Questions to Ask Yourself Before Starting with eCommerce


Welcome to eCommerce Paradise. 

I'm Trevor, and today's episode is all going to be about questions to ask yourself before starting with eCommerce. 


I have a few updates. I built a new website for eCommerce paradise. And on that website, you can get coaching directly from me. Scroll down and choose the coaching product, and you can purchase it. This coaching includes a phone call over Skype or Facebook video chat. I can go over any part of your online business, your eCommerce business, your options in business, and try to help you move past obstacles and push back to push fast barriers. I'm excited to tell the community out that way. I'm also offering a demo website building package. If you're just getting started, but you don't want to spend the time building a different website or just need a really good optimized demo site built and get suppliers, you can check that out. I've been doing this for years now, and I have a really good system in place. I can create some awesome websites. I will do that for you. 

And the other thing, too, I am also doing is a conversion rate optimization evaluation of your eCommerce website. If you already have one, if you're struggling to get sales and you really want to make you make a big splash in your industry, you want to get some sales, you want to start converting some of that traffic you're sending to your website, you've got to go. I've been doing conversion rate optimization for a long time. So all in all, this will be a really good package, I think, for people that are just starting and they can get an understanding of how to better their website. I'll give tips for future optimizations as well. 

With that being said, there is one more cool update for you guys. I am making courses now. I've created a membership site, and you can go ahead and go to eCommerce and click the courses button at the top. It'll take you to my teachable website, where you'll be sent to a free dropship video course. That's for beginners that are just starting. If you're new with eCommerce, new to drop shopping, but want to get into it and start making some money online, that's a great place to start. You'll get a really good idea of everything from what eCommerce is and what job shopping isn't, how it works to niche selection, how to get good suppliers, and how to choose products to sell. Everything's really good in there. I think it's a multi-hundred dollar course, maybe even thousands of dollars. But I am offering it for free because I want to help the community out and get you guys going. Sign up for that. 

You can also sign up for my Drop Ship Niche Hack's course, where I really go into depth. I go more than just surface-level. I'll show you using my Web browser, researching niches online, finding competitors, finding profitable products to sell. I'll break it all down for you step by step. I even have a whole list of websites you can go ahead and model after and different suppliers that you can call up because I know for sure that they dropship. That course is only forty-seven dollars for a limited time. It's only a one-time payment. You get access to all the future niche reports that I put in that course. It's called dropship niche hacks. Again, just go to and top or the bottom of the website and click the course button. We'll take you right there. 

All right, with that out of the way, I want to get into today's episode. So this is, again, questions to ask yourself before starting with eCommerce. This is kind of a beginner's thing. 

It's really important because people first get into eCommerce and building a dropship website. There's a lot involved, and they know that. You probably know it's a line ball. If you're a beginner, you're listening to this. I want to talk to you.

If you're not a beginner and you know you've been doing eCommerce for a long time, it might also be relevant to you in some ways, because as life goes on, you do have to make some sacrifices, and you do have to kind of change your lifestyle to fit your new career. Truthfully, eCommerce is a career path in life. 

People talk about what career they're going to go into after high school. They're going to get a degree and go to college and stuff like that. People spend tens of thousands, hundreds of thousands of dollars, these expensive MBA hoping that they'll get a job when they get into the workplace, in management or something at a big firm. But the truth is, these days, it's harder and harder to get these jobs. They're more competitive, and more and more startup businesses are actually becoming the big businesses that are hiring. And a lot of times, they don't even look at college degrees. They want to see what your past results have been, and if you're like a freelancer and a go-getter kind of a person, they're probably more apt to choose you over somebody who just went to school and doesn't have any actual real-world experience. 

Career is a lifestyle change. You consider how much time you spend working every single day. For instance, you'll probably spend eight hours at the workplace, 10 hours a day working if it's a grueling job, and sometimes up to six days a week. It can be tough. You spend a lot more time at your workplace than in other places. Consider that eCommerce is a lot like that. You're going to be working from home a lot. And working from home means that you're not going to have all the different distractions and all the different people coming at you that a workplace normally has. You have to be your boss.

It's a lifestyle in the sense that you have to be better at time management. You have to be better at project management. You're going to have to get good at people management and managing their projects and manage their time so that your business flows consistently. 

My question for you is, are you prepared to change your entire lifestyle? 

Before I started eCommerce, my lifestyle was all about waking up, going to work after work. I'd go skate after that. I'd relax, take a shower, eat some food, maybe go out and watch a movie or something like that. After I started my eCommerce business, that all changed. It was all about finding financial freedom and so the ability to not have to work at a job anymore. I could work wherever I wanted to. I could travel the world and stuff like that. Things I wasn't able to do all the time when I had a day job. And so I decided that I was willing to make those sacrifices to change my lifestyle on a day to day basis and work way more on my time off on my own, my own business. I was prepared to make that lifestyle change. 

Are you prepared to make sacrifices? 

These sacrifices are significant. When I was first starting out, I sacrificed my TV. I actually sold it. I sacrificed a videogame system; I got rid of that. I sacrificed a lot of stuff. 

I started working on my website during work, on breaks like a 50-minute break. You usually just go to the break room or chill out, read the Facebook feed, or something like that. Instead of that, I'd put a do not disturb sign on the door and work on my website. They didn't care as long as I was working hard at work. 

I went ahead and sacrificed all my downtime and spent it working on my eCommerce business and building it. And the other thing is I have to learn. You have to make sacrifices as far as entertainment goes in exchange for learning. Instead of going to the movies all the time, consider watching YouTube videos about how to do eCommerce. 

At that time of my life, I was young enough to qualify for free financial aid to college. I actually went to a community college and took actual business courses, and it was very eye-opening. It was good to see all the different types of businesses out there and all the different types of businesses you can start. It did help me a lot. Every single class, I was able to talk with my fellow students and converse with the professors. I would actually stay after class a lot and have conversations with the professor about topics that captured my interest or problems while building my business. The early mentors I had were people that didn't really do that. They just had experience in other businesses. I had to find help wherever I could. 

You have to be willing to make sacrifices like that. You're going to really have to change the lifestyle, sacrifice all the entertainment you usually have during the day. You know, the same thing goes with a lot of other things in life. If you want to get healthy, you got to sacrifice eating junk food. If you want to get fit, you got to sacrifice laziness and couch potato days for gym days, and that's just what comes with the territory.

As far as learning goes, are you prepared to learn new skill sets? 

Learning skill sets is important to your success as an entrepreneur because building a business means you have to be wearing different hats. You have to be learning a lot of different things, like how to build a website. It would be best to learn how to do some coding, make sales copy, drive paid traffic, paid ads, advertising, and things that aren't user-friendly upfront. They're confusing to learn. You're going to have to dig in and figure it out if you're good at that. You know, if you're a DIY kind of person, you like setting up tables from IKEA or building that kind of stuff on your own, or you might be good for it. And if you're not, if you're that have person always need someone else's help. You might struggle a little bit in the beginning. It is a really good idea to get a mentor or a coach to help you out along the way so that you don't get hung up and give up.

Are you prepared to be fearless and take risks? 

Are you prepared to be absolutely fearless about going in certain directions and learning what works and what doesn't work and take risks with your time, your money, especially if you're starting? As things go on, you will take small risks with a little bit of money here and there. It's important to understand that these small risks can lead to big rewards and the bigger risks you take. You have to understand that you have to be fearless to learn and fearless to take action and implement as you learn new skill sets. Don't be afraid to break things. Breaking things is a normal part of life. It's really not that big of a deal when you think about it. The most famous inventors like Thomas Edison, he tried and tried and tried to make a light bulb hundred and hundreds of times until he finally figured it out and make it work. 

You just got to figure things out. If you had mentors and coaches, sometimes they're unreachable; you just got to figure stuff out on your own. You really have to be fearless to experiment, take risks, and not give up. Have that determination, persistence to not give up.

The next question is, what's your number? 

What is the dollar amount that it will take for you to be financially free?

The first place you should really start is how much you can lower your expenses to be comfortable and living in life. A lot of people, they have expenses like expensive cars, expensive rent, whatever. 

Can you downsize your living space? 

Can you downsize to a less expensive car? 

Get rid of the car entirely. Get a bicycle. 

You should be willing to make lifestyle changes to help downsize your monthly expenses to the point where you could become financially free with a passive income of around a few thousand dollars a month. I know that living in an expensive city, Los Angeles, or New York, for instance, will cost you five thousand dollars or more per month in living expenses. But at the same time, if you choose to live in a different place, like, for instance, I'm looking at Tampa, Florida right now, I think it's a really cool city. Living expenses are quite a bit less there. It's also a sales income tax-free state as well. You can dramatically lower your cost of living just by looking at options. 

Financial freedom is all about making enough money passively, as passively as possible, so that you can live the life of your dreams. You know, that whatever that means, it doesn't have to mean you're flying private jets all across the world all the time, sipping cocktails, Rufe bars every night. You can chill and be relaxed all the time, and you're financially free. It just means that you don't have to adhere to a job or location to move around here and there. You'd be surprised that there are places on the earth that are outside the US, of course, that are in places like Malaysia or Thailand or Bali, Indonesia, Philippines, places like Vietnam, places that are very inexpensive to live, and pretty fun. 

Going be going back to the basic question, what is your number? If you want to make ten thousand dollars a month, many people like that number. Ten thousand dollars sounds really nice. You can live in an expensive place like LA or New York. 

What is it going to take, business-wise, to get you there? How many sales is it going to take? Consider taxes, consider insurance, and consider all your living expenses. 

And then beyond that, what's the profit going to be like? Know how many dollars of product to sell. It is what the profit margin has to look like. 

How many sales are you have to make? 

If you can't break all that down, you'll have a really good game plan. Have a financial game plan with your business plans to know where you need to be, and if you're not meeting those goals every quarter, go back to the drawing board, figure out why and make those adjustments. Hire a mentor or a coach to help you get there.

One of the last ones I have here is, what are your dreams? 

Ask yourself that because it's really important as you become an eCommerce entrepreneur. You won't have as many people around you all the time unless you actually intentionally put them there. Put yourself in places like that where there's a lot of people to socialize with. It can become depressing at times because you work really hard. If your dreams aren't to travel around the world and meet cool people, make sure you have a bucket list. Make sure you have a plan to do that because it's really important that you put that down, and you make that a reality for yourself. If you fail to plan, you plan to fail. I've caught myself to where I don't really know exactly what I want to do. I kind of have like an idea, but you can only do so much in a certain period of time.

I want to go to India and travel around all these big cities and stuff like that and see them. I want to see the Taj Mahal. I want to go to Egypt and see you and go to Cairo, see the pyramids. Want to get out to Morocco. I want to get to Las Palmas, Grand Grand Canary Islands. I want to get out to Barcelona again. I want to see Eastern Europe only go to South America. I want to go to South Africa and see Cape Cod and all that. I want to go to Australia, New Zealand, and Tasmania, where, you know, I have plans in place to go to China. Finally, Hong Kong, Japan, Seoul, South Korea, Taiwan. 

There are a lot of cool places I really want to go to. I just want you to know it's a great idea to look at the map, look at the globe, and write a bucket list of all the places you want to go. I know that if I keep working really hard to accomplish that, my goals, my financial goals with eCommerce businesses, I can achieve those travel dreams. 

As you grow older, you'll get to the stage in life where you might be ready to settle down, have children, start a family, have your own house. That could be a part of your long term vision. Go for it. Your dreams are really important part of your eCommerce lifestyle. Having financial independence means you can actually accomplish those dreams more often than you would without it. People who have a normal job can take a week off per year or something like that, two weeks off per year. If they're lucky, you can take off a week, every month or two. So go for it. Make that a part of your life, something that your dream. 

The last thing here is eCommerce. Are you prepared to communicate with customers directly and negotiate with suppliers via phone and e-mail every day? 

I think that this is often looked at when people start eCommerce businesses. People don't realize that you have to communicate with customers via email and phone all the time. To close sales, you have to become a salesman. You negotiate with the suppliers to get lower prices or get a drop ship account. 

Do you know what version of dropship you're going to do and what type of eCommerce you're planning to do? Maybe you want to private label your product. If you want to buy a huge bulk amount of some product, learn how to negotiate with the suppliers to get the lowest price possible. Negotiate with the shipping company so you get the lowest price on shipping as well and freight forwarders. If you're doing dropship and of course, you'll want to negotiate with suppliers to get those great dropship discounts. There are lucrative dealer packages. Learn how to sell. I can't stress this enough. If you're going to become an eCommerce professional, you have to learn how to sell. Learn to persuade somebody to do something. There's like a sales process called an idea. It's attention, interest, desire, and action, and that's the process. You can take every single lead through it. You're going to get their attention first builder interest, really build that core desire, get to their core desires, and build a desire for that product and get them to take action. Close the sale, ask them for the sale. 

There are many different ways you can close a sale by asking them what color they want, what size they want, what credit card they're going to pay with that kind of stuff. There are many different types of closes out there. If you want to learn more about sales, there are some amazing books and audiobooks available for free out there. Go to YouTube, type in how to sell, or go to the Kindle store. 

When you learn how to sell, you'll be able to write sales copy. Selling via the written word is one of the most lucrative positions available. Digital marketers of today make a lot of money because they know copywriting because they know sales funnels. If you are a beginner and you're getting started and willing to make the adjustments to your lifestyle, sacrifice to learn the new skill sets, willing to be fearless and take risks, willing to write down that number, and break down your lifestyle to the point where you can achieve that number within a certain amount of time, then you are ready. If you are willing to work with customers and suppliers directly, you are willing to go on the phone and close those sales because it's super superimportant, then you are ready. If you are already in eCommerce, you're already doing some of this, and maybe you lack on certain parts of it, that's fine. Understand that and accept it and be willing to work on it because we all have things that we're good at. We all have things that we're bad at.

Focus on your strengths. Find a partner that's really good at what you're not good at. Partner with them. Focus on your strengths and hire employees that can do what you're not good at, whatever it takes. I'm really lucky to have my wife working with me. She does a lot of stuff that I'm not good at, and she does an amazing job at it. Whereas for me, I do a lot of things that she's not good at, and I do an amazing job with it. 

There's are so many ways to do this. I'm really excited to hear your feedback. Please go to the website. If you want to read information, check out the blog or check out my courses, and check the YouTube channel.

If you want to check out what I'm doing in my travels, just go to That's my personal account. You can also check out That's my new blog for my Nomad travels. I got a lot of good stuff coming. You can learn more about living overseas and life on the road. It's pretty exciting lifestyle. 

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.

Resources for Starting A High-Ticket Drop Shipping eCommerce Store

These are the resources I've created to help you start your own high-ticket dropshipping eCommerce store:

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