Nexcess
Nexcess Blog Logo
February 08, 2021

Beyond AliExpress, Building a Dropship Site with Name Brand Products

If you’re like many new dropshippers that get into the game only to find out that it’s harder than it looks, this article is probably for you. Before we dive into building a site with name brand products, let’s consider a fictitious business in Los Angeles.

Tina’s Bike Service has been in business for over 10 years serving members of the Los Angeles community. For 10 years Tina has worked out of a small garage tuning, repairing, and building bikes for her customers. Her customers are willing to pay a premium to have her work on their bikes. While business has been great and steadily growing, many of her customers come to her for service, but head to online retailers or local sporting goods shops to purchase spare parts, upgrades, and accessories. Tina has noticed the trend and she’s thinking about opening an online store. She’s hoping that she can make her loyal customer’s lives easier by offering them a curated list of products that can be delivered straight to their door. Tina’s customers trust her, and the only reason they seek out products elsewhere is because she doesn’t offer them for sale (and doesn’t have enough space in her garage for retail).

Why build a dropship site with name brand products vs. AliExpress

When your customers are extremely price sensitive and willing to wait for a good deal, AliExpress is a great drop shipping option. AliExpress vendors often race to provide bargain basement prices (with longer shipping times), and as a result, you can offer those bargains to your customers. While often an effective motivator, price isn’t always the driver behind every purchasing decision. If price were always the driver, we wouldn’t likely see many luxury brands.

Brand loyalty, on the other hand, can be a huge driver for higher dollar sales in your online and offline business. And, if your customers are loyal to your brand, it’s likely they’ll be interested in purchasing other brands recommended by someone they trust (aka, you). If you have an audience or customer base that’s loyal and not price sensitive, you’re likely to do well offering a dropshipping site built with name brand products.

Curation is key

No matter the product category or mix, curation is always important. Curated or niche sites are easier to market, easier to navigate, rank higher on search engines, command higher prices, and, most importantly, get more sales. Because you’ll be selling name brand products for name brand prices, make sure to hand pick items individually or by brand / category. Think of the products and categories that your customers most often ask for and focus on those items first.

Find great suppliers

You may be surprised to know that many suppliers contract with data distribution companies to provide dropshipping to their wholesalers. This means that it’s possible to have a direct relationship with a supplier, get great prices, and also have a dropshipping relationship. Many direct-to-supplier relationships will require some sort of proof of existing business relationships or sales history. Not able to create a relationship with the name brand supplier you need to sell on your site? No problem! Companies like Wholesale2b and Doba make it easy to connect your new store to thousands of name brands through their existing wholesale relationships.

Build a direct relationship with your customers

And now we tune back into the story of Tina’s Bike Service. Her business is known for awesome service. That’s something she doesn’t want to give up as she creates a dropship site. That’s why she decided to publish her own terms and conditions, has strong fulfillment, return, and customer service policies, and has taken ownership of making things right when things go sideways. 

Just because you’re dropshipping name brand products doesn’t mean that those brands are responsible for your customer service. Look at the policies of your suppliers and echo those policies within your store. Then, when things don’t go exactly as planned, you can take great care of your customers with the backing of awesome brands.

Build new direct relationships with suppliers

Dropshipping name brand products is the stepping stone to direct supplier relationships. Take note of how much demand (how many product views) and how many sales you’re seeing on a monthly basis. Break the information down by product and brand and note trends that you’re seeing. Are certain products becoming more popular? Are some brands seeing a high amount of views but fewer purchases? Because dropshipping is often more expensive for everyone (your discount is lower and your shipping cost is usually higher), it makes sense to seek out direct relationships with suppliers armed with the real data you’re seeing in your monthly reports. Then, instead of selling slightly above retail, you’ll be able to negotiate wholesale prices that keep you competitive with others in your industry. As a dropshipper of name brand products, your goal should be to become a direct wholesaler for as many products as possible.

Conclusion

Building a dropship site with name brand products is a great way to roll existing customer loyalty and trust into a new or expanded line of business and reach people where they’re shopping every single day. Of course, if you’re ready to get started building your dropshipping store, the best place to start is with a Managed WooCommerce company. Need help getting started? Just give us a shout!

Avatar for Mendel Kurland
Mendel Kurland
Mendel is the Agency / Developer Advocate for WooCommerce at Nexcess and a WooCommerce & WordPress expert. He loves helping store builders solve complex problems for their clients.