DON’T Buy a Pre-Built Shopify Dropshipping Store!!

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I feel like I needed to write this article. Selling pre-built Shopify dropshipping stores to unsuspecting beginners is a hot business right now and I can see why.

It’s a very compelling proposition. If I didn’t know better and someone was offering me a complete Shopify store ready to make sales for only $50, I’d assume it’s the best deal ever.

Spoiler Alert, if you’re a beginner and considering one of these offers, don’t do it! I’ll cover more about this in the section below.

Although I personally have never purchased a pre-built Shopify store, I do have a lot of experience in eCommerce and I know of several people who have purchased these stores.

To Avoid Confusion

Just to be clear, this article is referring to pre-built stores that are yet to start making sales or running ads. I am not referring to buying already established stores that are running ads and making a regular income. These stores are often much higher in price as they have a proven track record of success. Often 30 to 40 times their monthly profit.

I would recommend checking out Empire Flippers if you are considering buying an already profitable Shopify store. I have an article on what to look for when buying a dropshipping business if you want to learn more.

Click here for a FREE Shopify trial and 3 months of Shopify for Only $1

Pre-built stores are often known as premade Shopify stores, done-for-you Shopify stores or existing Shopify stores which can be purchased at Flippa and XeeDevelopers. I may refer to these terms interchangeably in this article.

What is a Pre-Built Shopify Store?

Pre-built Shopify stores are fully designed eCommerce stores ready to start making sales. There are two main types of these stores; premade stores that can be purchased as is and custom-made stores which can be modified to your business needs.

Pre-built Shopify store from XeeDevelopers
Pre-built Shopify store from XeeDevelopers

Custom-made pre-built stores will take several days before they are completed as they will work with you and hopefully build a store that is branded towards your niche and target audience.

Customizable stores will cost more money as you are receiving a premium service. How customizable and which features your store will have will differ depending on who you purchase it from.

Pre-designed stores are ready for immediate operation and usually have a niche and products uploaded and won’t be modified to suit your personal needs. They are normally ready to take control of right away and any changes or alterations will need to be done by you.

With pre-built stores, the adage “you get what you pay for” often holds true. If a done-for-you store is being offered at a very low price, like $20, the quality and uniqueness can be questionable. These stores are typically created using a standard template, with minimal customizations such as changing images and some content to fit a specific niche.

As a result, there’s a high likelihood that the store you purchase will be extremely similar, or even identical, to others sold to different buyers. This lack of uniqueness can impact the store’s potential to stand out in a competitive online marketplace.

Pre-built Shopify StoreDescription
Turnkey Shopify StoreA pre-made store ready for immediate operation. Includes a built store with products, established supplier connections, and automated fulfillment software. Saves time on product and supplier research and store building. Offers limited control over aspects like products and store design.
Custom Shopify StoreInvolves hiring an expert to design and build your store based on specific requirements. More expensive but allows for a unique and professional store that aligns with your vision. You handle product research, suppliers, and other dropshipping elements.
Existing Shopify StoreBuying an already established and operational Shopify store from another seller. Provides a proven sales history and includes assets like supplier relationships, social media accounts, and customer lists. Can be the most expensive option and integrating into an existing business model may have its challenges.
Types of pre-built Shopify stores

There are also different types of stores that you can have designed depending on your business goals. This included dropshipping stores, general stores, niche-specific stores, print-on-demand stores, one-product stores and more.

Different pre-built store types at XeeDevelopers

What You Get in a Pre-Built Shopify Store

Depending on who or which website you buy your pre-built store from will depend on what is included as part of your package. You really have to work out beforehand what additions you require.

Some pre-built stores come with the bare basics whilst others come fully loaded with features you may or may not need.

The standard features you can expect are basic or premium themes, menus and categories setup, SEO optimized, products uploaded, apps & Plugins installed, trust badges added, creation of pages such as, shipping & terms of service, etc.

More advanced features are video content, social media management, unique product descriptions, branding, lifestyle videos and images, and blog articles written.

The advanced pre-made store features are a more premium option and the cost will be higher. In my opinion, you are better off with the basics until you’re making consistent sales before purchasing unnecessary features.

Basic FeaturesAdvanced Features
Integration with SupplierCustomized Checkout
Customized ThemeMoney Back Guarantee (Terms & Conditions Applied)
Logo DesignFull Shopify Store Setup & Responsive Design
Categorization of ProductsPremium Theme and Logo Design
Product TaggingLegal Pages & Shipping Setup
Product DescriptionTop Selling Winning Products
Trusted StoreFacebook Ads Strategy + Target Audience
Information PagesLifetime Technical Support
Online ChatConversion Boosting Apps
Social Media Integration SetupGoogle Verification
Payment Gateway SetupGoogle Web Master Tool Installation
Shipping SetupGoogle Analytics Set Up
Email Capturing System IntegrationProduct Link Fetching on Search Console
Included features of a pre-built Shopify store

How to Buy a Pre-Built Shopify Store the Right Way

I have seen some well-designed and beautifully, branded pre-built Shopify stores, and then I’ve seen others that look like a monkey built them.

I wish it was as simple as you get what you pay for but it isn’t always the case. I would, however, avoid cheap pre-built stores under $50, such as stores often listed on Fiverr.

Product prices vary on Fiverr for pre-built stores

On the other hand, custom-made stores can actually be legit and potentially profitable. But there are some things you should find out to increase the chances you receive a successful pre-built Shopify store.

Here are a few questions to explore;

Are there examples of other stores the seller has created? If the seller doesn’t have examples of their work, don’t work with them. Ask to see their previous stores as well as live stores they’ve recently created.

Does the site have legitimate reviews? It can be difficult to trust reviews and testimonials as these can easily be faked. If you are purchasing a pre-built Shopify store on Fiverr, the reviews are supposedly genuine. Take every review with a grain of salt.

Is the seller experienced? How many years of experience have they had creating eCommerce stores? Ask them some tech-related questions to find out how knowledgeable they really are.

Will the seller work with you? Will they present you with all the important choices throughout the process to ensure it’s your vision they are creating?

Will the store be ready to go once it’s complete? Ensure the owner does everything you want before you get started. You don’t need a finished product only to realize they don’t for example, design logos, optimize for SEO or provide sales copy.

Does the seller offer support after the purchase? Only purchase a store if there is aftersale support. If they are building a quality dropshipping Shopify store, they will stand behind their work and offer this service.

Ask Questions! If you’re spending money on a pre-built store, don’t be afraid to ask as many questions as possible. Ask everything you can think of no matter how stupid it may seem. If they don’t answer or get annoyed by all your questions, good, they are not someone you want to work with.

Why You Should NOT Buy a Pre-Built Shopify Store!

This is where I give you my honest opinion, even though it does not benefit me.

As a beginner in dropshipping, I recommend that you DO NOT buy a pre-built Shopify store. Instead, take the time to learn how to build your own store.

If you’re intimidated and concerned you won’t be able to, don’t be, it’s not that hard. Shopify is easy to use and even newbies with no tech experience can pick it up relatively quickly.

Click here for a FREE Shopify trial and 3 months of Shopify for Only $1

Let’s say, for example, you purchase a custom-made Shopify store for $800. It looks amazing, it’s responsive, full of products, reviews, images and is ready to start running ads.

You have learned nothing during the process!

No matter how appealing your pre-built store looks, the chances of it being profitable are very low. Most new dropshipping Shopify stores fail and the likelihood of failure is only increased for a beginner with little knowledge.

Even experienced sellers create new stores and fail regularly. They know the failure rate is high but they have one huge advantage over you, they can rebuild another Shopify store in less than a day and try again.

You have to pay another $800, wait a week until it’s complete and hope this one is successful.

Another question you need to ask is where are the products that are now uploaded to your new store from? Most likely they are uploaded from AliExpress or they are using a supplier such as Spocket, Salehoo or CJ Dropshipping.

Everyone has access to these suppliers and competitors will see that order count ticking over as you’re making sales. Before you know it, you’ll have copycats selling the same products as you.

How will you then pivot in your business and start focusing on a more specific niche, or sell different products or work with other suppliers? This will happen at some point in your dropshipping business.

You don’t know how to find products, do product research, find suppliers, negotiate with suppliers, get quality product images, copywriting, get reviews and testimonials and SEO optimization. These are all necessary skills to develop if you want to succeed.

I have a ton of free content that will teach you many of these skills and a complete step-by-step guide for building your own Shopify dropshipping business.

Dropshipping is competitive! You can’t expect you’re going to have a fully functional Shopify store that will continue to bring you in monthly revenue without you requiring any knowledge of how it all works.

The most successful dropshipping Shopify stores are all aware of one very important key to success. They make their stores impossible to replicate. They do this in a variety of ways which I’ll cover in another article.

The fact you are paying someone to build your store for you and add multiple products demonstrates how easy a store is to replicate.

Why You Should Pay Someone to Setup Your Shopify Store?

I’ve covered why I believe a beginner should not buy a done-for-you dropshipping Shopify store, but who should buy one?

If you already possess all the necessary skills to create your own store and it’s simply a way of saving time, then I could justify outsourcing the process.

It only seems worthwhile to me if a store can be purchased for less than $200 and the provider actually does a good job.

You may have a number of product ideas you want to try out as one-product stores. By outsourcing the process to someone who has some design and branding knowledge, you can have several stores created relatively fast.

Many of these services will include digital marketing, SEO and social media management.

Services included with pre-built Shopify stores
Various services included with pre-built stores

Failing with dropshipping is inevitable at some point, but it’s always best to fail fast. Having multiple stores created quickly allows you to focus on running and optimizing ads which means you’re more likely to find a winner faster.

Every aspect of a new Shopify store does not have to be perfect which is why paying someone can be beneficial. However, once you have found that winning product or niche, I recommend you optimize the store yourself with design, imagery and product descriptions.

Nobody will create your vision better than you will!

Free Pre-Built Shopify Stores – What’s the Catch?

You might have come across those social media ads from individuals like Adrian Morrison, promoting a Shopify store that’s seemingly ready to go. It’s pitched as being fully equipped with AI-generated product descriptions and a selection of products, all offered at no cost. But what’s the real story behind this?

The reality is that these stores are akin to other generic, pre-built Shopify stores. They typically use repetitive templates and add products that may not be ideal for dropshipping. The product descriptions are generated by AI tools like ChatGPT which are often inaccurate and will require editing.

Free AI-built Shopify stores are not a good idea

This approach to dropshipping is far from optimal, and the sellers of these stores are well aware of it. Such methods might have brought some success back in 2016, but they are largely ineffective now.

The profitability for these sellers largely comes from their role as Shopify affiliates. When someone signs up through their link, they earn a commission and continue to receive monthly commissions as long as the new signee remains subscribed to their Shopify plan.

While the offer of a free, AI-powered Shopify store might seem alluring, it’s important to recognize who truly benefits from this arrangement. For anyone, especially beginners, I would advise caution against opting for such a free Shopify store setup.

Where Do You Buy Pre-Built Shopify Stores?

We’ve established I don’t think it’s an effective idea to have someone else build your Shopify store for you in most cases. The good news is, it’s your decision, not mine. So I have provided you with a list of websites if you want to go ahead with it.

Pre-built Store WebsiteWhat They Offer
XeeDevelopersA good value option in terms of price and quality for one-product and niche stores. Additional services are offered, including Facebook and TikTok marketing.
AdsellrOptions are available to select from pre-built stores and custom-made stores.
Store StudioLow-cost pre-built Shopify stores in a variety of niches.
FiverrA huge range of individuals are willing to create a Shopify store from very cheap to premium services.
BrandafyPre-built stores are available from $17 up to fully customized packages for niche and one-product stores.
Dropship for SaleA vast selection of packages and options for pre-made stores.
Drop CommerceAll pre-made Shopify stores are available to view. No custom stores as far as I can see.
Be BiggyLow cost pre-built Shopify stores in a variety of niches.
FlippaA popular platform for most buyers and sellers with a large selection of pre-built and established Shopify stores online.
BigBuyTurnkey eCommerce stores for sale which is synced to BigBuy products.
Dropship LaunchpadPrices start from free. I’d be a little skeptical.
EcommerceifyOptions are available to select from pre-built stores and custom made stores.
List of websites selling Pre-Built Shopify Dropshipping Stores. Source: dropshippinghustle.com

Pre-Built Shopify Store Reviews

I searched through multiple websites and forums to find anyone who has actually made money with pre-built stores. I couldn’t find any positive reviews I believe were genuine.

Most forums claimed they had bad experiences with these stores although it’s hard to trust testimonials on websites as these can be falsified.

Without a doubt, the name you come across the most when it comes to done-for-you Shopify dropshipping stores is Mikey Kass.

Mikey Kass $17 pre-built Shopify store

Mikey Kass is selling $17 pre-built Shopify stores he claims are making him thousands each month. Stay away from this guy as this is a complete scam.

Do not buy a $17 pre-built Shopify store, they are not worth it. Each store is a template and has the same basic design, low-quality products and generic AI-written content.

His stores all look the same, they look hideous and untrustworthy and you won’t make a cent off them.

Key Takeaways from Buying a Pre-Made Shopify Store

  • Buying a pre-made store as a beginner is a bad idea, you will have more success if you upskill yourself first.
  • Learning the skills not only helps your current business but can also provide you with future eCommerce businesses.
  • If it appears too good to be true, it probably is!
  • Buying a pre-made store can be beneficial if you simply want to save time.
  • Nobody can create your vision for a store better than you can.
  • You need to differentiate yourself to be successful in dropshipping, buying a very similar store to a bunch of other people won’t achieve your desired outcome.
  • Custom-made stores are a better option than pre-made ready-to-go stores.
  • Whoever you work with, ask a lot of questions and make sure you’re involved in the creation process.
  • Don’t trust Mikey Kass!

Pre-built Store FAQ’s

Do pre-built Shopify stores work?

Pre-built Shopify stores can work but the vast majority of them fail. They are far more likely to succeed if you work with reputable companies or designers who have expertise in building Shopify stores.

What are the best pre-built Shopify stores?

The best pre-built Shopify stores are custom-made by experienced website designers who can customize your store to your vision and brand.

Why are some pre-built Shopify stores so cheap?

Many of the cheaper pre-built Shopify stores are templates that are all set out the same with different products, headings and images. Usually, these pre-built store’s content is copied and pasted directly from suppliers such as AliExpress.

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