How To Avoid Failing at High-Ticket Drop Shipping
Let's Talk About How You Can Avoid Failing at High-Ticket Drop Shipping
If you want to know how to avoid failing at High-Ticket Drop Shipping, I discuss many different ideas in this video including conversion optimization techniques, foundational knowledge, the experience you need for success, and how you can get out of a tight situation if you are in one right now.
Hey, guys. Trevor Fenner here with eCommerce Paradise high-ticket drop shipping podcast, YouTube channel, masterclass, and coaching program.
I'm here today to talk to you about what you should do if your high-ticket drop shipping store is failing, or you just don't have the budget to run it anymore because profitability isn't there. I wanted to discuss this from a few different angles because this happened to us in the past and it's also happened to some of my students. It's happened to a lot of people out there, and it might be happening to you right now, and that's why you're watching this video.
You also might be watching this video because you're interested in getting started but you don't want to make the same mistakes other people have made. So, I'm probably going to bounce around a little bit on this topic, but I really want to discuss reasons why that might have to do something with your store and the reasons why that might have something to do with you, and both are really important to understand.
So, first and foremost, let's talk about your store. Now, if your store is going to bring a return on investment, in other words, you've invested money in your software, you've invested money in your content, you've invested money in the marketing and the advertising of your store, it has to make sales in order to bring a return on that investment. So, in order to make sales, you have to convert potential leads into customers and what that means is sending the right kind of traffic to your website, the right interested buying group, that target market who's actually going to buy now as opposed to wait till later to buy, and then also having a website that's highly converting and has a lot of different features on it and has all the information that a customer needs to place the order now, and has a lot of different conversion rate optimization features.
Now, I have a whole another bunch of videos about conversion rate optimization so I do deep dives into that, and I also have on the blog and on the podcast and in the course all the different ways you can do that on your website, but there are some key factors that make a huge different. I'll drop a few of them right now.
Number one is social proof. If you don't have any kind of social proof on your website people won't trust you as much because people love to trust businesses that have other people that are saying good things about them. Social proof can be built through social media marketing and through reviews, and that's the number one way we do it, is having reviews on our website. So, make sure that when you set up your business it's set up to automatically get people to leave reviews for your products.
That means the review app should automatically be sending out emails to any customers that you get that request them to leave a review, and then you should also be sending out emails through email marketing service to get them to come back to your website, leave a review, also drop you a video review, and write you an email back saying whether they liked the product or not, that kind of stuff, because then you can manually put that on the product page's review.
Testimonials are also a great way to do it, so, besides just a product review you might get somebody who's excited about your business and the customer service they received, and they can make a video testimonial or just a written testimonial, and you can feature that on your website, you can feature that on the product pages, you can feature that on your own testimonial page and your About page, and all your other marketing stuff and feature them on social media, so these are really powerful tools.
One more is kind of a combined of two but it's scarcity and urgency, so make sure that on your website you have some sort of scarcity, so there's only a limited amount of supply of those products left, they're going to run out of stock soon, that kind of thing, it's scarcity. And urgency means you have a sale going on, it's going to end soon. That's basically what that is, and if you don't buy now you're going to miss out. Fear of missing out is real and it gets people to buy now as opposed to putting it off till later. So make sure you have scarcity and urgency built into your product pages and all across your marketing channels, marketing methods and things like that.
We actually stripped down the theme a lot and added some custom features to it just for high-ticket drop shipping, but we minimized it a lot so that we didn't have so many things loading and going on and popping up. They key here is to understand what's important and what still isn't going to take away from the site loading fast, because that's super key to conversions, especially people that are on their mobile device, but even on the desktop computers. So, keep that in mind.
So, social proof, scarcity-urgency, and a fast website loading, I would say are the most important things. If you want, again, to get more conversion optimization tips, dive into any of my other videos because there are tons more out there. I have just ridiculous amounts of different little things you can do to optimize for conversions. But beyond that, that's the number one place you should always be looking for.
Now, foundationally speaking, with your high-ticket drop shipping store, getting good suppliers on board and getting high selling or best selling products on your store are going to be key because if you don't have good suppliers that people are actually looking for all the time and are good at fulfilling products and orders and stuff like that on time, and having good product quality, your business isn't going to work as well. It's not going to be streamlined, it's going to be more difficult to handle orders all the time, and generally speaking, you're not going to make as many sales because if that brand doesn't have a really good reputation out in the rest of the marketplace, people might see that they have better reviews elsewhere and then decide not to buy them after all and go with a different brand. Maybe you don't have that brand.
So, just speaking hypothetically, but the truth is you can find out which suppliers' brands are the most popular ones and also the best before you even invest your resources and trying to recruit them. You can also figure out which product categories are going to be your most popular sellers, and also which products are, and it's all through keyword research. The number one keyword tool that I recommend is kwfinder.com. The link is in the description for my resources page so if you go down and click on the resources and then scroll through the resources page, you'll see kwfinder.com. It's a really cool tool because you can see exactly, through one page, exactly how much search volume they have in the U.S. and what the competitors are.
Now, it's a paid tool after your first three searches but I highly recommend using it because it doesn't just have keyword research volume, it has a ton of other things like competitor research tools and it's a lot like similar tools like HREF's now that allow you to do deep SEO research under competition to find out what their top selling products are, or their most popular pages are on the website and things like that. So, I recommend that tool.
If you don't want to invest the $29 a month, there is a free tool called Keywords Everywhere that I recommend using. It actually is a Chrome extension and you can get it for free. Just type Keywords Everywhere to Google and that links up with Chrome, and all you have to do is actually type the word into Google and it will load a little tiny thing next to it that says how much search volume there is. Now, whether it's 100% accurate or not is hard to say, but you don't really need 100% accuracy. You just need to be mostly accurate, because you're just trying to get an idea through your whole entire list of suppliers, which specific ones are going to be the best selling suppliers.
The ones that get the most search volume are going to search the most so they're probably going to be the higher selling suppliers. So, out of like 20 or 30 suppliers, make a shortlist of five or 10, the ones that are going to be the best selling, and go with those, because those are most likely going to be the ones that are selling the best and are going to have the best customer service and are around longer, better product quality, all that good stuff.
Once you've done that, then you can do a little bit deeper research and find their product listings on third-party market places like Amazon, or eBay or House, and go there and see if they have good reviews. Look in the reviews and see if the products are quality and if the delivery and service was quality. Some of that might have something to do with the dealer instead of the brand, but you should see if there's consistent product quality across multiple products. That probably means the brand is a good quality brand to work with.
Now, I do want to say one caveat here is that you'll find, sometimes, that the suppliers that have the most keyword search volume are very difficult to get because they've been around the longest, they're the bigger brands. You're probably going to have to make a phone call to get them, you can't just get them by an email, and so, with that said, don't be afraid to make phone calls, especially for the good suppliers. And if you don't get hold of them the first time, the first three times, first five times, don't give up. Keep following up every single day, halfway through the day, just give them a call and see if you can get through to the person you need to speak to about setting up a wholesale account.
It might take a little while but you'll eventually get through and then you can explain to them about your business and that you're ecommerce online only, you do the marketing, you pay for all the marketing efforts and you do the customer service for them, so on and so forth, and most likely you'll eventually get that account. So, do it.
The next thing is making sure that when you do get those supplier accounts, make sure that you go through and you research on your competitors' websites, if you can, what the best selling products are from that suppliers. There's little ways to do this, but if your competitors aren't Shopified, which they should be, I hope they are, you can go on to the collection pages and sort by best seller. That's really, really helpful, because then you have an idea of which products you should really focus on, deep optimization first. And this is key. Especially in the beginning, for any beginning entrepreneur, whether you have a ton of money to invest or if you're completely broke and just doing this with nothing practically, you need to know that if you go deep before you go wide, you're going to find success. But if you try to go wide before you go deep, you won't get any sales.
There's a saying that said, "Inch wide and a mile deep," and just focus on that. So, deep optimization is key to sales in this business model. I always recommend when you're just starting out, start with one single product category, because a one-category website, you're going to still have five or 10 suppliers or more, you're going to have probably five to 10 sub-categories. Usually it's like closer to three to five. And then, within each of the sub-categories you're going to have suppliers, you're going to have products, you're going to have different pieces of content, you're going to have different links going to other pages of your website, so there's plenty of work to do in a single product category.
When you're selling high-ticket items, thousand dollars and up, any one sale can result in up to $300 to all the way up to $1,000 in profit, so it's really worth doing deep optimization and it goes true for collections pages, but it also goes true for the product pages and the product pages where the sales are done. So I always recommend, if you want to be successful with this business model, focus on building out the best product page you possibly can using high-intensity copy writing and persuasion techniques, lots of high quality pictures, product sales presentation videos and proper headlines in SCO formatting because people love to see things formatted because a lot of people scan, and when the content isn't formatted, they just see it's hard to read, they're going to waste a lot of time trying to figure out what's what.
But if you format it with headers and bullet lists and check marks and really good, well-laid out pictures and stuff like that, it's a lot easier to see things. It's the best way to do it.
Now, with that said, make sure you're focusing on sales. What that means is, when you have leads and prospects coming to your website, oftentimes they're not going to buy right away. Some of them will but a very small percentage of them will, and so you need to follow up with people. Sales is follow-up. So, number one, make sure you set up an email marketing auto-responder for abandoned carts, because an abandoned cart is basically that person is almost ready to buy, and for whatever reason they didn't buy.
It might have something to do with the timing, it might have something to do with their trust of your business, or maybe they found a better deal elsewhere, or there might be something that was missing on your website. So you need to follow up with these people, automatically by email, but also, in Shopify. If you go to your orders and you see that little button for abandoned carts, check that every single day and actually call somebody back if they've abandoned their cart as soon as possible.
Either you or have a virtual assistant do this for you, but if you do that, if you actually call people, you'll get ahold of some of them and ask them those questions. "Hey, was it because it wasn't just not the right time for you, was it because you didn't have the money, was it because there was a feature missing in this product, was it because you were confused, or maybe you were just shopping around, or maybe you did find a better deal somewhere else?" Ask them those questions and find out about that, because then you can improve your product page, you can improve your offers. Your offer is not just your product page, your offer is the product plus everything that goes along with it, and with high-ticket products oftentimes you'll find that there is different little things like different options, different add-ons, different value-added services that you can do with the products, different accessories people want with it.
Your offer is a combination of things and I usually recommend doing some sort of an offer stack which is a thing I've learned from Russell Brunson where you just list out every single little thing that comes with your product, even if it's kind of obvious, like free shipping. Well, you've got to talk about that and how cool free shipping and how much it would normally cost if it wasn't free. And offering free gifts and free giveaways as bonus offers to make your offer better than your competitor's, that's key to conversions as well.
You have to have that in there, and if you don't, then you're probably not going to make sales, and if you do, even it's the smallest little free gift, you might get that three, five thousand dollar sale over your competitor, just because they want that little extra accessory. It's crazy but it works and it's always worked for us and it will work for you.
So, there's that. And I know, I just went on for 10, 15 minutes about all the things you can do with your store to improve it, but truly, you want to have a store that's profitable it has to bring in ROI, has to convert sales. So these are just some really practical tips that you can use to turn prospects and leads into customers, and then, from there, you want to try to get that person coming back over and over again, so having the best communication as possible with the customer is key throughout the entire process. So, don't be afraid to call your customers and say hi, don't be afraid to email at any time and say hi, and again, just like the supplier, if they don't answer the phone right away, just follow up and keep following up.
Sales and customer services are all about follow-up, guys. So learn it and be able to teach it so that you can outsource your work to a VA.
Now, if you do want to end up ... for some reason, maybe you feel like your niche isn't right and for whatever reason you just want to close your store, you're kind of done for a while and take a break, save up some more money and get back started again. There's a couple of different routes you can take with this.
Number one. If, for some reason, you feel like it has to do with the niche, and oftentimes they say it usually isn't to do with the niche, it's to do with you and your ability to market that product in that niche, because there's always going to be a successful competitor in a niche. And if there's not, then you probably shouldn't get into it in the first place. But, if you're unable to market products in one category, what makes you think you're going to be able to market products in another category? I would recommend just practice marketing skills. You have to build your marketing skills up first. Don't get turned off and start blaming other things and thinking, "Oh, it's the products, it's the suppliers, it's just this niche in general, it just doesn't work that well, I got bad advice from somebody."
It's nothing to do with anybody else but you. So take responsibility for your inability to do marketing appropriately, I'm just saying, and learn from it and build upon that skill set so that you can get better at marketing and you can just take more action and you can make more sales. And then you'll be more profitable and you'll be one of the profitable competitors in your niche.
Another thing is, reach out and get coaching from people that know what they're doing, from multiple different avenues. Get coaching from me but get coaching from other people in the high-ticket drop shipping space, get coaching from people outside of drop shipping that just talk about copywriting, and just talk about marketing methods, and just talk about sales. These things are really foundational and you don't even have to talk to somebody directly to get these kinds of mentorships. You can just read books that they've written and you can watch YouTube videos like this on other channels.
So I recommend, definitely, as much of marketing and sales as you possibly can, and then, of course, if you're having financial issues which is usually why people shut a store down, watch some videos on personal finance and get your life together. Lower your expenses, cut the spending, and cut the bad habits out until you can afford to have them again. And as you're doing that, learn, learn, learn, learn. Don't be afraid to invest in books and online courses because those things will actually bring you a much greater ROI than anything else will on the long run. Running a hundred dollars on Facebook ads isn't going to really bring that much or an ROI, if you don't know what you're doing with marketing in the first place.
So, buy $10 books for a hundred bucks, read those all the way through, take action on what you read, and then go back and buy those hundred dollars in Facebook ads and that's going to bring you a way bigger investment. Think about advertising as putting gasoline on a fire, but if there's not much wood in the fire yet, then the gasoline is just going to fizzle out right way. But if you have wood, which is a solid understanding and ability to take action with marketing methods and stuff like that, and skills and experience, then the gasoline will make the fire go crazy. So build up your pile of wood first before you throw gasoline on the flames with advertising ad spent.
But, with that said, there is another way to do this. If, for some reason, you're just over it and you do want to start another niche, instead of throwing everything away and shutting everything down, what you can do is actually sell your store for a little bit of money. There's a lot of people out there, like if a store has made a $500 or $1,000 over the last couple of months but you're just kind of tired of it, you can still get maybe a couple of thousand dollars for your store. So you'll basically, hopefully, you'll sell your store. All that hard work and effort you put into it will be gone. Somebody else will own that now, but you've recouped your investment, you can pay off your bills or whatever, and you can start over again.
Don't consider all that stuff as wasted time. It's not like a video game. You actually do get to save your spot in life, and that is through here, through your mind. And you're going to remember every single little thing you did so the next time you go through and do it again, you're going to be improving upon that first time that you were able to do it, which is key. For me, it's the same way. It's like every single time I go and do something, it's just sort of the first way I figure out how to do it, but the second, third, fourth, fifth iteration, they're all going to be better than the first. Way better.
That's what I'm doing with my high-ticket drop shipping masterclass, my services, any of my coaching programs. What I'm doing is I'm going through it and improving them every single time I offer them. I'm taking notes on what I do, I'm taking notes on the successes of my students, and also the lack of success, if there is any. What I do is I try to improve upon that. So now that I know if there's lack in this area, then what I need to do is fix that area and then improve it and then re-sell at that point. I like to do that. I like to go back through and figure out where the mistakes were, where the failures were, and how I can make that a success. And that's the mindset you have to have.
So, go ahead, you got to do it. And then you're going to have to just start up in a brand new niche, learn a brand new product category again, but there's nothing wrong with that because you can still become successful in any product category out there. There's nothing holding you back. You don't have to already have prior knowledge and experience in a product category to be successful at high-ticket drop shipping. You can learn it.
You can go out and read buyers' guides and just inculcate your mind with how these products work, because all you're really doing at the end of the day is sales and marketing. And all of sales and marketing does is convince somebody to buy something, but the suppliers, they're creating the products. They're going out there and they're marketing those products from the supplier's standpoint. All they need you to do for them is the bottom of the funnel marketing and advertising and sales, and the customer service after the sale is done. And that's it.
That's so much easier than product development. So much less costly and also it just means that anybody ... if you're willing to learn, then you can pretty much sell in any product category there is. The main skills that you need to know, though, like I said, marketing skills, sales skills, foundational business skills, advertising skills, financial skills, and sales channels skills. Well, sales channel ... what do I mean to say here? Like, the shipping and fulfillment, how to deal with shipping and fulfillment, and different ... like freight and all that stuff.
These are things you'll learn as you go, by the way, so don't expect that you're going to need to go and get a four-year college degree before you get started with this stuff. Just get started, learn as you go, and you'll get better over time.
And if you do want to sell your store, I'm building out a marketplace, the eCommerce Paradise marketplace for high-ticket drop shipping, so as soon as that's ready I'm going to put a link below in this video and I'll probably do another video announcement about it. But it's going to be a marketplace much like the Shopify exchange where you'll be able to find Shopify stores, but it's going to be only high-ticket drop shipping stores, so I have a lot of investors looking at stores that, you know, be ready to buy these high-ticket drop shipping stores.
The cool thing about this marketplace is, it's only going to be this model. This business model. So, investors, they'll know what they're buying and oftentimes they'll already have a team that will be able to pick up that store and manage it, so for you, as the seller, you'll be able to just quickly list your store in there and list out your numbers. It will actively calculate automatically a range in which the investors are probably willing to pay according to the time your store's been around and the amount of profits it's made. Run a gross revenue [inaudible 00:22:08] less costs, less cost of goods sold, less shipping, and then the cost of the software, and stuff like that, too.
So, look forward to that, guys. I'm really excited to offer that and right now, at this current moment, if you do want to sell your store and only for a few thousand, it's either best to do it through Shopify exchange or through a group, and so you can list it in the eCommerce Paradise high-ticket drop shipping group, or you can list it in any other drop shipping groups that you might be on Facebook. Facebook groups are really great. You'll find people are in there that are doing fairly well, they have a few thousand extra bucks lying around that they wouldn't mind scooping up a quick store, then they can take that store that already has suppliers, already has some products listed, and then scale it from there.
So, that's one way to go, guys. But just keep in mind that time is valuable stuff and if you spend two, three months of your life building up a whole store, getting rid of it is the easy way out. The hard way, which is better, is to hunker down, take care of your personal financial issues and learn as much as possible and then get back to that store and grow it. Now I know it can be hard to do that, emotionally. It can feel like you failed or something like that. You might not even be excited about that product category any more, but you've got to get over that. You've got to get over that weird emotional hangup and you've got to just get back into the business-building aspect of it.
Don't try to focus on what the product is and the market and all that. It's nothing about that. It's not about passion. Focus on what that is in a business-building sense. So, if you're completely out of passion about the product anymore and you have some weird emotional hangups about it, selling it might actually be the way to go and getting into a different category that you're more excited about. It might help you re-engage yourself in marketing and the business side of everything.
So it might actually be a good idea. Don't be afraid to do scary things. This stuff, at the end of the day, is not that scary compared to other things in life. All of it is in your head. You're really not doing a whole lot of crazy, physical stuff with this business. It's not that dangerous, honestly. It's just money, and money oftentimes is just a number on the computer screen. You don't even have it in your hand.
So, think about this stuff as a good learning lesson. Marketing is fun. Marketing is exciting, and you should be into it, guys. Get into it.
I'm so happy that ... if you've watched this video to the end, that's awesome, and I know that you're willing and able to become successful, and if you're interested in my masterclass, my coaching programs, you just haven't gotten in there yet, just so you know it's available and it's going on right now. So, don't miss out. Go to ecommerceparadise.com/masterclass and get in there. If you haven't gotten my free niches list, you can go to ecommerceparadise.com/99niches and get that niches list and then get into my drop ship secrets mini course. Over time I will be building more things up so you'll have access to that.
If you have a high-paying job or you have a business already, you're interested in going location-independent, I have a turnkey business package where I'll actually have myself and my team build you out one of these high-ticket drop shipping businesses, which is a store plus all the marketing methods, and once we deliver it, it's going to already be making sales for you and you can take it over from there and scale it and have your team scale it for you. As a business owner, I'm having a team-is-key and we teach people how to do that in our course, which you get full access to when you buy that turnkey package. If you're interested in that, link is in the description or click ecommerceparadise.com/turnkey and it will take you to the product sales page for that.
All right, guys, well, thank you so much for watching. Make sure you subscribe to the channel, subscribe to the podcast as well, and all the links that you need to find everything and anything about eCommerce Paradise is at ecommerceparadise.com. Thanks for watching and I'll see you in the next one.
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 selling high-ticket products online with the drop shipping fulfillment method so you can make more profit per sale, have a sustainable and evergreen online business, get started with very little upfront investment, and live a location independent lifestyle. Trevor owns multiple 7-figure High-Ticket Drop Shipping eCommerce stores and is a digital nomad, traveling the world while working remotely with the help of his team of over 10 virtual assistants from around the world. Trevor is currently located in Bali, Indonesia. Trevor is also 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.