Many dropshippers think, “Why wouldn’t customers just order the product cheaper on the suppliers’ website directly instead of buying from my store? “
But here is the truth —product is not everything!
When people buy things, they don’t buy into only products. They buy into the marketing strategy, design, positioning, trust and lifestyle these products represent. With dropshipping, you improve your focusing on the marketing strategy of your store and differentiate yourself from other eCommerce stores.
This was what Prabir noticed before starting a dropshipping store. Prabir works a 9 to 5 job in Canada just like many other people who live a corporate lifestyle. He was bored of seeing dull faces on the subway while going to his job every morning.
“I didn’t want to be miserable like this for the rest of my life while working paycheck to paycheck. So, I wanted to do something for myself, and I decided to start an ecommerce store.” he said.
Moreover, he shared his success path with us, including how he started dropshipping, what was his marketing strategy, how to use Pinterest for dropshipping, and how he got his first Pinterest sale in 48 hours!
Prabir didn’t have any experience in dropshipping before. To improve his dropshipping knowledge, he was watching YouTube videos, reading blogs, and bought an online course. To start dropshipping professionally, he decided to work with a mentor.
“It was a good investment. I recommend everyone to stick with a mentor who has a different mindset and ideas to help when you are confused”
“I tried my best to find the right products which have a reliable supplier based on the US. Starting dropshipping with Spocket was really handy for finding good quality products along with US suppliers.”
Prabir’s 3 product selection advice:
After deciding which products to sell, he created his store. For his strategy, he didn’t focus on a niche in the beginning.
“At the moment, I have a general store with different categories. Based on products that sell the most in the current store, I will begin a new niche store around it,” he says.
Prabir wanted to get started dropshipping in the easiest way possible.
“I wanted to use Shopify. Anybody can build a store there easily. The amount of apps and store customization are amazing.”
Joining active Facebook Groups especially around dropshipping, ecommerce, or online businesses is extremely helpful as other people can give you advice and insights of creating a dropshipping store.
The leading pop up & email marketing tool for eCommerce websites. It helps to convert website visitors into customers with campaigns based on user actions. Prabir utilizes their exit intent pop up feature.
Tabs by station (free):
Creates customizable tabs and allows you to assign them to products by collections, tags, vendors. It looks more professional and websites like newegg.ca use it.
Power Tools Suite (paid):
It is an 10-in-1 app bundle. Apps help you to save time and optimize your store with smart deletion, auto hiding products, and global sort orders. Prabir uses it to simplify his website navigation in order to find objects quickly and save time.
ManyChat is a simple designed Facebook Messenger chat bot for marketing. It takes customer service responsibility and provides service solutions without asking email address to customers.
Helps you to build a tracking page that customers can track and trace all shipments. Also, it sends automated, timely and personalized emails. “It provides a strong emotional connection to the website even after the purchase. We value human emotions,” he says.
JSON-LD for SEO (free):
Shows your product details in the search results to increase the conversion rate from organic searchers. It reduces indexing time and shows ratings of the products on Google.
A one-stop shop for marketing automation, Omnisend lets you create automated workflows for all of your channels: email, SMS, Facebook Messenger, WhatsApp, Viber, push notifications, and more. This is the app for those who want to take email marketing further.
Google Shopping Feed (free):
It syncs your Shopify store with Google Merchant Center to improve organic search traffic.“If your store is available on Google Shopping, customer will believe your store is legit and trustworthy.”
Bulk Image Edit (free):
Optimizes image sizes, alt-text and file names to improve SEO. Also, it can watermark your product and theme images to avoid using them by your competitor.
While creating the store, Prabir focused on 4 things; Domain name, SEO, Design and Social Media Marketing.
1- Domain Name: It was very important for him. “I have seen people choose very long, weird domain names that nobody can remember. Also, some of them use a hyphen between the words,” he says. “One word or two words are perfect, but more than that is difficult to remember most of the times.
2- SEO: He followed Neil Patel’s guidelines for SEO and applied them to his store at first. But, to improve his search engine rank, he hired an SEO expert on Fiverr. The expert wrote articles for his store, provided backlinks from guest posting and optimized website speed.
3- Design: Prabir believes design and marketing can sell any product so he focused his energy on store design. He used a custom paid theme called dropship theme by flyingstartonline and hired a freelancer for the logo.
“I can tell you that I attached great importance to the psychological reaction text fonts and button colors create.”
4- Social Media Marketing: You should know which social media channels your potential customers use in order to reach them. To do that, Prabir focused on Pinterest marketing.
“I thought about dropshipping with Pinterest because Pinterest users are more likely to buy than Facebook users,” he says.
For consumers, Pinterest is a place to hunt and gather. For brands, it is a gold mine. Consider this: as Shopify analyzed data from 37 million social media visits to over 520,000 Shopify store orders and found Pinterest had a 58.95% average order value while Facebook had 55%.
Pinterest was the second largest social source of traffic, and resulting visits had the third highest average order value.
“Everyone who started eCommerce using Facebook Ads. It's a good platform, but it’s overused,” he says.
After choosing the right social media channel to focus on, it is time to create a community around it. And here is the 4 steps Prabir followed for dropshipping with Pinterest.
Prabir created his Pinterest account with the designer he worked with. He got help while setting up his board designs, marketing strategy and automation process.
Besides the boards about products he’s selling, he created relevant boards to get traffic to his Pinterest profile.
“Inspirational and motivational quotes was a section that drove a lot of traffic along with other boards”
After he set up his Pinterest account, he started to use the tailwind app. With tailwind app, he shared posts automatically and rescheduled the sharing times to stay active.
By sharing regularly, you tell the algorithm you are an active user. Thus, the algorithm highlights your posts more on any social media platform, and you can reach more users.
“Once I set the post-automation, I forgot thinking about when to share. And thanks to it, I have more than 150,000+ monthly viewers on my Pinterest account now.”
“For finding most saved pin on Pinterest, I used a software called adnalytics.io, recommended by Franklin Hatchett. And, it was really helpful.”
By analyzing most viewed pins, he could understand what his community has an interest in. It’s a really helpful way for optimizing posts and finding a niche to create a store about.
“I gave advertisements on Pinterest after three months when my account is fully warmed up,” Prabir says.
Once you analyze who your customer base is, it is easy to set ads and get returns quickly. “I got my first sale on the second day of giving ad on Pinterest”
His ad strategy is pretty simple. For one product, he sticks with $10 daily for five days. If he doesn’t get a sale from the ad, he stops it. However, he got his first Pinterest sale in 48 hours after giving the first Pinterest ad.
“I would say easily that $1000 I have spent until now.”
He’s aware that it won’t be cheap to start dropshipping. And, he didn’t believe to dropshipping gurus who say start dropshipping for free.
“One thing I can tell is don’t be stingy; otherwise, you can’t be successful. And I don’t believe that you can open a dropshipping store starting with $0 investment just like some YouTubers says.”
Prabir doesn’t want to stop here. He wants to create his second store around a niche, and he wants to expand his social media network. Spocket Academy was a great initial resource in taking the next steps. Prabir was able to improve his knowledge on running different types of ads on various social media platforms, branding, and analytics.
“I just created a Youtube channel and Instagram page for my store in order to add my product videos. I think videos are the future of dropshipping and marketing. I will continue with Youtube ads along with Pinterest ads to dropshipping,” he says.
Not only did he start a side hustle with dropshipping, but the skills he is developing on eCommerce will open up a future full of new opportunities. With enough work coming in through his social media marketing work, he would be able to wave goodbye to the 9-5 and work for himself.
“Just like every business, it’s hard to get started but I believe I will succeed.”
Muammer is a marketing analytics manager at Turkcell and freelance contributor. He extracts meaning from the data and turns them into stories.