1. Unrealistic Expectations
These are amazing business models that have the potential to totally change your life BUT you need to have realistic expectations. Too many people take my courses and then expect to get-rich-quick! This is a real business and like all businesses, it takes time, dedication and patience.
I’m giving you (for FREE!) all the knowledge and skills you need but that doesn’t mean success will happen overnight. Sure, I’ve had students that have made thousands of dollars in their first month but the majority take 3-6 months to get this point.
Download Our Free Report
How You Can Tap On 1000's of Available Digital Products To Make Commissions
So be realistic with your expectations, don’t get disillusioned in the first week, realize this may take a few months and never give up.
The rewards will be well worth it.
2. Poor time management
We are all busy, I get that, but poor time management is something that can kill a business from the start. You may well have a full-time job, a busy family life and perhaps the weekends are already filling up well in advance. So what’s the solution? How can you make time for this great business model?
The answer is ‘little and often’. In other words, it’s way better to dedicate 30 mins a day, every day, than it is to try and do 3.5 hours on a Saturday for example. By applying the ‘little and often’ approach you will reduce stress and be amazed at how much you are getting done as the weeks go by.
It also means you are living more in the moment, you’re constantly thinking about ways to improve and the excitement is always there. If you try to sit down once a week you have to almost start over each time, which is a time waster in itself.
And when you are working on your eCommerce business, be sure to switch off all other distractions – both online and offline! Of course, 30 mins isn’t a golden rule but I would say it’s a minimum. If you have more time to dedicate to your business the faster it will grow.
3. Spending too much time creating the perfect website (at least in the beginning)
This isn’t necessarily a mistake BUT, in the beginning, at least, a perfect looking website is not as important as you might think. You see, content is king.
It’s not so much what it looks like, but what you are selling and who your customers are. I’m not saying don’t create a great looking site, it’s important, but so many students spend 3 months tweaking the software to create an amazing site and then the advertising and marketing is a mere after-thought.
So, get a website up and running that looks great within the first month but don’t worry if it doesn’t look perfect.
Then, follow my guidelines on picking products and above all finding your perfect customer – that’s what counts. If you’re still not convinced have a look at craigslist.com, it looks like something from 1991 but it’s one of the most visited websites in the world that generates hundreds of millions in revenue. Get my point 🙂
4. It’s all about the images
Sure, great product descriptions will help sell BUT it’s the images that really boost sales. On-line we don’t get to touch and feel the product and we can’t ask a salesperson for his or her advice.
So, it’s so important to have great looking product images to sell your products. In my courses, I hammer this home and teach a very effective yet simple way to describe the product with bullet points.
But despite my efforts, when I do site reviews for people I often see terrible images and product descriptions that are blatantly copy pasted from sites such as AliExpress where the English is very poor. My heart sinks each time as I know how much the person has put into the site.
So if you find what you feel is a great product BUT the images are terrible then just move on, forget it, don’t dwell on it. There’s no point adding products to your site with sub-standard images.
5. Failing to manage customer expectations
As a dropshipper, one of the biggest challenges is the shipping times which can often be long – this in a world where behemoths such as Amazon offer next day delivery. I must get 10 questions a day on how to handle this and the answer I give always the same – you need to manage the customer’s expectations!
In other words, be upfront and honest with how long it will take. Add a ’10 day shipping’ note on the product page or better still, create a separate page called ‘Shipping and Handling’ and explain how the process will work.
The point is that if people know up-front before they order, how long it might take you will have very few problems down the road. The real problems arise when you mention nothing and then inform them in an email after purchase.
Or worse, they email you 5 days later, already angry, asking about the whereabouts of their product. So be honest and upfront, manage the customer’s expectations correctly and your complaints and problems will be massively reduced.
6. Failing to mark up your products sufficiently
If you’ve taken my courses, you’ll know that most of the time I teach you to buy at $4 or less and sell at $15-20 and there are many good reasons for this. The main one, of course, is that you are in this to make money. But it’s little more scientific than that.
You’ve got to remember there will be a small advertising cost to pay, there will be the odd refund or return and sadly those pesky tax people will want a piece of the pie at some point also! So, if you don’t mark up considerably, you risk doing a lot of work for very little money.
By way of example, I had one student who was selling cat socks (socks for humans with cats on them) and was selling a ton. Unfortunately, he was buying at $4 and selling at $6 which leaves basically nothing when you remove the cost of sale.
The sales boomed as he spent hours and hours fulfilling order but at the end of the day, he had virtually nothing in his pocket. It’s a bit cruel, but sometimes I refer to this type of seller as the ‘busy fool’. I hope you get my point!
7. The wrong price bracket
In my opinion, If you really want to succeed in dropshipping, you need to be in the impulse item market. This means products that people will buy on impulse and for me, that’s the $20 range.
This is SUPER important because the other question I get all the time is ‘how can we compete with Amazon’? Well, of course, you can’t, and we’d be daft to even try. And that’s where impulse items come in.
People will buy a bracelet they love or a cute dog collar they just have to have, on IMPULSE. For $20 they are unlikely to spend hours trawling the net to see if they can save $1, they’ll just go ahead and buy it.
Now imagine you’re selling TVs at $800. Yep, it’s a completely different ball game. Your customer is far more likely to spend hours looking for the best deal and at the end of the day will most likely purchase from a trusted megabrand (wouldn’t you?). So make sure you are in the right price bracket and you’ll be one step closer to a great business.
8. Forgetting about the marketing
So this is how it often goes. A student takes my course and gets excited by the huge potential. They spend months constructing an amazing looking site (see my point above!) and then think ‘right who can I sell this to’?
They then do a quick test advert on Facebook with little thought for the target market, sales are minimal and they struggle to make a real business.
I know that’s a bit harsh, but so many people forget about the marketing, or at best consider it as an afterthought.
THE MARKETING IS THE MOST IMPORTANT PART !!! It’s also the trickiest to master but Facebook has given us the opportunity to laser-target our perfect customer like never before.
I wish you all the best with your new and exciting venture and I hope you’ve found this ‘cheat sheet’ to be really useful.