Dropshipping for eBay Sellers

Recently I’ve received several emails from readers of my book Make Serious Money on eBay UK. It’s always nice to hear from readers and it gives me a good idea of what I might need to improve in future editions.

One thing I don’t really cover is how eBay sellers can make the best of a dropshipping company to facilitate their sales. So it’s hardly surprising that I’ve had a few contacts asking my views.

So what do I mean by dropshipping? It’s where you outsource the storage and despatch of your items to a third-party leaving you to concentrate on administering your business. Lots of sellers do use dropshipping services successfully but in general I have two views on the subject (seeing as I have been asked!) and I’m not really a fan.

Firstly, I do sometimes wonder if these services offer ‘value for money”. I’m pretty certain that an enterprising seller can organise themselves in such a way that they’re cheaper and more efficient than a dropshipper and those savings go straight to the bottom line.

Secondly, it’s your reputation on the line. Your hard-earned Feedback could be at risk from poor service if you are let down. That’s why it’s essential to choose your service carefully and make sure you have watertight SLAs and make sure they live up to your high standards.

2 thoughts on “Dropshipping for eBay Sellers”

  1. A couple of my suppliers also offer drop-shipping services, and I can tell you that #1 is absolutely correct. The mark-up they charge for shipping to your customers is silly. However much you don’t think you have the capital to start up a business, even lending yourself a couple of hundred quid on a credit card is a better way to do it.

    The other thing I’d add is that there are now increasing numbers of drop-shipping companies marketing themselves at eBay sellers. If you’re using one, you can bet your life that a dozen of your competitors are too. Do you really want to be selling the same thing as everyone else and driving prices down and further down? There are better ways to do it.

    Oh, “and finally” – at Backstage the other day, Doug McCallum told a great story about buying a DVD player on eBay and it being drop-shipped from Amazon. 😀

  2. I don’t really know about its functionality over in the UK, but here in the US the sellers who use drop shippers can get a real bad reputation very fast when the drop shipping company doesn’t come through.

    I looked at selling this way a few times but didn’t want to risk my feedback and everything else on hoping someone else would get the products shipped out. It does work very well for some people in certain product fields that require a large inventory warehouse type facility and it does have its place, just be careful.

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