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A Handy Guide to Finding the Best Dropshipping Tool to Manage and Scale Your Business

Threecolts
Geri Mileva
Published
June 7, 2024
Modified
June 7, 2024
Finding the Best Dropshipping Tool

Imagine selling items and having them shipped to customers without having a physical inventory. That’s what dropshipping is in a nutshell. When a customer buys something from your online storefront, you’ll send the order to a dropshipper, along with the payment. Your dropshipping supplier will then cover the order fulfillment and shipping. 

What makes dropshipping so appealing to many businesses is that it comes with potentially lower overhead costs. With dropshipping, you don’t need to hold physical inventory and handle shipping. It also lends itself well to multi-channel selling. 

Businesses can use dropshipping to expand their reach because, aside from their own storefront, they can sell on eCommerce platforms like Amazon. Plus, it’s scalable. Dropshipping lets you accommodate more orders (and offers a wide range of products) without the need to increase your inventory. 

That said, dropshipping is not without its fair share of challenges, such as:

  • Having lower profit margins
  • Experiencing fulfillment issues
  • Customers returning your products
  • Building brand awareness

Furthermore, because it has low barriers to entry (low investment and overhead costs), you’ll be up against a lot of fierce competition. If you’re just starting out or running your business solo, managing all other aspects of your business, such as admin duties and customer service, also poses some difficulties. 

It’s also worth noting that for your dropshipping business to become successful, you’ll need to find the right products to sell. The thing is, how do you discover the right product that checks all the boxes while maintaining your competitive edge?

Enter dropshipping tools.

These solutions allow you to manage and optimize your dropshipping business. 

What Is a Dropshipping Tool and Why Do You Need One?

Why dropshipping tools? Well, why not? 

Most are designed to be user-friendly and easy to set up. They’re also accessible and allow you to start selling your products online. 

Dropshipping tools are software or services designed to help dropshippers streamline operations, enhance efficiency, and provide better customer experiences. Depending on the tool you choose, you can:

  • Automate manual tasks
  • Reduce errors
  • Conduct product or market research
  • Find suppliers, manufacturers, or wholesalers
  • Build your own storefront

With that said, there are several types of tools available, and each one is designed to address specific aspects of dropshipping. 

  1. Product Research 

Dropshipping product research tools help you find the right products to sell. They conduct comprehensive market analysis, identify customer preferences, and analyze product performance. By leveraging data, these tools can identify winning products that meet the following criteria:

  • Meet your customers’ needs
  • Have high demand
  • Good profit potential

A good product research tool goes beyond product scouting. It also allows you to explore different markets, which helps you find new product ideas. There are also product research tools that let you perform competitor analysis. These research tools will give you a glimpse of what the competition is offering, along with other helpful details like the number of ratings or reviews they have. 

  1. Supplier Sourcing

Finding reliable suppliers is one of the biggest challenges in dropshipping. Supplier sourcing tools can help you find and connect with global suppliers who can provide you with high-quality products. These tools often have a database of suppliers or manufacturers across different industries. 

  1. Product Management

Product management tools cover several aspects of the dropshipping process, from order fulfillment to tracking. For example, some of these tools can help you manage your suppliers and send tracking updates to customers automatically.

  1. Dropshipping Website Building

These dropshipping tools let you make your own online storefront. Features will vary depending on the platform you choose. For instance, some have drag-and-drop interfaces, while others may come with helpful built-in features like payment processing and order tracking. 

  1. Customer Service

Customer service tools are designed to help you deliver enhanced customer support and communication through features like:

  • Helpdesk management
  • Ticketing systems
  • Live chat 
  1. Automation

These tools let you automate different dropshipping-related tasks like creating product listings. Depending on the tool you select, some are capable of automating aspects like order processing and price monitoring. Some tools can also automate bulk product imports and order tracking. 

Key Features to Consider in a Dropshipping Tool

No two dropshipping tools are alike. Each one provides a different set of features, from automation to product or competitor research. With that said, here are the key features you need to consider before choosing a dropshipping tool:

  1. Product Sourcing and Inventory Management

A good dropshipping tool should be capable of finding and importing products from reliable suppliers. It should also integrate with popular eCommerce platforms and must-have inventory management features like stock updates (so you can sync the supplier’s stock information on your site) and automatic ordering. Inventory management capabilities give you real-time updates on inventory levels. 

Some tools are also capable of setting competitive product prices. This ensures that your prices appeal to customers while letting you make a profit. 

  1. Order Fulfillment Automation

If you’re handling multiple orders, things can quickly get chaotic. Order fulfillment automation is capable of automatically:

  • Placing orders with suppliers 
  • Generating tracking numbers 

These capabilities help simplify the order process and let you keep your customers in the loop, which translates to better shopping experiences for them.

  1. Customer Relationship Management

This is a must-have feature if you want to provide exceptional customer service. This allows you to provide order tracking and communication tools for shoppers. Also, consider whether your dropshipping tool can integrate with your preferred customer support platform. 

  1. Analytics and Reporting 

In dropshipping, like most other business models, data is crucial. It helps you assess your performance and learn more about your customers. These, in turn, give you valuable insights you can use to make data-driven decisions, identify patterns, and optimize your strategy to drive growth and profitability. 

In addition to these features, your dropshipping tool should allow you to customize your product listings. Adding your branding or value-added product descriptions helps your business stand out from the competition. Also, see if a dropshipping tool is capable of integrating suppliers. This feature allows you to access the supplier’s product range, which then lets you expand your product catalog. 

Picking the Right Dropshipping Tool for Your Business Needs

Choosing the best dropshipping tool for your business is crucial to streamlining your operations and scaling your business.  To make an informed decision, you need to carefully evaluate the following points:

  1. Your Business Needs

As with any endeavor, it’s always best to start by identifying your business needs. For instance, what type of products do you want to sell, or how many orders are you looking to accommodate? Asking these questions will help you find a dropshipping tool that supports your requirements. 

Aside from these questions, it’s also a good practice to identify potential bottlenecks. What issues are keeping your dropshipping business from growing? Furthermore, account for your goals (short- and long-term). Do you want to boost your conversion rate or expand your product catalog? Think about how a particular dropshipping tool will help you achieve specific goals.

Lastly, think about your current business stage. For example, if you’re just starting out, consider going for a dropshipping tool that’s beginner-friendly with basic features. If you’re looking to grow your business, opt for tools with more advanced automation and integration features.

  1. Your Preferred eCommerce Platform

Choose a tool that’s compatible with the eCommerce platform you’re using. Also, consider if a tool can seamlessly integrate with your current tech stack. 

  1. Product Features

Look for a dropshipping tool that has the key features mentioned earlier. Doing so will help you find a tool that:

  • Offers a comprehensive product and supplier range
  • Saves you time (automation)
  • Provides you with robust analytics for performance tracking and making data-driven decisions

On top of these considerations, your dropshipping tool should have integrated marketing capabilities. These help you attract new customers and promote your business. If the dropshipping tool doesn’t offer all of the features you need, chances are you’re going to spend a lot more on add-ons or other solutions. 

  1. User Experience

The best tool is one that you love using because, well, it’s easy to use. See if a tool has an intuitive and user-friendly interface. A good tool makes it easier for you to run your business—it shouldn’t be another hurdle to your growth. In addition to these features, see if the vendor provides a comprehensive onboarding process. This helps speed up your adoption of the tool. 

  1. Supplier Reliability

Your dropshipping tool must be capable of connecting you with reliable suppliers. This gives you a guarantee that you and your customers will have access to high-quality products and hassle-free delivery.

  1. Pricing

Think about your budget. You want to get the best tool, but buying an expensive tool won’t always guarantee the best results. Make sure that you compare several providers and tools. Check their pricing plans to see if they have a solution that fits your budget. Lastly, check to make sure that there are no hidden fees for extra features or premium support. 

  1. Scalability 

A great dropshipping tool is scalable. It should be capable of supporting your business as it grows. See if a dropshipping tool offers advanced features like upgrades or higher-tier plans, which may come in handy if you’re thinking about expanding your business in the future. 

  1. Level of Customer Support

Using a dropshipping tool won’t always be smooth sailing. Some may come with a slight learning curve, or you may encounter issues every once in a while. When choosing which tool to use, make sure that the vendor can provide you with easily accessible customer service. Also, see if they provide helpful resources like training, tutorials, or guides. 

Popular Dropshipping Tools 

Finding the best dropshipping solutions may seem like an impossible feat, given that there are tons of tools available on the market today. To help you get started, here are some of the most popular dropshipping tools that are worth considering. 

Shopify

Shopify

eCommerce platform Shopify makes it easy for individuals to start a dropshipping business. It’s packed with features like an online store builder, product sourcing, and branding tools. It also has tools and apps that can handle inventory management. These apps connect your Shopify store with suppliers, import product details to your Shopify store, and track delivery progress. 

Spocket

Spocket

Spocket is a great tool if you’re looking to source products from the US or EU. It lets you compare international suppliers, as well as get access to suppliers who offer fast shipping. It integrates with Shopify, BigCommerce, Wix, and more, making it easier for you to sync your online store. 

AliDropship

AliDropship

AliDropship is a great way for you to start dropshipping. You get a free online store (or you can choose to build it yourself using an AliDropship plugin), plus access to a personal manager for support. 

SaleHoo

SaleHoo

SaleHoo is a dropshipping tool that connects dropshippers with reliable suppliers and helps you find winning products. As of writing, SaleHoo has over 8,000 prevetted suppliers and more than 2.5 million products in its database. 

Doba

Doba

This dropshipping tool gives you access to a wide array of products across categories like beauty, health, and electronics. Doba’s website also makes it easy for you to check out high-profit products and top sellers. It also highlights top suppliers on the platform.  

Additional Tips for Choosing the Best Dropshipping Tool

Finding the right dropshippipng tool for your business can still be tricky. Here are some more recommendations to help you find the best one.

  • Consider integrations.

Go for a dropshipping tool that can seamlessly integrate with your existing workflow. A well-integrated tech stack boosts your efficiency, improves your capabilities, and helps streamline your business processes. It gives you access to centralized data. By eliminating data silos, you’re also making it easier for you, your team, and suppliers to better communicate with each other. 

  • Take advantage of free trials or demos.

Free trials or demos are great. They give you the opportunity to see the tool in action and how it could potentially help your dropshipping business. Plus, through such offers, you get to fully explore a tool’s features and assess its usability. You also get the chance to ask vendors specific questions related to your business needs. 

  • Read customer reviews.

Checking reviews, ratings, or testimonials allows you to see how the tool has helped other businesses similar to yours. They also help you learn more about other users’ experiences while using the tool. Forums and review sites are often a great place to start. Aside from these, you can also check out case studies to learn more about how a particular tool can help solve specific challenges. 

  • Ask for recommendations.

Don’t be afraid to ask your peers for recommendations. You can also check out dropshipping forums or even Reddit for insights and advice. 

  • Review the terms and conditions. 

Carefully go over the vendor’s terms and conditions. This will help you get a better understanding of their policies and how they approach data ownership. When it comes to the latter, it’s best to go with a solution that offers transparency and ensures that you fully own all your data. 

A Final Word on Dropshipping

Believe it or not, dropshipping has been around for quite a while—think pre-internet. In the 1950s, the practice of dropshipping started when mail-order companies sold directly to consumers through phone order catalogs. 

With the advent of online shopping platforms, dropshipping has become an immensely popular retail model. And it’s about to get bigger. It’s projected that by 2031, the global dropshipping market will reach $1,670.1 billion

Dropshipping Market Size

The market’s growth is due in part to the increase in smartphone penetration and disposable income. The rapid rise of the e-commerce industry, coupled with dropshipping’s relatively low barrier to entry, is also contributing to the industry’s growth.

While dropshipping may seem like an easy enough business model, the truth is you’ll still be facing several challenges. You’ll have a lot of competition, but a good dropshipping tool can help you enhance and grow your business. 

Aside from these tools, you need to focus on building a strong brand to equip your dropshipping business for success. Additionally, maintaining a good relationship with your suppliers helps ensure that the order fulfillment process goes smoothly. Lastly, make sure that you provide consistent and excellent customer service. This is key to building your customers’ trust and getting repeat business. 

Supercharge Your Dropshipping Business with SellerRunning

If you’re not yet ready to start dropshipping, a good alternative would be Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA). Threecolts’ SellerRunning lets you instantly add high-quality products from Amazon to your online storefront. Its automation capabilities help you automate dropshipping processes like creating or adding product listings. Plus, SellerRunning lets you compare prices across Amazon and Walmart, helping you maximize your profits. 

Take the next step in your dropshipping journey with Threecolts. Explore the diverse solutions Threecolts offers and start growing your dropshipping business today.

Learn with Threecolts

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