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How You Can Overcome Typical Drop Shipping Challenges with Automated Drop Shipping Solutions

by Olga L. Case studies
5.0 rating
May 10, 2017 19 minute read
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Solutions for automated drop shipping

Automated drop shipping solutions become more and more interesting for digital entrepreneurs who want to boost their income.

Why this happens?

We often hear that drop shipping is an easy business, why would we even need to make it automated? Isn’t it already clear and straightforward?

The answer is simple.

Even though it’s not that difficult to start such a business, there still exist several drop shipping challenges. Some of them are really easy to deal with, some of them are not. Anyway, when you first step on your drop shipping road, these issues are extremely important. It’s necessary to sort them out while your business is young and small. As your drop shipping business grows bigger, these challenges will be more and more difficult to keep up with.

Most of the day-to-day operations that represent the most crucial drop shipping challenges can be automated.

Various platforms, services, and other solutions let you automate such processes as data exchange, for example.

Of course not all of the necessary dropshipping operations can be automated. For example, to provide the top quality customer service, you need to establish personal communication with your client on every stage of the purchasing process.

But still, most of the management operations can be done without your direct involvement.

Let’s look at the example of AliDropship and its features that make it really easy for you to run your drop shipping business.

AliDropship was created by a highly skilled team of experienced dropshippers who have a deep understanding of this business. Our knowledge of all the stages of drop shipping process allowed us to create a multifunctional solution for AliExpress automated drop shipping that is easy to understand and convenient to use. We made our best to cover all the issues that are typically viewed as drop shipping challenges. That’s why this solution will be equally useful to those who have no drop shipping experience at all, and to those who already tried themselves in this business.

What are the drop shipping challenges you will certainly face?

Solutions for automated drop shipping

1. There is A LOT of items to choose from

As soon as you choose your primary suppliers and select your future business partners, you are free to pick any of their items for your store.

It’s great that there is a plenty of products: you can add whatever you like to your drop shipping store, and you can renew your offer from time to time. In other words, you open up lots of opportunities for your customers, and increase the chances they will make a purchase.

But.

How do you exactly choose the products for your store?

How can you make sure these offers will be appealing for your customers?

How can you guarantee the profit from selling these items will make nice revenue for you?

There is a whole range of criteria you can use to find the right dropshipping products. But imagine going through thousands of products, and checking if EVERY SINGLE ONE of them matches these criteria!

Actually, sounds like you’ll spend hours and days on it.

And to be honest, it will take you even longer hours to add these items to your drop shipping store. Each and every product. Manually. One by one.

How do we solve this issue?

The automated drop shipping solution we created for this purpose is automated product selection and import.

That’s really simple. You set the parameters you need, and the plugin automatically searches AliExpress for items that match your criteria. Then, you can automatically upload the chosen items to your drop shipping store. You won’t have to do all that manually – these processes are done in a few clicks, and only take several minutes.

Take a look at this AliDropship Google Chrome extension.

It helps you import products, edit their description, and place orders on AliExpress automatically.

When you use this extension, you see a red bar with ‘Import’ and ‘Edit’ buttons while you browse AliExpress.

Solutions for automated drop shipping

You can click the ‘Import’ button if you want to add the item to your store immediately, or you can click the ‘Edit’ button if you want to make some changes into the product description before publishing.

Watch this video to learn more about the process:

There is no limit on the amount of products you can upload. Also, all of them are imported with all the possible variations in size, color, etc.

Sometimes AliExpress items have several variations that are really different in size, shape, color, constructional design, etc. That’s inconvenient for customers who only see one featured image and don’t click on the item to learn more about alternatives. For this purpose, AliPlugin has a wonderful Duplicate Option. It allows you to import every product variation as a separate item. That’s how you make sure that your store visitors see each and every possible item variation and don’t miss anything

2. Your products must have some lovely descriptions

So you’ve added all the desired products to your drop shipping store. Now it comes the most important part: making your offers look fantastic.

How can you achieve that?

Well, first of all, it’s all about making a good-looking product page.

But that’s not the end, obviously.

When you take the products from suppliers and add them to your stores, you import photos, text descriptions, and customer reviews. Remember that all of these are vital for your success!

Surely enough, if you do that manually it also takes a lot of time.

What can we offer you?

The already mentioned AliDropship Google Chrome extension helps you edit product info quickly and easily. When you click the ‘Edit’ button, you see a pop-up that allows you to amend:

  • General product data (title, permalink and category)
  • Price
  • Description
  • Variations
  • Image gallery

Solutions for automated drop shipping

If you need more time for editing the product (for example, if you want to write a SEO-friendly article), click the ‘Add to import list’ button – the product will be invisible for customers until you make all the changes you wanted. If you’re already happy with the result, click the ‘Publish’ button, and the product will immediately appear in your store. If you don’t like the changes you made, just click the ‘Reset to Default’ button.

Watch this video to learn more about the process:

Another automated drop shipping solution we created for this purpose is automated reviews import.

The plugin allows you to import not only the product name and description itself, but all the customer reviews as well. Later, you can edit the imported information if necessary: rewrite the text description if you don’t like it, select and edit product photos you’d like to include in the description, and pick the most informative and well-written customer reviews.

Solutions for automated drop shipping

There is also an Ignore Images function. If you use it, you will only import the text part of every review without any photos. It is really convenient if you don’t want to show the pictures taken by buyers in your store.

3. You also need to pay attention to such factor as your pricing strategy.

One of the most important features of a good drop shipping product is its low price. If you look at the products shown at such platforms, for example AliExpress, you will see that the vast majority of items is offered for a really low cost. It gives you an opportunity to increase this cost several times, and set this increased price on the products you’re adding to your drop shipping store. It will not make a difference for your customers because even the increased cost will still be lower than the price offered by competitors in other stores, both online and offline ones.

It means that you are actually free to set ANY reasonable price for your items. And it means that you need to think a lot to create some kind of a pricing strategy. You will also have to spend some time manually editing price and product descriptions for every item you’re adding to your drop shipping store.

How does our plugin work on it?

The automated drop shipping solution we created for this purpose is automated price setting.

You can easily increase all the product prices at once, without manually editing it. That’s really simple: we have created a special markup formula that automatically increases the product price the way you like it. You can apply this formula to all the products, or to some specific categories.

Solutions for automated drop shipping

We review this formula from time to time, and it gets more and more awesome options and settings. Stay tuned to be aware of the newest updates!

4. You don’t know what happens on the supplier’s side

One of the key benefits of drop shipping business is your freedom from all the product concerns. You don’t manufacture products yourself, you don’t buy items in bulk, and you don’t keep them in a warehouse. All you need to do is keeping in touch with the suppliers you’ve chosen, and advertise their items in your drop shipping store.

And that’s exactly where the trouble lies.

What if the supplier decides to change some features and details in these items?

What if the supplier decides to stop manufacturing this or that item?

What if the product is out of stock now?

All these and many other situations will negatively affect your customers if they happen to order this exact item. Customer loyalty and trust is the key to your store’s success, so you definitely don’t want to disappoint them. In other words, you need to always know EVERYTHING about EVERY item in your store. Even if there are hundreds of them. Even if they come from dozens of different suppliers.

How do we solve this issue?

The automated drop shipping solution we created for this purpose is automatic info updating.

With AliDropship plugin, you don’t have to check the AliExpress sellers everyday to make sure they didn’t make changes into their items. The plugin has an auto updating system that connects to AliExpress and automatically updates products info. If any changes are made by the seller, they will automatically appear in your store as well.

Solutions for automated drop shipping

You can set any update interval you like: every 15 minutes, every hour, twice a day, or once a day. If you have already set the desired price manually, you can choose the settings to always keep the price on the same level and only change the product description and stock information.

The same goes for inventory – the plugin checks if the item is still in the supplier’s stock, and updates information if necessary.

Please note that even if you’ve added an item from one seller to your drop shipping store, and this seller stopped selling this product, it’s not a problem. Find another AliExpress supplier that sells the same item, and only modify the link that you will use to place an order. You won’t have to change anything else (product title, description, pictures, reviews, etc.).

5. You must be really attentive about the orders

So an Internet user comes to your drop shipping store, likes some of your offers, and makes a purchase.

What’s next?

You need to remember who is the seller who provided you with this item description, and then you need to contact them as quickly as you can. You inform them of all the order details: quantity and specification of the items, the buyer’s name and address, etc.

Then, it’s the sellers’ responsibility to deliver the exact amount of products to the specified address. You, in turn, will notify your customers that their orders are dispatched, and will provide them with the tracking code to monitor their package location.

Can you do all this really quickly if your store sees lots of orders?

Will it be always possible to keep everything in mind without forgetting something?

Can you be sure you’ll send the right order to the right seller, and won’t mix up the address, the name, the products, and everything?

As soon as your store becomes popular (and that’s your goal, right?), managing orders will become really tricky.

How do we work with this drop shipping challenge?

The automated drop shipping solution we created for this purpose is automatic order processing.

When a customer places an order in your drop shipping store, you won’t have to contact the AliExpress seller yourself. The plugin transmits all the order data to the seller automatically, so you don’t need to do it manually. It means you get free of all the concerns related to forgetting and mixing up multiple orders.

automated drop shipping features

What is also great, when supplier sends the package, AliDropship plugin regularly checks it for tracking updates. Surely enough, it does a lot for enhancing your experience!

Solutions for automated drop shipping

Watch this video to learn more about this process:

6. Promotion takes more time than you think

In ecommerce, the right approach to marketing is really important. The correct use of various social networks can multiply your store traffic by several times.

To benefit from drop shipping business, you need to raise awareness about your store.

How can you do that?

Through a variety of online promotion channels, of course!

Various social networks, such as Instagram, Facebook, and many others, can be used to make your store well-known to your target audience. Real experience of successful dropshippers shows that carefully managed online promotion of drop shipping stores is a huge part of your commercial success.

Still, as you can see from the success story of Alex, managing such stores takes lots of time. This is exactly why Alex eventually decided to sell one of his drop shipping stores, and this is why we can surely say that marketing issues definitely are a huge drop shipping challenge.

What is the automated dropshipping solution we can offer you?

Knowing that keeping an eye on several promotion channels at once can be tricky, we developed a special tool – Social Rabbit plugin that drives free stable traffic from social media to your store.

Social Rabbit covers 4 major social networks that generally play the most important role in raising awareness about your store: Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Instagram.

All you need to do is install the plugin on your drop shipping store in several clicks, choose the settings of posting, and enjoy your freedom. The plugin promotes your social accounts through following, liking and commenting on other posts. Check out our free guide to learn more about promoting your drop shipping store with the help of Social Rabbit. As for our own experience, the use of Social Rabbit brought us 66 orders and $813 in just one month. Definitely worth trying!

What are the benefits of automated drop shipping solutions?

 

Solutions for automated drop shipping

 Generally speaking, automated drop shipping tools and services let you overcome the most common drop shipping challenges. Still, you can get a lot more benefits from using them.

  • Effortless store management

As you’ve already seen, setting up your drop shipping store is really easy when you have the right set of tools to help you out. You don’t have to spend days and weeks on figuring out how this business works, and developing your own system of handling all the operations. The plugins will do all that for you. All the data is gathered in your Personal account, so you can easily view, manage and improve all the store processes.

  • Cutting down time and money spending

Your time is valuable. Why would you even waste it on something that can be done without you? If machines can do the same tasks with great quality, there’s no need for you to get involved.

Also, automation of business processes means that you won’t need to employ workers even if your drop shipping store grows really fast. And if you don’t need to hire people, you save tons of money on their salary!

  • Opportunities for business expansion

If you don’t perform all of your business operations manually, nothing can stop you from further expanding your business. No matter what you decide to do – try out a new customers’ segment, add a new products category, or open a couple of new stores – you can always rely on the automated business processes you already know and use.

As you can see, automated drop shipping solutions can really do a lot to help you overcome the most common drop shipping challenges, and they also give you a range of additional benefits. We’ve tried out services ourselves numerous times, which is why we can totally be sure they are really working. But we also would like to hear YOUR feedback!

So if you ever used these or similar solutions, or if you have other notes or questions with this regard, feel free to leave them in the comments section below. Remember – it’s your comments and opinions that drive us forward to creating even more advanced and convenient solutions!

By Olga L.
Olga is a content creator at AliDropship, and she aims to explain the most complicated drop shipping concepts in the simplest terms possible.
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19 Comments
SilWin May 10, 2017 16:38:42

Can’t wait for the Woocommerce update with automated Tracking.

Awesome plugin, keep up the great work!

Dave May 11, 2017 7:43:59

i said it in the forum and i say it here, that editing update is absolutely brilliant

Thor Willy Bjerke May 16, 2017 6:00:19

I am still not shure about the payment solution. Do I set up a local paymentsolution om my webside or do you have a solution for it? My clients pays for product and freight and I pay you as a suplier. Can this be made automaticly. Must I register as a Ali Express client?

Best regatds

Thor Willy

    yaros May 16, 2017 6:24:43

    Please check what payment solutions are available with AliDropship plugin https://alidropship.com/codex/payment-gateways/

    Yes, you need AliExpress account of course to place orders with your suppliers to process the orders from your clients.

      SK November 3, 2017 6:49:02

      Hello Yaros,
      I am from Bangladesh, and none of the payment gateways are available here. I use a credit card to purchase products from aliexpress. So, if I want to start with AliDropship plugin, what will be the solution for payment gateways?
      Thanks in advance.

Cherie June 4, 2017 4:32:54

Hey,
Please clear this issue ! When customer will order the product on my website then does it automatically get order to supplier or I will order manually to supplier on behave of customer. Thanks

    yaros June 4, 2017 11:45:44

    Hi,

    Once you get an order you just click Place Order Automatically and the plugin will take care about everything.

Raymond June 9, 2017 1:42:11

Hi Yaros,

After “Place Order Automatically”, am I getting notification from Aliexpress supplier to pay for the orders or will it automatically deduct the money directly from my account?

    yaros June 9, 2017 3:42:51

    Hi, after the plugin fills all details, you need to click Pay button yourself to place an order.

Raymond Tsang June 18, 2017 22:17:54

Hi Yaros,
If a customer orders a few things and products are from different suppliers, do you normally notify the customers that they will expect multiple packages? Major problem I can see is that the items will be delivering in different time frames. Any advise on this situation? Thanks

    yaros June 19, 2017 3:44:25

    Hi, actually it’s not a big problem and we have a note on the Thank you page that packages may be delivered from different storages.

Mahamoodally Sheik Mohamud Ibrahim August 25, 2017 18:05:34

How i will know when i receive an order from a customer????? I just received my Customized Store..its wonderful, and fantastic beyond imagination. So Much thanks to you for this Amazing project…God Bless You!…I have lost tons of money searching for such Tool since the year 2001…

    Yaroslav Nevsky November 3, 2017 7:40:53

    You will get an email notification and will see payment on your PayPal account.

Hisham Abdel-Ghaffar February 5, 2018 3:31:00

Hi Yaros,

Suppose I own an AliDropship eCommerce store.

Upon getting notified of a new customer order by email, I have to intervene and click what you called “Place order automatically” then your plugin will do great things contacting aliexpress and populating all order data (including my CC info), then I should verify and click “Pay & Confirm”.

I understand that “automatic order placement” means hands-free without my intervention, but I have to open the order and make two clicks plus verification. Can you adapt your plugin (which has all data) to perform these two clicks on my behalf and make the order fulfillment 100% hands-free? That is, I enable the plugin to launch the whole order fulfillment (possibly under certain rules and order status) as a robot while I am asleep.

I appreciate your thorough reply.

    Yaroslav Nevsky February 5, 2018 3:52:16

    Hello, you don’t need to go through verification process since your card is already connected to your AliExpress account. So, generally speaking, you just need to click Confirm button. You spend about 2 minutes on each order, I don’t think that it is a big deal. Once you start getting hundreds of orders daily, just hire an assistant. I would not prefer a system that takes my credit card details to place orders somewhere without my confirmation.

      Hisham Abdel-Ghaffar February 5, 2018 23:24:52

      Thanks. Please explain the price of the Woo version of AliDropship plugin for me. Is it one-time payment of $89 with support for life, or is it $89 per year only to be renewed yearly?

        Yaroslav Nevsky February 6, 2018 4:24:52

        It is one-time payment with free updates and support in future.

Hisham Abdel-Ghaffar March 26, 2018 15:36:50

Hi Yaro,
I invested some time tuning the Mystile theme on WooCommerce for my site. I have 2 specific questions: 1) Does AliDropship plugin work with Mystile theme (rather than other themes you recommend)? 2) Does the Woo version of AliDropship plugin support all features offered by the standalone version?
Thanks a lot.

    Yaroslav Nevsky March 27, 2018 3:49:39

    Hi,

    1. It should work with Mystile theme.
    2. AliDropship Woo does not have its own dashboard and SEO settings, other features are the same.

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