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Thread: Drop Shipping

  1. #1
    SitePoint Member
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    I am in the process of adding e-commerce to our exisiting site. Our business is not in retail, but we want to try and convert some of our site traffic into money by offering related products. Ideally, we want to dropship everything and simply take the orders.

    My question is, how can we make sure we get the repeat business routed through us. If we take an order, have it shipped, how can we then avoid the customer going direct if they get say a brochure or other literature with the product. The pricing wouldn't be any different, we just want to make sure if we brought the customer in, the repeat orders will be creditted to us as well. In your experiences, what incentives for either the customer, associate company, or both are effective in this situation?

  2. #2
    SitePoint Zealot
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    I think it will depend a lot on who is sending the products. My only experience with drop shipping is if I'm out of something and sending out a mailorder (I have a physical retail store). I can have my wholesalers drop ship for me, but they only deal with retailers so they don't include any promotional literature or catalogs in drop shipments. As far as the customer is concerned they are really only dealing with me.

    If you provide good service that a customer can count on, that is your best tool to keep him or her. Since you will be selling at the the same price there is no cost-savings incentive to go with the shipper.

    If some individual (or company) contacted me about selling my products on their website, but me shipping and stocking them, I wouldn't mind not including my catalog or other stuff as long as I knew that:
    1) The customer is going to be taken care of as I would take care of the customer. If the customer becomes disgruntled, I don't want my name associated with something that is not my fault.
    2) There is some incentive for me not to include my literature.
    3) I may want some exlusivity on the products. I've already got competition why should I increase it.

    I hope this gives you some help
    --Bill
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  3. #3
    ********* Addict jaiem's Avatar
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    Most (good) seller programs that do drop shipping know that the sellers market themselves as a seperate business from the parent company. As such they don't market themselves to compete with thier affiliated sellers.

    The only other approach is to ship yourself. More control but more work.
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