So, you’ve created your awesome Shop1 store and you are ready to sell. But how do you get your first sale? This is a great question. There are a few steps you need to take on your dropshipping journey before you make your first sale. Let’s talk about them!
1. Define Your Brand
Defining your brand is important because it defines everything about your company, from company values to your product and customer niches to how you market your dropshipping store. Your brand promise is almost like a blueprint for your business and something that leaves no doubt in the customer’s mind what benefit your store brings to them.
Let’s use Lindsey’s experience as an example. She was having trouble deciding what she wanted to sell, who she wanted to sell to, and how to be different. She hadn’t defined her brand and was winging it. She realized early on that this was not going to work at all. So she did her homework on what niche she wanted her dropshipping business to be connected to and got to work building her brand.
To make herself different she knew she would need to narrow her market so she could be a bigger fish in a smaller pond. By doing this, she was able to match her brand promise,which focused on providing quality active wear at an affordable price, to the products and customers it would affect the most.
2. Pick the products that match your Brand
As mentioned before, Lindsey discovered that just selling clothing was not going to work. The market was saturated with people selling a broad range of clothing and she couldn’t differentiate herself from her competitors.
Her first solution was to narrow down her target niche. Lindsey was an extremely active person. She loved the gym, hiking, running, sports … pretty much anything that kept her physically active. It made her rethink her niche strategy. She realized that with her knowledge and passion for being active that she was extremely qualified to dropship active-wear products.
She used this knowledge in her marketing and in her customer engagement and was able to drive more traffic to her store and grow her customer base.
3. Promote and engage to the correct people
So now that she knew what her target niche was, she was able to put together a plan on how to get people to think of her dropshipping store when they thought of active-wear. She decided to check out Social Media first. After all, the majority of people use it actively, and it is one of the most resource efficient and effective ways to reach her target audience.
Lindsey wanted to not only involve herself in the communities relating to her niche, but also create her own community. She joined different communities on social media. Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Reddit, Pinterest, and even Tik-tok.
The cool thing she found was that she could also create her own company page and build a community there. She made sure she was involved in the local community meet-ups for different activities so people knew who she was and built relationships.
She stayed engaged with the people in all of these communities, especially her own store pages. She would put exercise challenges up there and used images of her wearing the products she sold on her Shop1 dropshipping store while doing the exercises. She even created a Reddit thread for people to share their own experiences.
Lindsey also took out some of the pay-per-click ads on the relevant social media sites. For example, Facebook’s algorithms allow for her to target her ads to show for people who are interested in the activities and clothing she sells.
It made her advertising expenditures more efficient and the results more effective. These steps were key to driving the level of traffic she started getting to her store.
4. Offer Free Shipping
Something you see with a lot of dropshipping platforms is that they partner with Chinese suppliers. AliExpress is a great example of this. Many of those products are designed and shipped from China. This takes extra time and money for shipping. And if there is a problem, getting a replacement is just as slow.
Shop1 only partners with suppliers that are set up to ship from within the U.S. This means faster shipping times, and faster customer service. Shop1 also offers free shipping on our Entrepreneur and Business plans. Your items even get a Free Shipping badge on all product listings.
5. Engage in Entrepreneurial Behaviors
Lindsey discovered that there was more to being an entrepreneur and running her very own eCommerce dropshipping business, not from an operations point of view necessarily, however,being an entrepreneur is noticeably different than being a 9-5 employee.
She quickly realized that she was her own boss. She quickly learned how to manage her own time, her own workflow, and make the decisions that determine the success of her business. Essentially, being an entrepreneur is a lifestyle.
Something that became evident to Lindsey was the need for patience. She was doing all of the things necessary to drive traffic to her store. She had altered her behavior so she was managing her business successfully. She kept working hard each day, but wasn’t getting the sales.
She started to feel frustrated, but then decided to sit back and take a look at the data. Because the social media sites give you so much data analytics about your ads, she realized that the ad she had out needed to be retooled to fit her target audience better.
After making the necessary adjustments, she was still waiting for that first sale. Lindsey learned through this process that patience was key. Normally, a new eCommerce business will not start making sales right away. It takes time and constant retooling of your advertisements and positioning. But as Lindsey discovered, that sale will come.