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My Dropshipping Journey with AliExpress

Discussion in 'eCommerce' started by yaros, Jul 22, 2015.

  1. #1
    After several months of hard work, I have finally launched my first AliExpress dropshipping store - WorldOfHarry.com.

    The site was developed from scratch (including the theme and special ecommerce plugin that allows searching and importing products directly from AliExpress through your WP admin panel automatically).
    SEMrush
    Based on experience of other successful dropshipping projetcs I decided:
    - take a narrow niche;
    - select only most popular products in this niche;
    - import products with wholesale price not more than $20;
    - increase prices at about twice the standard cost;
    - sell products with free worldwide shipping option only;

    Another feature of this site is that the plugin imports only products that participate in AliExpress affiliate program. So, if I get any order I will be able to purchase necessary item on AliExpress using my affiliate link to get additional 5%-50% commission.

    The site still needs some improvements but I am going to start marketing it very soon and I will be glad to share my experience with you here.

    It would be great if you could review my site, give some recommendations, ideas, share your experience or just wish me Good luck!
     
    yaros, Jul 22, 2015 IP
    drues1986 and qwikad.com like this.
    SEMrush
  2. victor pacheco

    victor pacheco Peon

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    #2
    If i understood well, you used the affiliate app to import the products, descriptions, prices, but the checkout is in your page so you can also make a markup on it?
     
    victor pacheco, Jul 23, 2015 IP
  3. daftdog

    daftdog Active Member

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    #3
    One of my sites reviews products and recently I reviewed a course called eCom something and it really made me want to get into eCommerce. I would be very happy to hear about how you get on...I plan on starting in 2 weeks....
     
    daftdog, Jul 23, 2015 IP
  4. yaros

    yaros Active Member

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    #4
    You are absolutely right. The solution is based on AliExpress affiliate API. After I get an order I go to AliExpress (using my affiliate link to get additional profit from affiliate commission) and order the same product entering shipping details of my customer.
     
    yaros, Jul 23, 2015 IP
  5. yaros

    yaros Active Member

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    #5
    While putting the finishing touches and preparing my site for the market, I would like to share with you my experince and recommendations regarding choosing a niche for such websites.

    How to find a good niche for AliExpress drop shipping store?

    1. Popularity and Trend.

    Choosing a niche for your drop shipping website you should focus only on products that are always in demand and have positive or at least stable trend.

    Go to google.ru/trends to get better idea about selected niche. For example, we are going to build a store that will sell ‘Harry Potter’ products for Harry Potter fans.

    [​IMG]

    We can observe a small decrease since 2004 but the overall picture looks good, there are no dramatic falls and the trend is rather stable. So, Harry Potter niche seems interesting to me for a drop shipping site.

    Below you see the niche (‘Nokia’) that is not worth trying:

    [​IMG]

    2. Competition.

    It is impossible to find any popular niche with a good trend without competition of course. Before launching your drop shipping store it is strongly recommended to search for similar web stores in the Internet. If you find many good sites offering the same products (especially by good prices), probably you should think about another niche and products, which are generally more hard to find. Obviously, there is no point to create another usual “Shoes”, “Car parts”, “Gardening” stores. It’s better to take some narrow niche and try to be creative.

    3. AliExpress Stock.

    Before starting building your web store, make sure there are enough categories and products available in the niche. Go to AliExpress.com and enter necessary keywords in search bar. In my case with ‘Harry Potter’ everything looks fine.

    [​IMG]

    4. Prices.

    Generally, AliExpress offers very competitive (often unbeatable) prices for many products. However, I would always recommend making a small research about the products’ prices you are going to sell on your site. Ideally, AliExpress prices should be twice lower the prices of your competitors.

    You should pick at least 5-10 products in the selected niche and find best prices for these items on AliExpress. Then go to search.aol.com, enter shopping section and search for the same products in order to compare their prices with prices at AliExpress.

    Let’s take an example.

    I found such Harry Potter Scarf on AliExpress for $9,05/piece.

    [​IMG]

    Then I went to search.aol.com and found the same item sold by other sellers.

    [​IMG]

    As you can see the prices are much higher. In my opinion, it’s a good item that is worth adding to my store.

    to be continued...
     
    yaros, Jul 24, 2015 IP
    Lavonta, Digital_shubhi and initzero like this.
  6. rohit147

    rohit147 Well-Known Member

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    #6
    What about the time of delivery? Aliexpress ships mostly from china right specially at wholesale prices? and most have long shipping schedules? So how do you manage that?
     
    rohit147, Jul 24, 2015 IP
  7. yaros

    yaros Active Member

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    #7
    Shipping time is my main concern also and I know there were quite many complaints about AliExpress regarding this issue before. But as far as I know many things have been improved recently at AliExpress including shipping times. I spoke with many dropshippers who work successfully with AliExpress and they told me that they don't have big troubles with shipping, especially when we deal with not expensive products. Most people are ready to wait when thay get a free shipping option. Thtat's why I am going to sell only items that are shipped worldwide for free. Later, I will probably add other shipping options.
     
    yaros, Jul 24, 2015 IP
  8. cerno

    cerno Active Member

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    #8
    Nice plan, I hope it works out well for you. I would suggest you improve your catalog responsiveness so you don't drop to one column until necessary. Please update this thread after you have operated a while, I have noticed product availability and prices fluctuate wildly on aliexpress in the past. Does your system un-publish products automatically if prices or shipping terms change?
     
    cerno, Jul 25, 2015 IP
  9. ShortGuyzRule

    ShortGuyzRule Member

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    #9
    A prime example of contextual advertising being your enemy just occurred: right next to your store post/example of hogwarts scarves for $29.99 appeared an ad for the exact same scarves - in fact almost (if not) identical picture for $9.95 lol.....
     
    ShortGuyzRule, Jul 25, 2015 IP
  10. yaros

    yaros Active Member

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    #10
    The plugin updates products (description, shipping, price, variations, etc.) automatically, because it works on AliExpress affiliate API.
     
    yaros, Jul 26, 2015 IP
  11. yaros

    yaros Active Member

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    #11
    My goodness! Fortunately, I have some unbeatable Harry Potter magic wands! lol...))
     
    yaros, Jul 26, 2015 IP
  12. vip-registrator

    vip-registrator Active Member

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    #12
    What's the net income from the site in a month?
     
    vip-registrator, Jul 26, 2015 IP
  13. vip-registrator

    vip-registrator Active Member

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    #13
    ready to invest in your website, if you're interested in writing PM
     
    vip-registrator, Jul 26, 2015 IP
  14. yaros

    yaros Active Member

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    #14
    I have just launched the site. I am doing final improvements. I will start marketing soon.
     
    Last edited: Jul 26, 2015
    yaros, Jul 26, 2015 IP
  15. yaros

    yaros Active Member

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    #15
    How to choose categories and products?

    To find best categories for my drop shipping site I use Google Adwords.

    With the help of Keyword Planner I usually start checking different niche related keywords targeting all locations and English language.

    For example, I take “Harry Potter wands” and see the results.

    [​IMG]

    In spite of the fact that this keyword has high competition its search volume looks rather good.

    One by one I select 10 main categories and add them to my site.

    Among these 10 categories I also select 3-4 most popular ones to add them to the slider.

    [​IMG]

    After my categories are ready I go to AliExpress.com to find necessary products.

    To find the best and most demanded products I filter all products by orders and pay special attention to feedback score.

    [​IMG]

    I get product ID of a desired item and add it to the plugin that automatically finds the product and imports all necessary information (images, description, parameters, variations, etc.) in my site.

    Or I can make all the process (search, filter and upload products) work through the plugin.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    to be continued...
     
    yaros, Jul 27, 2015 IP
  16. yaros

    yaros Active Member

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    #16
    Some SEO aspects:

    1. Before choosing main categories for my site, I use Google Adwords to find good keywords in selected niche. As a result all names of my categories are in line with chosen keywords. (For example: category name “Harry Potter wands” = “Harry Potter wands” keyword that has 40,500 monthly searches according to Google Adwords.

    2. I am using Senuke software for social bookmarking. It helps to index site well and get stable pages on Google.

    3. I write and place a unique article (3000 symbols) on the home page above footer.

    4. I write and place a unique article with necessary keywords (2000 symbols) on each category page. For each article I make unique title placing it in H2 tag. It is important that this title (H2) should be different from the name of the category (H1).

    5. Using special software (usually WebSite Auditor) I do SEO audit for all my pages to find out if:
    - I have any errors in the code;
    - robots.txt created and setup properly;
    - there are any pages with 404 error;
    - a site has any broken links;
    - all meta tags are written correctly;
    - all pages are mobile friendly.
     
    yaros, Jul 30, 2015 IP
  17. vip-registrator

    vip-registrator Active Member

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    #17
    Profit?
     
    vip-registrator, Aug 2, 2015 IP
  18. yaros

    yaros Active Member

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    #18
    I will let you know when I lunch advertising campaigns. There are still some things I need to finish before pushing it to the market (responsive design, some SEO artciles, etc.)
     
    yaros, Aug 2, 2015 IP
  19. yaros

    yaros Active Member

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    #19
    For the last 4 days I was struggling hard with making my site mobile-friendly. Finally, done! Google liked it:)

    [​IMG]
     
    yaros, Aug 11, 2015 IP
    evelinawilliams007 likes this.
  20. initzero

    initzero Member

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    #20
    Hi Yaros,

    You are very good and got well-organized plan towards this journey. If you don't mind me asking, did you register your business (to the country you resided) for this venture ? Will you or are you issuing an official receipt to the buyer? Or is it the supplier in alibaba the one's issuing the receipts ?

    Sorry for too many questions, I previously owned an ecommerce biz(not dropshipping type) but now defunct. I register this then ecommerce business of mine to be legal, so I was wondering for this drop shipping type of ecommerce will be the same case.

    Thanks.
     
    initzero, Aug 14, 2015 IP