This an an important question for anyone starting a dropship business… should you pay for access to dropshipping wholesalers? What’s the point? In an age of instant global information, isn’t it possible to find the best dropshipping wholesalers yourself? What value could a dropship directory program possible offer?
The Problem With Finding Dropshipping Wholesalers
As dropshipping becomes more and more prevalent in online retailing, it would seem that e commerce dropshipping wholesalers would announce themselves and their programs directly to consumers through search engine marketing and other online visibility efforts. In reality, however, network effects and other factors prevent new dropship business owners from readily finding quality dropshipping wholesalers through efforts of their own.
First, there is the problem of dropshipping scams. You’ve likely heard plenty about this trend, so there is little use in beating a dead horse any further. The fact of the matter is that dropshipping scams do exist and will likely exist as long as there are unsuspecting dropship business owners out there to prey on.
Second, there is the aforementioned network effects. Dropshipping wholesalers want to concentrate their promotional efforts (insofar as they relate to the promotion of their dropshipping programs) to those online communities where they will find the most qualified dropshippers. These communities exist in directory programs such as Worldwide Brands, Salehoo and others. Just as dropshippers try to avoid scams, so too do wholesalers. There is an additional level of pre-qualification that goes along with membership in these directories that benefits both wholesalers and dropshippers.
The Benefit of Dropshipping Wholesale Directory Programs
Many of these directory programs cost money, so it is necessary to weigh the benefits with the costs of such investments. There are a number of benefits to dropshippers of membership in such programs.
First of all, dropshippers save a great deal of time and money in avoiding dropshipping scams (for the most part). Dropshipping wholesalers who attain membership in these programs have been screened for a variety of factors aimed to determine the legitimacy of their droppshipping programs. This saves dropshippers time and money.
Members of these programs also benefit from the economies of scale afforded to dropship member programs. A sole proprietor has little bargaining power against a large manufacturer, wholesaler or distributor in negotiating for the terms of (or even consideration for) a dropshipping agreement.
Finally, many offer additional resources, useful partnerships and other value-adds that assist new dropshippers in the launch of their business. Worldwide Brands offers a free license of Quickbooks and a wealth of extremely helpful tools aimed at helping get dropshippers started on the right foot.