Updated: May 23
Every business model needs a plan and that includes dropshipping. Just in case you are wondering what dropshipping is, Dropshipping is a retail fulfillment method where a store doesn’t keep the products it sells in stock. Instead, when a store sells a product using the dropshipping model, it purchases the item from a third party and has it shipped directly to the customer. As a result, the seller doesn’t have to handle the product directly.
The biggest difference between dropshipping and the standard retail model is that the selling merchant doesn’t stock or own inventory. Instead, the seller purchases inventory as needed from a third party—usually a wholesaler or manufacturer—to fulfill orders. Sounds easy right? Now, if you are thinking of starting a dropshipping business in the Philippines and catering or will be serving customers located in the Philippines. Our checklist is for you!
0. Set Aside A Budget: Dropshipping is easy to start but that does not mean you do not need a budget. Every business needs capital and the same applies to dropshipping business. You may not be spending on stocks since you are dropshipping, Most of your spending will go to marketing and advertising your products. Here is a list of what you will spend on:
Store Hosting: $13/Month, Shopify is a hosting platform and one of the best eCommerce platforms to build your site. I personally recommend it. It is cost-effective and easy to manage
Domain: Domain is your presence on the web. It is recommended to get a domain for your store. They are relatively cheap and you can get one from Godaddy. It usually costs ₱300 -1200 / Year
Laptop / PC [ If you have none ]: eCommerce is not something you do from your phone, You need a PC for this. A good PC with at least 6GB or 8GB ram should be fine. You can get a decent one for around ₱30,000+
Stocks & Inventory: This will depend on the kind of dropshipping you will be doing. By default, you don't keep stocks in Dropshipping but that is via Aliexpress. The Philippines market is complicated and with the presence of COD it is hard to find a dropshipping supplier that will allow you to dropship items without paying upfront - ONLY OJMD OFFERS that solution at the moment. However, if you will stock your own items, There are lots of suppliers in Divisoria or Shopee. Some suppliers will agree to drop ship for you on mutual agreement. You need to discuss the deal with them.
Advertising Costs [ Safe Budget ] = ₱30,000 - ₱40,000. I call it a safe budget because you never know what will happen when it comes to advertising. Facebook ads can be complicated so if you will be doing this, it is better to learn first. You can attend workshops or seminars or find a mentor.
** There is no specific figure on marketing budget, we just say a safe budget from the data we have collected from past entrepreneurs and beginners
1. Choose A Platform: This is probably the first step you need to take. Since you will be selling online, You need to figure out where you will be building your online store and what platform. There are a lot of platforms and CMS out there and it can get quite confusing. To name a few we have:
All these platforms offer unique features and you might be overwhelmed when trying to analyze each. However, the best and most popular platform for drop shippers is Shopify. Want to make the whole process easy? You can buy a dropshipping store here at OJMD! We set up everything for you and ready to launch your dropshipping business. See more info HERE
2. Product & Market Research: The next step is to create your customer persona. Find out what you want to sell, Know more about your customers. Who are they? What is their location? What is their purchasing power? Where do they hang out? Facebook? Instagram? etc. Knowing your customer and market will enhance your product research. You can make use of some product research tools all over the internet. A few of them are:
3. Locate Suppliers: The next step is to find or figure out your product source and suppliers. This is an important step because you will need stocks and product supply to run your business. Since you are planning to sell in the Philippines you will need suppliers. You may find suppliers in the local market or local online marketplaces such as Shopee. You may visit the local market hubs in Manila like Divisoria. This place offers various options. Meet the suppliers and talk to them about potential partnerships for supplies. Most of these sellers are not accustomed to dropshipping, You will have to explain.
Sometimes you will need to source items from abroad from websites such as Alibaba or Aliexpress. You can import products from these websites from foreign suppliers and fulfill them to your customers. You may need a fulfillment service or a dropshipping company for this process. Importing from China can be hard because of customs limitations. Find fulfillment centers that can help you import products from abroad if your suppliers are from abroad.
4. Fulfillment Services & Couriers: After you have secured suppliers for your products, The next thing is to choose fulfillment services. Fulfillment simply means packing and logistics. You can either do the fulfillment your self or use a dropshipping service. Again, Our OJMD Dropshipping service handles everything for you!
If you want to do the fulfillment yourself, You may partner with local couriers that can help you with cash on delivery shipment. There are a lot of options but you can always go with:
5. Choose A Store Name & Domain Name: You can now choose a store name. Choosing a store name can be hard and easy! Do not overthink it. Make sure your name is unique, short, and precise. Do not tie your name to a particular product name or Niche [ Unless you are building a niche store ]. Make your store name universal and easy to remember like Lazada, Zalora, etc.
You can now go ahead and choose your domain name. You can check out domains at GoDaddy website.
6. Build Your Store: Now that you have the foundation, It is time to set up your store. It is pretty much easy to create a Shopify store. You can watch our free guide at OJMD eCom University on how to create your Shopify store.
7. Business Registrations: You want to be legit as possible. In doing business in the Philippines, you should have at least registrations. It is easy to register a business in the Philippines for sole owners and it is not so expensive! You can easily get a DTI.
8. Market Your Business: Once you are done setting up your business and website. The only step left is to get ready for marketing. You can do that via paid advertising platforms. In the Philippines, Facebook is the most popular advertising platform. Learn more about Facebook ads, attend seminars, or learn via youtube. You can also learn via FACEBOOK BLUEPRINT.
9. Strong Desire To Win: The business is unpredictable so do not expect and the easy path across this! Just like every startup business, you will face huge disappointments such as failed product testing, disabled ad accounts, disabled facebook accounts, RTS, fake orders, and more! But all these are part of the business. You can wiggle your way through and become successful with the right mindset. Dropshipping is not MLM. It is not investing and wait for the money-making method. You need effort! it is not a sideline, You need commitment.