How to Sell a Product in 2018: The Future of Drop Shipping
Running a successful eCommerce company takes more than just knowing WHAT products to sell - you need to know HOW to sell a product.
Knowing How to Sell a Product is Important for a Variety of Reasons:
- It makes you money… obviously.
- It invokes sustainability for your company.
- It lets you focus on picking the perfect niche to sell in. More time can be spent picking a niche, and less time will be spent learning how to get conversions.
- It forces you to understand and empathize with your customer.
How to Sell a Product in 2018
Over the years, many parts of the business machine have changed. The “ages” of business management and operational procedures evolved through the waves of execution, expertise, and empathy. The ethical umbrella that most businesses operate under today is different than what was commonplace 100 years ago.
But there are also many practices that have remained the same over time. As businesses, we will always need the customer.
In the Forbes article linked above, Robert Wallace writes that:
“Even as tech changes our processes and delivery mechanisms, we still need to have a clear idea of who we're talking to, how to find them and what messages will resonate and convert them into paying customers.”
Adapting to the Future of Drop Shipping
Below are two common schools of thought when looking at the future of drop shipping:
- Some people believe that it’s too late to get into this business. I get asked, “Anton, isn't everything saturated? Isn’t drop shipping just a trend that’s going to die?”
- Other people are already drop shipping and making money, but they aren’t sure what’s going to come next. They are curious as to what their business is going to look like in the next two to five years.
So some people think drop shipping is a trend, and others have no idea how to grow their business.
Here’s what I think:
There will indeed be some shifts in the drop shipping world. When?
I don’t know. I don’t spend my mornings deciphering the letters in my alphabet soup. I don’t claim to see the future.
But know that if you ever see any videos, blog posts, or headlines that say anything like “drop shipping is dead”... stay wary.
I don't think that’s ever going to happen.
Drop shipping is NOT like an eCommerce trend, or a trending niche. It won’t just “go out of style”
The drop shipping business model will never die. Manufacturers and brands will always need retailers to brand themselves. That’s the reality of retail.
3 Simple eCommerce Marketing Strategies you Need to Take More Seriously
I’m going to share three broad tips for selling a product.
As I mentioned earlier, the roots of marketing have stayed the same throughout history. Of course, we must adapt to current styles and trends, but the formula is simple: speak your customer’s language, get the sale.
Below are three strategies that will ensure you know how to sell a product, even when the future is uncertain.
This isn’t an all out guide - it’s a place for you to start. I provide information from industry experts like Derek Halpern, Empire Flippers, and Shopify. They are awesome. The community has A LOT to thank these people for, and Drop Ship Lifestyle is grateful for the impact these folks have had on digital marketing.
Let’s dive in.
1. Learn How to Sell a Product to Passionate People
It's easier than ever to bring people into YOUR world - into YOUR eCommerce business.
Just put products they love right in front of them. Give them products they’re actually excited about.
Find a group of people that are passionate about a certain product type. Look at what they like, and what they don't like. If you truly know your customer, you will be able to deliver relevant products and content.
But here’s the caveat… products don’t exactly sell themselves.
In this video, Derek Halpern shoots the breeze about why people don’t always buy what you sell.
“People rarely believe that what you do is as awesome as YOU believe it is” says Halpern.
He continues on to say that “you must realize that creating a good product or service is the cost of entry… and to succeed, you’ve got to sell it.”
Halpern couldn’t be more right.
Yes, finding good products to sell is important. Finding passionate people to sell to is extremely important. If you don’t pick a good niche to sell in, you’re gonna lose sleep and hate yourself for it.
If you don’t know how to SELL the product, you won’t make sales (aka, NO money for you).
So pick a niche that breeds awesome, passionate customers… then SELL TO THEM! There’s a million strategies for doing this. Check out more strategies on Social Triggers, or look at some of the selling techniques we teach on the Drop Ship Lifestyle blog.
- Put more effort and energy into new websites and new product types that people are passionate about.
- Your audience needs to be passionate about what the product does or what they can use it for. Could it fuel their hobbies or help them with their career?
If you sell to a passionate audience, you will take advantage of opportunity as you move into the future of eCommerce. Your customers will stay with you, even if the going gets tough. They will love you, but again, you need to SELL to them. Read more about that in the next section.
2. Learn How to Sell a Product with Trust and Authority
Trust is a HUGE factor when selling online.
People always ask why someone would buy from their store over buying on Amazon.
Imean, why would someone choose to buy from [.generic example namehere.] when they could get the product on a super site that’s trustedall over the globe?
Methods to Build Trust
Marketers use little hacks to increase a store's level of trust. We do things like:
- Getting reviews from customers
- Paying for different badges and trust seals to put on the website
- Building a solid brand(I will talk about this at the end of the section)
- Having other people vouch for you (what we will focus on for right now)
The latter point, “having other people vouch for you”, is my first suggestion for gaining trust and authority in your industry.
Partner with people in indirectly related industries. If other companies vouch for you, your customers will fall in love.
The trick is to find non-competitors who are involved in your circles. These people/companies/organizations will be interacting with the same people as you, having the same conversations, and they will be interested in the same products.
From here, you could:
- pay them to vouch for you
- do a joint venture with them
- or you could scratch each other’s backs by promoting one another’s products
This is known as influencer marketing. If these indirect competitors vouch for your product, talk about your product, or promote your product, it’s going to hold A LOT of weight for your business.
Influencer marketing will definitely increase your conversions. Not only it will send you people, but it's going to make sure your site stands out as an authority in your space.
This is one of the areas where marketing is taking somewhat of a new turn in the future. Yes, influencer marketing has always existed… but not in the vast universe of social media and the internet.
Times are a changin’ for sure.
Focus on Good Branding
Empire Flippers wrote a fantastic article on the importance of good branding.
In this piece, Gina Edwards reminds us to “keep in mind the intended effects of branding — promise, loyalty, and differentiation. Your brand should speak to how your business or services follows through on the things your customers are looking for, and you can build a relationship with them from there.”
Good Branding Does 3 Things:
Makes a Promise
Builds Loyalty & Recognition
Sets You Apart
If your brand effectively speaks to your customer, you will form a bond with them. Making promises you can deliver on is an effective way to build trust.
- A great way to become a big player in your industry is to partner with other people in indirectly related industries.
- The more other authority figures vouch for you, the more trust and authority you will gain.
- Building a brand builds trust.
My next point builds off of what Edwards wrote in the Empire Flippers blog. Branding brings opportunity…
3. Branding is the Icing on the Cake
One of the benefits that we have as independent retailers over huge shopping mall sites is customer access.
A site like Amazon targets EVERYONE. They sell everything from chicken nugget soap to carburetors. Your store, on the other hand, is able to target specific customers. This provides them with a unique and personalized experience.
Comprehensive Overview From the Pros
Shopify is an incredible source of information for up and coming entrepreneurs.
If you want some great starter info for building a brand, check out this little guide from Shopify.
The guide’s author, Braveen Kumar, states that
“Your brand is how people perceive you wherever they interact with your business—both the impressions you can control and the ones you can't.”
Kumar gives some great tips for getting in the right mindset to build a brand that leaves the right impression for your audience. If you’re currently in the initial stages of the branding process, you need to read this. You could be missing something vital to your branding endeavors.
Taking the Next Step
Once you build a niche-specific drop shipping store, and once you’re consistently making sales, it’s time to take the leap.
You need to build your own product line.
While this isn’t absolutely necessary, I think it’s the next logical step in the process of growth for your eCommerce business. Even if you’re just private labeling a few products, a product line makes a massive difference. Not only will you be more profitable, but you’ll expand your reach.
If you go with creating your own brand and product line, your products could even end up being sold in your competitors’ stores. There are plenty of benefits to this:
- More money
- A little more work
- But more opportunities (not just to your drop shipping store, but with your new brand!)
Discovering How to Sell a Product is Worth It… Even if it Takes Some Work
- Get into product types that people are passionate about.
- Build trust and authority in your space. You want to be someone that people talk about - someone that your indirect competitors are linked to.
- You’ll want to create a brand within your space [AFTER you're already successful - making money and sales].
I’m always down to chat, so feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments.
Thanks for reading!