With a continuous flow of loyal customers and a huge potential for business growth, eBay is a highly popular marketplace for new sellers and small-scale businesses. You can find many potential buyers on eBay if you are running an online dropshipping business.
Additionally, dropshipping through eBay has opened the doors to this large number of customers globally without the requirement to invest capital upfront. With a lower financial investment than traditional stores, eBay dropshipping could provide an ideal way to access online sales for entrepreneurs who are new to the business or want to try out the waters.
Dropshipping is a legitimate way to make money online and it can be done through eBay. There are certain advantages and disadvantages in running your dropshipping business on the eBay marketplace. You must take all things into consideration and determine if this is a viable option for you or you should go open your online store using platforms like Shopify, Wix, or WooCommerce.
What exactly is the dropshipping company?
Dropshipping is a fulfillment technique whereby a company cannot maintain its stock of goods. Instead, each time the customer purchases something that you sell, the order is sent to an external supplier who prepares and then ships the items directly to the customer.
So, you as a seller neither have to manage the product directly nor do you have to own the stock or manage the inventory. A dropshipping business model implies that sellers buy inventory from a dropshipping business, usually manufacturers or wholesalers, and from that point on the handle the rest.
eBay Dropshipping guidelines and regulations
If you want to dropship on eBay, first, you need to be aware of what is and cannot be allowed. According to eBay’s policy on dropshipping, it is not possible to purchase products from a different seller or marketplace and then ship them directly to your customers.
What does this mean? This means that you cannot be dropshipping directly from companies such as Amazon or AliExpress If it is done, eBay could lower, make your listings invisible, or even remove them entirely.
Failure to adhere to eBay’s guidelines could reduce the ratings you have as a seller and even eventually lead to account suspension.
Before the change, eBay sellers were able to drop ship items from almost anywhere, resulting in unhappy customers that ultimately affected eBay’s reputation and the eBay brand itself.
In an eBay thread, it’s possible to read about how buyers felt they were deceived when they purchased on eBay but then received an Amazon parcel with an Amazon receipt with a price that was lower than the price they paid when they placed the order.
As a result of all of this eBay went on to introduce drop shipping guidelines which prohibited sellers from doing this.
The only way to dropshipping via eBay is to process orders directly from wholesalers. It’s also required to pay listing fees for every product even if it doesn’t sell and ensure delivery within 30 days.
How do dropshipping with eBay?
Dropshipping on eBay is now extremely restricted in the last few years. However, this doesn’t mean that it is completely impossible. You can still run a dropshipping business, however, it means you as a seller have to be vigilant about not violating eBay’s dropshipping rules and to avoid negative results. Here’s how it can be done.
1. Start by setting up the eBay Seller account
All you require to begin dropping shipping requires is to have an eBay Seller account. It is possible to invest more in making your own eBay shop. However, it isn’t necessary. You must also pay the listing fees.
Keep in mind that there are numerous eBay websites for various countries worldwide, so make sure to register for the correct one based on your intended audience and where you intend to do business.
2. Select products to sell and choose a dropshipping service provider
Conducting some research and choosing the products you’d like to sell through eBay is your first step. After that, you’ll have to establish your account to become a retailer and connect with the sellers of your preferred items. Contact them and request if they will drop-ship to your customers.
It’s also essential to make sure that the vendor will attach a custom return label that will include your company’s name and your address in the box to ensure your customers are aware that the package was sent to them from you.
3. Place your items for sale on eBay at the price higher than the purchase
This step is one of the most important. Use every trick available to make your listing stand out from the rest. Upload professional pictures of the items on the supplier’s website, or you can create your images when you have samples. Write up detailed descriptions of your products to optimize listings to ensure the best search visibility.
Be aware that you’ll likely be competing against other sellers that use the same vendor, and sell the same or very similar products. Because of this, you’ll have to think of ways to differentiate your business and stand out from your competition. The right price is equally important. It should be competitive enough with similar listings to attract buyers bring in an income.
4. Send your customers’ information to the suplier after you have made a sale
Contact your supplier when you sell something and provide them with their shipping details. Once the order is processed your supplier is the one that does packaging and delivery of products to your clients. But while it is the supplier who handles all this according to eBay it is you, the seller who is ultimately responsible for secure shipping and on-time delivery of the purchased products.
You may have difficulty finding a wholesale supplier willing to drop-ship directly to eBay customers. In this case, instead, you can purchase large quantities from the supplier and ship the merchandise to a fulfillment provider like ShipMonk, ShipBob, or Fullfilify.
This service will monitor the inventory, package, and then ship the products on your behalf. A purchase of shipping management software like Ordoro or EComDash will help you streamline this process and find the lowest prices for shipping couriers.
The primary disadvantage to this is that you’d have to purchase lots of stock in advance, but there’s no assurance that it’ll all sell and the risk to your business is significantly higher than dropshipping.
Dropshipping through eBay is possible but it comes with a number of pros and cons you must take into consideration. If you start dropshipping on eBay you will have access to a huge market and millions of potential customers, low starting capital, and a platform that is easy to use. On the other hand, there are a number of restrictions in place and also a large competition of other sellers who will be selling the same products at an even lower price.
If you are only trying to make some extra money or trying dropshipping business then eBay might be a good option. If you are thinking about starting a serious online business and building your own brand then the best would be looking for another way to establish your online presence like opening your online store.