Dropshipping is not shipping large containers of goods, or dropping items at a location ready for shipping. It is rather a way for the ‘seller’ (store owner, online retailer, merchant etc.) to provide retail goods to the consumer without having to first buy the goods at wholesale prices. This means the following:
- The ‘seller’ can sell the items in the catalog of the ‘supplier’ without actually buying items in the catalog up front.
- The supplier/wholesaler will stock the items in their warehouse and wait until the ‘seller’ has made sales.
- The supplier will then ship the items directly to the seller’s customers.
An entire catalog that could include many thousands of different products can be sold without holding any stock at all. Once an item is sold, the Seller buys the item at a discount price from the third-party supplier/wholesaler who then ships it to the person who made the order.
In most cases, the seller never sees the actual product or its packaging.