Working from home has been in the minds of many 9-to-5ers who are fed up working on-site. However, most of them haven’t been able to resign from the mundane bill-paying jobs. The good thing is, e-commerce automation technologies are here to stay and allow more people to stay at home while earning a good living. The benefits of working from home are tremendous.
One of the most notable business models that would work for those who are in transition from working as employees and being a full-time WAH (work-at-home) entrepreneurs is dropshipping. This model has reached a new peak for flexibility and convenience. Prior to automation in dropshipping, many manual tasks must be performed, which can be quite time-consuming and be draining.
In this article, we’ll discuss the definition of dropshipping, how it works, and how you can manage your family-oriented days when working on a dropshipping business.
First things first, what is dropshipping?
Dropshipping is an almost hands-free business model, in which the entrepreneur merely needs a working e-commerce site, a dropshipping management app, and a strong drive in promotion. This model is known for its almost zero capital, no stock inventory, and the products will only be purchased with wholesale price after they have been ordered and paid for by the customers. Also, the orders will be fulfilled and shipped directly by the dropshipping suppliers.
Using the dropshipping management app, sourcing pre-vetted suppliers, selecting, and publishing selected products can be done within minutes. All the specifications and images are transferred from the suppliers’ site to the online store with editable features. Global price markups and changes can be done with a few clicks. Also, orders can be tracked automatically.
Such automation allows the store owner to focus on the marketing aspect, such as selling on Instagram, which gives them many hours in a day to focus on the family life. During the employee-to-entrepreneur transition period, you can start building your e-commerce store with turn-key platforms like Shopify in just a few hours.
Now, assuming you’ve built an e-commerce store with the dropshipping capability and are now ready to sell. How do you manage your days?
1. During Employee-to-Entrepreneur Period
During this employee-to-entrepreneur period, spend 1 or 2 weekends finalizing the e-commerce store, sourcing pre-vetted suppliers’ products, and publishing them directly from the dashboard. Since these activities can be completed in a few minutes to a few hours, depending on how much functionalities you use, you can still have great family time on those days. And you can go to work on Monday as usual.
2. After Settling as a Full-Time Dropshipping Store Owner
After the online store is ready to accept orders, you can decide whether you want to work in the morning, afternoon, or evening. However, in the beginning, we recommend spending 3 to 4 hours per day analyzing traffic, promoting, and replying to contacts via e-mail or online chat.
In a typical dropshipper business owner’s day, most likely, you’d need to purchase the ordered products as soon as possible, to ensure that the items are still available at the suppliers. The dropshipping management app will notify you if the products have been sold out. Your ultimate job is delighting customers.
Promoting the business would require creativity and resourcefulness, however. While many marketing automation tools are available, such as e-mail marketing servicer Mailchimp and Instagram post scheduler Later, you need to ensure there are no errors.
In conclusion, transitioning from being a full-time employee to a work-from-home e-commerce entrepreneur is definitely doable with the automated dropshipping business model. And since this model involves almost zero inventory costs, you can experiment with the product categories. Once you’ve found the right products and the most suitable marketing channels, you can expect to earn a decent income, which eventually would allow you to work 100% from home. Enjoy your family life.
About the Author
Jennifer Xue is an award-winning author, columnist, and serial entrepreneur based in Northern California. She is also a digital strategist for Oberlo. Her byline has appeared in Forbes, Fortune, Esquire, Cosmopolitan, Business.com, Business2Community, Addicted2Success, Good Men Project, Positively Positive, and others. Her blog is JenniferXue.com.