The UK is one of the most powerful countries in Europe with one of the best e-commerce capabilities in the world. Selecting UK manufacturers and wholesalers is a great opportunity for your dropshipping.
The UK e-commerce market is the largest in Europe and the 3rd largest in the world. It generated 260 billion euros in 2020.
The target is large and has a high purchasing potential with 67 million consumers in the UK.
As the country with the largest e-commerce market in Europe, you can easily collaborate with UK suppliers who are able to work in dropshipping.
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Dropshipping is an online sales method that allows e-merchants to sell products without having to store them. The dropshipping supplier in France is therefore a provider who offers French e-merchants products to sell online, without stock or warehouse. As in many European countries, dropshipping is a practice that is already well established in the UK.
The advantages of this mode of operation with UK suppliers are multiple:
- You will save a lot of time in terms of product research and exchanges with your supplier. The communication in English will also be much easier than with Chinese interlocutors on Aliexpress
- The negotiation margin is more important, the suppliers adapted to work in this way will sometimes offer you more interesting rates than wholesalers' platforms with which you have no ties or contact.
- Unique and better quality products, UK based suppliers are, for some, still untapped nuggets. Their products are therefore quite unique and of much better quality than those you can find from the Chinese competition, a real boon for dropshippers.
- Faster delivery times compared to solutions that store products in China. After placing an order on your website your customers can expect to receive their package within 72 hours even in the UK.
E-commerce represents a major part of global trade. This activity is no exception in the UK. Individual sales amount to almost 20% of e-commerce.
The market is also an opportunity since it represents less than 65 million people, which is a significant number of customers given the access to the Internet in this area.
Unlike other markets, the UK has a higher than average conversion rate (excluding mobile) of just over 3.6%. By working well on your websites or your stores on marketplaces, you will be able to generate sales quite easily.
If you are thinking of launching a store based on organic traffic only, it is also possible, but be aware that the UK is one of the most competitive markets in terms of SEO, depending of course on your niches.
Regarding the online store solutions used, it is not surprising that you will discover the same as in many European countries:
It's no surprise that, like Germany, the most visited e-commerce sites in the UK are Amazon.uk and Ebay.uk. Both marketplaces get a huge share of the traffic and offer you a huge customer potential.
The apparel sector is also very popular as clothing giant Asos comes in at #3.
Finally it is important to keep in mind that there are higher barriers to entry to dropshipping in the UK than in other European countries. In fact due to its geographical and political situation the way of operating will be slightly different from other markets.
This will not impact your ability to dropship directly with your suppliers but there are a few things you should keep in mind. Of course you won't need a bigger budget to get started, you can always start your business with an internet connection and little funds.
However, the way of presenting your site will not be the same. You will have to manage two currencies: the euro and the pound. It is much better to build a site that automatically detects the language and location of your user in order to offer the corresponding information to your customer.
Also plan to pass on your suppliers' shipping costs to your customers by raising your prices, as most suppliers will charge you more when you ship to the UK rather than Europe.
A little tip: never display delivery fees on your stores, always prefer to increase the price of the item. Your customers generally don't like to discover exorbitant fees when they check out.
Finding the perfect supplier is without a doubt the most difficult task for dropshippers. However, dropshipping is better seen in the UK than in other European countries as it is much more popular with both customers and sellers.
This will make it easier for you to get in touch and work with suppliers based on the island.
However, you will need to be patient in order to find the ideal partner, so don't hesitate to send many emails and calls and don't get discouraged.
Since a few years, many brands are launching as suppliers or e-shops and need visibility. This is where you come in, you will have to succeed in contacting these suppliers and wholesalers at the most important moment, when they need it.
Social networks and especially Instagram are an excellent way to get in touch with them. Do not underestimate the power of this channel.
Remember, partnerships are a two-way street, if you bring value to your suppliers, they will be more likely to help you and your relationship will be better for it.
Not all suppliers are good to contact, if they respond quickly they are not always the most serious. Finding a wholesaler or dropshipping supplier requires patience and above all a lot of tests before finding the rare pearl.
The definition of dropshipping platform is not really unanimous. For some, it is more of a CMS that will allow you to run a shop and for others, it is really a tool that will allow you to manage and optimise your business.
We will obviously focus on the second aspect that will help you find dropshipping suppliers in the UK.
Here are the 5 best dropshipping platforms, both in terms of their connectivity with online shops and the solutions they offer:
It is difficult to talk about dropshipping platforms without mentioning the Chinese giant Aliexpress. This dropshipping supplier is also one of the most popular platforms for finding products with good margins quite easily.
For dropshipping it is one of the most popular solutions. With a fairly simple but information-packed interface, you can run your dropshipping business exclusively on this platform if you wish.
Today the platform has lost trust from dropshippers and requires other complementary tools in order to launch a solid dropshipping business.
On this solution, most Chinese suppliers offer white label shipping, which is an undeniable plus compared to other solutions.
Beware of long delivery times, even if this aspect is only secondary since the products will not take much longer to arrive in the UK than in Europe if they are shipped from China
Vidaxl is not only a provider but also a platform that is quite efficient for working on marketplaces as well as your Shopify and Woocommerce sites.
You will only find products directly from VidaXL but if you are positioned on the niche of this supplier it is surely the most efficient platform. The stock management is done directly in-house and you should not logically find yourself doing customer service.
A point not to be neglected with this solution is the flexibility proposed during the returns, thanks to the form available you will be able to propose free returns under 30 days in the whole world.
BigBuy is the Spanish 360° platform that has been able to adapt to offer a complementary service in addition to simply being a dropshipping supplier. It is now present in most European countries.
The different delivery options offered by the platform allow you to choose how fast your customer will be delivered, all you have to do is decide how to adapt the price of your products to this information.
On the platform you can request the creation of shops directly connected to their catalogue. Like VidaXL you will only find their products and the platform is quite expensive.
The margins are not sufficient to compete with the products available on Aliexpress but you will be able to offer your customers much faster deliveries, an undeniable advantage over your competitors sourcing directly from China.
BigBuy's features are adapted to dropshipping work since the tracking numbers are quickly made available to you, convenient for working on e-commerce shops as well as on your usual marketplaces like Ebay, Amazon or even Cdiscount pro.
Positioned as a reference in its field, Onbuy is the marketplace if you want to sell easily online in the UK. The marketplace does not offer its own products and therefore you will have less competition to sell your items.
The platform often puts forward new products with specific ads for certain events like Halloween or Christmas for example. If you have the possibility to decrease your margins you can also use private sales on the platform to promote your ads even more easily.
There are also 17 different product categories, so you will not be restricted in terms of sales or items. If you wish, you can also use the fullfilment service provided by the marketplace to distribute your customers' orders even more easily.
This can be a good way to deliver to your customers faster than usual.
Moreover, the platform is growing from year to year, on average that of the company is multiplied by 6 each year. We also talk about a very large number of visitors since it is 7 million buyers who regularly visit the platform.
Dropix is a European solution that gathers most of the advantages of the platforms presented before. Of course, we are talking about Europe in the geographical sense. The list of suppliers on the platform includes companies that can also deliver to the UK very quickly.
With a unique positioning and a will to simplify dropshipping in Europe, the solution proposes to gather the best of what exists in one place.
It offers a very extensive list of suppliers located in France that are not present on other platforms.
Like Dropizi, the platform is 100% French and will offer you a responsive customer service to answer any question about your business and provide advice.
The ambitious goal is to allow both experienced and amateur dropshippers to easily find very good dropshipping suppliers.
With a history of suppliers in France, delivery times are the shortest in the market and you can deliver to your customers within 2 to 3 days on average.
Here is also a list of companies that can be good partners to work in dropshipping, beware most do not offer integrations or automations.
- Wholesale Deals (generalist)
- The Wholesaler
- TBTtrade (very small supplier of home/kitchen accessories)
- Clothes2order (a print-on-demand system for clothing lines)
- Printify (a service relatively close to Clothes2order, easier to connect with your stores but the quality is below other print on demand services)
- Some other suppliers if you are very specialized (PowerBody, AwDropship, Aulola)
If in all the suppliers we have proposed so far, only Aliexpress Europe has caught your attention, we are going to explain to you the 2 ways to optimise your product search in order to benefit from the best margins and delivery times and above all to avoid the after-sales service which can be devastating for your business.
At first, you may well decide to filter the best products by yourself. In this case you will have to be patient and use the right filters in order not to get tangled up in the Chinese platform.
First choose the category or even the product you are interested in and make your search. In a second step you will be able to choose where the product is shipped from.
If choosing France automatically seems logical, it is not necessarily the case. Some products may be delivered more quickly from a border country, you will need to check and do some serious work to ensure this.
To get around this we recommend that you don't select a country but instead look at the "Delivered in 12 days" option. This is a little more precise than the country selection and should allow you to refine your search.
Beware, however, of the notorious "pitfalls" of fast deliveries. You will often be unpleasantly surprised to find that the delivery time is finally 1 month, unless you pay an astronomical sum for the product to be delivered quickly.
The combination of "Delivered in 12 days" and "Free delivery" is in this case a mix that can be interesting for you.
Once you have identified your products, always check the reviews of each supplier so that you only order from the most reliable. After-sales service is a real scourge for your business and the less you have to deal with it the more effective and efficient you will be.
However, manual research is not recommended if you want to save time and scale your business quickly. Here we present you with a second alternative that may well help you radically.
What if we told you that it was possible to have access to a list of pre-filtered products that meet the ideal conditions for a dropshipping shop?
If this solution was unthinkable a few years ago, today it is a reality and dropshippers already use it. Thanks to a system of advanced filters and AI, we retrieve for you only the most interesting products.
You will be able to have the products with the best margins, the fastest delivery times, distributed by the best suppliers and above all in substantial stock to make this product a flagship product for your online shops.
This system will allow you to quickly access the best products and add them to your shops with one click. The AI solution is available with most online shops and marketplaces (Ebay, Shopify, Woocommerce, Dropizi etc...).
Finally, each dropshipper is different and a filter that is relevant for one seller will not necessarily be relevant for another. This is why the platform also allows you to add filter overlays. This way you can automatically create price and margin rules to easily find and publish only those products that perfectly match your shop's price identity.
It will also be possible to search only the product categories that interest you, always benefiting from the filters on the most interesting products.
The service is free of charge to allow all retailers to benefit from the best products for their shop.
If Aliexpress products still haven't convinced you, then it's time to explore the products that your users are looking for the most. It's not that complicated, just go to the software and explore the topics that are most attractive to your users.
Use the filters skillfully to best identify e-commerce related searches on which you can launch a store.
Amazon and Ebay being 2 very popular platforms on the island you can use the "best selling products" sections which will allow you to see the items that really sell on the marketplaces.
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