People love coffee mugs not only for holding their favorite beverage but because they are fun and make a statement. You can dropship coffee mugs and earn a healthy side income.
Don’t underestimate the power of a coffee mug. Funny coffee mugs are huge sellers. Coffee mugs that cater to a specific niche (geeks, teachers, cats, etc.) always have buyers.
I will explain how you can dropship coffee mugs easily with your own dropshipping store. I’ll use my dropshipping store as a guide so that you know where to source your products and how to set up your store.
Let’s get started!
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Why Dropship Coffee Mugs in the First Place?
If you were to open an online store selling coffee mugs, you would need to buy all of your inventory upfront. Meaning, you would need to locate wholesale suppliers and buy your coffee mugs in bulk.
That would mean investing in a lot of inventory that may or may not sell. Plus, it would require much more start-up cash than you may have.
In order to offer a wide variety of products in your store, you would need to buy a large amount of inventory. This could cost hundreds of dollars.
The dropship model eliminates these start-up costs without sacrificing variety.
The Dropship Model – A Brief Definition
Thanks to the dropship model, people from all types of backgrounds with little to no experience have the opportunity to become online store owners.
The dropshipping model is low-risk and low-cost to start. You do not have to invest start-up cash into your inventory.
Instead, you source your products from the manufacturer a.k.a., your dropshipping supplier.
The same items they sell, you can also sell in your own store. When a customer orders an item from your store is when you buy that item from your dropshipping supplier.
During the checkout process, you input your customer’s shipping details so that the dropshipping supplier can ship the item directly to the customer for you.
You do not have to deal with any shipping & handling. Your profit is the difference in price between what you charged for the item and what the dropshipping supplier charged you.
I chose the dropship model as I didn’t have the funds to invest in a ton of inventory for my store.
Now I am able to offer a wider variety of products without spending money on buying and storing bulk items.
Where To Find Coffee Mug Dropshippers
Finding dropshipping suppliers on your own is a time-consuming process. You may track down coffee mug suppliers but they may all differ.
Some may not offer a wide enough variety of products. Others may have registration fees, monthly fees, or even per-item dropshipping fees.
Even worse, some so-called dropshipping suppliers won’t offer wholesale pricing which greatly reduces your potential profit margins.
Rather than hassle with all of that, I chose to source products from AliExpress. AliExpress is a large online retailer that is part of the AliBaba group.
They are made up of merchants primarily based in China and other locations around the globe to include the U.S.
Why Source Coffee Mugs From AliExpress?
There are many good reasons why dropshipping store owners source their inventory from AliExpress. Here are some to consider:
- No requirements to begin selling
- No registration fees or monthly fees
- Worldwide shipping
- ePacket shipping (faster shipping from China to the U.S.)
- Over 100 million products
- Shipping locations in the U.S.
- Merchants accustomed to working with dropshippers
- Buyer protection system with full money-back guarantee
AliExpress carries a large variety of coffee mugs at wholesale pricing. Here is a screen capture of what you may find:
You can search for coffee mugs and sort by the number of orders as well as by their star-rating (customer reviews). You can then find suppliers offering the best pricing.
You also have the option to search for suppliers based in the U.S.:
Sourcing products from AliExpress is an easy, hassle-free way to add products to your store.
You can add a good variety of products to your store that have low pricing, thus increasing your profit margins.
Setting Up Your Dropshipping Store
When I initially became interested in dropshipping, I started off testing out Shopify and the Oberlo app. While they both work extremely well, I still wanted a WordPress dropshipping solution.
I didn’t want the monthly software fees associated with Shopify and I also wanted to retain complete ownership of my store.
Shopify and Oberlo Fees
There is nothing wrong with paying monthly software fees if the software that you use meets your needs. However, if you can save on monthly software fees and still have quality software, why not?
Shopify’s basic plan is $29 per month. The Oberlo app has a free plan but it is limited. If you choose to upgrade, the Oberlo basic plan is also around $29 per month.
Between the two, you can expect to pay around $720 a year. This is not the case with WordPress. WordPress is free to download and install.
Besides monthly software fees, you may want or need to add more apps to manage your Shopify store. These apps may have additional monthly fees.
Keeping Ownership of My Store
Another thing to keep in mind is that when you use a software-as-a-service option such as Shopify, you do not have complete ownership of your store.
You must agree to Shopify’s terms of service. In it, they state that they have the authority to close accounts at any time for any reason:
By building your store using the WordPress CMS, you do not have the worries of another service shutting down your store.
Fortunately, I was able to find the solution I was in search of in the AliDropship Plugin.
The AliDropship plugin is a WordPress dropshipping plugin that turns a WordPress website into a full-featured AliExpress dropshipping business.
The plugin has several key features to include unlimited product importing, unlimited automated order fulfillment, automated product and pricing updates, and automated order tracking.
Building Your Store or Order a Custom-Built Store
If you are familiar with using WordPress, then buying the AliDropship plugin and installing it will be easy.
However, if you want to save time and not have to build your store yourself, I recommend outsourcing the work to the AliDropship team.
No matter which custom store package that you choose, you will be assigned a personal manager who will handle all of the details:
Although the plugin does make it super easy to build your store yourself, it is a huge time saver to have all of the work done for you by the professionals.
Either way, you will receive free lifelong plugin updates and free lifelong customer support.
Getting Your First Sale
Whichever way that you choose to build your coffee mug dropshipping store, your primary job will be promoting it.
Without consistent marketing, you will find it difficult to make sales. Like any business, you have to advertise your store.
You can use both free and paid advertising methods. Free methods can include social media channels such as Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter.
Paid options are also available on these channels. Facebook ads have been successful for many dropshipping store owners.
You don’t need to have any prior experience with marketing but it helps to learn as much as you can before spending money on paid ads.
I recommend reading the marketing tips section of the AliDropship blog. They share tons of free and actionable information to help you not only make your first sale but regular sales.
My Closing Thoughts On How to Dropship Coffee Mugs
Dropshipping coffee mugs is a cool, fun, and profitable niche to build a dropshipping business in.
Sourcing them from AliExpress is a hassle-free way to add a wide variety of products to your store without spending money on inventory upfront.
Dropshipping is a low-cost and low-risk online business model. Many people have found success with this model and have created a new stream of income.
Managing a dropshipping business requires your hard work. However, it is made much easier when using reliable dropshipping software.
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