In a previous article, I gave 4 reasons why dropshipping is a bad idea. But just because there are good reasons not to do it, doesn't mean you should shun the idea altogether. There are legitimate reasons to dropship products.
You Have an Established Blog or Website
If you already have an established website about dogs, it might make sense to start selling leashes and dog food bowls. If your blog is well known in your niche, ranks well in search, and already has a lot of unique content, then adding some physical products can actually add value to your visitor's experience. It also cuts straight through some of the disadvantages of dropshipping.
Because you already have an audience, you have eliminated the problem of having a low barrier of entry into the market. Creating even a mildly successful niche site is a phenomenal accomplishment that is not easy. Not everyone can do it. The few that try will usually not try very hard and give up. You already have a moat. Just keep digging it deeper. You are well on your way to elevating yourself above the morass of sameness that dropshipping usually produces.
This is probably the best way to successfully launch an ecommerce business anyway, whether you choose to dropship or not. Start a content website or blog that aims to help a specific problem or related group of problems. Post regularly. Follow some sound SEO and marketing advice. Within one year, if you work hard, you'll probably have something you can launch a business with. If not, the audience probably isn't there for an ecommerce site anyway. Move on.
But if you can't commit to post to a website at least twice per week, then you probably don't have what it takes to commit to an ecommerce business. So whether you succeed or fail, at least you'll know. And remember, there is no shame in failure.
You Want to Supplement Your Current Offerings
If you already have a successful ecommerce website, dropship providers can be a good resource to expand your offering, or test at least test the waters of expansion before commiting to carrying inventory. If you are selling home kitchen appliances and supplies, it might make sense to test out selling some cookbooks. Or if you are selling dog food, dog health supplements might be a good fit.
This may seem obvious. Of course dropshipping can work if you are already selling similar products. Success usually begets success. But its true.
If you already have the infrasctructre in place to run a moderate ecommerce business, then adding dropshipped products will be easy an easy way to add variety. Its a potential resource you don't want to ignore.
You Want Backup in Case of Inventory Outages
It happens. You run out of the hot product. Or the shipment is late getting to your warehouse. In this situation, having a few dropshippers in your pocket that sell the same or similar product can help you maintain availability and serve your customers without interruption.
All of these reasons come down to this: if you are going to dropship, it shouldn't make up the core of your business, and it shouldn't be what you start with. Start by building assets first. Dropshipping should be the new rims on a car, not the engine itself.