, and comes with little risk. From that statement alone it may sound that dropshipping is too good to be true, However, if you think that dropshipping is easy and simple, I can already tell you by now that it’s not. For you to successfully run a dropshipping business, you must be capable of making sound decisions that align with your goals, which takes me back to carefully selecting your products and suppliers.
In this blog, we’ll give you a comprehensive guide on how you can find the perfect supplier for your dropshipping business as well as tips on how to succeed in dropshipping.
Finding the Best Supplier
Looking for a reliable supplier can be a real challenge, especially for beginners who don’t know how to start. This is essentially true simply because there are tons of suppliers that are posing themselves as a legitimate manufacturer / distributor when in fact they are merely middle-men suppliers. These are the ones that you need to avoid. In dropshipping, you are the only one that’s supposed to work as a middleman between the supplier and end customer, having another supplier in between this chain will highly affect your margins.
On the contrary, if you were able to track down a legitimate distributor / manufacturer, there’s another problem in making sure that their products and services are outstanding. There’s no point in having a supplier that offers products with high margins yet is problematic when it comes to delivering items to your customers. These are typically suppliers who are not efficient in handling orders and cause your customers to receive defective, damaged, or worse, the wrong item. We all know how this can adversely affect your business.
A good supplier is one which can offer you products with good margins and one that can deliver outstanding customer service. This is essentially the perfect combination that you need from a supplier. If you have these aspects, then order management will come easy.
But first, what’s the best way to do dropshipping?
The Secret to dropshipping: High-ticket Dropshipping
Standard dropshipping involves selling low-cost items, which you can sell at a steady pace. This kind of business is one that enjoys constant customers but has limited margins and hence, slower returns. If you’re not entirely excited about this, then I recommend you to try high-ticket dropshipping instead.
High-ticket dropshipping focuses on selling expensive items or “high-ticket” products. These are products that are typically priced above $1000 like electronic gadgets, home appliances and furniture, jewelry, and more. The implication here is that since you’re selling expensive products, your margins are also bigger. Thus, you get better profitability and faster returns. The best part about this is unlike in standard dropshipping where you compete with tons of other businesses, since high-ticket dropshipping only sells expensive products, competition is far lower than traditional dropshipping.
So, if what you have in mind is running a business that requires low investment, better margins, higher profitability, and faster returns in a relaxed market, then high-ticket dropshipping is my best bet.
However, don’t expect that you will have hundreds of customers in a day since as we all know, products that are high cost don’t sell like hotcakes. This can also be a good thing since you’ll only be dealing with a number of customer inquiries a day. Meaning, you get to take your time in carefully addressing customers’ issues and concerns, which will in turn make your customers feel that they are valued. Essentially, it’s a win-win kind of business. If you’re wondering what are some examples of high-ticket products, here are the best products for high-ticket dropshipping.
Selecting the Best Dropship Supplier
To give you a full understanding on what you need to know before onboarding a supplier, we’ll be answering the how, what, who, where, when, and why in terms of selecting dropship suppliers. This will certainly give you an edge in starting your dropshipping business, since you won’t be committing the most common mistakes of selecting the wrong supplier.
Which Dropship Suppliers to Avoid
As earlier mentioned, the main ones that you must avoid are those who pretend to be an exclusive distributor or manufacturer when in fact they are also middlemen. These are what I call “fulfillers”. These are pseudo-suppliers that will only take margins from you and will negatively affect your profitability since they take a huge chunk from the margin that could have been yours if you worked with a legitimate supplier.
In dropshipping, the best setup is Customer – You – Manufacturer / Exclusive Distributor. That’s the setup that you must adapt to.
Look for Manufacturers
Aspiring dropshippers typically start their journey by looking through Amazon and Google and searching for the drop shipper keyword with their chosen niche. Say your chosen niche is a massage chair, then you can easily type in a drop shipper massage chair. This is the traditional way of doing it.
However, this might take some time and you might not be able to easily identify which ones are fulfillers and those who are legitimate manufacturers. The way to do it is to come up with your chosen high-ticket products and search them on Google Shopping. From there, you will see where you can find niche sites that sell them. Then, simply check if any of those niche sites don't have a physical store or warehouse. If so, then you can be certain that their suppliers are drop shipping for them and of course will most likely drop ship for you too.
However, before doing this, your demo site must be ready. Once your demo site is ready, then that’s the time that you can contract suppliers and ask if their brand is a good fit for your web store. If you do this, your life will be so much easier.
Top Qualities of a Dropship Supplier
If you get successful in finding a legitimate manufacturer / distributor, the next step is checking if they offer excellent customer service. First, you need to ensure that the supplier has all the qualities that your store requires. Say for example you want to have a supplier who can deliver in two to three days or one that offers 24/7 customer support. These are the qualities that highly depend on the product that you will carry.
It’s also important to check whether or not the supplier is known for outstanding customer service and efficient fulfillment. This will save you from future headaches especially if you’re selling high-ticket products. This is where it’s important to take note that not because you’re selling a high-ticket product, your business will be sustainable. Of course, it will still depend on your customer service from initial customer touchpoint to after sales. Hence, from the time that your customers submit an order to the time that they receive the actual item, the experience must be seamless, convenient, and free from stress. Besides, you wouldn’t want to address an angry and infuriated customer who’s blasting about your poor customer service and products all over the internet.
A reliable supplier must be able to fulfill customer orders on time, and in good condition. They should also provide a protocol in addressing product issues, warranty, and refunds. Having knowledge of these things prior to launch will surely be of great help, and will free you from stress as much as possible.
In addition, there are also some qualities that you need to consider that will offer great convenience. For one, having a supplier that accepts credit cards for purchase order payments will make it easier for you to settle balances, especially if you prefer a cashless method. A good supplier must also be able to accept orders through email so you won’t have to consolidate, compile, and process orders online, one by one. Finally, a good supplier must have a good working relationship with a well-known shipping company. They must have a good working relationship to ensure that all your deliveries will be on time and without issues. This lets you off the hook of facing logistic issues.
When to approach a Dropship Supplier
As earlier mentioned, there are several things that you need to do before contacting a dropshipping supplier. One is your website. Your website must be live the moment that you contact a drop ship supplier, so they can check your credibility. Of course, you can’t contact a supplier when you have not selected any product to sell yet. Plus, your business must be registered legally. Setting up your business legally is a legal requirement. However, if you’re unsure of how to register your business, then you may get tips on how to register from the best business formation experts.
Get Approved Quickly
In sourcing out suppliers, don’t get the idea that it will be easy. It is not. Not all suppliers are just after selling and making money. Many of these suppliers only work with businesses that they think are credible and will add value to their business. Thus, it’s important that you only approach a supplier once you’re ready.
Once you’re ready to tap a supplier, don’t just email, call them. Once you email these suppliers, there’s only a slim chance that they will respond to you. If you email, the chance of you getting a reply is 2 out of 10, as opposed to calling them directly since you can get a response of 8 out of 10. However, it’s extremely important that you have answers to the possible questions from suppliers and likewise, you must have a set of questions to ask them, so you can effectively compare which ones are good and those that don’t fit your requirements.
Overall, the tip here is to act like a real business owner and a professional, make smart choices, be prepared, and be confident, this will give you better chances of getting approved.
On the contrary, here's another blog that can help if you're interested about finding the best dropship suppliers for high-ticket dropshipping.
Did you find this article useful? Do you have other suggestions on how to find the best dropship suppliers? Let us know in the comment section below!
eCommerce Paradise was created by Trevor Fenner of Seattle, Washington in 2015 to help you, the entrepreneur, to start and scale your own eCommerce business. Trevor owns multiple 7-figure eCommerce stores and is a digital nomad, traveling the world while working remotely with the help of his team of virtual assistants from around the world. Trevor is currently located in Bali, Indonesia, and is a passionate skateboarder, surfer, scuba diver, photographer, environmentalist, outdoorsman, fitness and tattoo enthusiast.
AFFILIATE DISCLOSURE: Some of the links on this page may be affiliate referral links. I will get a commission from the vendor when you make a purchase after clicking them at no added cost to you. As a result, many of them also provide you with a special discount just for using my link. You can go directly to their support if you have any issues with their software or product.