How Much Does It Cost to Start a Dropshipping Business?

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Dropshipping is a popular and profitable e-commerce business model, where you sell products online without having to handle inventory, warehousing, or shipping. You simply act as a middleman between the customer and the supplier, who fulfills the orders on your behalf.

But how much does it cost to start a dropshipping business? What are the expenses and investments that you need to consider? In this article, we will break down the basic and major costs of starting a dropshipping business, and give you some tips and recommendations to help you save money and maximize your profits.

Basic Costs of Starting a Dropshipping Business

The basic costs of starting a dropshipping business are the expenses that you need to pay to set up and run your online store. These include:

  • Your Shopify plan: Shopify is one of the most popular and powerful e-commerce platforms in the world, with over 1.7 million merchants and 3.6 billion in sales in 2020. Shopify offers a variety of features and tools to help you create and grow your online store, such as inventory management, payment processing, marketing, analytics, and more. The basic Shopify plan costs $25 per month, and it gives you access to all the essential features that you need for your dropshipping business.
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  • Your domain: Your domain is the name and address of your website, such as Choosing a domain that is catchy, memorable, and relevant to your niche and brand is important. You can buy a domain from Shopify or other domain registrars, such as GoDaddy, Namecheap, or Crazy Domains. The average cost of a domain is about $15 per year, depending on the availability and extension of the domain name.
  • Your apps: Shopify has a large and diverse app store, where you can find hundreds of apps that can enhance your online store and dropshipping business. Some of these apps are free, while others require a monthly or one-time fee. You can choose to pay for some apps that are extra but not necessary, depending on your needs and preferences. For example, you can use apps to add product reviews, loyalty programs, upsells, cross-sells, and more to your store. The cost of these apps can vary from $0 to $100 or more per month, depending on the app and the features that you use.

These are the basic costs of setting up and starting your dropshipping store. They can add up to around $40 per month, or $420 per year. However, these are not the only costs that you need to consider. There is another major expense that you need to budget for, and that is the marketing costs.

Major Costs of Starting a Dropshipping Business

The major costs of starting a dropshipping business are the expenses that you need to pay to promote and advertise your online store and products.

Marketing is the key to attracting and converting customers to your dropshipping business. Without marketing, you will not be able to generate traffic, sales, and revenue. There are many ways to market your online store and products, such as SEO, email marketing, social media marketing, content marketing, and more. However, one of the most effective and popular methods is running Facebook ads. Facebook ads allow you to target and reach your ideal audience, based on their demographics, interests, behaviors, and more. You can also create and test different types of ads, such as images, videos, carousels, and more, to see what works best for your products and niche. However, running Facebook ads is not cheap. You need to pay for every click or impression that your ads generate, and the cost can vary depending on the competition, season, and other factors. We recommend that you have at least $1000 for running Facebook ads, as this will allow you to test many products with different selling angles and creatives. The testing phase alone is going to take a good amount of money, as you need to find the winning products and ads that can generate a positive return on investment (ROI).

These are the major costs of starting and running your dropshipping business. They can add up to around $1000 per month, or $12,000 per year. However, these are not fixed costs, as they can vary depending on your results and performance. You can also optimize and scale your marketing campaigns to reduce your costs and increase your profits.

Total Budget and Barrier to Entry for Starting a Dropshipping Business

Now that you know the basic and major costs of starting a dropshipping business, you can calculate your total budget and barrier to entry. The total budget is the amount of money that you need to start and run your dropshipping business for a certain period, such as a month or a year. The barrier to entry is the difficulty or challenge that you face to enter and compete in the dropshipping market.

Based on our estimates, the total budget for starting and running a dropshipping business for one month is around $1045, and for one year is around $12,420. This means that you need at least $1045 to start your dropshipping business, and you need to generate at least $12,420 in revenue to break even and cover your costs.

The barrier to entry for starting a dropshipping business is relatively low, as you don’t need to invest a lot of money in inventory, warehousing, or shipping. However, the barrier to entry for succeeding and growing a dropshipping business is relatively high, as you need to compete with many other dropshippers and e-commerce businesses, and you need to invest a lot of money in marketing and advertising.


We hope you found this article helpful and informative. These are the basic and major costs of starting a dropshipping business, and the total budget and barrier to entry that you need to consider. Of course, many other factors and variables can affect your costs and profits, such as your niche, products, suppliers, customers, and more. Therefore, you should always do your research and analysis, and adjust your budget and strategy accordingly.

Dropshipping is a great way to start and grow your e-commerce business, but it also comes with its challenges and risks. You need to be prepared and realistic about the costs and investments that you need to make, and the results and returns that you can expect. You also need to be creative and strategic about your marketing and advertising and find ways to stand out and differentiate yourself from the competition.

Thank you for reading and happy dropshipping!

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