Hi Shopify, hi Entrepreneurs,
After the success of one of my friend, I decided to launch a Shopify store. I picked a topic what I truely love and I believe the price margin is fine as well. That is BOARD GAMES and RPGs. Currently I'm seeking dropshippers for two days now and I'm staggering. Please help me.
I have already registered and checked Oberlo, it's not providing any board game related stuff.
Currently my only option I found at least related a bit is http://www.aent.com/. I will call them today in work hours, but based on their site it's not that easy as Oberlo with Shopify.
Please share your super valued advice! :D
I seek the following supplier's dropshipper (NA + EU + AU regions):
I don't know what's up with Hasbroo, but they own a huge chunk of the games market. Do they have a dropshipper?
Besides these awesome board game retailers, I seek RPG dropshippers for the product line of White-wolf / Onyx Path (if there is any yet) and Montecook. They are the ones mostly that are not covered with the above list.
Please help me chase my dream and create an awesome Shopify success story!
p.s.: I have already posted this but the topic were not created. I guess because there were links for the manufacturer sites. If I did something wrong, sorry for that. Did not meant to. :D
Aria here, one of the Social Care gurus at Shopify. :)
First of all, I think it's great that you're looking to start a store with a niche product you have a passion for. It makes me a little sad when people are selling random products just to try to make money. It makes it difficult for them to build their brand because they lose focus.
That being said, I think you may run into difficulty with this one and there are a few reasons for that.
If you find known board games on Oberlo/Aliexpress, they are going to be fake. The last thing you want to do is launch a brand with fake products.
People who dropship are usually middlemen. The vendors on Aliexpress are not selling their own products (in most cases). They have purchased wholesale from a large manufacturer, marked up the price to sell it to you and they will ship it to your customer on your behalf.
The big game companies are likely to do wholesale only. It takes too long to dropship one game at a time. If someone was dropshipping the games, they would be buying wholesale directly from the game company, marking up their price to sell it to you which wouldn't leave you with much room to mark up the price again. They are likely to be paying the game distributor at least 50% of the retail cost. It's hard to imagine it would be profitable, especially when you consider how much games weigh which makes shipping expensive. The most profitable items from Ali weigh a lot less and due to China's economy, there's a lot more room for profit margins.
One thing you could potentially try is reaching out to independent game companies via Kickstarter or Indiegogo. You'd most likely have to wait until their campaign is over and fully funded but you might have better luck getting them to agree to dropship compared to the big game companies.
There are definitely products you can dropship from Europe and North America with higher margins, you just need to get creative.
My advice would be to dropship something else that you're interested in as a way to get your business off the ground then when you've raised the capital, you could perhaps apply for a wholesale account with a game company and build from there.
If you were willing to start off shipping to the USA only (targeting the US market), you could consider ApparelPop! which has licensed goods like t-shirts and canvas prints. You can find more dropship companies here, there are three pages of them.
I did also find this company who ship print on demand playing cards. That's pretty interesting.
I wish you the best of luck with your business. I hope you manage to find something that works for you. I'd be interested to hear how you get on. :)
Social Care Guru
Very nice to have your help. I truely admire the shopify community.
Currently I'm a bit more ahead. I managed to identify the top 6 wholesales in hobby gaming and board games. They are soliely working with wholesale approach. However I'm lucky since I run a succesful company (an online marketing agency) and can allocate a couple thousand dollars capital.
I found these (for future reference if someone else wants to find a good board game wholesale):
Ye, this took me 10+ hours of research and calling around. And I'm really good in using the search engine and calling around. I don't know how these guys are being found otherwise. :D
So currently I'm opening account with them and start scraping their database soon for the product lists. Meanwhile I'm seeking a customer fulfillment company. I really don't want to pay a warehouse. That is something which is definitely out of scope.
My approach in the beginning:
I understand that speed is essential, but considering the volume of products (3000-8000 individual things) and the countries we will serve (NA/EU/AU) this is goung to be easy to reach $400 / 3 days from early on. Worse than Amazon but it's kind of industry standard.
So do you have any suggestion for a delivery fulfillment company?
I'm Michael from Fulfillrite. We are one of the earliest fulfillment apps on Shopify, and have been integrated with Shopify for fulfillment for several years. We store, pick, pack, and ship Shopify orders seamlessly, and have great one-on-one customer relationships. Hopefully we can help you in your own successful store.
I'd love to provide you with information that can be helpful to you and see if we can be the right fulfillment company for you. We have lots of board game customers so it's a niche we are really comfortable with. I'm glad you are doing your research and coming up with suppliers and partners that work for you. I also really appreciate your ethic of honesty with your customers! You can't put a price on authenticity.
Let me know if I can help with any of your fulfillment needs, or just answer any fulfillment questions.
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