Statista reports that, in 2016, retail ecommerce sales in Canada brought approximately 18.3 billion dollars into the economy. However, by the year 2021, that amount is expected to grow to around 29 billion, making many retailers across the country happy about the prospect of taking their companies to higher levels over the next three years.
Though many factors are undoubtedly driving this seemingly effortless drive in online retail sales, such as the convenience of online shopping and consumer access to a greater number of businesses, there are a few actions you can take in regard to your own retail store to potentially capture a larger piece of this growing revenue pie. One option is dropshipping.
More and more companies are finding that this type of product delivery process offers a lot of advantages to businesses and consumers alike. In fact, according to The Wall Street Journal, one survey found that one out of two logistics firms anticipate that dropshipping will be responsible for more than 25 percent of total sales by the year 2020.
If you’ve never heard of it, dropshipping involves purchasing items from a wholesaler and having them shipped directly to your customer. This reduces your operating expenses because you don’t make the buy until your customer orders the item, eliminating upfront inventory costs and storage of goods.
Dropshipping also lowers your risk as you’re not purchasing your products beforehand, potentially getting stuck with a huge inventory if you overestimate which ones will sell best. Additionally, by not having to store the items, you don’t have to worry about purchasing or leasing storage space, potentially entering into a contract that limits your options should you decide to take your retail business in a different direction at a later point in time. But how can this method of product delivery be used to increase your retail sales?
Dropshipping and Increased Sales
First and foremost, by having the items delivered directly to your customers, you reduce any delays that could be created if you have them shipped to your business first. This improves your level of customer service, keeping your customers coming back to you because they know they’ll get their products within a reasonable amount of time. This is critical in this age where many people expect almost-immediate access to the items they purchase.
Another way to increase your retail sales via dropshipping is to educate your consumer so they know that you chose this method of delivery in order to provide faster shipping services at a lower operating cost, ultimately passing on the savings to them. Let them know that you’re a business owner who is concerned about your customer base and willing to go the extra mile to ensure that they’re happy with your company.
Consumers today like to know more about the companies they interact with so they feel good about the buying process. Case in point: one Morgan Stanley consumer survey found that 32.4 of consumers feel that a company’s “ethical credentials” are somewhat important and 18.6 percent feel that they’re very important. Therefore, providing this information up front helps your customer understand why you should be their retail provider of choice.
You can do this by sharing that you dropship on your website, adding this information under the shipping section during the purchase process. You could also post about dropshipping on your social media pages, helping your customers understand what it is and how it benefits them.
Additional Sales-Increasing Options
Other ways to get more sales with dropshipping include holding webinars to better explain your products and services and more effectively utilizing the various social media platforms to maximize your exposure. You can also incorporate push notifications into your marketing strategy, enabling you to send your customers important messages, such as issuing them a reminder when they’ve abandoned their online shopping cart before completing the sale.
Search engine optimization (SEO) is also huge for increasing your online sales as you can’t service customers who don’t know you exist. Some retailers are also pursing non-traditional forms of advertising, which includes creating podcasts and writing ebooks, giving them even more avenues for reaching their target markets.
Another sales-increasing option that many business owners tend to forget involves marketing to the customers that have already purchased from them in the past. This is called follow up marketing and requires reaching out to those who’ve spent their hard-earned money with your company to ensure that they’re happy with their purchase. This shows them that you care about them and that you’re not just after their cash.
Between using dropshipping as your delivery method and implementing these additional actions designed to increase sales, you can position your business to collect a larger portion of the growing revenue pie. And that’s one of the only pies that most everyone likes.