I decided to give it a go after coming across Oberlo in a Facebook Group back in December. I thought, why not give it a shot as an experiment during my semester break, and that’s how it got started.
With dropshipping, e-commerce store-owners can sell and ship products to their customers without actually ever seeing or handling the products. After you sell a product, you simply buy it from a supplier and have it shipped directly to the customer. Dropshipping is far from perfect, but it’s clearly one of the easiest ways to jump-start an online store.
Melvin got started with less than a $100 investment. All he put in was his time, a domain name, and a Shopify + Oberlo subscription. “Dropshipping allowed me to focus on what I do best; bringing in traffic and converting customers” he says.
Picking a product idea
Given the access to thousand of dropshipped products, Melvin started off by picking his store category — clothing. He then narrowed that very broad category down by testing a constant stream of ideas, retaining the ones that gained traction and removing the ones that didn’t work.
As a tiny startup, he knew he needed to find a niche to inhabit. The challenge in a clothing niche is the difficulty of gai...
... middle of paper ...
...any e-commerce startups are trying to speak too many languages to a poorly defined audience, which only serves to confuse the customer and fails to make a store stand out in a crowded market.
For those of you who question if Instagram is right for your business, Melvin suggests checking out Shopify’s guide, 50 Ways to Make Your First Sale, which he says is the beginner’s Holy Grail.
It looks like the combination of focus on sales, a specific niche product, and the right message delivered through the right channels worked quite well in transforming what Melvin thought of as a summer break experiment into a life changing business.
After serving more than 4,000 customers, Melvin sold his business to focus on finishing his studies. He’s looking forward to traveling as a nomad for few months, as he says, “to experience life while building the next dropshipping venture.”
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