Have you just created your online store but are struggling to get your first dropshipping sale? Don't worry; you're not the only one with this problem.
Unless you get lucky or you're naturally talented, getting your first few dropshipping sales can require a lot of effort.
Arguably, it's more challenging to go from 0 to 10 sales than going from 10 to 100 sales.
Because for your first dropshipping sales, you will have to find out what resonates with your audience. You will have to find a combination of ads, descriptions, images, colors, price, and much more that will make your visitors think, “I want to get that product!”.
Once you've found that combination, getting more sales is easier since it's more a matter of rinse and repeat.
I've written this article to give you a few tips & tricks about getting your first dropshipping sales and finding that golden combination!
1. Have the right mindset
I know that you may have heard from “dropshipping gurus” that it's easy to make $10k+ a month with dropshipping.
Sadly, that's not true. There are some things that dropshipping gurus don't tell you as a beginner.
One of them is that dropshipping is a real business. To succeed, you will have to put in hard work and be prepared to work on your business consistently.
Please don't go into dropshipping thinking that it's a way to get rich quick.
Be prepared that getting your first dropshipping sale may be harder than you thought.
Expect that all your work will seem to be done for nothing at times, but keep on going, and you will see that your first dropshipping sale will come!
If you're interested in learning more about how to have the right mindset when opening up your dropshipping store, then check out this article.
2. Try using different marketing channels
If you're having trouble getting your first dropshipping sale, trying out different marketing channels may be worth to try!
Common marketing channels for dropshippers are Facebook Ads, Google Ads, Instagram influencers, and Pinterest.
Each marketing channel has its pros and cons, and some products can be more suited to market with a specific marketing channel, like Instagram influencers.
Here's a simple overview of choosing the right marketing method:
To make it easier for you, I'm going to give a short summary explaining the pros & cons of each marketing channel and tell you for which kinds of products they are most suited!
Facebook Ads is a paid marketing channel where you can create ads and display them to potential customers through various platforms like Facebook and Instagram.
Facebook Ads is most suited for:
- Products with a WOW-factor.
- Problem-solving products.
- Products that appeal to a specific audience.
Pros of Facebook Ads
- Detailed and extensive targeting possibilities
- Use Facebook's AI and get access to features like Lookalike Audiences
- Advertise on multiple platform placements
Cons of Facebook Ads
- The Ad Manager can seem complicated for beginners; I suggest reading our Facebook Ads for Beginners Guide!
- Facebook has a strict ad policy
Google Ads is the marketing channel behind the “Ad” results you see when typing something in Google, as you can see above.
Google Ads is most suited for products that are being actively searched for.
Pros of Google Ads
- Your visitors will be actively looking for your product (engaged shoppers)
- Extensive analytics
- Only pay when someone clicks on your ad
Cons of Google Ads
- Keywords can be difficult to set up; you may attract visitors interested in different products if you're not careful (For more information about keyword research, check out this article)
- Not the cheapest marketing channel
The platform is most suited for:
- Products that are sensitive to impulse buying.
- Products with a WOW-factor.
- Products that sell better with word-of-mouth marketing. In other words, products that are more easily sold when a person that your customer already knows promotes it.
Pros of Instagram influencers
- Cheap impressions
- Excellent marketing channel if you have a low marketing budget
- Increase your social proof
Cons of Instagram influencers
- No full control over the audience
- Can't be run on “autopilot”
- Can be difficult to find good influencers
Click here to learn more about the pros and cons of Instagram influencers!
Pinterest is a social platform that people use to find inspiration and ideas for their interests and hobbies.
The platform is most suited for:
- Products that look great and provide excellent visual content.
- Products with a WOW-factor that people haven't seen before.
Pros of Pinterest
- Still a relatively untapped marketing channel
- Advertise your dropshipping store for free
- Helps to boost your SEO
Cons of Pinterest
- Can be time-consuming
- Most Pinterest users are female
If after reading this you're interested in giving Pinterest a try, I suggest reading the articles I've linked to below:
- How to Get Free Traffic From Pinterest for Ecommerce
- How Do I Advertise My Dropshipping Store With Pinterest?
3. Analyze your ecommerce purchase funnel
When you aren't getting any sales on your dropshipping store, it's a good practice to take a closer look at your ecommerce purchase funnel.
Examining your conversion rates will give you insight into which step of the funnel could be improved.
Maybe you will notice that many people are adding your product to their cart, but only a few of those continue to the checkout.
Knowing this will help you a lot since you can now try implementing solutions that are specifically designed to fix this problem.
For example, you could:
- Stop forcing your customers into creating an account on your online store
- Try to show the shipping fee in the cart
- Target a different audience that is more likely to purchase
- Let your friends and family order something on your online store and get feedback
You should really try to analyze your purchase funnel.
Click here to open an article that will give a detailed explanation on how to analyze your purchase funnel and provide various solutions to help you get your first dropshipping sale!
4. Start a blog
Have you already thought about starting a blog on your dropshipping store? Probably not.
Starting a blog can really cause you to get your first dropshipping sale. It basically adds another way for potential customers to find your online store.
When looking for specific information, people may land on your blog, after which they will check out your store and may even purchase a product!
Furthermore, having a blog on your online store will also improve your store's SEO, which means people can find your products on Google more easily.
I recommend starting a blog around your online store's topic. Here's an example:
Another creative example is Blend Jet, a company you may have heard of before selling portable blenders.
Instead of creating a traditional blog, Blend Jet is writing and making videos about different recipes you can try making with their product. That's really smart!
5. Offer a discount code
Offering a discount code can occasionally give your visitors that last needed push to order a product and get you your first dropshipping sale.
People love discounts!
There are many ways of offering discount codes. For example, you can try to offer a discount code in your header while a visitor is viewing the product.
Or, you can offer visitors a discount code when they subscribe to your email newsletter, as Alo Yoga does in their footer here:
Perhaps, one of the most effective ways of using discount codes is by using SMS marketing.
By using an SMS marketing app such as Cartloop, you will be able to send conversational SMS messages to your customers. Often, reminding your customer about their shopping cart and including a discount will give them the last push to place an order!
To learn more about recovering abandoned checkouts using SMS marketing, click here!
6. Post your product in online communities
If you have a strict budget, posting your product in online communities can be a great way to get your first dropshipping sale.
For example, if you're selling a woodworking tool, you could post and talk about your product in this Facebook group:
That way, you can provide value to the group by offering them a problem-solving product and give the group members inspiration by showing what kind of wood pieces can be created using your tool.
Hopefully, some group members will like it too and pay a visit to your online store!
Be creative. Besides Facebook groups, you could also post your product on your company's Facebook page or on Facebook's marketplace. Or, you could post it on one of the different platforms like Reddit, Pinterest, TikTok, Instagram, and more!
Just remember not to spam every page you can find with your product. Try to provide real value in your posts and read the concerned policies about promoting products before making a post.
Can You Do Dropshipping With the Facebook Marketplace?
7. Try to optimize your conversion rate
I've already talked about this in the ecommerce purchase funnel section, but there are more ways to improve your dropshipping store's conversion rate!
So, remember to spend some time to improve your store's conversion rate. No one is going to buy from a dropshipping store that looks like it has been made in one day.
Make sure you have things like:
Giving your dropshipping store some extra love can make the difference between an abandoned checkout and your first dropshipping sale!
If you're having trouble with coming up with things like a great product description and product name, then you could also take a look at tools that can help you with this.
One example is an AI tool called Jasper!
Here are a few things that Jasper can help you with:
- Writing Facebook & Google Ads
- Product descriptions
- Product names
- Landing pages
- Feature to benefit (turn your product features into benefits that compel action)
- Images (Check out our Jasper Art review here)
- And more!
If that sounds awesome to you as well, then check it out here to get 10,000 words for free.
Plus, you can check this out here to see an example of how to sell a product with Jasper!
8. Make your store look trustworthy
To make people buy your product, you should not only make them want to own it, but they should also trust your store.
If your online store doesn't look like a real brand, people will think that their payment information will be stolen. They won't purchase anything, and you won't get your first dropshipping sale.
Like I said above, you can try looking at other dropshipping stores for inspiration to see how they made their store trustworthy.
For example, never directly copy AliExpress product descriptions. Do you think this product description looks trustworthy?
If you think you're going to miss something, then don't forget to check out our dropshipping startup checklist here.
9. Rethink your pricing strategy
When you haven't gotten your first dropshipping sale after targeting different audiences and trying everything to improve your store's look, your product price may simply be too high.
When it comes to pricing your product, you can't just trust your gut feelings. You will have to consider things like costs, taxes, and psychology.
With a pricing strategy, you will be able to set your price at a rate that is appealing to visitors, and won't cause you to generate losses.
Take a deep dive and learn some new things about pricing strategies, and I'm sure that you will improve your profit margin!
It will guide you through pricing strategies for low-ticket, medium-ticket, and high-ticket products. Also, it will go over rounding your pricing and how to calculate your profit. Click here to read the guide!
10. Make sure that your store loads fast
In this day and age, who has the patience to wait 5+ seconds for a website's page to load?
It shouldn't come as a surprise that a slowly loading online store can increase the chances of people closing their tab.
Here's the effect that page load time can have on your store:
Fast load times not only have a positive effect on the bounce rate but on SEO as well. Your page's load time is actually a ranking factor on Google!
All of this means that your store's load times can really make the difference between a sale and an abandoned cart.
Strange Loop even discovered that a one-second delay in page load time could cause a 7% loss in conversions!
Luckily, your store's load time is something that you can work on to improve.
We've written an article that includes more essential facts about why you should improve your store's load times and (more importantly) how you can make your store load faster:
It's an article focused on Shopify stores, but it also includes many tips for ecommerce stores in general!
11. Organize a giveaway
Organizing a giveaway is a great method to increase trust and awareness around your (new) brand.
Everybody loves free stuff, and many people will gladly share your giveaway post for a chance to win one of your awesome products!
Remember that all participants of your giveaway will be interested in your products. Some people will even go ahead and straight-up buy your product after finding out they didn't win!
Here's an example of a giveaway post on Facebook:
Don't forget that after doing a Facebook giveaway, you can retarget all people involved with your post using Facebook Ads.
12. Accept cryptocurrency on your store
Cryptocurrencies are becoming increasingly more popular.
Some people love using crypto as a currency and often look for stores that accept cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin as a payment method!
This is where your dropshipping store can step in by accepting cryptocurrency and potentially secure some extra sales.
There are even certain websites that promote cryptocurrency-accepting stores.
For example, Spendabit is a search engine that only displays products that are available for purchase with Bitcoins, and Bitcoinwide is a platform that lets you search for businesses that accept cryptocurrencies:
To find out how you can accept Bitcoin (and other crypto payments) on Shopify, check out this article!
13. Tell friends and family about your dropshipping store
Telling your friends and family about your new dropshipping store is never a bad idea.
Besides being able to get some honest feedback, some friends or family members might like your products so much that they will place an order themselves!
That would be an awesome first dropshipping sale, wouldn't it?
Assuming your friends and family didn't place orders only to support you, at least you will know that there is interest in the product. Even when they didn't order anything, you can ask them to share the store with their friends. Who knows, you might get a couple of extra sales!
14. If nothing works, try selling a different product
When you've tried all of the above tips and still didn't manage to get your first dropshipping sale, it may be that you just aren't selling a winning product.
People simply don't have enough interest in the product to place an order on your store.
If that is the case, don't worry, it's okay to step away from a product and to move on to a different one. (Don't get “married” to your product!)
You will have more chance of succeeding by testing new products than marrying one product and trying to make it work for too long.
Before picking your next product to sell, I suggest reading our guide that will tell you exactly how a winning product looks like (and will give you winning product examples, like this one from Sell The Trend).
Then, you can use one of these product research methods to find a new winning dropshipping product.
With the knowledge you've built and learned from your previous mistakes, you will be able to set up a new online store with your new product in a much more efficient way.
So, don't give up and try to sell a different product to get your first dropshipping sale!
How long does it take to get your first dropshipping sale?
You may wonder, “How long does it actually take to get your first dropshipping sale?”.
Unfortunately, I can't give you a clear answer to that.
If you're lucky, have lots of experience, or are a natural talent for marketing dropshipping products, you may start seeing your first dropshipping sales a few days after finishing creating your online store.
However, don't get bogged down if you still haven't received any sales after a few weeks.
And remember not to give up; maybe you are just a day away from your first dropshipping sale? No one knows.
If you're interested in reading a more detailed explanation around this topic, you should visit our article: How Fast Can You Make Money With a Dropshipping Store?
It will explain in more detail what factors can play a role in the way some persons can start earning money within a few days on their dropshipping store, and why it might take others weeks or months.
Great job on reading the whole article!
It shows that you're dedicated to getting your first dropshipping sale, and I genuinely believe that if you can apply the tips I've given in this article, you will achieve your goal.
But if you think you're stuck in the research phase and not sure if you can start or not, then check out this article here.
Look, the first dropshipping sale can be a magical moment. You have worked really hard for it, and once it happens, it will boost your motivation to continue working on your business.
It's addicting, but in a positive way. Hearing that cat-ching sound will leave you wanting only want more and more.
I hoped that this article helped you to get your first dropshipping sale. If it did, leave a comment down below so we can celebrate together on your massive achievement!
Good luck with everything!
Getting Started with Dropshipping in 2023
So, are you ready to get started with dropshipping? Or maybe you have already started, but you’re looking to get some inspiration?
If so, then I suggest reading this complete Shopify dropshipping guide.
It’s a huge article, but it contains everything that you need to know to create your own Shopify dropshipping store in 2023. It’s like a dropshipping course, but then for free!
Reading this article will surely help you to get started and to stay motivated while beginning and continuing your dropshipping journey.
Just don’t forget that success takes time. Keep improving each and every day!
And here are the articles I suggest you read next:
- The 25 Best Dropshipping Niche Ideas for Your Store
- 15 Best & Worst Countries to Target as a Dropshipper
- How Many Products Should You Have to Start Dropshipping?
- The 25 Best Dropshipping Websites & Companies for Your Store