Amazon FBA or dropship

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I am looking at making a side income from ecommerce and with limited time exploring one of the two options either a Shopify plus oberlo drop ship solution, which mean no inventory or fulfilment logistics to deal with or selling products on amazon using their FBA (fulfilled by Amazon). I was wondering if anybody has experience of both and can share some insight as to which one is quickest to profit and less time consuming to manage?

Thanks
A
#amazon #dropship #fba
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  • Profile picture of the author ashkanwalk
    I have done some research into FBA and for me so far the appeal is that if you can find a good product niche for which there is good demand then taping into the massive amazon marketplace means there as already thousands of people searching for that products.

    Launching a Shopify store would mean starting from 0 visitors and requires lots effort on marketing side. The plush with Shopify drop ship solution is that there is no need to import product and private label it, something that would be needed for FBA method.
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  • Profile picture of the author Ken ny
    If you're good at marketing, do dropshipping.

    I've done FBA before and it requires more research on certain products and seeing if the demand is there, in my opinion.
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    • Profile picture of the author ashkanwalk
      Thanks Ken for the input. Have you also done dropshipping and if yes was that more profitable for you?

      Cheers
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      • Profile picture of the author Ken ny
        Hey Ashkanwalk,

        I've did in fact do some drop shipping, but I'm pretty inexperienced with marketing so it didn't go as well as I wanted. I profited more from FBA than dropshipping .
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  • Profile picture of the author DanHoogstra
    Hello A,

    I am actually in the wholesale business and perhaps could provide another line of insight for you.

    Some vendors if you are planning to purchase wholesale product and retail online do offer dropshipping programs for you. However I would do your research on these and ask questions prior as typically their are volume requirements and fees or lower than standard margins to make up for the fees. Not that these would be unreasonable but usually requires some working up toward.

    From an FBA standpoint there are challenges however a good wholesale vendor or distributor should be able to point you in a direction toward what is selling to help you locate what your after. Their goal will always be the same as yours which is to help you succeed as that is how they succeed.

    I have seen smaller business find much more success in the FBA standpoint than I have with dropshipping. once you reach a certain point with your business you could make the decision to do both.

    If you have other questions please feel free to let me know I would be happy to provide input where I can.

    Thank You,
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    • Profile picture of the author ashkanwalk
      Thanks Dan for the useful information. I am researching products on Amazon right now to find product opportunities and then go after sourcing them form Alibaba.
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      • Profile picture of the author ashkanwalk
        I will aim to send updates about the progress on this thread.
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      • Profile picture of the author Importexport
        [DELETED]
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        • Profile picture of the author ashkanwalk
          Very useful thanks will check your thread
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  • Profile picture of the author MValmont
    I used to do FBA, now I drop ship and my margins are much better now.

    FBA is WAY overrated in my opinion (because there is a super high priced program out there with an army of affiliates promoting FBA)
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  • Profile picture of the author ashkanwalk
    It's now about four months since I posted this. Quick update on my journey. I started the FBA route and to arm myself with enough info I signed up to this FBA course on Udemy by Colton Shuel ($20) and an ebook by Oliver Denyer ($10). Was very good, I had products in mind to get started and then came across this Facebook expert ( Sean) on PeoplePerHour.com who told me about all the success he has had driving traffic and sales to dropship stores.

    What appealed to me about the Dropship model was that I wouldn't have to ship products to Amazon and deal with inventory matters. So I went with the Dropship model instead and ended up paying $1300 to get Sean's 1to1 consulting time and pick his brain.

    I am telling you it's been a tough time and scary at times. During this period I lived at my mother's house with a pregnant wife, which was a challenge, so we ended up moving to a new house. Now I definitely have to make it work to pay the bills!

    So how is it going so far? I have launched the dropship store on Shopify using Oberlo to list products from AliExpress. Last week I started my FB campaigns and spent about $300 so far. I have had a decent amount of visitors and some add to carts but not purchases yet. It's a game of going through that learning to find the right product and target audience for FB campaign. I just hope I don't burn too much money as our saving is going low.

    My conclusion so far: Between FBA and DropShip is never going to be a clear winner. As we can see from the varied comments on this thread, thre are pros and cons and could be different results for each person or product. One thing I can tell though, there is a lot more extra effort in terms of managing an e-commerce shop and marketing on the dropship model (something not needed on FBA)

    Will update again...and any tips appreciated!

    Cheers
    Ash
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    • Profile picture of the author riskingmymoney
      hey, thanks for sharing your journey with us. i'm also in a similar situation. i'm getting into ecommerce but not sure if i should start selling on online marketplaces like ebay and amazon, or open my own online store. right now, i'm leaning towards ebay/amazon because i need to get the ball rolling and see some early results. i'm subscribing to this thread. please keep us updated.
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      • Profile picture of the author ashkanwalk
        Hey, Good luck with your journey! I think it's best to start and test and see how it goes. There is also a lot of useful info out there, people sharing their experience. You just have to sift through the clutter to find the getter ones who have been there and done it and sharing real data. There is the possibility to make money from all those methods as long as you do it right.

        Will post an update... hopefully, I see sales coming through
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  • Profile picture of the author Anthony Frost
    To do FBA you create a shipment order, it's really simple to do that. You manage your shipments you go through you create the order you have to put your From address, where it's been picked up from, Amazon will give you the delivery address and then all you need to go through is put in the details box so if it's one box you put in the size of the box then you put through the information such as the weight as well.
    Then your courier come to your warehouse or goes to Australia Post drop it off and you'll get delivered to Amazon. What happens then is that Amazon receives it about three or four days later they say yes, we received. For whether you should send directly from China or import from there to Australia, you can seek advice from Amazon Consultants from Coach AMZ.
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  • Profile picture of the author ashkanwalk
    Wow I can see 1 year has passed! doesn't time fly?

    So here is where I am now 1 year on: I did end up launching 3 Shopify/Oberlo dropship sites. first one didn't make any sales. Second one I had product that was selling a few every day made a few hundred there but the conversion rate wasn't good.

    I launched the 3rd one fixed the conversion issue and stated figuring it all out to make it profitable.

    At this point I realised this all going to take some more time and investment before I see any sizeable return and luckily stumbled upon a program that changed everything.

    With the new program, two months on I have found a better way of making my money quicker and doing something that is more enjoyable, whilst not having to put all those upfront investments for ad spend.
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    • Profile picture of the author riskingmymoney
      hey, thanks for updating us with your progress...
      you went further than i did. i didn't even finish my first dropshipping site. i shifted my focus to selling on ebay but realized i didn't want to keep inventory so i tried to continue to develope my dropshipping site when my pc started having problems and i had to replace my hard drives. now i'm trying to figure out how to quickly put up a dropshipping site because at the rate i'm going right now, it will take me close to a year to finish. i don't understand how people can put up a site within a month or two when you also gotta do facebook and instagram pages. that's a lot of work for one person.
      are you still doing dropshipping? you mentioned found something that makes money quicker and more enjoyable. would that be affiliate marketing?
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    • Profile picture of the author afgan8448 mido
      Hey Ashkanwalk.

      I'm happy to find this thread and i read all post in it.
      I juste have same questions if you don't mind:
      I can invest $300/month, do you advice me to try amazon fba? or shopify?

      how many weeks/months it may take to see same resultes?

      Thank you.
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  • Profile picture of the author ashkanwalk
    Hey riskingmymoney

    How come it is taking you such a long time? Setting up a Shopify store with one of the free default templates takes 30 min and then there is some initial settings you do which takes 1 day and then you link it to Oberlo and push products into Shopify with a few clicks.

    Could there be something else missing to push you? like mindset or purpose?

    Of course the part that takes time and really matters is products research and Facebook advertising. There are good courses for a few hundred dollars that show you step by step what to do. for example Tristan Broughton is a good one. But the space is crowded and take lots monty on ads before you find a product that sells.

    The mentor I too the program which changed everything for me Dan Lok. For me worked much better and no upfront investment needed. What's more important is that he first fixes the mindset part which opens all the doors.



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    • Profile picture of the author riskingmymoney
      i'm using woocommerce but that shouldn't make a big difference as far as setting up the template and importing the products. the part that took a long time was re-doing all the product images, titles, and descriptions, making sure i don't put anything stupid. also i had to scour the internet to find images for social media. for a site with 50-100 products, this can get tedious real quick.
      as you can see, this is a full-time job but i can only work on it part time. that's why it will take me several months to finish. and this is only for one site!
      did you make your sites all by yourself or did you have help?
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      • Profile picture of the author ashkanwalk
        Originally Posted by riskingmymoney View Post

        i'm using woocommerce but that shouldn't make a big difference as far as setting up the template and importing the products. the part that took a long time was re-doing all the product images, titles, and descriptions, making sure i don't put anything stupid. also i had to scour the internet to find images for social media. for a site with 50-100 products, this can get tedious real quick.
        as you can see, this is a full-time job but i can only work on it part time. that's why it will take me several months to finish. and this is only for one site!
        did you make your sites all by yourself or did you have help?

        I see. Ok so there are short cuts for all this. I did it all by myself. I don't know about woocommece but my guess is if you switch to Shopify and Oberlo it will become so much faster as you just click a button and it will import the images from Aliexpress to Shopify. The only thing you need to write is the product description which you can copy from similar products on Amazon for example.Also to start selling you need only as little as 10 products. customers don't care about how many products you have if the product they land on is very good.
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  • Profile picture of the author ashkanwalk
    Hey afgan8448

    Ok so the only advice I can give it that sign up to a good course that has good FB community so you can use their advice. I can recommend a couple if you want. Both FBA and Dropship will only work if you put the work in and it will take a few months. so expect a couple of thousands investment before you see any results. If you do this half heartily as an easy money sort of thing, it is not going to work.
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    • Profile picture of the author afgan8448 mido
      hey Aashkanwalk!
      Thank you your answer.
      i have decided to focus now on shopify, and i'm learning i know it will take long time but i'm ready for it.
      Thank you again!
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  • Profile picture of the author riskingmymoney
    Originally Posted by ashkanwalk

    Ok so there are sort cuts for all this.
    yes i'm beginning to realize that now. this is my biggest mistake. that's what's holding me back. i originally wanted at least 50 products to make my site look legit but that will take too long. i'll have to launch with less.
    so are you still doing dropshipping or something else?
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  • Profile picture of the author Importexport
    Originally Posted by ashkanwalk View Post

    Thanks Dan for the useful information. I am researching products on Amazon right now to find product opportunities and then go after sourcing them form Alibaba.
    Anyone starting off as a newbie should learn first how to safely source on Alibaba and other B2B platforms. See my thread: Ask Me Anything About Product Sourcing And Importing For Profit. ― Veteran Importer Here. (

    Originally Posted by ashkanwalk View Post

    It's now about four months since I posted this. Quick update on my journey. I started the FBA route and to arm myself with enough info I signed up to this FBA course on Udemy by Colton Shuel ($20) and an ebook by Oliver Denyer ($10). Was very good, I had products in mind to get started and then came across this Facebook expert ( Sean) on PeoplePerHour.com who told me about all the success he has had driving traffic and sales to dropship stores.

    What appealed to me about the Dropship model was that I wouldn't have to ship products to Amazon and deal with inventory matters. So I went with the Dropship model instead and ended up paying $1300 to get Sean's 1to1 consulting time and pick his brain.

    Cheers
    Ash
    Hi Ash,
    Sorry to see that your training provided by the experts didn't lead to the success you needed and deserved after all the effort you put into it.

    The obvious question is: Did you just take their word that they had been successful, or did you see some proof? If the proof was screen shots of their sales figures can you be sure they were not photoshopped?

    There are so many "experts" out there who make great claims, but how is the success rate of those that they teach?

    Walter Hay
    Importexport
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    Don't just slap on a label. Build a GREAT BRAND http://powerlabelsforprivatelabelingprofits.com Safe sourcing and easy importing from China & many other countries.https://ko296.isrefer.com/go/pcs001/whay/
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  • Profile picture of the author Ishika Agarwal
    Do amazon FBA only after you know advanced level of product research. Trying FBA for bad product is simply horrendous mistake that can make anyone bankrupt.
    You are charged based on space you use and if your product remains more than 6month or a year, you will be paying huge fines to amazon.

    For dropshipping part, you will be making good profit if you buy in bulk. Aliexpress is not a good option. There are dropshippers dropshipping to you. Price of the product is much less than what is displayed on aliexpress or alibaba.
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    • Profile picture of the author DWolfe
      Originally Posted by Ishika Agarwal View Post

      You are charged based on space you use and if your product remains more than 6month or a year, you will be paying huge fines to amazon.
      Those are not fines Amazon has to pay for all the warehouses they build, own and maintain. Plus they have to pay employee's salarys benefits and more. So if the product does not move it is an expense for Amazon. Just because Amazon is online does not mean they do not have daily business expenses.
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    • Profile picture of the author Importexport
      Originally Posted by Ishika Agarwal View Post

      For dropshipping part, you will be making good profit if you buy in bulk. Aliexpress is not a good option. There are dropshippers dropshipping to you. Price of the product is much less than what is displayed on aliexpress or alibaba.
      If you are buying in bulk you are not dropshipping.

      If you want a secure and sustainable business you should carry inventory and sell on eBay or Amazon, and preferably also have your own eCommerce store.

      To make high margins when carrying inventory you need to buy direct from the actual manufacturers. With the current tariff situation as it is, I suggest looking in countries other than China. See my thread: Beating the New US Tariffs - An Opportunity

      I have taught thousands of newbies how to safely source from China AND many other countries. You should ignore the myth that says you have to buy huge quantities.

      Walter Hay
      Importexport
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      Don't just slap on a label. Build a GREAT BRAND http://powerlabelsforprivatelabelingprofits.com Safe sourcing and easy importing from China & many other countries.https://ko296.isrefer.com/go/pcs001/whay/
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  • Profile picture of the author denev
    dropshipping, neeeds more time but more income at the end
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  • Profile picture of the author Fred Kimberly
    Well, if you just want to test the waters then this is the best option for you to start making money with minimal investment. Find the right suppliers who will drop ship the items to your customers on time. You can test it by placing few orders with them and then finalize the supplier.

    Dropshipping on Amazon has few benefits and it is great way for new sellers to start selling on Amazon without investing huge capital. Take a look below at some of the main benefits:
    • There is little or no upfront cost or capital required to start the business as you don't have to buy inventory and rent a warehouse.
    • Since there's no inventory so you dont have to worry about the logistics that frees up time for other tasks.
    • Dropshipping on Amazon also give you access to a huge customer base thus less marketing efforts required.
    • You can sell as many products as you want without worrying about running out of inventory.
    • You can learn how selling on Amazon works before getting into FBA or private label selling.
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  • Profile picture of the author GiorgioGD
    I would go for Amazon FBA.

    Dropshipping starts to get more popular and everyone will undercut each other, which results in lower profits.

    In addition to that, if you don't outsource the customer support you are going to have a hard time. Every customer will complain about the shipping time, even though you have stated it clearly on your website and in the product description.
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  • Profile picture of the author SellerSpace
    If I was asked for my personal opinion that which mode of e-commerce I would follow, I would surely go with dropshipping. The reason I think is quite simple. It does not require much investment and if I am a beginner and don't possess much initial capital and I am still not ready to bear greater risks, I think dropshipping would be the better option for me.

    No doubt, Amazon is a big name and Fulfillment by Amazon can render huge returns on your investment but you need to make huge investments before that. You will have to find a suitable supplier who can make your products available at the Amazon fulfillment centers and then pay him huge sums.

    So, if you want to save your money and are not prepared for greater risks, in the beginning, go on with dropshipping. I hope now the dilemma that you should choose Dropshipping or Fulfillment by Amazon became a bit clearer for you.
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  • Profile picture of the author Importexport
    Originally Posted by Fred Kimberly View Post

    Well, if you just want to test the waters then this is the best option for you to start making money with minimal investment. Find the right suppliers who will drop ship the items to your customers on time. You can test it by placing few orders with them and then finalize the supplier.
    Originally Posted by techwizard View Post

    Dropship till you make it, then move your winners onto FBA.
    As an expert in safe sourcing, having begun importing in 1987, I can tell you that finding the actual manufacturer for products you have been dropshipping from Aliexpress is near impossible.

    Sellers on Aliexpress don't often buy their products from suppliers on Alibaba, so where will you look to find the manufacturer?

    Will you search through the list of thousands of traders pretending to be manufacturers in the general product category you are wanting to source? You might be lucky and find a picture that looks like what you want, in a listing on page 156 or maybe 300.

    There is a much better way:
    • Ignore the myth that you have to buy huge quantities from manufacturers. That story is told by people who have no real understanding of safe sourcing.
    • Buy direct from real manufacturers, not the traders pretending to be manufacturers.
    • Negotiate a small order. That will give you product to validate the market. Small orders will cost you more than larger ones, but still cheaper than paying retail on Aliexpress.
    • Ship to an independent fulfillment service for prepping your order and have them ship to Amazon in quantities that won't cost you an arm and a leg for Amazon storage fees. Or ship direct Amazon FBA, but I don't recommend that.
    To see what is involved in safe sourcing direct from manufacturers, have a look here: Ask Me Anything About Product Sourcing And Importing For Profit. ― Veteran Importer Here. See post#196 for a lot of detail about how to get started.


    Walter Hay
    Importexport
    Signature
    Don't just slap on a label. Build a GREAT BRAND http://powerlabelsforprivatelabelingprofits.com Safe sourcing and easy importing from China & many other countries.https://ko296.isrefer.com/go/pcs001/whay/
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  • Profile picture of the author Suta Ash
    Hows your site doing now? the 3rd one is charm suits for you?
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  • Profile picture of the author hearme
    there are many factors involve in Dropshipping specially if you are doing it on Amazon or ebay or any other marketplace You need to have few things like settings Good pile of amount to be invested with low percentage of profit as compared with other ecom solutions
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  • Profile picture of the author Miles Zhou
    i think Amazon is very simple and easier,you only purchase some goods from china and chinese frieght forwarding can send goods to Amazon FBA warehouse for you ,but you should pay money before you sell your goods!
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    • Profile picture of the author Importexport
      Originally Posted by Miles Zhou View Post

      i think Amazon is very simple and easier,you only purchase some goods from china and chinese frieght forwarding can send goods to Amazon FBA warehouse for you ,but you should pay money before you sell your goods!
      This makes it seem so easy, but it ignores some important facts.
      • You need to know who you are dealing with when buying products in China. Most of the advertisers on the big B2B sites claim to be manufacturers, but they are not. They are traders, and they can't give you the best prices. You need to learn how to tell the difference.
      • You also need to know if the freight forwarder is reputable. There has been a huge increase in freight scams in recent years, It has become so bad that I have written a whole chapter about it in my safe sourcing and importing book, to warn my readers.
      • You need to be reasonably sure that the product you intend selling will actually sell on Amazon, and will be profitable after taking into account the landed cost, plus your selling costs. Do your market research.
      If you need help see my AMA: Ask Me Anything About Product Sourcing And Importing For Profit. ― Veteran Importer Here.

      See Post #34 above.
      Walter Hay,
      Importexport
      Signature
      Don't just slap on a label. Build a GREAT BRAND http://powerlabelsforprivatelabelingprofits.com Safe sourcing and easy importing from China & many other countries.https://ko296.isrefer.com/go/pcs001/whay/
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  • Profile picture of the author DWaters
    With a Shopify store you may need to advertise in order ro get buying customers to your site. With FBA this does not need to be the case since the buying customers are already on Amazon's site. You may still end up doing some sponsored ads on the Amazon site but that is probably not as vital as it would be with a Shopify store.
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