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When you decide to source for great products you need to be prepared that it will be a long and tedious process, and not easy at all. There are many decision to make for example where to start sourcing and which supplies site to use. On the top, there are several sites like AliExpress and many sites from China that should not be excluded right away. You will encounter many negative comments and low ratings of products. Those negative ratings should not discourage you because you will be sifting through so many products that those comments should not be your focus point. They are the easiest way to get distracted from your goal, so you need to move pass them and see them as something normal and regular.
Aliexpress is Popular Among Dropshippers
Aliexpress is one of the largest global online shopping websites, known for its wide product choices and rock-bottom prices. You can basically find any niche, and anything popular and trending on Aliexpress. The price is low enough for dropshippers to add their own margin, and the ePacket shipping solution is the most economical way to order small goods to USA (usually cost $1-2 and deliver around 20 business days). The best of all, as a B2C website, placing a dropshipping order on Aliexpress is the same as any online shopping experience.
Safety is THE MOST IMPORTANT
Also being concerned about the process and who you can trust is absolutely normal, especially if you are new. For this situation is good to know that AliExpress has a safety policy for the buyers called a buyer protection.One of the biggest benefits of AliExpress being a B2C shopping platform is the buyers protections meant for every customer. If the order doesn’t get on time, you are entitled to a refund or a partial/full refund if the product isn’t the same as on the picture.
Easy to Start, Hard to Scale
Aliexpress is probably the best go-to place for dropshipping beginners. With zero upfront cost, it’s pretty friendly for beginners to test the water. However, there are several disadvantages that dropshippers should keep an eye on:
- Update products: People would suggest add at least 5-10 new products to store weekly. It involves researching and sourcing, editing images, writing description, confirming product specs, and finally upload the listing to store. It could cost you decent amount of time at the first step, considering the search engine in Aliexpress is made for consumers not resellers.
- Order fulfillment: You made a sale, congratulations! Now the job next is to open the product link in Aliexpress, select the size/color, click buy now, copy your customer’s shipping address into the blanks, enter your credit card information, and repeat that with your every order. you may need to hire a few more people just to fill in the shipping addresses and source from another Aliexpress seller if a product runs out of stock.
- Account Safety: You will have to place more orders with Aliexpress as your business grows. Unfortunately, Aliexpress doesn’t support bulk purchase, so you have to place order one by one, which could get your Aliexpress account or credit card suspended due to too many transactions daily.
- Shipping: Be aware that most Aliexpress sellers use ‘ePacket’ with average deliver in 20 business days. Customer could get anxious and complain if the package hasn’t delivered in two weeks (even one week). Slow and unreliable delivery could affect your ads ranks, store reputation, and your sales performance.
- Returns, and Customer Care: In many situations, the returns could become a big problem, as shipping the product back to China is expensive and takes long time, and you have to refund your customer from your own pocket in advance.
Using Extensions and Apps
The good thing is that there’s something we can do about the shortages. Useful tools to connect dropshipper’s stores and supplier include Alidropship and Oberlo can help you automate some manual work and achieve higher ROI.
Alidropship is known for its automation and customization features for dropship sellers. With the extension sellers can enjoy advanced filters to find ideal products to sell, get auto-updates on product pricings, and consolidate multiple orders into one. It works with Shopify, WooCommerce and WordPress stores.
With Oberlo, you can source either form its supplier directory or from Aliexpress. Oberlo’s full integration with Shopify makes it the operation center of dropshipping store. Sellers can edit product page, place orders, track packages, track sales performance, and many more. The multi-user account feature is a big benefit for bigger team. Unfortunately Oberlo only works with Shopify stores.
With HyperSKU, a fully integrated dropshipping App with Shopify, sellers can source directly from vetted Chinese suppliers and access to quality products. Sellers as well enjoy the convenience to upload products to Shopify store with one click.
Read more about HyperSKU’s features.