Drop surfing is a term often used in the dropshipping world. Are you already familiar with the dropshipping world? Then you’ve surely come across this term before. But what exactly does it mean? Is it like dropshipping? Can you become a “drop surfer” instead of a dropshipper? Is this also a profitable online business model? These are all questions we are going to answer for you in this article. Drop surfing vs dropshipping, what are the differences and what do these two terms have in common?
What is drop surfing?
The term drop surfing is not easy to explain. In fact, you can do this in two different ways:
1. Looking for the best price
The first meaning of drop surfing is looking for the best price. This is also called price shopping. When you run a dropshipping business and work with multiple suppliers providing the same products, this is what is known as price shopping. After all, you are looking for the best price for the product being purchased from you. When a customer places an order from your online store, you start comparing the purchase prices of the product offered by different suppliers. Based on this, you then decide which supplier to order the product in question from. The best price not only depends on the established purchase price. The best price is also determined by things such as:
- The shipping costs
- The size of the order you place (the more products you buy at once, the more discount you get)
If you look on marketplaces like Amazon or AliExpress you will see that exactly the same products are offered by multiple suppliers. However, product prices and terms of delivery often differ. When you then start looking for the best price for the product you want to order, you are drop surfing.
2. Looking for trends
The second meaning of the term drop surfing is looking for trends. Which products within the niche in which you operate as a dropshipper are currently popular? The online market is constantly changing. This also applies to the products you sell through your online store(s). One month one product will be in demand, while the next month other products will increase in popularity. This form of drop surfing is incredibly intensive. There is no programme that you can call on to look for trends within your niche. For this, you will have to constantly take action yourself. When you are able to move with the waves of the product trends within your niche, you will definitely be at the helm of a successful online store.
Thus, when you move with the trends within your niche, the offerings of your online store will constantly vary.
What is dropshipping?
Dropshipping is an online business model through which you run an online store. However, when running a dropshipping business, your own product inventory is not required. Managing and shipping the products you sell are the responsibilities of the supplier(s) you work with.
As a dropshipper, however, you are responsible for the customer service of your online store. Complaints about products and deliveries come to you. Therefore, it important that you work with reliable suppliers. If you are a good dropshipper, your customers will not realize that the products you sell do not come directly from you. Of course, it is important that you clearly communicate any changes in the delivery process. Consider a delayed delivery, for example.
Dropshipping is a popular online revenue model since you need virtually no initial capital to start your own online business. All you need to get started with a dropship business is an e-commerce platform such as WooCommerce or one of the other best e-commerce platforms for dropshipping.
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Drop surfing VS dropshipping
So in a nutshell, you can say that: drop surfing = drop shipping + looking for the most popular products within a particular niche, for the best price.
If you run an online store and want to maximize the profit margin from this, you might consider starting drop surfing. And quite honestly, maximizing the profit margin of your business is, of course, something we all love to do the most. Yet drop surfing is not for everyone. In fact, there is still “a catch”. If you want to put all the time you have into your online venture, you can definitely consider drop surfing.
After all, searching for the right products at the best price is quite time-consuming. In actual fact, when you focus solely on dropshipping, you will still have some free time left over. After all, you probably also have some social obligations to fulfil every now and then.
Drop surfing should really be seen as more than a full-time job. This is very different to dropshipping. After all, dropshipping does require time, but not as much as a full-time job. Of course, it can be if you chose to run multiple online stores. You could even still choose to start a dropshipping business in addition to a salaried job. With drop surfing, this is virtually impossible. Do you want to start a drop surfing business? Then this certainly offers you a number of advantages as well:
No start-up capital needed
The biggest advantage of starting a drop surfing business is the low start-up costs. This is because you don’t need to invest money in your own product stock. In fact, you contact the supplier of the products you want to sell directly. Then you incorporate the links to the relevant products onto your online store. The only costs you incur are the costs of creating your online store, or having your online store created for you.
You can get started quickly
When you want to start a drop surfing business you can get started quickly. After all, you don’t have to manage inventory or look for packaging materials for the products you sell. Both shipping and inventory management are the responsibilities of the suppliers you work with.
Whether you are a digital nomad, or you just go on vacation often, you can run a drop surfing business anytime, anywhere. All you need is a laptop and a stable Internet connection.
Save on overhead costs
As you don’t need warehouse workers and couriers to make sure the products you sell reach your customers, you can save on overhead costs.
You sell popular products
Because you are continuously educating yourself about the latest trends within the niche you operate in, if all goes well, you will only be selling popular products. So when you run a successful drop surfing business, you don’t have to worry about not making any sales.
Easy to scale up
You can easily scale up a drop surfing business. By constantly adding more popular products to the assortment of your online store, you can easily scale up your business.
So drop surfing and dropshipping have quite a few similarities. The main difference is in the time you spend running your online business. Drop surfing takes a lot more time than dropshipping. If you are willing to do this to run your business well, you will be richly rewarded. Drop surfing allows you to maximize the profit margins of your business. Fortunately, there is special drop surfing software available that you can use. However, the use of this software is not free, which in turn will increase the overhead costs of your business.
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