The Ultimate Shopify Dropshipping Guide (2024)

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For many entrepreneurs, launching a Shopify dropshipping store is an awesome way to break into the ecommerce industry. Here’s why: spending time and money on managing your inventory is overwhelming, but with the dropshipping business model, you’ll never need to carry any of the products you sell. You’ll be free to focus your valuable time and resources on growing your online store and making more sales.

Dropshipping is a flexible way to run your business, and it’s supported by the majority of the largest ecommerce platforms—including the biggest of them all, Shopify. Because we believe in making life easier for ecommerce entrepreneurs, we’ve created this ultimate Shopify dropshipping guide to help you start your own successful Shopify dropshipping business. Use it as your “dropshipping for dummies” guide to getting started. 

And once you’re ready to start dropshipping, follow our step-by-step guide to finding great products to sell online and building a Shopify store. It’s super easy to follow, and in less than 50 minutes, you’ll have a Shopify dropshipping store ready to make sales!

What is dropshipping?

Dropshipping is a business model in which ecommerce entrepreneurs sell products without having to carry any inventory. When a store owner receives an order from a customer, they simply contact the supplier, who will then ship the products directly to the customer’s door. Dropshipping apps like DSers let you add products from various suppliers into your shop to fuel your product offering.

Dropshipping is the perfect business model for new ecommerce entrepreneurs. It’s simple to set up and manage, and it doesn’t require a large upfront investment. You can also run your dropshipping business in your spare time—you don’t need to quit your job to start a successful store. Plus, there are several dropshipping tips you can apply to drive traffic to your store.

Dropshipping for Dummies Guide

What is Shopify?

Shopify is the leading ecommerce platform that enables entrepreneurs to start their own online stores. Shopify is simple to use, so you’ll be able to build your own store even if you don’t have any technical experience. It’s also perfect for entrepreneurs who want to launch their own dropshipping business. Shopify will give you access to the wealth of dropshipping and marketing tools available on its platform. 

How does Shopify work? 

Essentially, Shopify works as the foundation for your ecommerce business. It’s an ecommerce platform that provides entrepreneurs with the skeleton they need to start and design their store, and its back end lets you run your business without any hosting fees. You’ll need to pay Shopify’s fairly priced monthly fees, and then your ecommerce store will run without any hitches, letting you rely on Shopify to keep your store up and running while you focus on making sales and scaling your business. All of this is true for Shopify dropshipping stores, too—they’ll follow the same rules as your average Shopify store, you’ll just need to install the DSers app to source products.

Why consider dropshipping on Shopify?

Dropshipping is the perfect business model for entrepreneurs looking to set up their own business with little upfront investment, and Shopify is the simplest platform you can use to create and run your store.

When you dropship on Shopify, you’ll never need to worry about excess inventory, as you’ll only ever order the necessary amount of products to meet the demand from your customers. This system is unlike a typical ecommerce business, which involves either manufacturing products or purchasing products from a wholesaler in bulk.

If you’re planning to use Shopify with DSers, you’ll be able to control your inventory with just a few clicks—another reason why Shopify dropshipping is so simple. 

Is Shopify dropshipping really profitable?

Yes, Shopify dropshipping can be profitable for merchants because you are not responsible for manufacturing or shipping. You can make good, consistent profit with the right suppliers and avoid incurring huge costs as a wholesaler typically would. 

How much can you make as a dropshipper?

Most dropshippers earn between $1,000 and $10,000 per month on average, but you’ll probably make less when you’re just starting out in the ecommerce field. If your idea of running a sustainable dropshipping business is to make at least $1,000 per month, you’ll need to set the right profit margins and establish a strong brand.

Is Shopify dropshipping legal?

Yes, it's perfectly legal to dropship through a Shopify store. However, you’ll need to be careful when choosing your suppliers, because some illegally use other companies' intellectual property. As long as your suppliers practice good business etiquette, you shouldn't have any legal problems while dropshipping on Shopify.

Where to find a Shopify dropshipping business for sale

If you don’t want to create a dropshipping business from scratch, you can buy an existing dropshipping business from a buy and sell website like Flippa. Flippa is essentially a marketplace where entrepreneurs offer their ecommerce businesses for sale to interested buyers.

7 Steps to Start Dropshipping on Shopify

In this section of our Shopify dropshipping guide, we’ll walk you through all the steps you’ll need to take to create your own ecommerce store. We’ll show you our best tips for each stage you go through, and at the end you’ll have a fully functional Shopify dropshipping store that can start making money today. Here are the steps you need to take to open a dropshipping store with Shopify.

1. Choose a store name

This is the first step you’ll take toward opening your Shopify dropshipping store. Follow these tips for coming up with a name for your online store:

  • Keep it simple
  • Be creative
  • Make it memorable

Shopify makes it easy to brainstorm creative name ideas for your dropshipping store. All you have to do is use Shopify's online business name generator, enter any word you would like your business name to include, and click on “Generate names.”

business name generator Shopify

You’ll be presented with a list of business names from which you can pick your favorite to be your Shopify dropshipping store name. Not only will it save you a lot of time, but it’s also completely free to use.

Once you’ve come up with some ideas for the name of your Shopify dropshipping store, you’ll need to check what’s available. If you’ve come up with a name like “American Clothing Store,” it’s likely already in use. You can check this by using Google search and seeing if there’s already a .com domain attached to the name.

2. Create a Shopify account

Creating an account for your Shopify dropshipping store is a simple and quick process. To start, you’ll need to visit Shopify’s homepage and click “Start free trial.” 

Shopify dropshipping: create a Shopify account

Enter your email address in the empty field on the next screen. You’ll be asked to create a password for your account and to enter the name you’ve decided on for your Shopify dropshipping store. 

Shopify account login

Next you’ll need to fill out a couple of questions about your experience with ecommerce, along with a few personal details.

Once you’ve completed this, your Shopify account will be up and running. Then you’ll need to configure the settings to launch your Shopify dropshipping account.

3. Optimize your settings 

In this section of our Shopify dropshipping guide, we’re going to go through the settings of your newly created Shopify account. This step is essential for setting you up to receive money from your customers, creating your store policies, and establishing your shipping rates.

Payment information

The first thing you’ll need to do is set up payments for your Shopify dropshipping store. This is a vital step, as you won’t be able to receive money from customers if you don’t add a payment option.

To add payment information, you’ll need to access Shopify’s Settings page. Simply select the Payments tab on the left and add your payment information.

shopify dropshipping

We’d recommend that you add a PayPal account here. If you don’t have an account, you can sign up for one in just a few minutes—it’s a simple process, even if you’re not technically proficient. (You can also check out our article on PayPal and other payment gateways.)

Store policies

When you’re launching your own Shopify dropshipping store, you’ll need to make sure you have created the necessary store policies. Shopify has a bunch of helpful tools that automatically generate a standardized privacy policy, refund policy, and terms and conditions for your store.

You can access these tools from Shopify’s settings. Click on the Checkout tab and scroll down to the bottom to find the relevant fields.

dropshipping with Shopify

Click on the Generate button, and you’re good to go.

Shipping rates

It’s critical that your Shopify dropshipping store has clear shipping rates. We recommend that you always offer free shipping, as this is the easiest option. If you offer different shipping rates for various regions, it can become confusing, so simply incorporate your shipping fees into the price of your products and make shipping free. 

For example, if you’re planning to sell a t-shirt for $20, raise the price to $25 and offer free shipping. Using “FREE SHIPPING!” as part of your Shopify dropshipping store’s marketing will help you sell your products.

You can set free shipping on your store by accessing the Shipping tab in your Shopify settings.

Shipping zones

Delete all domestic shipping zones and add “Free International Shipping” into the Rest of World section. Then select Rate: Free Shipping Rate, and you’re set.

4. Launch your Shopify dropshipping store

You’ve now added all the necessary information you’ll need to launch your Shopify dropshipping store.

To launch your store, simply go to the Sales Channels tab on your Shopify admin dashboard. From there, select the “Add an online store” option.

Shopify dropshipping store launch

Once you’ve finished this step, you’ll have an online store that’s up and running!

5. Work on your store’s design

In this section of our Shopify dropshipping guide, we’ll go over the importance of design for your ecommerce store and highlight some key points for you to consider. The design of your Shopify dropshipping store will hold great importance, as it will be how you’re presenting your store and your brand. 

Having an aesthetically pleasing ecommerce store is just as important as a brick-and-mortar store having an enticing shop window. It’s a user’s first impression of your business, and first impressions count. Don’t forget to look at these easy ecommerce store design tricks that will help your sales skyrocket. 

When it comes to designing a Shopify dropshipping store, there are two main aspects you’ll need to consider: your theme and your logo.

Picking a theme on Shopify

theme Shopify dropshipping

Shopify has a theme store where you can source a wide variety of themes. You will find both free options and premium options there. Take a look around and decide on the best theme for your store based on your financial resources—if you’re starting your store with a tight budget, we’d advise choosing a free theme.

We understand that it can be tricky to decide which theme you should choose. To make it easier for you, we’ve written a post to help you decide which option is best for your Shopify dropshipping store. It covers topics such as what you should consider before selecting a theme, details about free Shopify themes, how to customize Shopify themes, and much more.

Creating a logo for your store

The logo for your Shopify dropshipping store will help customers remember your brand. Take some time to consider how you want your logo to look and how it will fit in with the rest of your store’s design.

Creating a logo might sound like a tough and time-consuming task. But with Shopify's free online logo maker, you’ll be able to generate your preferred logo in less than a few minutes. All you have to do is experiment with fonts, colors, icons, and positioning for you to develop the perfect logo for your brand.

If you’re interested in creating your own logo, you can use graphic design software, like Photoshop or Canva. You can also outsource high-quality graphic designs from freelance platforms, like Upwork or Fiverr, at an affordable price point.

Once you’ve got your theme and logo figured out, your store will start getting into shape. If you’re looking for further inspiration, you can check out the amazing designs of these ecommerce websites that we’ve prepared for you.

6. Dropship on Shopify with DSers

Once you’ve sorted out the design of your Shopify dropshipping store, you’ll need to start adding products so you can begin generating revenue. 

To add products that you can dropship, you’ll need to install the DSers app, which is one of the best Shopify tools for ecommerce entrepreneurs who want to import dropshipped products to their store. AliExpress and DSers are seamlessly integrated, so you’ll be able to start importing and offering products from Day 1.

When you’ve installed DSers with Shopify, you’ll need to add a category to your Shopify store. Name this category after the type of products you’ll be selling. If you’re thinking about starting an online t-shirt business, simply name this category “T-shirts.”

If you’re looking for product ideas, check out our list of unique dropshipping products. And, if you’re interested in understanding how to choose products to sell, be sure to check that out too.

With the DSers installation complete, you can use the app to search for AliExpress products that you’re interested in selling. Click the Import button on any products you’d like to sell and they’ll be imported directly into your Shopify dropshipping store.

7. Make your first sale

dropshipping on shopify for dummies guide

Now it’s time to start making sales and earning money with your Shopify dropshipping store. It’s unlikely you’ll generate a huge volume of traffic by simply launching your store, so we recommend that you use marketing campaigns to draw potential customers.

Take a look through the various available marketing channels, and do some research to find out which one will work best to drive traffic to your Shopify dropshipping store. If you think you’ll excel with Facebook advertising, then test out some campaigns. If you want to try your hand at TikTok or Instagram, go for it. The most important thing is to keep testing. You’ll soon find out which marketing strategies work best for your ecommerce business.

Over To You

You’re now the owner of your own Shopify dropshipping store. Congratulations!

We’ve covered a lot in this Shopify dropshipping guide, but you’ll learn even more while you’re actually getting your hands dirty running your own business. There’s no limit to the amount of money you can make with your online store, so it’s time to start making sales and generating revenue. With the availability of Shopify and third-party tools, it’s no longer a struggle to dropship products online.

Shopify dropshipping FAQ

How do I start a Shopify dropshipping business?

  1. Choose a store name.
  2. Create a Shopify account.
  3. Optimize settings.
  4. Build your online store. 
  5. Work on your store’s design.
  6. Install a dropshipping app.
  7. Make your first sale.

What are the benefits of dropshipping on Shopify?

  • Less upfront investment required
  • Easy to start
  • Customizable store
  • Wide selection of dropshipping tools
  • Various payment options

Is Shopify dropshipping worth it in 2024?

Dropshipping has some definite advantages, but it introduces a number of complexities you’ll need to resolve. For instance, shipping is complicated when you’re working with multiple suppliers, because each will charge their own rate for sending the item to the customer.

The good news is that with some careful consideration and planning, most of these roadblocks can be eliminated and you can progress toward building a thriving Shopify dropshipping business. 

Want to Learn More?

If you have any other questions let us know in the comments section – we’re happy to help you out in your ecommerce journey.