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by Mike Vestil 

What Is Reverse Dropshipping And How Does It Differ From Regular Dropshipping?

Reverse dropshipping is a new and innovative way of dropshipping that has emerged in recent years. It's a method where retailers work with suppliers to ship high-quality products and deliver them to countries usually associated with producing lower-quality items.

Starting with the reverse dropshipping definition, you can consider it the opposite of traditional dropshipping. In traditional dropshipping, eCommerce entrepreneurs sell lower priced products to customers in higher paying countries (think buying from Asia and selling to the U.S.).

Reverse dropshipping changes that by having the supplier be in a country where products are considered high ticket (think U.S.) and the buyer in a country where products are typically less expensive but also naturally of a lesser quality (think Asia). More affluent customers in Asia want a product that's not only going to last but also has a certain prestige as it’s bought from the U.S. (or any of the top countries).

Reverse dropshipping is also beneficial for entrepreneurs who want to get involved in dropshipping but don't want to deal with the hassle and cost of importing products from overseas. If you want to learn how to earn money online with this business model, keep reading to find out more.

What Is Reverse Dropshipping?

So what is the real reverse dropshipping meaning, and how does it work? 

Going deeper into what this business model entrails, the main elements involve a seller and a buyer.

The seller is typically in the United States, Canada, Europe, or any country with excellent economic standings, where demanding higher prices is the norm.

What Is Reverse Dropshipping And How Does It Differ From Regular Dropshipping?

Image credit: https://mydukaan.io/

When it comes to the buyer, they are typically wealthy individuals found in various countries around Asia, where the cost of living is lower than that of the seller. With the quality of goods produced in these countries having lower standards, the products are often inferior, and this is where the reverse dropshipping model comes in.

The wealthy individuals’ desire for top quality products is what initially started the trend of reverse dropshipping.

This business model is a great solution for those who are into making money without a job or who want to start their own business working on their own terms. Not only is there minimal overhead costs involved, but by utilizing a drop shipper, you can have products shipped directly to your customers without ever having to see or touch the product yourself.

Reverse Dropshipping Vs Dropshipping

Now that you know what reverse dropshipping is, it's time to understand how it differs from traditional dropshipping. The biggest difference between the two models is who your customer is and where they are located.

In regular dropshipping, entrepreneurs sell lower-priced items to customers in higher-paying countries like the United States. In reverse dropshipping, you are selling high-quality items to customers in countries where the cost of living is lower, such as China or India.

The other significant difference is the profit margins. In traditional dropshipping, entrepreneurs typically have smaller profit margins because they are selling lower-priced items. In reverse dropshipping, entrepreneurs can command higher prices and, as a result, have significantly higher profit margins.

When it comes to some of the best tips for wealth you might consider, selling higher-ticket items is one way to go about it - it's better to sell one $1,000 item than ten $100 items. Not only do you make more money per sale, but you also save on shipping costs.

How To Start Reverse Dropshipping

Knowing how to start to reverse dropshipping is not that difficult. The first step is finding a supplier in the United States, Canada, Europe, or other countries with a great economic standard of living that’s also proven to produce top notch products. The supplier must be willing to ship goods to various countries around Asia.

Then, you need to set up your website, where you will sell the products that you've sourced from your supplier. Here's more information about that.

Setting Up A Reverse Dropshipping Website

Creating a dropshipping website for reverse dropshipping purposes involves these steps.

Choose A Niche

Knowing who you're selling to is the first step in starting any business, and dropshipping is no different. When you're thinking about what products to sell, you must consider your target audience and what they would be interested in purchasing.

Are you selling to men, women, or children? What interests them? What are their demographics? These are all critical questions to answer when choosing a niche for your dropshipping business.

This is key when setting up your site as your content, design, navigation, and many other aspects will be influenced by your niche selection.

Research Products To Sell And The Categories They Fall Into

Now that you know who you're selling to, it's time to start digging deep and research the products. This part of the process can be a little bit overwhelming because there are thousands of high-ticket products that you could potentially sell on your website.

To narrow things down, we recommend using a tool like Google Trends to see which products are trending upward and which ones are on the decline. You can also use Google Keyword Planner to get an idea of how much traffic specific product keywords are getting.

Finding the right products and categories to include on your website will ultimately determine how much money (and profit) you’ll be able to make.

Create A Website And Set Up A Shop

Now that you know what products you intend to sell, it's time to create your website and set up shop. If you've never made a website before, don't worry - it's quite straightforward to accomplish, and there are plenty of resources to help you.

We recommend using a platform like WordPress or Shopify to create your website. Both platforms are very user-friendly and have plenty of themes and templates available to help you get up and running.
shopify homepage

Image credit: https://www.shopify.com/

Promote Your Website And Start Making Sales

Whether you use Facebook ads for dropshipping, Google AdWords, or another form of paid advertising, it's essential to promote your website and start making sales.

The best way to do this is by creating high-quality content relevant to your niche and target audience. Moreover, if you start a blog and create articles related to what your target audience is interested in, you’ll be able to get people to your website organically (through SEO).

That said, in the beginning, you may need to invest some money in paid advertising to get things rolling.

Those are the steps you need to take to start a reverse dropshipping business website.

Products You Can Sell With Reverse Dropshipping

Depending on your niche selection, some of the product categories that can be dropshipped are:

  • Clothing and accessories
  • Home goods
  • Electronics
  • Toys and games
  • Health and beauty products
  • Travel accessories
  • Self-development tools

Here's some information about a few of these top-selling categories.

Clothing And Accessories

One of the most popular dropshipping niches is clothing and accessories. This is because people are always looking for new styles and trends and are willing to spend money on clothing and accessories that make them look good.

There are a few things to remember if you're considering starting a clothing and accessories store. First, you'll need to find a reliable supplier who can provide high-quality products at a reasonable price. Second, you'll need to create stylish and eye-catching product photos to attract customers to your store. And third, you'll need to choose the right marketing strategies to reach your target audience as this area is quite competitive, even if you’re selling luxurious clothing.

Travel Accessories

Another popular reverse dropshipping niche is travel accessories. This is because more and more people are taking advantage of the opportunities to travel, and they're looking for ways to make their trips more enjoyable without having to go cheap.

Travel Accessories

Image credit: https://www.forbes.com/

Selling high-quality travel accessories is a great way to tap into this market. But as with any other niche, there are a few things you'll need to keep in mind. From ensuring you’re selling luggage that lasts a long time to providing travel gadgets that make life on the road easier, ensure you offer top-notch products that appeal to your target audience.

If you combine this with a blog that gives the best tips for traveling to potential and actual customers who visit your site, you have a winning dropshipping store idea on your hands.

Health And Beauty Products

Another niche that is perfect for dropshipping is the health and beauty industry. This is because people are always looking for new ways to improve their appearance and are willing to spend money to do so. You can find a wide variety of health and beauty products to sell, such as skin care products, hair care products, and makeup - most of which will generate a pretty penny if chosen correctly.

One of the great things about reverse dropshipping health and beauty products is that you can start with low investment and grow your business quickly. You can also find suppliers who offer private label options, which means you can sell products under your own brand name. This can help you build a brand identity for your business and make it easier to sell your products online.


The self-development niche is another great option for reverse dropshipping. People in this niche always look for new ways to improve their lives and aren’t afraid of spending money to achieve their goals. You can find various self-development products to sell, such as books, courses, and audio programs.

Again, it’s worth repeating that charging a premium price for your products is one of the great things about dropshipping in the self-development niche. Whether you're providing wall posters that offer tips for happiness or digital products that teach people how to manifest their dream life, there's a self-development product that will resonate with your target audience, and then some.

Pros And Cons Of Reverse Dropshipping

As with anything, there are pros and cons to various business models and the same holds true for reverse dropshipping. Here are a few things to keep in mind.

Pros Of Reverse Dropshipping

Let's start with the pros.

Less Competition

Since you are selling high-ticket items to a niche audience, there is less competition in reverse dropshipping than in regular dropshipping. This means that it's easier to get started and to stand out from the crowd.

You Can Target A Vast Market

The amount of potential customers that are hungry for high quality products and tired of low quality ones that break after a few weeks is immense. This means that reverse dropshipping has a lot of potential for growth, especially considering that more and more people are realizing that in the ecommerce space, you often get what you pay for.

Good Return Policies

Many suppliers who offer private label products also offer good return policies. This means you can offer your customers a hassle-free returns process, which can help increase customer satisfaction and loyalty. 

As opposed to traditional dropshipping businesses, this return policy is definitely a great unique selling proposition. Traditionally, if someone has a problem with their purchase, the usual solution would be for the seller to send another product, which would take several more weeks to get to the customer.

Quick Delivery

People don’t like to wait when they place an order, and reverse dropshipping takes care of this. With reliable delivery methods, you can get the product in the hands of customers in a matter of days, not weeks or months as is the case with traditional dropshipping.

Cons Of Reverse Dropshipping

Of course, there are also drawbacks to reverse dropshipping that you need to consider.

Different Market Conditions

Understanding your target market is key to success in any business and it’s the same with reverse dropshipping. Conditions in foreign countries can change rapidly so staying on top of this is crucial as what works today might not work tomorrow. This means that you must constantly monitor your target market and make changes to your business as necessary.

Unpredictable Regulations

Another thing to remember is that the market in foreign countries can be heavily regulated. This means that there are a lot of rules and regulations that you need to follow to sell your products in Asian countries. If you don't stay up-to-date with the latest regulations, you could run into trouble with the law, which could jeopardize your business.

The Language Barrier

Another potential issue you must be aware of is the language barrier. When you're dropshipping in Asia, you need to be able to communicate with your customers in their language. This can be a challenge if you don't speak the language yourself. You might have to hire someone to help you with this or use a translation service to get the job done, which brings with it its own challenges. Knowing the language is almost as important as knowing the market conditions.

Who Is Reverse Dropshipping For?

Let’s start this section off by saying that starting a reverse dropshipping business is not for everyone. There are a few things that you need to consider before starting your own business.

First, you need to be comfortable with the risks involved. As we mentioned before, you're marketing in a new country and to new prospects, so you need to be prepared for the potential of changing regulations or the language barrier.

You also need to have a good understanding of your target market. This means you need to know what they want, what they need, and how to best reach them. Without this knowledge, it will be challenging to succeed with a reverse dropshipping business model.

Finally, it would help if you were comfortable with selling high-ticket items. Remember, you're selling products that cost hundreds or even thousands of dollars. This means that you need to be able to handle the financial risk involved. Compared to traditional dropshipping where you can start a business with a few dollars, the financial risk is much higher in reverse dropshipping - and so is the potential upside.

If you're comfortable with these risks and have a good understanding of your target market, then starting a reverse dropshipping business could be an excellent opportunity to undertake.


Knowing what's reverse dropshipping is the first step to starting your own successful business. But there's a lot more to it than just that and hopefully, this article shone a light on some of these factors. 

If you feel that reverse dropshipping is for you, now is the best time to get out there and start building your business using the above information to guide you along the way.

Want more ideas on how to make money online with proven business models that work? Check out The Lazy Man’s Guide To Living The Good Life, a book that’s packed with actionable advice on building a business that will give you the time and financial freedom to live life on your own terms.

Want to make an extra $250 per day online?

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About the author 

Mike Vestil

Mike Vestil is the author of the Lazy Man's Guide To Living The Good Life. He also has a YouTube channel with over 700,000 subscribers where he talks about personal development and personal finance.

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