Is dropshipping in the UK possible? Yes. In fact, dropshippers can sell to many countries around the world, regardless of where they currently live.
That’s the benefit of dropshipping compared with traditional online selling. While online sellers have to figure out the logistics of storage and shipment of products, all we have to do is make a few technical adjustments on our laptops.
Dropshipping in any country really comes down to picking suppliers that ship domestically and using local selling channels. It’s that simple. With the right tools, you can have stores in several countries and significantly increase your profits.
In this article, we’ll talk all about dropshipping on eBay UK. From the advantages of eBay UK to instructions on suppliers and product research, you’ll get all the info you need to start your own eBay UK dropshipping powerhouse.
Is Dropshipping Legal In The UK?
Rest assured that dropshipping is as legal as any eCommerce business in the UK. However, like other countries, the UK has its own set of laws and regulations that we must abide by.
Some of the regulations are strikingly similar to dropshipping in the US or other countries. For example, copyright infringement, an almost universal concept, is strictly regulated. A good rule of thumb would be to avoid any product on the eBay VeRO database.
To briefly describe eBay VeRO, it is a list of brands and companies that disallow reselling of their products without express permission from the owner. Many of these entities clearly state that they enforce their copyrights and often do.
Dropshipping Regulations In The United Kingdom
Getting more specific with UK regulations, there are product categories that are forbidden in some circumstances. For example, many products are age-restricted and require that the seller or supplier verify the age of the buyer.
Since dropshipping makes compliance with age verification tricky, it’s best to avoid selling these products altogether.
Some rules pertain to consumer rights. The competition and consumer laws prohibit certain kinds of anti-competitive behavior and price gouging. While this doesn’t apply to most dropshippers, it’s good to familiarize yourself with these laws.
Finally, the British government outlines rules for distance and online selling.
In general, distance and online selling rules require you to be specific about your product offerings and policies. This includes what payment methods are accepted, the length of delivery, how a customer can cancel, etc.
While there is a slight difference between online and distance selling, the important distinction here is that online selling has a few more rules that we must follow.
For instance, online selling requires letting customers know what languages are available. Additionally, customers must be aware of how they can correct their orders.
The bottom line is that you don’t need to worry too much about every rule. Many of them are already covered by local suppliers or by eBay UK. Just remember that the UK is very consumer-oriented, so if something goes wrong with an order, you will need to abide by the rules.
The Advantages Of Dropshipping In eBay UK
Now that we know the legal aspects, let’s look at the benefits of dropshipping on eBay UK.
First and foremost, demand for online products in the UK is constantly growing. According to Statista, UK eCommerce sales have seen an increase of close to £200 million since 2016.
It isn’t surprising then that eBay UK has over 240 million monthly visitors and is ranked as the overall #2 marketplace in the country. With such exposure, you won’t have to do much marketing.
What’s more, competition in the UK region is not as strong as in other places. The majority of dropshippers are currently selling to American buyers, so you would be one of few entering this lucrative market.
As a final point, because our suppliers and customers are based in the UK, we can deliver items within a couple of days. This results in higher customer satisfaction, and higher profits for us.
For all these reasons, dropshipping on eBay UK is too good an opportunity to pass up.
eBay UK vs. eBay US – Which Is Better?
With eBay UK being such a great option, why should we even consider eBay US?
In reality, both eBay US and eBay UK are excellent places for dropshipping. It is difficult to say that one is better than the other. With each having its upsides and downsides, it just comes down to how you use them.
Obviously, eBay US is the more popular platform with a significantly larger audience. The site gives you access to more buyers than most existing marketplaces, which translates into higher sales.
However, the fierce competition on eBay US requires you to get creative. Your marketing and listing need to be flawless, and you might have to test more products before you see results.
Conversely, eBay UK is obviously less popular and has a smaller audience primarily based in the UK (a smaller population than the US). Additionally, UK buyers are more likely to be careful with their spending. Nonetheless, with hardly any dropshipping competition on eBay UK, it is much easier to get sales.
Keep in mind that UK and US audiences each require a different approach. A product that sells well in the US may not work in the UK and vice versa. It all comes down to product research and testing different categories and niches. Once you learn what works for the UK audience, you’ll quickly start raking in those sales.
What Are The Best Dropshipping Suppliers In The UK?
Does dropshipping on eBay UK look like a fun idea? We agree! Before you begin, remember that UK buyers expect consumer-friendly experiences and fast shipping. Additionally, as we mentioned earlier in the article, there are strict laws that govern online selling.
Therefore, we should pick only the best suppliers to handle the demands and the rules. Here are some of the best dropshipping suppliers for eBay UK:
1. Amazon UK
Amazon is a great dropshipping supplier for any country. And with the UK it is no different. Blazing fast shipping speeds and great customer service make it easy for you to provide the same for your customers.
Additionally, close to %91 of UK residents purchased on Amazon before, which means it has the products and the services people seek.
Finally, Amazon boasts a selection of millions of products with new ones launching all the time. With so many products and plenty of categories, there is always something to sell in your store.
It’s never a good idea to count out AliExpress as a viable dropshipping supplier. Overall no other supplier can beat its selection and prices.
You’ll be able to sell almost anything for the lowest price and still earn higher profits than the competition. Don’t worry about the distance from the UK; AliExpress offers worldwide shipping.
While shipping takes longer than domestic suppliers, customers are more than happy to wait for a good product.
3. Banggood UK
Speaking of Chinese suppliers, you don’t want to miss out on Banggood UK. With over 250,000 products from multiple popular categories, you’ll find exactly what your customer wants.
As a platform designed for dropshippers, Banggood offers special discounts, personalized recommendations, and other benefits for dropshippers. Finally, with warehouses in the UK, you get Chinese prices shipped at UK speeds.
4. Costway UK
Costway UK is a supplier known for being dropshipping-friendly, and a good fit for the UK’s strict standards.
For starters, it offers a dropshipping agreement. Additionally, Costway provides sellers with discounted prices and daily product reports. The reports can include information like stock management, new images, and other product updates.
Finally, Costway is a consumer-friendly supplier, offering free and fast shipping from UK warehouses and 90-day returns.
5. Wayfair UK
Domestic UK suppliers each come with their own set of benefits. Wayfair UK stands out for specializing in home and furniture products.
As a dropshipping-friendly supplier, you’ll be able to choose from thousands of trendy items to sell. Additionally, shipping from Wayfair is fairly quick, and often free. Many items take one to two days to deliver and there is no shipping charge for any order above £40.
6. vidaXL UK
Since we mentioned the home products category, we can’t forget about vidaXL UK. Like Wayfair, it is a domestic supplier specializing in all things home. However, vidaXL offers different trendy home products at amazing costs. Furthermore, this supplier offers free shipping on all products!
In a time when furniture sales are booming, vidaXL allows you to access more audiences and earn high profits. Best of all, as a UK-based supplier, your UK audience will receive their items fast and free.
How To Start Dropshipping On eBay UK
Alright, that was quite a bit of information. While it isn’t everything you need to know, it’s enough to take your first steps to dropship on eBay UK.
To get started, you’ll want to open an eBay UK account. The process is simple and self-explanatory.
Once signed up, it’s time to list your first item. Start with a simple small item from your house. Then, go through the steps to familiarize yourself with the listing process on eBay UK works.
To begin, click ‘Sell’ on the top right of the eBay UK homepage, and follow the steps to listing a product manually. This opens up the option to set up eBay business policies.
Setting up business policies constitutes the second step to dropshipping on eBay UK. These policies let your customers know how to pay, the expected delivery time/cost, and the return policy. Along with that, we can use the eBay UK fees calculator to calculate the fees and profitability of the product.
Setting Business Policies For eBay UK
Setting up business policies requires patience and careful attention to detail, as these policies are our store’s terms and conditions.
There are three eBay business policies to set up:
- Payment Policies – To inform your buyers of what payment methods you accept.
- Shipping Policies – Display where the product can be shipped, how long shipping will take, and the shipping cost by destination.
- Return Policies – State how much time they have to return a product.
Lucky for us, we don’t have to create new policies for every product we import. eBay allows you to create policy templates for each category. Then, when importing items, you can pick a template from the drop-down menu.
Now that we understand the basics, here’s how to set up eBay UK business policies.
To begin, log in to your eBay UK account and go to your business policies dashboard
UK Payment Policy Setup
We’ll begin with the payment policy, as it’s the first on the list. Click ‘Create policy’ followed by ‘Payment.’
That will direct you to the policy page as shown below.
As we can see, ‘Payments managed by eBay’ is the default option. This means Payoneer (or our bank account) is the payment method offered to buyers.
Unlike other eBay regions, eBay UK has fully transitioned to using Payoneer with it’s eBay managed payments, allowing for a smooth payout process.
UK Return Policy Setup
Next, let’s create the return policy.
Same as before, click ‘Create policy,’ on your policies dashboard, then ‘Return.’
Type in a name for your policy – – for example, ‘Default returns policy.’
From here, we need to configure our return conditions. It is crucial to create a policy that matches the policy our supplier provides.
For the record, offering a 30-day return policy (or better) helps us qualify for ‘Top Rated Seller’ benefits and ranks our listings higher in eBay’s search results.
That’s why we recommend using suppliers that offer free returns. By doing so, you can use ‘Return shipping paid by seller’ instead of ‘Return shipping paid by buyer’ and rank higher than your competitors who make the buyers pay for the returns.
Offering free returns ranks you higher in eBay’s search results and provides better customer support.
For this demonstration, we’ll select ‘Domestic returns accepted.’ From here, we’ll go with the 30-day return period on the drop-down menu, and set the return shipping to be paid by the buyer.
Click in the ‘Replacement or exchange available’ checkbox, and do the same for the international returns (if of course, your suppliers support it):
Finally, click ‘Save.’
That’s all there is to it for the returns policy on eBay UK. If you’re not sure what your supplier offers, reach out to them and be sure to provide your buyers with the correct services.
Shipping Policy Setup
The third policy to set is your shipping policy. Once again, in the business policies, click on ‘Create policy,’ then ‘Postage.’
Add a ‘Policy name’ and scroll down to the next section.
For eBay UK dropshipping, it is best to set your shipping policy without specifying a carrier’s name. This means avoiding options such as Royal Mail, FedEx and DHL.
Instead, choose a shipping option with relevant shipping and handling times for your product. For example, if it takes the supplier a week to deliver the shipment, under ‘Service’, select a general policy with 4-5 days shipping.
Then for handling time (how long it takes to provide a tracking number), click on ‘Dispatch’ and choose an option under 4 days as it will help your listings rank higher. If it takes longer to provide tracking information, select the right number of days.
International Shipping Policy Setup
Now that you have domestic shipping set up, it’s time for international shipping. To dropship from eBay UK to customers outside the UK, first decide which countries you’d like to sell to.
You can choose ‘Worldwide’ or ‘Choose custom location’ to list specific countries.
As for international shipping costs, this depends on the supplier you use. Make sure to verify that your supplier ships to all the countries you want sell to first.
Exclude Shipping Locations
The last and final step to complete your eBay shipping policy is to exclude shipping locations.
Begin by clicking ‘Create exclusion list’. That will open a pop up as seen below.
Select any countries you can’t offer shipping to and save once done.
That wraps up how to create business policies for eBay UK. Remember to check the policies with your suppliers and make sure that you’re offering similar services. You can create as many policies as you want and select the relevant one when importing each product to your store.
eBay UK Product Research
Technically, you are now ready to start listing and selling products. However, to earn profits you can’t just list anything. Finding the products that convert into sales requires due diligence and careful research.
We cannot emphasize enough the importance of product research. This is one of the highest payoff tasks in a UK dropshipping business. Once you get this right, the sky’s the limit on how much you can earn.
In general, fruitful product research includes:
- Finding out what’s trending.
- Testing multiple products.
- Using effective marketing.
We’ll look at two specific ways to conduct product research through eBay UK and UK dropshipping suppliers.
Research Products From eBay UK
A great starting point for product research is to see what dropshippers are selling successfully on eBay UK. The emphasis here is on selling, not just what dropshippers are listing.
Consider this method a way to test products, which means you won’t see results immediately. However, after repeating the process several times, you’ll find products that yield sales.
Start from a supplier website by choosing a hot product. For example, pick a category in Amazon’s Best Sellers and select an item. Then, copy the first half of the title, paste it into the eBay UK search bar, and click ‘Search.’
Next, filter the results so that you only see active listings with sales. Scroll down and check the ‘sold listings’ box on the left side, and uncheck the ‘Completed Items’ box.
If you see listings similar to what you found on the supplier site, it is likely being sold by dropshippers. Additionally, it indicates that there is demand for these products.
Finally, it gives us the range of prices customers are willing to pay for the product type.
Next, go ahead and create your own listing for the item. Start with a title that includes strong keywords that other sellers used. Then, add a few more strong keywords, to bolster your listing on search results. Now, add a product description, images, and any other info and list the product.
Research Products From UK Suppliers
Another route to product finding involves looking for buying trends on supplier websites. For example, Amazon UK provides lists of products or categories that are ‘Best Sellers,’ ‘Newly Released’ or ‘Most Wished For.’
And remember, Amazon is just one example. You can find buying trends on any supplier site.
Regardless, view these trends are a starting point for narrowing down categories until you find a particular niche.
Once you’ve identified a specific sub-category, pick at least 15-20 products and test them in your store. Don’t settle for testing 1-2 products, as it simply won’t do the trick.
In time, you’ll start to see which products are selling and you can use them as launching pads for finding even more hot products.
Import Products To Your eBay UK Store
Testing multiple products also means importing each, one at a time, to eBay UK. This can take up many hours that we simply don’t have.
To counter this issue, AutoDS has developed several automated methods that save us hours on importing products. They include one-click importing, copying product URL or ID, using a CSV file, or the AutoDS finder.
A couple of these will only work after you download the Chrome AutoDS Dropshipping Helper Extension. So download the extension first to be on the safe side.
The One-click importer is the quickest way to import a product to AutoDS. On any one of our twenty-five supported suppliers, you can find a dedicated import button on every individual product.
With a single click on the ‘Import to AutoDS’ button, the extension imports the product directly to the drafts page on the AutoDS platform.
Import By Product URL/ID
You can also import products to your store using the product URL or ID.
On any product page, either copy the product ID or the URL, then head over to AutoDS and click ‘Add Products.’
This action essentially copies all the information that the import button does. Except, that it gives you more options. You can customize the listing, and add it as a draft. Alternatively, send it directly to your eBay store right away or schedule it to import at a later time and date.
For either option, first, paste the URL or Product ID into the box. Then, choose what you want to do with the product.
Upload CSV (Bulk)
Since product research requires importing and testing multiple products, it can end up taking lots of time. This is the brilliance of the AutoDS bulk importer. It allows you to import hundreds, thousands, and even tens of thousands of products at a time!
The bulk importer is extremely useful when you want to test a particular category or niche. Alternatively, it is beneficial for adding multiple products from a category that already proved itself.
Using the bulk importer is easy. Whenever you land on a results page, click the AutoDS button on the bottom right, and click ‘Extract.’ This action adds all product IDs from the page into a dedicated box.
You can keep fetching more products into the box from any supported supplier website or results page. When done, click ‘Export as CSV,’ which saves a file with all of these products on your computer.
Next, head over to AutoDS, click ‘Add Products’, and select ‘Upload CSV.’ Then, drag and drop the CSV file into the dedicated box. Finally, add the products straight to your eBay
store, or to the drafts page.
Let’s face it, not all of us have the time or patience to conduct product research and importation. That’s why the AutoDS Finder does both jobs in a few seconds.
On the same window where you add products, click on the third tab titled ‘AutoDS Finder.’ Then, select the level of popularity for a product (measured by sales levels), and the number of products. Finally, add the products straight to your store or to the drafts page.
The good news is that AutoDS supports UK suppliers, so the feature works just as well as it does with US suppliers.
Order Automation And Easy Scaling
After researching and importing products, orders will start to come in. The traditional solution is to go to supplier websites and fulfill each one. However, with so many orders coming in, the last thing you want to deal with is a backlog causing delays and hampering your growth.
That’s the beauty of Order Automation. AutoDS offers two neat solutions. One is called Automatic Ordering, where you can add a buyer account for each supplier with your payment information. Then, AutoDS places orders for you, as well as updates tracking information automatically.
The second option is even better. Depending on the supplier, you can choose the Fulfilled By AutoDS service. This feature does not require you to add buyer accounts. Simply add funds and AutoDS credits to your account, and AutoDS takes care of your orders from A-Z.
To illustrate, as soon as an order comes in, AutoDS processes it by ordering the item from the supplier. Then, when the product ships, AutoDS retrieves tracking and provides you and your customers with updates.
All of this happens automatically without having to do anything on your computer. So, you can be asleep, or out for the day and not have to worry one bit about your orders.
Here is how you can turn on these great features: After adding Auto-Orders in your subscription, go to ‘Settings’ then ‘Store Settings.’ Next, add your supplier and under the ‘Orders’ tab and click both on ‘Automatic Orders’ and ‘Fulfilled By AutoDS.’ You’re all set!
Keep in mind that not every supplier supports Fulfillment by AutoDS. You’ll need to add a buyer account in those scenarios so AutoDS can use your info to process orders.
The possibilities are endless when you automate your store. You can scale the business to unbelievable sizes and profits, and you won’t have to invest much or hire anyone. The platform does most of the work for you.
Become Dropshipping Royalty In The UK
Who said dropshipping is only relevant in the US? In the era of globalization, new markets are emerging, and you can become a household name in a new market if you act fast.
eBay UK allows you to dropship to an eager audience hungry for products of all kinds. As long as you follow the local rules and learn the interests of UK buyers, you’re well on your way to a profitable store.
Don’t feel overwhelmed. At the end of the day, the principles of dropshipping in the UK are similar to other regions. Pick good products from excellent suppliers and provide exceptional customer service. The rest will follow.
With that in mind, here are some articles that offer valuable tips and suggestions to make our eBay UK journey even easier: