7 Unique Dropshipping Tips (Beginners Don’t Know)


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Welcome to a guide that’s all about making your dropshipping store shine! We’re diving into 7 key things that often slip through the cracks for beginners but are common among premium Shopify stores.

And don’t worry, I’ll walk you through how to bring them to life in your own store!

Dropshipping has changed a lot over the years. What was a hit in 2016 might not get you far today, and there’s a big reason for that… so much competition!

Dropshipping has become super popular, meaning you’ve got to bring something special to the table to get noticed. There’s just not enough space for every new business to thrive.

The dropshipping pros get creative and think differently, especially when it comes to designing their websites.

Now, I don’t have the numbers to prove it, but I’d bet that a lot of dropshipping stores don’t make it, and many people trying it out hit a wall.

So, what’s the secret sauce for the best and most successful stores compared to a newbie starting a Shopify store and filling it with items from AliExpress?

My related articles you might like:

Tip 1. Don’t Look Like a Dropshipping Store!

Dropshipping sometimes gets a bad rap, and it’s often because some folks dive into it just looking to make a quick buck, neglecting customer service and selling subpar products with slow shipping times. They’re not thinking about building a business that will last.

So, if you’re diving into dropshipping, you’ll want your store to shine with reliability and not scream “dropshipping” to savvy shoppers. How? Make it look and feel like a regular, trustworthy online store.

Let’s take emails, for example. Successful dropshipping stores have professional-looking email addresses that match their store name. Take a look at Cat Genie.

Their email is [email protected], which aligns with their store and oozes professionalism. Imagine if it was something like [email protected] instead – it might make you wonder, “Is this place for real?”

Contact information for an eCommerce store

You can get a business email from various companies but Google Workplace is the most popular option for a business email with prices starting at around $6 per month.

Now, about adding a phone number to your store, you’ve got options:

  • Use your own number if you’re okay with that.
  • Try a virtual answering service like Ruby or ReceptionHQ.
  • Get a free virtual number and use an additional sim or a budget-friendly burner phone to handle calls.

Having a phone number is especially crucial if you’re selling pricier or high-quality items. For $15 phone cases, it’s nice but not a must.

Next up, let’s talk about giving your store a physical business address without sharing your home details (because who wants to do that?). Here are your choices:

  • Opt for a virtual office, which can start at around $10 a month, depending on what you need.
  • Use a PO Box. It doesn’t give a physical address but adds a layer of trust to your business.
  • Go for a sneaky option: Google an office building, check for an unoccupied office and simply make that your address.

Implementing these tweaks not only boosts your store’s trust and professionalism, making customers more likely to hit that “buy” button but it establishes E-E-A-T, an important SEO factor for ranking in Google’s SERPs.

Check out my article on the most profitable Shopify stores to see what is possible.

Dropshipping Essentials Members Area

Tip 2. Private Label your Products

Dropshipping is a fantastic way to do business, which is why so many people are drawn to it. But it’s not without its challenges, especially when using popular platforms like AliExpress. The moment you start making sales, you’ll likely notice competitors springing up, selling the same products as you. That’s because everyone has access to the same items on AliExpress, making it tricky to stand out.

So, how do the best dropshipping stores manage to shine in such a competitive environment? They collaborate directly with manufacturers in China to tweak and enhance their products, ensuring they offer something unique.

When they place a bulk order, they might make various changes to the products, such as:

  • Enhancing battery life
  • Using better materials
  • Introducing new colors or designs
  • Adding their store logo
  • Incorporating additional features

Since many manufacturers don’t produce items until orders are placed, these kinds of changes are usually possible.

However, communicating these specific changes can be a bit tricky due to language barriers. While many Chinese suppliers say they speak English, they often rely on translation apps, which can lead to misunderstandings. That’s why it’s usually better to work with a Chinese dropshipping agent who speaks both English and Chinese, ensuring your specifications are communicated accurately to the manufacturer.

Moreover, the savviest dropshipping websites often strike deals with manufacturers to get exclusive rights to their unique product version. If they’re selling enough, manufacturers are usually happy to agree, which means no other competitors can sell that exact design.

If you’re looking to work with an agent in China to customize your products, I suggest you read my article on what does a dropshipping agent do and how to buy in bulk from China.

Tip 3. Appear Like the Original Creator!

No matter how spectacular a product might be, if customers don’t trust a store, they simply won’t make a purchase. A brilliant strategy to build this trust is to present the store as the original creator of the products they sell.

Top dropshipping sites often curate their store’s theme and brand to convey this. By ensuring that the store and products appear cohesive and legitimate, they enhance the perceived value of the products.

But how do they manage to create this impression while merely dropshipping?

Unique Product Naming

They assign truly unique names to their products. This strategy makes it seem like the product is specialized and that the store is the original brand.

For example, check out the store below, they are selling drink bottles. But they’ve named their store Halo Bottle, all their products have Halo on them and they’ve even given each color a unique name.

They appear like they are the original creator of the Halo drink bottle. If they tried selling one of these drink bottles in a general store but called it a “green water bottle” they couldn’t sell them for half that price.

Another big advantage of giving products unique names is people can’t price check the same product. If you Google “Halo Vesper Drink Bottle” no other stores will be selling the same one, making their water bottle appear specialized.

Tip of creating unique product names for a dropshipping store

Consistency and Flow

They ensure that the store’s theme aligns with the products. If the products feature specific colors, the site’s design will incorporate them, creating a harmonious look and feel.

This consistent flow across colors, fonts, and content makes customers feel like the store and products were crafted in tandem. If you’re seeking inspiration for your niche store, consider exploring some niche store examples in my article.

Crafting a Believable Narrative

Their content is structured in a way that convinces readers that the products were thoughtfully planned and created from the outset. Take a look at the eCommerce store Blend Jet.

Their content narrates the story behind Blend Jet’s foundation, emphasizing a market need for a portable blender capable of making smooth, clump-free smoothies. Customers reading this might perceive that Blend Jet was created to meet this specific need, even though the reality might be that the founders were simply seeking a profitable product and happened upon this blender.

By employing these strategies, dropshipping stores can successfully create a trustworthy and original brand image in the eyes of the consumer.

Blend Jet about page

Tip 4. Social Proof is a Must!

Ever noticed a perpetually bustling restaurant or a cafe with a constant queue? Without having tasted the food, you might assume it’s scrumptious. That assumption is powered by social proof.

Social proof is a psychological phenomenon where people validate the quality of something, without any direct evidence of its worth, simply because others are endorsing or using it. This concept is crucial for online stores where establishing trust is paramount before customers are willing to share their credit card details.

Top dropshipping stores leverage social proof effectively. But how exactly do they incorporate it?


Reviews are paramount in adding social proof to eCommerce stores. A Forbes article reveals that 84% of online shoppers trust online reviews as much as personal recommendations.

Many dropshippers, even with brand new sites, upload product reviews from AliExpress onto their platforms. For instance, the LOOX reviews app from Shopify is a great tool for user generated content.

Check out the example below from an eCommerce store selling indestructible shoes. All the reviews appear like genuine experiences from real people who have bought the product (Even if they’re not).

Reviews for adding social proof to a dropshipping store


Testimonials, akin to reviews, add another layer of social proof. They are essentially positive reviews prominently displayed on a website. Testimonials are vital for dropshipping stores selling products that need proof of efficacy.

Take a look at the example below, Lettuce Grow, a store that sells vertical vegetable stands. Testimonials effectively bolster confidence in the product, assuring customers that it delivers as promised. For products requiring less validation, like plush toys or sunglasses, testimonials might not be as crucial.

Lettuce grow testimonials to add social proof

Social Proof Notifications

Have you seen those little pop-up notifications indicating that someone from a certain location just bought a product from the store you’re browsing? That’s a social proof notification.

In essence, the store is signaling that their products are in demand, nudging you to make a purchase. While these notifications aim to build trust and create a sense of urgency and scarcity, they can be perceived as spammy and slightly irritating.

Their effectiveness can depend on what you’re selling. For a branded or high-ticket store aiming to convey a luxury feel, they might not be the best choice and may appear spammy.

If you opt to use these notifications, Fomo Social Proof is a recommended tool, offering a free version that allows up to 1,000 notifications a month.

Tip 5. Create Viral Worthy Videos

Leading dropshipping stores often design unique and imaginative videos that resonate and forge a connection with their audience, presenting their store in a light that’s both relatable and engaging.

A common pitfall for beginners in the dropshipping realm is utilizing the same promotional videos provided by AliExpress. This is a significant misstep. With numerous individuals employing these videos, using them will not allow your store to distinguish itself amidst the sea of similar content.

Take a peek at final straw for a stellar example of video marketing done right. The video elucidates what the product is, its functionalities, its advantages, its environmental benefits, and above all, it’s funny and entertaining, making it memorable.

Articture is another store that has masterfully crafted videos and images. They’ve produced sleek and visually stunning videos for each of their products.

While they seem to be a dropshipping store, they successfully convey the aura of a luxury furniture store, complete with premium pricing, through their high-quality visual content.

Example of high quality images for a dropshipping store

Tip 6. Stop Dropshipping!

Top-performing dropshipping stores often transition away from dropshipping their products at a certain point. While dropshipping is a fantastic business model, acting as the intermediary between the consumer and the supplier, it often provides low profit margins.

This is because you’re relying on a supplier to ship individual products instead of purchasing in bulk at wholesale prices.

Many savvy dropshippers choose to buy their best-selling products in bulk, sending them to a fulfillment center (3PL), which then ships out each product individually. This strategy typically results in higher profit margins for the dropshipper and expedited shipping for the customer.

This is a great way for the best dropshipping websites to gain an advantage over their competitors. They can essentially provide a better buying experience and undercut their competitors as they are paying less for the product.

A significant advantage of a one-product dropshipping store is that you only need to purchase a single product in bulk, thereby minimizing risk. This contrasts with a niche store that might carry 100 products, which is why many stores opt to buy only their popular products in bulk and dropship the remainder.

You can check out all my one-product store content here if you want to learn more.

Take Ben Francis, the founder of Gymshark, as an example. He began by dropshipping apparel and supplements. As the business burgeoned, he ceased dropshipping and pivoted towards designing and manufacturing. Now, Gymshark boasts a valuation of $1.3 billion.

This is just one among numerous examples of a dropshipping store that utilized dropshipping as an initial step to expand its eCommerce business.

Tip 7. Brand your Dropshipping Store

Diving into the world of dropshipping, you might have encountered the phrase “branded dropshipping.” This term, coined by dropshippers, refers to identifying a profitable product (or products) and constructing a brand around them.

The top-tier dropshipping stores you’ll discover online have seamlessly integrated branding into their operations. However, it’s crucial to note that establishing a brand goes beyond merely creating a logo and affixing it to your products.

For some examples, I suggest you check out my article The Best Branded Dropshipping Store Examples!

The most successful dropshippers craft a store that zeroes in on a very specific niche and audience. They design their store with this particular audience in mind, ensuring it feels tailor-made for them.

I stumbled upon this eCommerce store recently, Beef Cake Swimwear. We all know those fun, imperfect and beefy (slightly annoying) people who are also loud and proud of it. This store is designed for that very specific audience in mind.

Ecommerce store Beefcake's homepage example tip

Having a target audience is pivotal when creating an eCommerce store. Given the plethora of choices consumers have online, it’s imperative to offer the most optimal shopping experience.

If you’re contemplating branding your store, it might be wise to steer clear of establishing a general store. Branding tends to lose its efficacy when your target audience is everyone. For those interested, I have some examples of general stores that are still successful without branding.


Embarking on a dropshipping business presents a unique challenge: Initially, you and your competitors often have access to the same resources. The same products, suppliers, prices, and advertising platforms are available to all, making the competitive dropshipping space a tough nut to crack.

This is precisely why seizing every small advantage becomes crucial. A strategic approach involves scrutinizing the most successful dropshipping stores and pondering: What are they doing differently?

  • What strategies are they employing to drive traffic?
  • How have they crafted their brand identity within their store?
  • Which social media platforms are they predominantly utilizing, and what could be the reason?
  • Which advertising platforms are they leveraging the most, and why?
  • Are they opting for shipping from China or domestically?
  • From where are they sourcing their products?
  • How are their ads being crafted and targeted?

The key lies in observing what works, emulating aspects of their success, and, crucially, enhancing them. It’s about drawing inspiration, then adding your unique twist to carve out your own space in the dropshipping world.

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