Online sales, regardless of niche, can be a pretty competitive business. As a dropshipper, you may think that you can just go muddling along with little effort because you have nothing to lose if you don't sell. This is true to an extent, but just because you have little or no capital tied up in your business doesn't mean you aren't losing money.
By missing opportunities to sell that could so easily be caught if you just put a little more effort into marketing, you're missing out on a serious profit. With these 10 web and mobile apps, perhaps you'll find it a little easier to make that crucial step from “What are you gonna do,” to “I've done it!”
We'd be a bit remiss if we didn't mention this one. If you're getting rid of your excess baggage on eBay, you don't need to know what products are trending, but if you're dropshipping seriously and eBay is a primary market, you will want to find out which products are performing the best, preferably in real time.
Our very own Market Research Lab allows members to check a products' success rate and average end price on eBay, among other relevant market data. All of this helps you understand which products are most likely to do well. It is not precisely an app; rather, it is an added service for SaleHoo wholesale supplier directory subscribers.
Conversion is all about having the best deal for Amazon customers who aren't shy about checking out other offers for better prices or more freebies. The Profit Bandit lets you scan barcodes to calculate profits based on several factors, including:
It can also indicate which of your products are up against products sold by Amazon, as well as those that are in the Buy Box. If you want to do well selling on Amazon, you have to know what you're up against. This online selling app offers a free trial, but goes for $9.99 a month with unlimited scanning.
One of the biggest challenges for dropshippers is finding popular products to sell. This iOS/Android-compatible app allows you to scan for prices, listings, sources, and reviews of products that are Fulfilled By Amazon (FBA), making it easier to select products that have the best potential for making the most profit.
The unique feature that sets ScanPower apart is the ability to source products. The app has a 2-week free trial for its ScanPower List + Mobile package, but is otherwise $59.95 a month or $600 a year standard. However, you can customize the services you want so the price will depend on the features you choose.
WorldLister is an app that takes care of the listing, pricing and shipping of your items. Best of all, it's absolutely free! Simply scan a barcode or follow a series of steps to create your listing. The best thing about this mobile-friendly web-based app is that it takes on the hassle of crafting a professional product description for those of you who can't (or won't) string two coherent sentences together. WorldLister uploads the listing on eBay, but plans to accommodate Craigslist and Amazon listings are in the works as well.
Do you spend hours on Facebook? Why not turn time wasted into productivity by changing your profile into your very own online billboard? After all, statistics show that social networks are the one of the best places to sell your wares. Advertising there makes a lot of cents, and a few dollars as well.
EasySocialShop lets you customize your links to Facebook by automatically importing products from your online store on any of the following:
The best thing about it? It's 100% FREE!
Soldsie is a little more proactive than our other online selling apps. Instead of merely providing links to your online store, it allows people on Facebook and Instagram to actually buy the product then and there, simply by commenting on your post with “SOLD.” They comment, and the app opens up the option to send an invoice automatically to the commenter's email.
All you have to do is to connect your Instagram or Facebook page (or both) to Soldsie and select product photos to upload as posts. The service is free for the first $700 and then levies a 3 percent transaction fee, which includes PayPal and credit card charges. Not too shabby, especially if you have (or build) a sizable social media following.
Instagram is fast becoming the visual equivalent of Facebook, and many people would love to do their socializing and online shopping at the same time. Enter Hashbag, the “classified ad” section of Instagram, where buyers can search for stuff with the use of hashtags.
You'll want to get into the action by simply Instagram-ing a product photo and tagging it with #forsale. You'll be asked to log into Hashbag to include a price and then the listing will automatically be uploaded for your followers to see. You will be charged $0.99 for each item you sell, so include that when calculating your costs.
Even with the Internet making it uber-easy and affordable to do retail marketing, it still takes time and organization to launch promotions and post announcements. Fanchimp automates many marketing processes for your online store by letting you choose what products you want to promote and when.
Fanchimp is primarily a tool to share content on Facebook and Twitter, and it allows you to schedule when your posts will go live. This can help you increase brand awareness and conversion. There's a 30-day free trial (no credit card required) and then a $9.99 monthly charge to continue usage.
One of the most important emerging trends for retailers is the emphasis placed on customer reviews and recommendations. The Beetailer Social Widget app allows your customers to share their comments, tweets, or likes of your products on their social networks. Any social mentions you achieve are sent to you via email. It's currently compatible only with Magento and Shopify stores that have the Beetailer Extension for Facebook Integration. The app is free but the Pro version is available for a one-time payment of $9.95.
Aside from doing the research and preparing to sell your products for maximum profit at minimum effort, you also need to do an analysis of your actual sales. Using eBay's Listing Analytics can help you better understand the buying behavior of your customers and see what products are performing well and why.
By doing an analysis, you can optimize your offerings, identify the products that don't sell, and improve your sales by concentrating on products that do. The app is free and will give you valuable insight into your sales performance.
That's our list for this week. What did you think? Did we miss any online selling applications that can really be a boon to your business? Let us know in the comments.