Retailing on eBay: Drop-Shippers and Profit Margins
For the third installment of my “Retailing on eBay” series, I’d like to take a minute to talk to you about finding drop-shippers. There are plenty of lists out there where you can find drop-shippers. Usually though, no one is giving you the straight dope on the quality of these companies, and you have no idea what to expect.
First of all, if you’re not already using FireFox for your web browser, go get it now. It’s one of the safest, most wonderful browsers on the planet. With tabbed browsing and a whole slew of extensions (plug-ins or add-ons) that make it even more useful, you’re wasting time right now if you aren’t using it.
Once you have that taken care of, you’re going to want to open multiple tabs by pressing CTRL+T in Windows and Apple+T if you’re using a Mac. In each window, you should have open one of the following sites (open more tabs so you can have each one open): ebay.com, Amazon.com, Froogle.com, and Google.com. This is so you can comparison shop when you find a new drop-shipper.
Secondly, don’t follow along with any site that asks you to install anything, or that asks you for money before giving you access to their lists. You’ll always be taking a risk and in the long run you’ll probably be able to find the same sites they are listing in Google. You just have to be good at looking. I often go to Google and will type in “drop shipping wholesale China -list” and I’ll skip the wholesale lists and go straight to a list of Chinese drop-shipping wholesalers.
Finally, when checking out these drop-shippers, remember to think about your profit margins. Comparison shop to see what the imported Chinese item is going to cost you up front, including shipping, so that you can charge an adequate amount for your item. Also, keep in mind that eBay has a schedule of fees, and you’ll want to know how much eBay or Amazon will be taking in their slice of the pie. If you use PayPal, be prepared to serve up another slice of that profitable pie. You don’t want to just break even and have your efforts be for nothing, or even lose money on the deal! It sounds silly to have to remind you of that, but I’m telling you from experience!
Here’s another company I use to drop-ship an item you might not normally expect to sell: Beer Box Hats. These sell one at a time for $15 on the wholesaler’s site. I sell these on Amazon for around $23.99 + $6.99 shipping and am making a nice profit.
Next time in the fourth installment, I’ll talk about a free eBay tool that comes with (mostly) no strings attached that saves you money on making an attractive listing without using eBay’s extra marketing options, and I’ll have yet another drop-shipping company website for you.