Choosing the right products is one of the most important stages when setting up an online store. Even the most well-developed online store will not earn if you forget to prepare a good offer.
Find out how you can choose products for dropshipping, even experienced retailers forget about them.
Even the most well-developed online store will not earn if you forget to prepare a good offer.
Product selection – 8 questions
1. To what group of customers do I want to address my store’s offer?
2. Is there a market demand for these products?
3. Do I have knowledge about the products I want to sell?
4. Is it possible to apply the so-called cross-selling (sale of complementary products or services)?
5. How much work and costs will be associated with marketing activities?
6. How strong is competition on the market?
7. What do others think about it?
8. When should I say “check”?
1. Who do I want to reach?
The selection of a target group is an attempt to define a group of customers with specific needs that we want to meet. The better we do this, the easier it will be for us to conduct effective promotion and sales.
It makes no sense for an online store that uses the benefits of Dropshipping of clothing, e.g. dresses, to also offer aquarium accessories and fish food. Of course, the combination of different, at first glance, mismatched categories can bring positive effects, but it must be a well-thought step.
The owner of the store should know his main recipient, his expectations and how important is the product category offered to him.
Define your customer target group. It makes no sense for an online store selling underwear to also offer fish food.
2. Who is looking for our product?
Another important issue is to examine the demand for a given product on the market and sales potential. We should think about whether there are people willing to buy the products we want to sell? If so, how long will it last? Will it be possible to expand the offer with new products in the same category? Let’s not forget about the price and quality of our product compared to its replacements.
We can review current product trends and growth opportunities through some of the tools available on the Internet, such as Google Trends or the Keyword Planner. We can also browse our offers on popular auction sites.
3. Do we know our products?
It is also important whether the product category we choose will generate a lot of questions from our future customers. If we do not have a lot of knowledge about our offer and the questions will concern, for example, technical details, then conducting professional consultancy may prove difficult and time-consuming.
In a lingerie store, the size table and material composition will be important, but in the case of an exotic fish food store, the composition information alone may not be enough.
4. Cross-Selling – will I sell anything else?
When choosing product categories, we should also include cross-selling, which is a profitable sale of the additions to the main product.
If you are going to run a dropshipping clothing store, e.g. with ball gowns, it may be a good idea to expand your offer with matching shoes or handbags. The higher the potential for Cross-Selling, the greater the likelihood of high profits.
The Cross-Selling technique is demanding in terms of proper selection of additives. It will definitely be easier to find a supplier who will provide us with a wide range of products.
5. Marketing – how can I reach the client?
In order for a customer to buy something in our store, first, he has to learn about its existence. Marketing is crucial and very important, especially in e-commerce – when choosing a specific type of assortment, we have to take into account the workload and costs associated with it.
It is worth considering the positioning of the store in search engines, partner programs, presence on auction sites such as Allegro and eBay and in price comparison websites, social media, etc. There are many methods and not each of them brings the same results – that’s why it is worth getting to know them or ask a specialist for advice.
The choice of marketing activities will depend on the type of product, target group, business development and competition. If we are setting up the first online store, it is best to consult people who already have experience in this matter.
6. How strong are our competitors?
Usually, we are not alone on the market, competitors are already on it or will be there soon. We should analyze its actions, look at the methods, sources, and strategies of acquiring customers, determine strengths, e.g. position in search engines, customer reviews, brand recognition.
The analysis of our competitors’ activities is also an analysis of their aggressive actions, such as using dumped prices. If the sale is only possible at very low margins or with high service costs, even a very good range will not bring big benefits because only a low profit would be possible in such case.
7. What do others think?
We often forget that not all people think and act the same way as we do. That is why it is worth asking and consulting all ideas with trusted people before they are implemented. The more people ask for your opinion about the store and its range, the greater the chance of success.
8. When do you say “check”?
Finally, a very important issue that is easy to forget – the time frame and the success/failure criterion.
The introduction of a new product package for sale can be treated as a kind of project, so at the beginning, we should specify at least three dimensions:
You should specify whether broadening the store’s offer is only aimed at selling new products, or if you want to achieve some additional benefits, e.g. improving the image of the store, increasing traffic from search engines and price comparison websites, etc.
The time is limited so it is good to plan work related to introducing products to the store’s offer and when and what marketing campaigns should be launched.
Of course, the point is not to stick to the once established schedule. The world is changing, especially on the Internet, and we must adapt our actions to this.
Each project must have a time frame. You define them, but remember to do it wisely. It is assumed that expanding the online store’s offer with new products should start bringing effects after 3-4 months. However, we must also remember about specific industries – e.g. toys and Christmas products should be in the store for many months before the culmination of sales.
It is assumed that expanding the online store’s offer with new products should start bringing effects after 3-4 months.
The process of choosing specific categories of products for the store is extremely important and has many advantages. Inexperienced owners of online stores often think that one should offer as many goods as possible in the store and they want to include all possible categories of goods in it.
The quantity and variety of goods are primarily related to the chances of higher profit. In many situations, this is the case, but not always: the costs of purchasing goods and their storage are much higher, the management of many product categories requires more time and costs, and the effort related to marketing activities is much greater. This can be seen in many stores that have a very large range of goods. They have many customers and high turnover, but the effective profit margin is often low. These low margins can be due to a very high workload in goods management, logistics, and marketing. That is why the main advantages of dropshipping are no need to store the goods and no need to ship them.