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Wei Linchao

Wei Linchao

Dropship and Logistics Specialist, the founder of Bestfulfill that help you with order fulfillment from product sourcing, shipping, branding, and customized package.

Is AliExpress Dropshipping Worth it?

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If you’re wondering whether AliExpress dropshipping is still worth it in 2022 and beyond, the simple answer is YES! 

AliExpress dropshipping is still worth it, and every indicator is that as the dropshipping market continues growing and expanding, it will continue being worth it well into the future.

In today’s post, we shall discuss fundamentals like:

  • What makes AliExpress dropshipping still worth it?
  • Some interesting facts about AliExpress dropshipping, and
  • A brief discussion of the critical steps to starting a successful AliExpress dropshipping business.

Let’s get started:

Why AliExpress Dropshipping Is Worth It (The Pros)

Like AmazonFBA, AliExpress dropshipping has many positive aspects that make it worthwhile and profitable in 2022 and beyond. 

Some of these things include:

#: A friendly getting-started process

Despite being one of the biggest online retailers, AliExpress also has one of the friendliest, most straightforward getting-started processes of any online retailer offering dropshipping.

This ease of getting started is one of the core factors that make AliExpress dropshipping worth it because it means people looking to get started with AliExpress dropshipping can do so fast and efficiently. 

Starting an AliExpress dropshipping store is so simple that you can create a fully optimized AliExpress dropshipping store in one afternoon –or day, when you account for day-to-day life.

For example, AliExpress has such a unique drop shipping and order fulfillment process that, to get started, all you need to do is: 

  • Find profitable AliExpress products you’d like to sell and import/upload them to your store, ensuring your product descriptions are concise and compelling to the end buyer. AliExpress has such a dropshipping-friendly system that you can use the DSers system to import AliExpress products to your Shopify/online store at a click. 
  • Choose your markup, factoring in things cost of production, shipping –if you intend to odder free shipping–product popularity or scarcity in the market, etc
  • Then, when you market your store/products and orders start coming in, you forward that order to your AliExpress drop shipper, including the product’s wholesale price and the customer’s address. The AliExpress seller then fulfills the order by sending it directly to the customer.

The friendliness of this process makes AliExpress dropshipping worth it; the fact that you can start this process at zero or next-to-zero cost is just icing on the cake. 

Talking of which

#: Zero getting-started costs

If you’re wondering how much it costs to start a barebones AliExpress dropshipping business, the answer is ZERO. AliExpress dropshipping is 100% free –in the sense that there are no monthly fees to pay to access AliExpress dropshipping suppliers. 

AliExpress dropshipping is worth it because, even if you don’t have a truckload of capital or a burgeoning bank account to bankroll your venture, you can still start a dropshipping business because of the zero startup costs. Really, to get started with AliExpress dropshipping, all you need is a profitable product, an AliExpress dropshipping supplier, an eCommerce store, and you’re good to go. 

Courtesy of Oberlo

NOTE: However, even though you can start an AliExpress dropshipping business at zero costs, if you want the prospect to be worth your while, it’s in your best interest to invest in essential costs like a custom domain name, a hosting plan, and perhaps a Shopify plan –if you intend to do AliExpress Shopify dropshipping, which you should. 

Essential costs can run you $100 or below, depending on your choice packages –the basic Shopify plan costs $29 per month, a .com domain can cost $10>, and hosting packages start at $5 per month. 

#: No inventory obligations, minimal overheads, and minimal risk

AliExpress dropshipping is worth it today –and will probably continue being worth it well into the future– because it frees dropshipping resellers from inventory obligations, which is the essence of the dropshipping model. 

Zero inventory obligations mean you will have minimal costs because you won’t have to pay for expenses like warehousing –and the related costs like utilities– labor, nor will you need to keep stock on hand, which can take up a lot of capital.

Moreover, all you need to do to start an AliExpress dropshipping business is find a product and supplier. You then upload that product to your store, market it, and forward orders to your dropshipping supplier. That makes the risk very minimal, making AliExpress dropshipping worth it –after all, which other business has the potential for massive upsides -profits– and near-zero getting started costs?

The fact that there are n0 inventory obligations and the overhead costs are minimal –so is the risk– makes AliExpress dropshipping worth it. AliExpress dropshipping is particularly worth it for entrepreneurs who don’t have that much capital but are willing to spend time optimizing their store, product descriptions, and marketing the heck out of their business.

These three are the main reasons why AliExpress dropshipping is worth it, but they are not the only reasons that make AliExpress dropshipping worth it. Other advantages of AliExpress dropshipping include:

  • Unlimited inventory options –since you can work with multiple suppliers- all without holding any inventory
  • Choice –because of the many suppliers and products on AliExpress, you will be spoilt for choice regarding what products you sell or drop ship to your customers
  • Agility –since you have no stock obligations, your business is flexible enough to pivot into a new niche at a moment’s notice. Because all you need is an internet-connected computer or smartphone to manage your business, you can run the business flexibly from anywhere in the world.
  • Affordability – because most AliExpress dropshipping suppliers are manufacturers, products are affordable –even cheap- making it easy to get started, especially if you need to order some product samples. Moreover, Most AliExpress suppliers also offer free worldwide shipping –-which you should take advantage of– which means you only need to tack on your markup on a product to work your way to a profitable AliExpress dropshipping business.

As you can see, ALIEXPRESS DROPSHIPPING IS WORTH IT; every indicator is that it will continue to be worth it for a long while.

However, like most businesses, AliExpress dropshipping has some cons you should know before getting into the business, all-starry-eyed, with dollar signs in your eyes.

AliExpress Dropshipping: The Cons

The most notable of these cons are:

  • Competitiveness: Because starting an AliExpress dropshipping business is so easy and anyone -even teens– can create one, the competition is usually very high, with dropshipping business owners competing to beat each other to the bottom of the barrel –price-wise. This cut-throat competitiveness means you will need to be strategic in how you price and market your products. After all, you don’t want to spend a lot of time on your store and marketing plan only to rake in pennies per order.
  • Shipping-related issues: Because most AliExpress suppliers are China-based manufacturers who ship from China, shipping issues, like longer shipping times and complications, are one of the main challenges you will need to look out for and hedge against if you want a profitable AliExpress dropshipping business. One way to ensure that customers don’t leave negative, shipping-related reviews on your store is to communicate consistently and ensure that customers know that orders may take a while to arrive at their locations. Remember that it’s better to underpromise and overdeliver than to overpromise and underdeliver. Factor the order turnaround time and any other factors into your shipping promise. Ideally, you want customers to expect their orders 5-60 days later. 

Courtesy: CedCommerce

  • Low profit margins: AliExpress is highly competitive with dropshipping business sourcing from the same manufacturers and competing to outdo each other’s prices. The best way to hedge against this is to offer the best product possible at a competitive price that allows you to pocket a 50-70% profit margin –the higher the profit margin, the better.

AliExpress dropshipping is still worth it, especially for small business owners, despite these stark cons. 

Now you understand why AliExpress dropshipping is still worth it. With that understanding, you’re probably eager to get started. Let’s look at a whittled down process you can use to create your AliExpress dropshipping business, fast:

How to Start a Successful AliExpress Dropshipping Store

Here’s how to start an AliExpress dropshipping business fast:

Step 1: Choose a niche/product and AliExpress suppliers

Your first step is choosing a niche or products from AliExpress –after all, you need something to sell. Ideally, you want to conduct thorough product research before settling on a product (or a niche).

When choosing AliExpress products to add to your dropshipping store, remember this:

  • You want a decent profit markup: The essence of creating a dropshipping store is to sell products and turn a profit with every sale. Therefore, you want a product/niche offering a profit margin of at least 20% –the higher, the better. This way, the profit margin can accommodate other expenses like CPC advertising.
  • Products/Suppliers with over 300 orders: AliExpress is a beehive of suppliers, and there’s no shortage of suppliers willing to accommodate businesses of all sizes. To ensure you work with the best suppliers and sell highly profitable products, only go with products/suppliers with over 300 orders. AliExpress allows you to sort products by “orders.” Over 300 orders show demand for the product and reliability on the supplier’s part.

  • Avoid fakes: No matter what you do, and no matter how fast you want to make money, avoid knockoffs, fakes, and brand products. Besides being a lawsuit waiting to happen, selling fakes and knockoffs can make it more challenging to build a memorable brand, which can work against you as a business owner.
  • Go for products with free shipping: AliExpress has a shipping option called ePacket shipping – essentially free shipping. You want to focus on such products –at least as you get started– to ensure you do not eat into your profit margin; ePacket delivery, especially to the US, is the most economical way to ship, especially small items.
  • High rating: You want to work with AliExpress suppliers with a high rating (at least 4.5 stars). This positive feedback allows you some degree of surety that the supplier offers good products and is reliable. You can use a tool like AliExpress Seller Check to get an overview of an AliExpress seller.
  • Good product photos: If you intend to use the DSers system, you want to ensure your product of choice has good product photos from the supplier. Be very mindful here because some AliExpress suppliers notoriously “steal” product photos from other sellers and use them as their own. 

Fundamentally:

You want to get the product/niche research process right; it’s the foundation for everything that follows.

You also want to pay special attention to your suppliers of choice. Keep in mind things like feedback, customer service, good returns policy, years of operation, minimum orders, rating, etc.

Courtesy: DoDropshipping

One of the best things about using AliExpress for dropshipping is that the platform has spun another industry of verified AliExpress dropshipping agents. 

Verified AliExpress dropshipping agents like Bestfulfill will work with you at every step –from purchasing products from AliExpress, inspection, warehousing, custom packaging, order fulfillment, etc., making it very easy to start a dropshipping business. 

Step 2: Create and design your Shopify Store

You can create a dropshipping store from scratch using a platform like WordPress. However, if you want to get started fast, go for Shopify because it makes it easy to create and manage an online store. You only have to sign up for Shopify’s 14-day trial and then start customizing your store.

When designing your Shopify store, you want to choose a theme that fits your niche, have consistent branding –logo/colors– and make your store very navigable and user-friendly. 

When setting up your store, and before you start adding products, you also want to deal with the backend of things, including setting up a payment gateway and your taxation information and customizing your domain for higher brand impact.

After your store is ready, test out the systems in place, then move on to the next step:

Step 3: Create and optimize your product listings

AliExpress and Shopify integrate so well that even if you don’t want to use a DSers system, uploading products to your Shopify store is as simple as following a few prompts:

When adding products to your Shopify dropshipping store, remember that you want:

  • Great product descriptions: Create compelling product descriptions that highlight your brand’s uniqueness and relate to the target audience. 
  • Include key details: Key information you should include on your listing is a size chart, delivery guidelines, timelines, rules about duties, etc.
  • Your pricing strategy: Your pricing strategy is a key consideration to keep in mind, especially because it determines if you’ll operate a profitable Shopify dropshipping store. Ideally, favor products that give you a 50% or more profit margin –the higher, the better. Where it makes sense, offer free or competitively priced shipping prices. It can make all the difference.
  • Use DSER: The DSer system eliminates the need to manually add AliExpress products to your Shopify store, saving time.

Step 4: Market, rinse and repeat

Without selling products, you will not have a profitable AliExpress store. Therefore, you want to market your eStore and products as if your business depends on it –which it does.

Here:

You can market your dropshipping business in several ways. For example, you can create SEO-friendly content, create a sales funnel that captures leads and nurtures them on the backend using email marketing, employ influencer marketing strategies, or even run CPC campaigns on Facebook, Instagram, Google, etc. 

Choose a marketing plan/approach that works best for your product/niche, but remember that marketing is sometimes about experimenting with different approaches until you find a few that work seamlessly well for your business.

All you have to do now is rinse and repeat the process with as many AliExpress products/Shopify stores as you want to create a thriving AliExpress dropshipping empire.

Conclusion

AliExpress dropshipping is worth it today and will probably continue to be worth it for a long while. 

Remember to:

  • Create a brandable Shopify store, and 
  • Optimize your product descriptions, and market the bejesus out of your store/products to make the most of this opportunity.

Interesting Statistics that Make AliExpress Dropshipping Worth It

  • AliExpress is available in more than 230 co1untries 
  • AliExpress has over 150 million users
  • About 20 million people use AliExpress daily

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