A10.8 Words to the Wise

Parting words of advice:

  • Just like everything else: dive in and start making mistakes
  • Don’t be a moron about customer service
    • My personal templates will be shared with the replay
  • Walking a fine line RE: copyright infringement is playing with fire
  • Dropshipping Delays & Lost Products
  • Chinese New Year a.k.a. the Lunar New Year
  • When to move from dropshipping to warehousing your own products
    • Only really advisable if you’ve established a brand or VERY unique sourcing
  • Helpful apps & future expansions for your eCom store
    • Social proof notifications, scarcity/countdown timers, retargeting apps, and more…

A10.7 Fulfilling Orders When Sales Are Made

Fulfillment depending on the business model:

  • Managing inventory yourself? Either you or an employee are packing & shipping.
  • Working with a fulfillment center? Likely some sort of app integration or csv sent daily.
  • Dropshipping? Likely Dropified or Oberlo.

A10.6 How Do I Get Traffic to An eCommerce Website?

It’s all already in the training…

  • Lower budget? Content marketing strategy taught at FIMP and “put on steroids” through IMP
    • Getting traffic for an audience via keyword research/SEO/content marketing
    • Using conversion optimization, monetization training, and email marketing to monetize
  • Higher budget? Facebook ad training taught in A8 & A9 at IMP
    • Much faster track, but also a lot more expensive ($X,XXX minimum)

A10.5 Understanding the Psychology of Online Shoppers

  • Two major categories: Seeking impulse buys vs. establishing a brand
    • Impulse buyers: Have to REALLY spike emotions
      • Likely forces you into a constant product launch cycle
      • “Here today, gone tomorrow” — Often burn bright but very quickly
    • Establishing a brand: Typically more expensive, but also much more dependable & long-term
      • Will likely have long-term, multi-purchase customers
      • Is a more valuable sellable asset
      • Makes it easier to pursue your own products & house more inventory
  • Keeping this in mind during niche selection
    • Seeking impulse buyers?
      • Quick validation or failure, easy to pivot, fast (but often short-lived) cashflow
    • Establishing a brand?
      • More market research, a “marathon” mindset, will cost more & take more time to validate but will also stick much longer if you find a winning product:audience match

A10.4 Sourcing Products for Your Store

  • Purchasing In Bulk vs. Dropshipping First
    • Working with a decent budget & existing audience?
      • You might consider securing inventory first: purchasing in bulk or seeking consignment.
    • Lower budget, no audience, and seeking the simplest approach?
      • Probably not worth the risks that come with inventory: dropshipping is probably the better first step.
  • Pros & cons of securing inventory first
    • Pro: Better profit margins
    • Pro: MUCH better shipping times
    • Pro: Typically happier customers
    • Con: Harder & more expensive to ship internationally
    • Con: Requires inventory management labor & expenses
    • Con: Large up-front costs and therefore a lot of risk
  • Pros & cons of dropshipping
    • Pro: No inventory management or labor
    • Pro: Very little up-front costs or risk
    • Pro: Easy & cheap international shipping
    • Con: Usually costs you at least 50% of your profit margins
    • Con: Pretty dismal shipping times, especially in an “Amazon Prime” world
    • Con: Much more customer service intensive, resulting in spiteful customers & chargebacks
  • My recommended path to most people…
    • Unless you have a lot of capital and a VERY strong understanding of an existing market: dropshipping is probably a best first step to get proof of concept
      • You can scale out from there
    • But what about sourcing products?
  • Sourcing products for either model
    • Inventory/consignment: Wholesalers, trade shows, Alibaba, and similar sites
      • Almost always room for negotiation when buying in bulk
      • Consider finding a good sourcing agent or trusted contact to avoid “Gold Samples” and other commonly-employed tactics
      • “A section of its own” — We’ll talk about this more in-depth in a later IMP section
    • Dropshipping: AliExpress is most straightforward & common
      • Many others have cropped up (and will continue to) in time
      • Likely want at least $20 gross profit on each item
        • Which is where “perceived value” becomes very important
      • Diving into AliExpress so you know how to search & what to look for

A10.2 Which Platform Should You Use?

Woocommerce, Shopify, or Something Else?

  • My initial mindset toward these options
  • My experiences with Woocommerce vs. Shopify
  • Why I’ll always use Shopify for the foreseeable future

A10.1 Introduction & What to Expect…

Giving this section some context…

  • My background on this side of the industry
  • My thoughts on cash-strapped entrepreneurs in this space…
  • “Dropshipping is Dead”
  • Setting realistic expectations
  • What you’re going to walk away from this section with.