The 21st century ushered in a digital age that revolutionized commerce beyond anything the human race could have imagined.
Two hundred years ago, even the most optimistic, bright-minded merchant would have had a hard time picturing that one day, people would successfully conduct trade across the world from the convenience of their homes – without setting foot at a port.
Yet, today’s merchants hardly know the core details of actual shipping and the complexities involved. Instead, sophisticated trading mechanisms like dropshipping have evolved, reshaping global commerce.
Dropshipping negates the need to hold actual inventory in warehouses. It rather allows you to be the middleman between the supplier and the consumer.
Despite being cost-effective and profitable, dropshipping has its drawbacks. You face a huge challenge as a merchant if your dropshipping business expands beyond your predictions – one that many businesses don’t survive. Ironic, isn’t it?
The promise of profit is a good incentive. However, the stress of handling multiple orders, monitoring shipping lines, and dealing with various customers can be overwhelming. The solution? Automated dropshipping.
Suppose you haven’t heard of it, no worries! We’ll get into it fully right away!
What is Automated Dropshipping?
Automated dropshipping is simply the incorporation of technology into dropshipping processes. It eliminates repetitive and tedious tasks in the dropshipping business, allowing the business owner to focus more on customer service and marketing.
In other words, automated dropshipping leverages software tools to automate specific dropshipping processes. It should be noted, nonetheless, that you can automate dropshipping without operating these software tools in person – by hiring freelancers or contractors. However, this method is often more expensive.
Additionally, successfully outsourcing key dropshipping processes to others hinges on their professionalism and efficiency. The poor performance of one element can easily affect other aspects of your business, including the entire supply chain.
Why Do You Need Automated Dropshipping?
Although automated drop shipping is popular enough, you might wonder how beneficial it is to your business. After all, you probably made a decent profit before you ever heard of automated dropshipping.
Nevertheless, you’d be surprised how much you stand to gain. Some of these benefits include
1. Effective time management
Many dropshipping businesses need help managing time efficiently. This is even more pronounced when the business begins to scale. There are more orders to fulfill, packages to track, products to source, and suppliers to negotiate with.
This goes without including the time and effort it takes to successfully market the drop shipping business, whether via paid advertisements or marketing content creation. Such activities take time.
Without automated drop shipping mechanisms, business owners will have to manually monitor the metrics involved, including attending to each customer individually.
It’s almost impossible to manage such scenarios efficiently. Time-wise, the strain will tell on business owners, who will make errors involving bad orders, leading to potential refunds, shipping delays, and ultimately unhappy customers.
In all, the business processes in dropshipping can be mentally and physically draining, even for a commercial enterprise that works without an actual inventory.
Automated dropshipping helps you save time, especially regarding mundane, repetitive tasks such as order tracking and uploading the details of each product on online stores.
2. Seamless order management
What is more stressful than managing multiple orders for a fast-growing dropshipping business? With automated dropshipping, you get to go about business more efficiently and with less pressure.
The platform automatically detects orders – lists each product and its respective suppliers. It then processes each order based on various preset criteria such as item weight and volume. After that, the items are sorted out on a per-order basis.
Order processing doesn’t end here, as it extends to your chosen merchant.
Automated dropshipping mechanisms enable order detail sharing with your merchant to enable you to track the supply chain and eventual shipment to the customer.
Additionally, each order and shipment can be tracked by the d by the customers, making for real-time supply chain visibility for all parties involved.
3. To save running costs
The top eCommerce stores globally often employ thousands of people in various capacities. There are people in charge of logistics, sales, telemarketing, customer service, and so on.
Quite naturally, such a large workforce costs much money to maintain, even if you’re making steady sales.
As a lone dropshipper, you may be unable to take your business to the next level without being able to spend such amounts on workers’ salaries. You might be unable to afford an employee. That’s where automated dropping comes in: To serve as your virtual workforce without having to pay huge fees as salaries.
This way, you can channel your profits back into your business to scale it quickly. Over time, you may reach a point where your business needs actual people to help it grow. However, before then, automated dropshipping can save you lots of dollars.
Besides, automated dropshipping can help optimize your business processes if you aren’t delving into multiple niches.
4. For accuracy
Manually running your online store leaves plenty of room for human error. While these errors are unintentional, they often creep in when you least expect them.
For instance, you can make errors with orders, forget timelines or switch addresses wrongly. This, in turn, will negatively affect your business, particularly your relationship with customers and suppliers.
When you use automated dropshipping, everything is seamless and error-free, as the software tool carries out operations.
For instance, the dropshipping software can alert customers via email of the confirmation of their orders, including relevant tracking and shipping details. Additionally, the tool can update your online inventory, so you don’t list items that could be out of stock.
5. For scalability
The ultimate reason for using automated dropshipping is to help your business to scale.
A dropshipping business starting out small can scale rapidly with the use of automated dropshipping tools. All business processes are optimized, customers are happier, and entrepreneurs can fulfill more orders than ever before.
Additionally, its automated features mean that several business processes are on autopilot and do not require constant monitoring. With such convenience, you can take your business to the next level and run several dropshipping stores simultaneously.
Pros and Cons of Automated Dropshipping
Depending on your business model and objectives, automated dropshipping will benefit you to varying extents.
Let’s examine some of the pros and cons of automated dropshipping:
Here are the merits of automated dropshipping:
1. Improved business efficiency
One of the most notable pros of automated dropshipping is that it optimizes your business processes. Mundane tasks like manual communications, approvals, and reviews are seamlessly optimized. You can spend less time on these tasks and focus on the more productive aspects of marketing and customer service.
All you have to do is to set the automation, and the software will handle the rest.
2. Increased accuracy
Business strategy, data, and metrics go hand in hand. Without the correct data, you’re prone to make costly errors, which can make a dent in your profits and your commercial reputation.
Automated dropshipping helps you to dispense with these error-causing manual processes, mitigating the risk of human mistakes.
As such, your business can function optimally with accurate data, which translates to well-informed decision-making.
3. Requires less business capital
One of Automated dropshipping’s most notable pros is that there’s no need to invest in inventory. Given that your suppliers already stock the products you want to sell, your position as a middleman reduces the amount of capital required, especially if you have automation tools on the side.
4. Reduced costs
With limited errors and optimized business processes come reduced overall costs. Just as well the automation speeds up your tasks and reduces the required resources and time needed to carry out commercial operations.
As a result, you can run a leaner business model and have excess funds to channel into other crucial aspects of your business.
Here are some of the demerits of automated dropshipping:
1. Reduced profit margins
Automated dropshipping tools are perfect if you already have a working business strategy, automated dropshipping tools are perfect for you. However, you may earn less profit than if you developed your own product and handled the order fulfillment hands-on.
The most significant benefits of automated dropshipping involve time efficiency. However, this still comes with a cost, and you may have to make several sales to earn any considerable profit.
This makes automated dropshipping more apt for established businesses instead of for online stores just finding their footing in their preferred niche.
2. Technical know-how is required.
Incorporating eCommerce tools into your dropshipping business can be a steep learning curve. You need to understand the correct use of the resources and tools and find the best channels to implement each automation.
Additionally, you may need to carry out occasional updates and maintenance. This can prove overwhelming if you’re a newbie to such software tools.
3. Less control
One of the demerits of automated dropshipping is that you have slightly less control over your business processes. Regular dropshipping gives you more leeway in product delivery and order fulfillment.
Automated dropshipping gives you less control over things, as your suppliers control shipping and hold the product. Sometimes, you won’t get as many customization or branding options as you’d like. Additionally, other third parties in the supply chain can make errors.
4. Reduced flexibility
With reduced control over the product and customizability options, you have to make do with the terms and conditions offered by your suppliers.
Automated mechanisms hardly improve this, as unsatisfactory orders can be initiated without manual assessment.
Things to automate in a Dropshipping business
Like any commercial endeavor, there are multiple components in dropshipping. Having established just how beneficial automated dropshipping tools are, let us examine how automation can be integrated into the following business processes:
1. Managing payments and accounting
Finances are a crucial aspect of any business. In addition to establishing secure, seamless payment channels between your dropshipping business and clients and suppliers, you have to monitor the books. Profits, sales, and expenditures must be adequately documented, with each penny accounted for.
Additionally, your suppliers have to receive payments in due course. This is one of the most important aspects of your business, as it keeps open communication lines between you and the supplier- guaranteeing steady business dealings.
Without automation, it can be tedious to monitor invoices and expenditures, especially when your business is rapidly scaling.
Dropshipping automation tools are vital for accurate accounting, enabling easy and real-time access to financial data. It also comes with integrations with relevant tools for the optimal running of business operations.
2. Stealth account creation
Top eCommerce marketplaces like Etsy, Amazon, and eBay can provide you with a vast audience of potential clients. Automated dropshipping tools can help you to create multiple merchant accounts to maximize your commercial reach.
However, dropshipping accounts listing their products on these platforms often end up being banned. Getting blacklisted on such platforms won’t help your business, as your IP address will be permanently restricted.
To bypass this, you can use an anti-detect browser like Incogniton to create multiple storefronts with secure, varying browser fingerprints and IP addresses.
3. Inventory management
Although a dropshipping business model leaves you with a physical warehouse to stock products, you should nevertheless maintain an inventory of products available at your suppliers. It’s essential to do this to keep ahead of customer demands and order deliveries.
Automation can be integrated into the dropshipping business model for efficient inventory management. This way, you’ll be notified when stock is running low and place orders for more before customers request them.
Additionally, you’ll find it easy to isolate demand and supply issues and rectify related issues as they arise.
4. Products listing
Manually listing your products on eCommerce stores is a massive, time-consuming chore. If you sell multiple products, you’ll have to upload details of each product on the platform painstakingly.
More often than not, you’ll use multiple storefronts and eCommerce platforms. In such instances, it’s nearly impossible to list your products without assistance manually.
What better assistance in this scenario than an automated dropshipping tool?
The right software automates this repetitive task, helping you easily upload images, product titles, prices, and meta tags.
Some tools even make it possible to schedule product listings based on preset conditions, such as the item’s availability from the supplier.
5. Order tracking
Wouldn’t it be nice to have an automated order tracking system in place that’s accessible by you, your customer, and your supplier?
When customers place orders from your e-store, it’s essential to provide them with information on the delivery, including when it’s en route and when they can expect actual delivery.
In most cases, you’ll turn to manual means of sending emails or text messages with relevant tracking codes. You may even have to place a few phone calls. In all, it’s a tedious way of keeping track of things.
A more efficient method is to automate the process. Rather than manually sending notifications to your customers, preset configurations can have these messages sent out automatically upon confirming the order.
Another task you’d rather avoid in your dropshipping business is the bit where you set individual prices for each product. It’s stressful and time-consuming, especially when you deal with many products. Like this wasn’t difficult enough, the tasks take on a new level of difficulty if you have international customers, as you have to set prices in various currencies.
The right automated dropshipping tool can help you with this, eliminating the need for manual calculations. Once you’ve set percentage and pricing rules, the automation kicks in for each product you upload to your online storefront.
How to start Automation?
Now that you’ve seen just how essential automated dropshipping is for your business, the next question arises: How do I start? Here are the steps to follow:
1. Open multiple storefronts
The logic is simple. More storefronts equal a larger audience, which leads to more sales. The first step is to open multiple unique profiles on different platforms.
For this, you will need the Incogniton browser. A tool grants you multiple IP addresses to avoid being flagged and banned by various eCommerce platforms. Here is a detailed guide on using Incogniton for Dropshipping.
2. Choose the right automation tool
There are different automated dropshipping tools, each offering various features tailored to different needs.
Examine your business model, identify the aspects that you want optimized and choose the appropriate solution.
3. Set up automated email marketing sequences
Email marketing is one of the most efficient ways to grow your dropshipping business.
With the right strategy, you can grow customer interest in your products via welcome emails, relevant newsletters, and other excellent content.
There are several email marketing processes that can be automated, including creating automated responses, intermittent promos, and other sequences.
4. Install Meta Pixel
You can take your social media marketing to new dimensions by using Meta Pixel. This tool automates your Facebook Ads by tracking their performance. Additionally, you can identify users who’ve added your product to their carts and remarket it.
By automating your dropshipping business, you’re able to save costs and devote more time to customer service and marketing. This way, you can scale quickly and earn more profit.
Additionally, you get to automate your marketing efforts and optimize your tasks all around while staying on top of technology.
Given all we have discussed in this article, everything you need to start automating dropshipping is at your fingertips. To begin, follow the steps in the How to start Automation section, and don’t forget, 10 free browser profiles await you on Incogniton to ease your journey.