Dropshipping on Ebay is Not Very Effective

dropshippingYou probably know what dropshipping means. Just in case you do not, let me briefly describe it to you. You simply market an item of merchandise that you found online. When your customer purchases from you, you order the item, and the merchant ships the item to your customer. To make a profit, you have to charge your customer more that the item costs you, including selling expenses. This all sounds very simple, but it is not.

If you are selling on Ebay, and are thinking about listing dropship items, think again. This does not work very well. There are 7 reasons not to use dropshipping on Ebay.

  • First, the market is saturated. Many Ebay sellers use the same dropshippers. The items from those directories are listed on Ebay so many times, that the market has long become saturated.
  • Second, finding dropshippers is costly. Most people who list dropship items on Ebay find suppliers from various dropshipping directories, such as, Doba and GoGoDropship. These directories charge a high fee just to give you the web sites of suppliers who dropship items. What is even worse is, these suppliers are not reputable. They are on their last leg, and are depending on dropship orders to save their hides. Besides, their merchandise is junk, which leads into the third reason why dropshipping is a crock.
  • Third, most dropshippers have junk. In order for an item to sell successfully on Ebay, it has to be either a unique item, or an item that people want. I have browsed through the dropshipping directories many times, and have found it very difficult to find items that meet these criteria. The suppliers that are provided by these directories are those that have inventory they are trying to unload. Those are items that nobody wants, and this makes selling on Ebay extremely difficult.
  • Fourth, selling dropship items on Ebay cuts into your profit margin. The cost of most dropship items is more than someone is willing to bid on Ebay. If you are expecting to make a profit, you may be disappointed. You would be more successful buying items from The Dollar Tree, and re-selling them on Ebay.
  • Fifth, you have to depend on someone else. When listing dropship items, and hopefully, getting a winning bid, you are not in control of following through with the transaction. Someone else needs to, have the item in stock, and second, ship the item to your customer. There is always the risk of listing an item that the supplier has in stock at the time of the listing, but not at the time the auction ends. This will get you in trouble with Ebay buyers, and eventually, with Ebay. When a bidder wins an item that is suddenly no longer in stock, the result will be a negative feedback, and this is not what you want. Even if the item is in stock at the time the auction ends, and you follow through with your end of the deal, you still don’t know when the supplier will ship the item. They are usually not in a hurry to get the item to your customer. If you sell on Ebay, you certainly want to know that your customer has received the item, and is satisfied with the transaction. When using certain dropshippers, this can be difficult.
  • Sixth, Ebay and PayPal fees will take away profit. You will be lucky to make $10 on a dropship item. Even if you do this, the fees charged by Ebay and PayPal will take most of this away, if not all. Many times, you will risk losing money on a dropship item. This defeats your purpose.
  • Seventh, making it work requires very hard work. Even if find a way to make a profit listing dropship items, your profit margin on each will still be very small. To make some serious money, you will have to list close to a hundred items a day. This is a lot of work. However, if you have found a niche, and some good products that are profitable, go for it.

Contrary to my recommendation, if you are determined to list dropship items on Ebay, go with your instincts. Here are 4 recommendations on how to sell dropship items on Ebay.

  1. Find a suitable market niche. Do your research and determine whether a certain item, or niche will be successful. If you find a successful product, then the profit will be there. This is difficult, but can be done.
  2. Find your own suppler. Try to find one that very few are using. You can find numerous suppliers on Google.
  3. Call the supplier and talk to them. Tell them your situation. Ask if they would consider dropshipping to your customers. Remember, if you sell, they also sell. Many suppliers will work with you.
  4. Ask if the product will be available. Keep in touch with the supplier during the auction. Remember, if the product suddenly becomes unavailable more that 24 hours before the end of the auction, you can end the auction, and still be within the rules of Ebay. Having better control of your Ebay listing will increase your chances of a much smoother transaction.

Selling dropship items on Ebay can be very risky. My overall recommendation is, don’t do it. It is not worth the effort.


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