As the lucrative e-commerce market continues to thrive, one business model has emerged as a go-to solution for entrepreneurs looking to minimize startup costs and risk while maximizing product range and flexibility.

Welcome to the world of dropshipping.

What’s dropshipping? In short, the dropshipping business model is an effective and appealing way to sell products online. Dropshipping allows merchants and retailers to sell goods via an e-commerce site without having to keep them in stock. When a customer makes a purchase in your online store, the order is fulfilled by a third party—no need for you to purchase all those products upfront.

It’s a model that reduces initial business costs, along with the risks associated with stocking inventory that might not sell. Securing stock, managing inventory, and shipping products is a time-consuming process that requires funds and resources you may not have. As an e-commerce retailer who uses the dropshipping model, though, you get to focus on developing your website, creating a satisfying user experience (UX), and driving traffic to your online store with e-commerce marketing strategies, all while a trusted partner handles stocking, packaging, and shipping products on your behalf.

Sounds pretty great, right? It is…but because dropshipping involves third party suppliers, choosing the right platform partner is critical to your business’s success. Today’s most successful dropshipping businesses work with trusted partners to ensure they’re always able to deliver for their customers.

In addition to checking out our dropshipping guide, we recommend getting to know the top e-commerce dropshipping platforms and strategies before launching your business online. Finding the right match will make things run more smoothly in the short term, while also setting you up for future growth.

The 7 Best Dropshipping Platforms and Apps

What are the best dropship platforms, you ask? There are several factors to think about when sorting through the best dropshipping websites, from the types of products offered to dropshipping suppliers’ geographical location, the level of integration with e-commerce platforms, and the quality of support you’ll receive. Don’t be intimidated by the prospect of selecting a top dropshipping website, because each platform offers unique advantages.

The best dropship websites, platforms, and apps cater to the diverse needs and preferences of individual merchants, and are designed to help you grow your e-commerce business. So before you decide on the best products to dropship, consider the right dropship website or platform for your brand by evaluating the following variables:

  • Product catalog. What kind of products will you offer? Will yours be a high-ticket dropshipping business that sells low-volume expensive products at high prices to generate larger profits? Or will you sell a wide selection of products from different categories? Either way, you’ll want to make sure you include clear product descriptions, specifications, and images in your catalog.
  • Marketing help. Ask yourself what kind of advertising and marketing support you may need to drive traffic to your site. Marketing is a vital part of this type of business, since it will help you promote and sell your products online (more on that below).
  • Data analytics. Tracking sales, revenue, and customer behavior is crucial to helping retailers improve their UX and maximize sales.
  • Integration. Integrating your site with an e-commerce platform like Shopify, WooCommerce, or AliExpress can help you import products to your online store.
  • Inventory management. Even though dropshipping enables retailers to avoid stocking products themselves, you’ll still need to ensure that you have a real-time inventory management system in place to avoid overselling the goods.
  • Shipping and tracking. An automated shipping and tracking system that employs reliable shipping carriers and tracking numbers will keep your operations running smoothly. When choosing a carrier, keep in mind that fast shipping times can be a competitive advantage; customers may leave better reviews on platforms like Trustpilot and Yelp if they’re happy with order fulfillment. Keeping shipping times to under 7 days, or at least within a 10-day time frame, can improve your brand’s reputation and result in more sales.
  • Quality customer service. What will your user experience (UX) look like? A responsive and well-informed customer service system is vital to ensuring consumers are satisfied, and can also help retailers identify areas in need of improvement.
  • Custom branding. Custom branding options and features allow retailers to create their own brand identity, which in turn can help you differentiate yourself from the competition online.

Keeping all of these factors in mind, here are some of the best dropshipping platforms. While they may cater to different needs, all have the ability to help you maximize your online selling potential.

1. AliExpress

Owned by Alibaba Group, AliExpress offers a wide range of products at low prices, which makes this choice very popular among dropshippers. Launched in 2010, AliExpress is an online retail service featuring more than 100 million products (source: Torchbankz), so you’ll find something to sell regardless of your niche—and you can pay for those products at wholesale prices. What are the best products to dropship on AliExpress? Think electronics, fashion, toys, and beauty items.

Pro Tip: Unlike some other marketplaces, like Amazon and eBay, AliExpress’s infrastructure is highly suitable for dropshipping order fulfillment. This platform makes it easy to find products to sell in your store without worrying about inventory or shipping.

Key features:

  • Access to a massive variety of products
  • No upfront fee or commission on sales
  • User reviews for vetting product quality
  • Easily order samples for a quality check

2. Spocket

Let’s start with Spocket. Spocket is an order fulfillment service involving a wide range of wholesale merchants, most of which are based in the US and Europe (though the platform also has merchants in Canada, Asia, Australia, and Brazil).

This dropshipping solution allows you to browse products and add them to your Shopify store with a single click. That makes it easy for online retailers to keep their site populated with in-demand items, all without needing to manage those items on warehouse shelves, since Spocket automates the entire order process and ships to customers at the point of purchase.

Pro Tip: This platform offers a branded invoice feature, which means you can create custom invoices to ship along with your products. Customizing your packaging can help you generate brand awareness and even support customer retention, since it conveys professionalism and credibility to consumers.

Key features:

  • Suppliers mainly from the US and EU for faster shipping times
  • Integration with Shopify and WooCommerce
  • Automated order processing
  • Real-time inventory updates

3. SaleHoo

Think of SaleHoo as both a research tool and a supplier directory designed for dropshippers, wholesalers, and e-commerce stores. With a database of more than 8,000 wholesale distributors and dropshipping suppliers—which offer over 2.5 million products (source: SaleHoo)—this platform can help merchants source all kinds of goods to resell in their own stores.

Pro Tip: In addition to providing access to Market Research Lab, which offers data that can help merchants discover high-quality products that stand to sell well online, SaleHoo lets you see how many other retailers are selling each product. This can help you gauge product availability, and also makes it easier to find your store’s niche and position your brand.

Key features:

  • A curated list of vetted dropshipping suppliers
  • Market research tools for trending products
  • Access to training materials for e-commerce learning
  • A supportive community of online sellers

4. Worldwide Brands

Worldwide Brands is the veteran on our list, one of the oldest and most trusted supplier directories among long-time retailers (it was established in 1999). It claims to be the only 100% certified legitimate directory, offering only certified wholesale products.

Like Wholesale Central, Worldwide Brands is a directory of suppliers and dropshippers who are open to working with new retailers like you. The best products to dropship on Worldwide Brands include popular and high-volume items that are suited to bulk selling.

Pro Tip: While Worldwide Brands may not offer automation like the preceding platform options, it does include more than 16 million certified wholesale products (source: Worldwide Brands) across a wide range of categories—and a dedicated list of certified dropshippers, too.

Key features:

  • Lifetime access to a huge directory of certified wholesalers
  • One-time joining fee without recurrent costs
  • Wide range of products from legitimate wholesalers
  • Market research tools and excellent customer service

5. Zendrop

Zendrop is part of Shopify Apps, created by Shopify dropshipping experts as an easy-to-use plug-in that addresses some of the common frustrations associated with other dropshipping sites. It aims to improve issues like inconsistent suppliers and unpredictable shipping by offering both dropshipping and print-on-demand services that let you create custom packaging and subscription boxes for your brand (which can drive repeat purchases from customers).

Pro Tip: Zendrop has an intuitive interface for adding products to your e-commerce store; most are stocked within the US, enabling quick 5–7-day delivery. That makes it an especially good choice for unique and customizable items that benefit from faster shipping times.

Key features:

  • Automated ordering and fulfillment processes
  • Custom product branding options
  • Expedited shipping times compared to other platforms
  • User-friendly interface with excellent customer support

6. Doba

Offering access to around 2 million products (source: Doba blog) from a host of different suppliers, Doba helps merchants streamline their operations through inventory management and order tracking. Most of its suppliers are in the US and China, so keep that in mind as you consider it as an option. The best products to dropship on Doba fall into categories like home, office, and electronics.

Pro Tip: Take advantage of Doba’s automated pricing rules. One of its most unique features, this tool allows merchants to create rules to price products at a fixed markup on the wholesale price, rather than managing pricing manually. That can save businesses a lot of time, while also boosting profits.

Key features:

  • Single dashboard to manage all products from multiple suppliers
  • Custom data export tools for use on any e-commerce platform
  • Inventory management and alert system
  • Doba’s Score for product and supplier performance tracking

7. Modalyst

If you’re looking to market big-name products, look to Modalyst, which prioritizes offering products from companies your customers are already familiar with to build trust with your brand and boost sales. The best products for Modalyst fall under the categories of high-end fashion and lifestyle, including eco-friendly and sustainable options. Another perk of working with this platform is that Modalyst wholesalers ship to more than 80 countries, and have an API partnership with AliExpress in the form of a Chrome extension.

Pro Tip: US merchants can benefit from utilizing Modalyst’s onshore marketplace of suppliers. This will ensure that domestic orders ship within 6-8 days.

Key features:

  • Direct integration with Shopify, BigCommerce, and Wix stores
  • Access to high-quality products and premium brands
  • Automatic inventory and pricing update
  • Real-time order tracking and dropshipping management tools

Ensuring Dropshipping Success with Marketing and Advertising

Now that you’re equipped with information about the major platform options, it’s time to talk about marketing strategies for dropshipping. In the highly competitive dropshipping space, promotion can mean the difference between low sales and a thriving online store. A well-crafted marketing strategy can build brand awareness, drive traffic, engage audiences, and convert site visitors into customers.

Here too, there are many options at your disposal. Social media engagement not only increases traffic, but can also convert visits into sales. Email marketing automation has been known to improve lead generation for 80% of digital marketers (source: Invesp). As for SEO strategies (aka search engine marketing), that will help you reach querying audiences with the right keywords at the right time.

Among the most effective advertising platforms is Taboola and native advertising. Native ads are an impactful marketing strategy that can significantly boost your visibility online—and we all know that amplifying your online presence can generate qualified site traffic and sales. Advertising with Taboola allows for precision targeting, so your products are seen by those customers who are most likely to buy. It’s an excellent way to set yourself up for long-term success.

No matter how varied and desirable your product selection, or how streamlined your dropshipping operations may be, the importance of a strategic marketing and advertising strategy can’t be overstated. It’s an absolute must for brand engagement, brand visibility, and sustaining growth and profitability over time.

Final Considerations on Best Dropshipping Platforms

By now it should be clear that dropshipping can be a profitable avenue for businesses—but as with anything else, execution is key. That’s why it’s so important to assess each dropshipping platform to gauge which is the best fit for your brand.

Consider factors like product range, integration with your online store, supplier reliability, shipping timeframes, and cost-effectiveness. Once you’ve launched, remember to also conduct recurring tests with sample orders to vet product quality and supplier reliability over time. For new marketers entering the dropshipping business, deep research and testing are two of the most valuable tools at your disposal.

With the right dropshipping platform, along with a marketing and advertising strategy that includes Taboola and native ads, there’s really no limit to what you can accomplish in the e-commerce space.

Ready to promote your online store with Taboola? Get in touch!

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