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Dropshipping with AliExpress 101 – Start using AliExpress for dropshipping


How to do dropshipping with AliExpress? Here is an expert guide to starting dropshipping with AliExpress.


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How to do dropshipping with AliExpress

Here are the steps to start dropshipping with AliExpress.

  1. Decide your niche to start a dropshipping business.

    A niche is the range of products that you are going to sell online. So, before you start product hunting on AliExpress, you need to think of the best niche for dropshipping.

  2. Find winning products on AliExpress, related to your niche.

    Not every product is suitable for dropshipping. Selecting the winning products for dropshipping increase your chances of getting more sales.

  3. Decide the best price for the selected products on AliExpress

    When you do dropshipping with AliExpress, product pricing plays a major role in marketing. Therefore, make sure to select competitive prices for dropshipping products without hurting your profits.

  4. Import AliExpress products into your dropshipping store

    You can use AliExpress dropshipping plugins to automatically import AliExpress products into your store. Also, you can use the same plugins to fulfil the dropshipping orders with AliExpress.

  5. Learn how to handle returns and refunds when dropshipping on AliExpress.

    Returns and refund requests are unavoidable in dropshipping. Therefore, make sure to learn and understand the right way to handle disputes when doing dropshipping on AliExpress.

Scroll down to read the above steps in detail

If you are a total beginner for dropshipping, we highly recommend you to start by reading what is dropshipping to understand the inside-out about dropshipping.

Advantages of dropshipping with AliExpress

Aliexpress is a popular online marketplace for retail sellers. But, the product prices of Aliexpress suppliers are very competitive, allowing you to have a good profit margin by reselling their products.

Also, there are plenty of Aliexpress dropshipping plugins that you can use to easily automate your order fulfilment processes.

To be frank, there a whole eco-system is built around dropshipping with AliExpress. Therefore, it is easy and free to find support and learn about this industry.


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Dropshipping with AliExpress Vs. Wholesale suppliers

  • Dropshipping with wholesale suppliers –
    Wholesale suppliers usually offer very low prices compared to the prices listed on AliExpress. (AliExpress is more of a retail marketplace).
    However, if you are a beginner to dropshipping, sometimes you may feel that working with wholesalers are bit complex. You may need to get into a contract with them before ordering. And, sometimes you may have to pay in advance to start a credit account with them.

  • Dropshipping with AliExpress –
    Even though the product prices are higher than of the wholesale suppliers, AliExpress is much easier to get started. AliExpress allows anyone to purchase products from listings. So, sourcing the dropshipping products from Aliexpress is not harder than buying and re-selling a product from Amazon.

If you like to start dropshipping with wholesale suppliers, check this dropshipping supplier directory. There we have listed the best dropshipping suppliers for most of the popular niches.

It is important to have a proper marketing strategy before you start dropshipping with AliExpress

Why would anyone buy from you, when they can directly purchase it (for a lesser price) on AliExpress?

The answer is Marketing! You need a strong marketing strategy to do dropshipping with AliExpress. More than 95% of the new dropshipping sellers fail, just because they don’t focus enough on the marketing aspects.

Don’t just waste your time and money. Learn the most essential marketing skills, before you start dropshipping on AliExpress.

Decide your niche to start dropshipping with AliExpress

If you have already selected a winning niche, you can skip to the next step.

What is a niche in dropshipping?

A niche is kind of the range of products that you are going to sell when dropshipping with AliExpress. For example, you can create a dropshipping store to sell men’s wallets. Or, you can start a store to sell only the baby clothes. Likewise, you can decide a niche for your dropshipping business.

Why would we need a niche? Can’t we sell everything?

Well, you can. However, having a niche store helps to build an engaging marketing strategy for your dropshipping business, easily. For example, if you have a definite niche, you can easily target your ads to your target audience. So, it will be cheaper to get better results.


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I got a niche, what’s next?

Once you have your niche in mind, select the right category to see suppliers related to that niche. As a case study for this guide I will pick, men’s wallets as my dropshipping niche.

  • As the first step, I have selected wallets under the category of Bags & Shoes > Men’s Luggage and bags.
Select product catergory - Dropshipping with AliExpress
  • Amazing, I got a large number of awesome products to start dropshipping.
Get the list of products - Dropshipping on AliExpress
  • Hold your horses! We are not done yet. Before we start importing these products into our dropshipping store, we need to do a little bit of product sorting.

    So, I would try to sort for the suppliers who have ratings above four stars. In this way, I can assume that these sellers are better than the others. Also. I am going to add Free shipping and highest number of orders from the sorting panel.
Sort products using the filters
  • Then I got a filtered list like the below screenshot.
Filtered product list - dropshipping with AliExpress
  • Now that we have narrowed down our potential suppliers, it is time to pick individual products.

    It can be overwhelming to see a large number of beautiful products with small price tags. You might be already calculating the profits in your head. But, there are a few other points to consider before selecting products for dropshipping with AliExpress

Say no for brands

When it comes to dropshipping with AliExpress, it is always better to stay away from branded products. There are a few reasons for not to sell branded items from Aliexpress.

First, you may not have the license to resell some branded products. Sometimes, you may end up facing lawsuits by selling substitutes and counterfeits. So, for your own safety just pick generic products, which do not carry any brand names, or do not resemble a branded product.

Price with a high markup potential

When you source products from Aliexpress for Dropshipping, it is better to stick to the products with prices ranging below $25-30. Then if anything goes wrong, you lose a small amount of money.  And, when you select products, try to choose the products where you can sell around $50. In this way, you can keep a higher margin while lowering your risks.

E-packet delivery

Almost 99% of the Aliexpress products are coming from Hongkong or Mainland-China. So, E-packet delivery is the most economical and quickest way of shipping these products to the USA or Europe.

If you can find the products which offer E-packet delivery with Free shipping, that would be ideal. So, you can provide the Free shipping option to your customers, which usually increases your chances of selling a product.

Products with unique photos

What if you buy products from another retailer who is just dropshipping like you. He will again keep a profit margin, narrowing down your profits. Also, he may not be able to provide good customer support by providing you with any unique product photos, or specifications.

So, by checking for the unique product photos in Aliexpress listings, you can filter out useless re-sellers on this marketplace. You can check for such resellers by doing a quick image search on Google. Use Google image search for the product photos, and those who have unique product photos can be the sellers who have an actual stock of the products they sell.

Contact sellers

AliExpress has recently introduced a chat facility to contact your sellers before you make a purchase. So, before you list something on your store, you can have a chat and check if the seller is ok to dropship on behalf of you. Also, some sellers might agree to give you discounted prices for your listing.

You can access this feature by clicking on the small envelop icon at the cart section.

contact-sellers

How to import Aliexpress products into your Store

Now it’s time for us to list the selected products in your store. Depending on the platform which you are using, there can be some useful Aliexpress plugins or apps to automate this process.

Using an app or plugin ease the overall process, as they can track the real-time stock levels of the supplier listing and update your stock level accordingly. Also, these apps can assist you through the order fulfilment process.

How to process (fulfil) orders, when dropshipping with AliExpress

Once you make a sale for a product on your store, you have to fulfil that order on Aliexpress. The process is as simple as ABC.

As we have mentioned before, if you use any apps or plugins with your store building platform, you can apply that service to process orders.

However, if you want to do the order forwarding manually, all you have to do is go to the supplier listing and place the order on behalf of your customer.

When you do so, let your supplier know that you are dropshipping by adding a particular comment under the comment section.


Aliexpress sellers know that most of their customers are dropshipping retailers, and they are happy to do this for you.


You can type in something like, “Hi, This is a Dropshipping order. Please do not add any promotional materials or invoices”.

inform the sellers - dropshipping with AliExpress

And, once you place the order you will get an email with an order confirmation from Aliexpress.

Then you can go to the AliExpress order page, and see all the available details. If you have selected E-packet option as the delivery method, you will see the tracking number for the product.

Next, you can go back to the admin panel of your store, and fulfil the order by entering this tracking number.

Dispute Handling when using Aliexpress for dropshipping

When start dropshipping with AliExpress, most of the time you have to eat up the return and refund costs all by your self.

By selecting the right price for your dropshipping products, you can cover the cost of occasional returns and refunds!

Usually, Aliexpress suppliers do not accept returns. If your customer wants to return the product, you may have to receive the return package. If your customer requests a refund or return, handle that as you would typically do in your business.

If your customer did not receive the package, you could contact the seller and ask for a resolution. Or you can even use the Aliexpress buyer protection scheme to do so.

Sometimes your customer may receive a damaged product or a different product. Then you can ask your customers to take some photos of the product, and you can forward these photos to the supplier for a resolution.

If your customer is unsatisfied with the product, you may have to get the burden and provide a refund either by accepting the return or not. It is all up to your return policy.

Now you know how to use Aliexpress for dropshipping!

What’s the next step? Make sure you learn the right way to market and sell your dropshipping products. At Ecommercebuff, we research and write about the best tricks and tips about running a successful online business. Follow us on Facebook or Subscribe to our email updates to start tuned!

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