Look inside Their Dropship Directory and Wholesale Services
Shopster (Shopster.com) is different from other drop shipping directories. It enables you to start fully stocked storefront populated with products of your choice without worries about customer support, stocking warehouse, secure merchant account, professional design, or delivering products. However it does not mean instant riches. It puts you in a position where you can spend more time and attention on market research, promotion and advertising of your store, eliminating most of the time consuming software and technical problems. Shopster solution has its own pros and cons so let’s examine if you should consider it for your online business.
Blueprint of drop ship business
- Pick the niche you like or know something about.
- Create online storefront, park it on your own domain name.
- Populate it with products relevant to your niche.
- Set your profit margin.
- Start driving traffic/customers from search engines(Yahoo/Google/Bing).
- Promote your site using PPC, content, back links, newsletter, blog, Social Media etc.
- Track and monitor your sales/traffic.
- Connect with your buyers to make them loyal customers and get friend referrals.
- Analyze and improve.
Products / Pricing
Shopster Network carries products ranging from electronics to children toys, books, sport equipment, clothing, and accessories and keeps adding new ones. Good part about it is not some cheap silly staff. I was surprised when I saw top brand names like Oakley, Fendi D&G, Invicta, Movado, Canon, Intel, Epson, Apple. You are not going to find these suppliers in vast majority of other wholesale directories. You can actually see prices that Shopster has inside their network without signing up. You can browse online stores of Shopster members and compare their prices with any large marketplace like eBay or Amazon. To find these online storefronts simply go to Google and type “powered by Shopster” in quotes and then find stores that are close to what you’re thinking to sell: waterproof radios, fragrance, jewelry, video cameras, toys etc. What I have found from this simple research is that most of the time prices are quite competitive and usually are on the same level or cheaper than Amazon or eBay. Remember, you don’t need to have the lowest price in the marketplace to make money. You are not trying to outsell Amazon or eBay.
Shopster Inside – Video
Not sure about Shopster? See it compared to others in these dropship reviews
Visit Official Shopster website
Shopster made website creation and management VERY easy, so you can get used to it in a matter of hours. It took me around 30 min. to create professional website with newsletter, shopping cart, discount coupons, populated with products I like to sell. They have step by step course how to get started and also downloadable PDF guide. Web site creating tool gives you an ability to customize your storefront, add custom pages, feature pages, create unlimited product categories, design your logo and much more; manage your store, including searchable customer order history, customer search statistics, customer reviews, coupon creation, payment system with secure checkouts and SSL, and fraud detection. With website tracking tools you can view:
- Reports for last 7 days,
- Unique Visitors and Page Views,
- 100 Most Popular Pages,
- Top 10 Referrer Domains
- Top 50 Referrer URLs,
- Product Statistics,
- Search Statistics,
- RShop Products Out-of-Stock.
Shopster made website creation easy and fun so even a person with basic knowledge of computer can do it.
After creating your store you want to see customers rolling in and buying your products. Nobody wants to see their store looking like a ghost town. That is why marketing and sales tools are so important. Shopster allows you to park your online store at first level domain (http://yourstore.com instead of http://yourstore.secure2u.com) and look like professional legitimate business.
They also offer powerful marketing tool – custom pages. If you want high Search Engine positions you need to have custom pages with your niche relevant content (reviews, articles, testimonials…), you can also exchange links with other similar sites for higher rankings. Advertising in major Search engines (Google/Yahoo/Bing) will bring you customers and sales (if you do it right way). You can promote your site with data feeds (data feed is a formatted list of the products being sold in your store) publishing them on Google, eBay, Yahoo etc. You can publish and send newsletter announcing sale or new arrival connecting with your buyers and turn them into repeat buyers. Never overlook this opportunity - it can double/triple your sales and profits. You can create discount coupons for specific products you want to sell and attract even more buyers.
With all this being said there are several moments that you should be aware of when planning to use Shopster storefront as your framework for ecommerce business.
Complication of Website Promotion
Drawbacks and possible obstacles for website promotion
There are two ways of how you can get people to your store. First – you can buy visitors (Paid visitors). Second – they found you (Free visitors). You can obtain paid visitors by advertising on Google Adwords, Yahoo Search Engine Marketing, Bing Adcenter, buying banners on topical websites, sponsoring relative ezines and so on. Internet marketing can be a quite costly process if you don’t have any experience. So if you’re just starting out you probably don’t have/want to spend money on advertising. So you want the majority of your website visitors to be free. Largest source of free visitors is SE (Search Engines) natural search (your website – appears when somebody searching for a phrase). In order for your website/page to appear for a specific keyword it needs to be optimized for that keyword. Unfortunately, Shopster preconfigured online stores currently are not Search Engine optimized and are not very flexible and friendly for SEO. So you will need to spend a lot of time writing articles, descriptions and tweaking your website in order to have good SE positions. SE optimization does require some skills, knowledge (I see, it is very difficult for somebody without proper education) and a LOT of work to be able to achieve high positions for competitive keywords.
For me the most important thing I was looking for was ability to sell products on eBay because I use this platform for majority of my product ventures. Shopster offers over 1 500 000 of eBay compatible products which you can start listing on eBay in a matter of minutes using Shopster eBay listing manager (eBay compatible application). If you are planning to open your store, selling products on eBay is a great way to test the market to see what products are HOT in your niche and which are losers so you can stack your store with TOP sellers and also it is one more way to gain lifelong customers.
Complication of Selling on eBay
Drawbacks and possible obstacles for selling on eBay
There are several questionable moments when selling from Shopster on eBay. Since you’re selling from Shopster network there are no guarantees that the item will be available to you when the auction ends. So this can negatively influence your eBay feedback and add auction fees you need to pay without a sale. I think system need to be improved in order to provide smooth process for people that are selling on eBay marketplace and insure that the product is always available.
If you are new to online business, Shopster has a good source of FREE books and guides and also articles and webinars. So you can get a lot of tips how to create profitable, respectable, successful online business. Also if you stack with something there is live Forum where you can post your question and more experienced entrepreneurs will help you. If you are more advanced entrepreneur you’ll still find for yourself plenty of useful information, marketing tips, SEM, promotion and advertising.
Shopster offers several options:
- Free – start up option, list up to 15 products in your store or network, good for playing around and getting feel of the system.
- $39.95/month – list up to 200 products in your store or network.
- $69.95/month - list up to 2500 products in your store or network – have all the bells and whistles as enterprise version with fewer products to list.
- $249.95/month - list up to 20 000 products in your store or network – for enterprise customers with serious volume of sales.
Does Shopster work? Shopster has a great idea behind it – bridging e-commerce and social networking. It offers array of tools easy to use, making storefront creation process a breeze. But at the same time system has several imperfections/possible problems that need to be solved.
- Make default storefront more Search Engine friendly.
- Streamline and simplify mechanisms of communications inside the Network.
- Protect and improve process for people that are selling on eBay.
Shopster vs Worldwide Brands
Currently I would not recommend Shopster to start ecommerce business and would suggest to look at service like Worldwide Brands (see Worldwide Brands review). They offer more flexibility for drop shipping or for selling products in your store. If you want you can always give Shopster a shot and try it for yourself for free. Click here to try Shopster for yourself.