It’s been awhile since I posted here, I’ve been busy setting everything in place for $2 million in revenue next year. Lots of weird things have happened this year like my FB Ad account being disabled and my 3PL going out of business, luckily both resolved. That’s the problem with ecommerce, something new comes up everyday that can fuck up everything else.For those of you that don’t know, I run an online store for my private label of women's sportswear. I’m currently on pace to do $1.2mil gross, and $400k in net profit. I work maybe 5 hours a day growing the business, and I can work anytime and anywhere since I outsource storage and packing to a 3PL.AMA!
>>52217864Are you a white man?
>>52217864i own two similar stores, a little bit more revenue etc on both.the biggest hurdle in all of ecommerce, is dealing with payment gateways and merchant providers, you are in clothes so i guess you are fine.what is your dispute/chargeback rate? who do you use for processing? shopify payments?
The world is a zero sum game. If you profited this much, you wouldn't tell anyone because the more competitors, the smaller your piece of the pie. I don't believe a word OP says.
>>52217864also, why do you get zero orders after 8am? peak online shopping is 7pm...do you sell to a different timezone? why havent you branched out to other countries if your brand is that good.
>>52217864name of 3PL?US only?How do you deal with returns?What's your chargeback %?What payment processor do you use?Who does customer support?Everything in shopify of did you build out landing pages elsewhere?Let hear it anon
>>52217882Yes>>52217922I’ve had maybe 10 chargebacks in the past 5 years. I maybe won half of them since the product was delivered to the customer. I use Shopify Payments, PayPal, Afterpay, etc.>>52217930Nowhere in this post did I publicize my brand but whatever you say man lol
>>52217963It’s 10am where I am good sir. New York City
>>52217988- can’t say - US mostly but ship internationally - I use an app called Loop Returns- Low chargeback, 10 in the last 7 years- I do customer support, have a bunch of prebuilt response templates so get them done quick - Built my own website using a purchased theme from themeforest
>>52217864>I can work anytime and anywherethen why would you live in new york? why not live in...i dunno...pattaya
>>52217930Yes anon he's scared of retards like you who are too afraid to do anything but wageslave will suddenly take his revenue
>>52218085Thanks anon, good stuff.>Built my own website using a purchased theme from themeforestHow does this work? You link people to the shopify order page if they press buy but the rest is all in Woocommerce?
>>52218160It’s hard traveling with a toddler, but eventually I’d like to >>52218224No, you buy a Shopify compatible website them. You’ll get a zip file that you upload into your Shopify themes page, then you just customize it
>>52217864>AMA!Do you prefer a beer or a glass of wine with a good meal?
>>52217864Did you design the clothes yourself?How did you come up with such a niche thing anyway as a man?
Do you work with anyone? Are you eligible for small business write offs and shit like that, do you have an LLC? Cost to get started? Do you design your products
>>52217922>>52217864Did you set up the online ads yourselves or hired some firm/guy for it?
>>52218276those bowls of rice are my definition of a shit meal
I also think OP is full of shit.
>>52217864how the fuck do you have a private label?!
>>52218262what hosting do you use?
I’m eager to start a side project that could turn into something like this, would be a lot better than wasting time on video gamesDid you start off right away with your own private label?Do you design your own material or get it cheaper from somewhere else and slap a label on it?
>>522178641. Any plans to sell on Amazon (I think I might've asked you this before years ago)? Your Shopify store gives you a ridiculously strong base for cash flow, and of course the brand's already there. Looks like you're leaving money on the table to me. Plus, if you get big enough to get the interest of big retailers, then we're talking about 100m exits.I work for an *8-figure PL selling on Amazon (*if Q4 goes well lol).2. How did your first 100 orders go? Like, at what point did you know you were on to something and that the business would come? You started probably 7,8 years ago so markets in general were easier to get into.3. What social media channels are key for you? Do you make the creative yourself? Tiktok on the horizon? Do you work with influencers?
>>52217864ive made way more then you clicking some buttons a computer. lol nice "business"
>>52217864What resources would you recommend to someone starting out with this?
>>52218276A glass of water>>52218284Yes. Had the idea in 2016 and ran with it >>52218337Nope I’m a company of one (LLC). I took preorders when I first launched the brand, so it covered my fist production run. I spent maybe $5k of my own money outside of that.>>52218351Myself. CBO cookbook by depesh madelia >>52218435Shopify >>52218521I have a few suppliers in China. They send me booklets of sportswear textiles that I choose from. They take my designs and produce samples with the fabrics I picked out.>>52218580Tbf I don’t see myself ever selling on Amazon. Besides all the horror stories I hear, I’m sure my products would get ripped off of and that will be the demise of my company. Maybe I’m overreacting but I’d rather not risk it. My sales started off very low for the first 3-4 years. At one point I wasn’t sure I wanted to continue I but I kept at it and things have been going extremely well in the last 2-3 years. There were weeks I’d even get $0 in sales lol.FB and IG ads bring me the most money. TikTok ads started off great but eventually fell off, but I’m still testing on that front.
>>52218642Be honest anon, you didn’t sell and now you’re bagholding >>52218686Google. Dumb answer I know but there is too much info to fathom on starting an online business
>>52218736How did you select your suppliers in China?
>>52217864so you are the reason why i abbandoned ig and fb 2 years ago.nice to meet you.
>>52218791Alibaba RFQ (request for quotation)
>>52218736Is there any way you can characterize the degree to which a concept in the clothing world needs to be novel in order to capture a healthy customer base? Is it a matter of providing a slightly different option to customers or more of a whole new concept that meets an unmet need?Thanks for checking in.
>>52219058Any problems with the chinks? Poorer quality than expected? Logo turned out ok?
>>52219141Definitely a whole new concept. That alone decreases your amount of competition by 90%. For example, instead of starting a regular ol’ activewear brand, I’d start an activewear brand made exclusively for anime lovers. What problem am I solving? To get weebs in the gym. >>52219374No, you just really have to stay on top of them. You can use inspection companies as well (for example V-Trust).
>>52219742Do you inspect before its shipped? How much did the first batch cost? Different company to ship it to you? What platforms did you market on? Thank you btw, I have been working on something for 5+ years, but have never executed on anything
I just opened a Shopify myself, halp!How do you market? Anything unpaid like blog posts?Where all do you sell?Margin per item?Biggest thing successful e-commerce businesses do that the ones that fail don’t?What’s your manufacturing process like?
>>52217864Do you work with influencers or affiliates? I'm selling vintage which doesn't scale super well for an operation like yours. I have too many individual skus, wondering if I should pivot to private label offerings like you.
>>52219903yes you can inspect before it’s shipped, but they charge per inspector. So if it’s a small order you’ll probably need one inspector, but if it’s larger you’ll pay more. For example if I ordered 300 units, I’d pay like $260 to have only 80 units inspected. It’s been awhile since I used one though as I trust my supplier to do their own inspections now, we’ve been working together for years. >>52220008I spend $850 per day on FB/IG ads (started at like $10 a day and slowly worked my way up) and $150 per day on Google ads. I only sell on Shopify. My product margin is 80%. The successful brands are in it for the long haul, while those who expect it to be a get rich quick thing fail quickly. Patience is key.>>52220125No I don’t. Most of my revenue comes from online advertising. My products are also in a few retail stores as well.
>>52220366Whats a typical day for you? What websites/apps do you check and what do you do on them?
What would you consider the key to brand building? Think this is where most drop shitters get it wrong. You need to have an elevated perceived offering. What do you do to stand out in this space (without giving too much away)
>>52220671In order:- Customer emails - Personal emails/communication channels- Check TripleWhale (store and ad performance overview)- Work on “growth to-do list”, right now I am working on improving Google ads performance and hiring more UGC content from Fiverr>>52220738I don’t dropship but here’s my take. The average company doesn’t breakeven until year 5 and this was the case for me. It’s really not rocket-science. Use that 5 years to get your brand out there in different ways. My first year I was contacting journalists for press, working with Instagram pages in the same niche to advertise, going to tradeshows, sending my product to influencers to post on IG, etc. Use that first 5 years to just build recognition and a shit ton of product reviews. When you have that ready, you’re able to scale heavily with ads and you already have that history of customer feedback for new customers to see and create trust. Of course you can also expedite this process and I know of brand owners who have gone from $0 to $2 million in under 5 years.
>>52217864Good post. It's a nice change of pace from people shilling shitcoins on this board.Like you said in this reply >>52218736 I don't have the conviction to start my own business. I would constantly second guess myself if my sales were low for a few years, wondering whether I'm doing the right things. It would piss me off to spend years trying to get a business off the ground and it ultimately goes nowhere. But congrats on your success, you deserve it.
>>52221376Can you walk us through what you do? Where is your product made? How much did you spend on your first product run? Where does it go when it leaves the mfg? How does fullfilment work? How do you deal with returns (since you're selling clothes to women I'm guessing a lot of them send shit back for some reason).
>>52221541do you not even bother to read previous posts?
>>52218736>My sales started off very low for the first 3-4 years. At one point I wasn’t sure I wanted to continue I but I kept at it and things have been going extremely well in the last 2-3 years. There were weeks I’d even get $0 in sales lol.What was the event that built that first bit of momentum? Were you discovered by some influencer?
>>52217864How do you source your models and how much do you pay them?
>>52221673Also are there any copyright issues to bear in mind with the name of the store?
>>52218736>I have a few suppliers in China.you're not diversifying suppliers from other asian countries like vietnam and indonesia? you'd be making +25% more importing from countries that don't have the china tariffs.
>>52218736How do you find Chinese suppliers?
When you were just starting off how much did you spend on advertising initially and through which platform(s)? What are the best advertising platforms today?
>>52221754How do you find vietnamese/indonesian suppliers?
>>52217864>121k/mth>91$ avg sale>does it all by himself>working 5 hrs/dayCool story, bro
>>52217864You should join the biz entrepreneurship discord tAGGHWpM if you haven't already.
>>52221932I second this, we would love to have you there, Shopify anon. And this goes for anyone in this thread hoping to make it with their own ideas rather than just crypto.
>>52219058How do you manage shipping your goods? Is it basically drop shipping your own custom product with shopify or are you hiring people to take the products and ship them from China? How much start up capital did you have and use? Is there any hope for dudes interested in a similar path? Been considering doing something like this but not 100% sure on all the logistics yet.
I still like how people think all commerce on the internet is drop shopping
>>52221376>My first year I was contacting journalists for press, working with Instagram pages in the same niche to advertise, going to tradeshows, sending my product to influencers to post on IG, etc.no one here is going to be psychologically capable of doing this
>>52221376>I don’t dropshipwhere do you keep your stock/inventory?
>>52222491>since I outsource storage and packing to a 3PL.It's in the first fucking post
>>52222509How do you find a good 3PL? Is Shopify's own one good?
>>52222509I missed that until I reread the whole thread after making my post. It's easy to miss in his post if you haven't heard the term. I've never heard of 3PL until now and hearing OP's experience with it would be nice for retards like me.
>>52222575You go to the internet and search '3rd party logistics company' and read the offerings available
>>52217996>maybe won half of them since the product was delivered to the customer.Wut
>>52222675Thanks, now tell me how to find a good 4PL. After that you can tell me how to find a good 5PL
>>52222808>5th party logistics I wouldn't know who was jewing who at that point
>>52222348Lol I was just thinking this.
>>52217864wauwyou do in a day what I do in 2 weeks impressiveyour order value is nice and fat, is that just one item or multiple, if multiple very coolI'm bothering with $19,99 posters mostly 1 item per customer
>>52217864how did you find someone to make the clothing? how do you ensure they dont fuck you over by sending a shitty batch or something?
>>52217930For some inspiration, I began with 500$ of cool crap from ali and in a year I was making as much as my wagie jobNow I have 300+ small money stuff dripping in my bucket everydayThe setup is a lot of stress but once the shop is turning things slow down (if you want)
>>52218431you can order white label and print it on yourself, or get a printed one from your supplier for a min. order quantity, bringing (imagined?) exclusivity for your shop
>>52223104so its just cheap chink stuff? dont you need to get the brand going on say insta with a following to do anything?
>>52222328dropshipping in EU is even illegal now
>>52223116well the choice to go for 'cheap stuff' is to the buyer, there ís good stuff available, and you can go with that, there is still marginI have been burned ordering cheapcheap but now I just order with 3-4 good sellers that do their thing well and quick, I order trough Aliexpress not Alibaba
I've been in retail, running two seperate e-shops for 4 years now and i've learnt how to deal with most things like customer support, ordering shit from suppliers,preparing and sending orders, adjusting prices,etc. Ive been thinking about starting my own business instead of slaving for others but honestly i don't know where to begin. Any good courses or seminars to help me start things off?
>>52217864Hey good for you anon. Even though you're just transferring wealth from Americans to chinks and taking a cut, I'm glad that you are doing well.
>>52217864Hey OP visit the entrepreneurship discord server /entg/.Also any other biz owners or aspiring ones should join. Below is the discord invite extension /vhUwNsG5
>>52222509So... You drop ship. Pretty amazing you have essentially zero charge backs.
>>52223594You don't know what drop-shipping is
>>52223372Who cares anymore? Jews and boomers have been doing this longer than I have been alive. Taking the moral high ground and being poor for a society that is not functional and has no real connections to me anymore is a exercise in futility. Ok I took the moral high ground and I'm poor. I don't have any means of making my life or my families life significantly better because I didn't do a tiny fraction of what our evil elite have been doing to us for decades. But I was right so it's ok being a slave for nothing. You're making the same argument twitter libs do for bitcoin. "Oh it's destroying the planet I'll never invest in it" retards say as they stay impoverished forever missing the boat. Play the game and if you hate it, play it hard enough to change it and money is half of the equation.
>>52223602I know what you think drop shipping is. Services like FBA isn't drop shipping but not are you warehousing it, picking, packing and dispatching yourself.
>>52223636FBA is a 3PL, you don't know what drop shipping is
>>52223636Also I'm not OP
The low ammount of chargebacks is still a-mazingwe (Dutch) had a national problem abt. 30% of ordered clothes got returned bc it was free to do soorder 3 sizes take 1
>>52223635Guess I hit a nerve. Selling chink garbage is encouraged and subsidized by our foreign policy so do you bro. Just making an observation.
OP here typing from my laptop since there are so many questions.>>52221485Thanks man. That's what stops alot of people from starting, the thought of doing it for a long time and failing. But if anything you set yourself for success the next time around.>>52221607I spent years marketing and advertising to a specific niche of people. Whether it be a certain age, ethnicity, interests, etc. I took off once I started targeting broad and not limiting myself to certain groups.>>52221673You mean my product models? I outsource photography in Ukraine and they sent me a list of girls to choose from.>>52221754Yeah I know, but I am getting crazy good terms with my current supplier after working with them for so long. I make some products in Taiwan that my main supplier can't make.>>52221809FB is still king>>52221932I'll check it out forsure!>>52222996My AOV was $70 earlier this year but I started pushing bundle offers and now it's $90-95. Offer your customers a 15-20% discount if they purchase 2 or more items. I've also added post-purchase upsells which makes me an additional $200 per day. Check out One-Click Upsell or Aftersell.>>52223062Sick shit dude, keep it up!>>52223337Never a once size fits all answer. I would just recommend watching youtube videos from real and legit people, stay far away from these gurus or courses because they're all a scam. The main thing really is to figure out what you want to sell.>>52223594No I don't dropship. I just have a company store my products and ship my orders out for me. Dropshipping is when you don't own any of your products and just act as a middle man.>>52223635Thanks for answering this on my behalf. Great points made.>>52223743I always get people commenting posts saying "Where is this made? China? I will never buy products made in China!!!" Lmao like I give a fuck. Why are you posting for the world to see? Do you want a gold medal because you don't buy Chinese products? You remind me of them lol
>>52224104>I always get people commenting posts saying "Where is this made? China? I will never buy products made in China!!!" Lmao like I give a fuck. Why are you posting for the world to see? Do you want a gold medal because you don't buy Chinese products? You remind me of them lolThe biggest meme in all this is that Germany started out as China copying UK products a century ago, they were the Chinks of Europe and now what?I stopped giving a shit about poorfag morals and mentality long ago, the world is in constant motion.China took a risk, they sacrificed, they played smart and they'll be rewarded. That's how it works.
>>52224104ty for the reply and idea, I'm locked with a national platform and giving coupled discount works a bit retarded on there.A post-purchase upsell of a poster-holder would work greatWas thinking abt a shopify shop dealing in adult toys in 2017 and set it up (somewhat) in the month you get for free with them, should revisit seeing your results, I just need to take care it doesn't look coociecutter-shopify imho, I recognize them at a glancety for providing all this information about what you use, If I can add, anons should look to sell stuff they already know something about like your hobby or work-related, makes it a lot easier to sift the garbáge imho
>>52224104I've manufactured an item that would be a really good (christmas?) gift from a guy to gf. How can i go about marketing this? I've spent so much time making this thing and just now realize I'm clueless on how to get people to find it.
>>52224274to add, people are naïve in thinking the store stuff comes from somewhere else, when I literally see Ali stuff in the baskets
>>52224104>I outsource photography in Ukraine and they sent me a list of girls to choose from.do you arrange for the products to be sent to them to model?
>>52224686Also how would one go about finding a Ukranian modelling agency?
>>52224104You can base your business on relying on Chinese goods if you want anon. But it's always good to have an alternative. I'd be willing to bet that half the shit you think is coming from china is just being shipped there from vietnam or bangalore and that they are marking it up more to you than you are to US customers. Also chinese quality is still shit, I don't care what anyone says, and if you want shit to be your brand then by all means keep it up.
>>52224716You think after 7 years that I don’t have a solid grip on my manufacturing process? I’ve watched my supplier make my products from A to Z, and they are inspected from start to finish before shipping. Chinese products are not “shit” if you know what you’re doing and have the right quality control methods in place. If I’m spending $100k per order, you bet they are going to do anything I ask and make sure everything is top quality before sending to me. If you don’t vet your supplier, don’t check and approve samples, and don’t hire inspection companies before shipment then yeah you deserve getting shit products delivered to your door. You’ll see thousands of reviews on my pedicures raving about the quality and how long it lasts. I’ve been doing this shit since 2015 I know what I’m talking about, thanks for your insight though
>>52224879Products* not pedicures
>>52224879Are you affected by the zero covid measures? I often hear about negative effects on supply chain
>>52225046Not one bit
>>52221376OP, thanks for the year 5 breakeven talk, it's encouraging. I'm on year 4 of running my biz.I'm staring at my company cashflow and thinking "how the fuck have I made and spent 400k this year?" and then become mega-demoralised because I've constantly put every penny back into the biz to reinvest and try to grow it. I was only doing 50k/pa a couple of years ago, no profit. 4 years of sacrifice and no profit.On paper, we should be getting just over 1M in revenue and 300k profit in 2023, but the thought of putting all that back into the biz to try and make it a 1.5M or 2M biz honestly makes me feel depressed, I don't know how much I can stomach all the extra stress and headache to make my paper net worth go up while having so little to show for it. But not pushing every opportunity to try and make the most of things makes me feel like a huge pussy and like I'm leaving loads on the table and that my competitors might be braver.Words of wisdom?
>>52225238If you are so tired, then why not sell your business? Would be a good lump sum of cash to invest with
>>52224104>Dropshipping is when you don't own any of your products and just act as a middle man.Technically you own when you pay. I am aware of the difference just choose to lump you with drop shipping as you have none of your own infra to deal with logistics. Have been online retail since 1999 and do all three.i don't pretend FBA is not drop shipping.. it really is. Also you sound like a larp due to your charge back rate
>>52225302I'm just fatigued from the decision making and dealing with shit 24/7 but couldn't see myself doing anything else. No break in almost 3 years and as dire as this feels sometimes, it's 1000x better than the cage. I'd rather torture myself like this than be a wagie, the most I could sell my biz for at this stage is probably 1/1.2M but I'd still have to prove some profitability first so it's minimum 12-18 months first.Also now is probably THE worst time in the world to be selling a business, now is the time to be a cockroach and try and survive and grow during all the turmoil as the big boys that survived on cheap credit get wiped and new opportunities come out.
>>52225238If it makes you feel better, I don’t pay myself either. I only take money out of my business for the mortgage and bills. Otherwise, my business won’t grow. I NEED to keep reinvesting back into more inventory, otherwise how am I going to hit $2 million in revenue? It sucks and I definitely understand where you are coming from, but it actually seems you’re further ahead than I was at that point in time. It’s necessary, stress yes, but necessary and soon enough you’ll be able to eat the fruits of your labor. I’m right there with you
>>52223062your own site? or do you use amazon or something?
>>52225437thanks fren, sometimes just knowing someone else on the other side of the planet truly understands what it's like is enough to keep you pushing.good thread OP
>>52224302try etsy and charge a premium price. i doubt youd be able to get your own platform in time. search for similar items and see what they go for and where
Todays sales update
>>52225495>try etsy and charge a premium priceEtsy is shit now.>>52225495>i doubt youd be able to get your own platform in timeIn time? It takes very little time to setup shopify, squarespace, etc. If you market the thing and drive eyes to either etsy or your own store.. there is little difference. A site selling one product is 5-10 pages max. Find someone similar, see what they have (contact, terms, about us, about the product, etc) and go from there.
>>52225046Me I got delayed delivery of sent items but sales were absolutely phenomenal, the delay came bc everyone was spending their money on online stuff
>>52225462well no more of my own place at a national site, its a bit like aliexpress but Dutchamazon seems so massive to me, but seeing how building a personal private brand cán work with a shopify website is encouragingA shopify website is pretty doable and you can outsource a lot, I pay 12% commission to my platform so that would be an extra right away with your own site
>>52225526very nice, Christmas coming for you
Phenomenal thread, thanks OP
>>52226303Thank you sir. I will make progress posts more often.
>>52217864best sites to use to sell stuff?
>>52218736how do you come into contact with suppliers/ find them
>>52226489Already mentioned this. Scroll up.
>>52226467interesting. I had a male clothing brand and didn't last year 3. I believe it was because I just didn't have enough money to support myself as well as carry on the store. It was sad because I had a guy wrote to me via email that I inspired his decision to go into marketing. The concept was very unique, lots of attention in my local area but 0 sales. For what its worth I started the business when I was making 18 an hour.
>>52217864You should try dropshipping on the side, hire a customer service rep and I bet most of your mental load is goneI have customer service templates as well but there are always retards that want a custom handholding email.Anyway you can generate cashflow using dropshipping and use that to grow your brand. Use a different fb page but the same ad account on the same niche and you can crush it with minimal work, you already have an agent/3pl use them to ship that shit too.
>>52226591Would never in a million years dropship. I can’t stand dropshippers. Shit is a cop-out to putting in actual effort.
>>52226524can you direct me? im looking but keep skipping it ig
>>52226660>>52226591what is actually meant by 'dropshipping' i have heard differnt definitions
>>52226660Im addicted because its very easy, I should be building a brand instead of fly by night stuff but speed is king in businessA brick and mortar boomer would say the same thing about an online brand
Considering you're in clothing, I have to ask how much talent would you say you have in fashion design? I'm curious as to how much any retard off the street could do what you do. No offense.
>>52219742I love the way you think. Thanks for the reply
Obviously there is a ton of variables OP, but as a general what would you say is a main factor for low 'add to carts'? I'm getting traffic via advertising but not too much more than that :/
>>52220366>My product margin is 80%King shit, man. You got it made. Hoping to get into it myself but honestly think starting an ecommerce agency focused on specific services would be safer and do better (with my personality). Hearing you mention those 3-4 years of not getting sales is crazy. Glad it worked out for you.With that kind of margin I think you should start putting more money into SEO on your main keywords as well if you aren't already. More a long haul game to play but still important as this is unpaid media unlike FB/IG/Tiktok.>>52218736>Tbf I don’t see myself ever selling on Amazon.Yeah definitely fair. Would really need something like a 2-5 person team for that, and margins might be at something like 10% for you. The getting ripped off part is overblown, all you need are some trademarks in place and cease and desist templates ready. Amazon's gotten better in the past few years but it still takes some elbow grease.>>52221376>- Work on “growth to-do list”, right now I am working on improving Google ads performance and hiring more UGC content from FiverrTry joinbrands . com. We're working with them atm, pretty decent. Completely different market but doesn't matter, more suited to lifestyle products like yours.OP are you working on an exit sometime in the future?