View Full Version : Verifying if my drop ship supplier is safe

03 Mar 2011, 10:40 AM
Just attempted to start drop shipping as a way to work from home, and got seriously shafted by my supplier. I donít really want to go into it, because my hands are shaking just thinking about it. What I would like to know is how to avoid this. What do I need to do to verify that the next supplier is safe?

03 Mar 2011, 11:10 AM
Sorry to hear about your troubles, O_OWHISPER. Scams hurt no mistake. I’m sure we can help you be more careful next time, though, so you should definitely stay in the game! There’re a few points you want to keep an eye out for in general, but I’m sure my compatriots on the board will fill in any gaps.

Here’re those central points, though-

● A physical address and land-line phone number are required for a business license in most (if not all) states. Besides that, the drop shipper has to have a place to keep their stock.

● Avoid any drop shipper supplier who charges a fee to see their product list or discuss their prices. Really, any caginess around products and prices at all, should send up warning flares. If they won’t give you a price and stock list, the lists probably don’t exist in the first place.

○ Don’t confuse product/price list access fees with fee-supported supplier listings. Most professional supply databases charge an access fee for real information, and that’s perfectly normal. In fact, I’ve gotten all of my current suppliers through sites like Wholesaledeals.co.uk.

● Contact established suppliers you know to be reputable, and find out if they’ll drop ship for you. You’d be surprised what you might find. Heck, if you’re really weary from getting bitten so quickly, go through Amazon. Check the main site for “Fulfillment by Amazon”. It’s a drop ship service through Amazon. Check for those kinds of services from established companies, and you’re sure to cut out all that uncertainty.

● Do a thorough search for reviews for that company. Check out the forum here, scour Google. If they’ve been in business for any length of time at all, there should be some kind of evidence of activity online. Adjunct to that, I tend only to deal with suppliers with five years or more under their belt. It shows staying power, and just in general, means they’re experienced. Incompetence can crash you every bit as hard as proper malicious practices.

● Get references, check references. Run away if you get more than a few bad reviews, especially if those reviews cite issues like shoddy or fake products, or missing money. Basically, complaints that sounds more like underhanded operations or consistent inefficiency than just mistakes.

As you can see, there’s really just a handful of things you want to look out for. Mostly, just keep it in your head that this drop shipping thing is a real business, and should be treated as such. So long as you keep an eye on staying in business and forging long-term relationships with suppliers and cultivate a healthy paranoia, you should be in wholesome company this time around.

03 Mar 2011, 11:23 AM
If you want to be extra careful, once you’ve decided to use a supplier, make an order to be shipped to, like, your mom. Track it from start to finish, keeping an eye on how long it takes for the item to be shipped, and the condition of the item on delivery. If there’re any problems whatsoever, poke customer service.

You want to see how they react to problems and know whether the stuff your customers are receiving is actually good. Remember, this’ll very likely, be the only time you so much as see the goods your customers are ordering, so use it to your advantage.

03 Mar 2011, 11:30 AM
Be sure to check out this forum for reviews. There’s honestly a fair bit of reliable supplier information here. According to this thread here (http://www.wholesaleforum.com/discuss/dropshipping-discussion-6/dropshipping-lists-review-best-dropship-sources-1467/), eSources (https://www.esources.co.uk/premiumbuyer.php), World Wide Brands (http://www.worldwidebrands.com/?kbid=27064), and Hienote (http://www.worldwidebrands.com/?kbid=27064) are verified sources. Of course, these are paid lists, but it’ll be worth your money to know you’re looking at real options instead of having to worry about scams.