Dropshipping with AliExpress – what do you need to know when setting up a store?

AliExpress is one of the most popular marketplaces in the world. It is very popular mainly due to very low prices and a wide range of products. Products from China are also popular all over the world.

This is why many online retailers are choosing to dropshipping with AliExpress. Find out about the most important rules for this type of activity!

What is dropshipping with AliExpress?

Dropshipping is a model that allows you to conduct online sales without actually contacting the goods. The entrepreneur does not have to worry about the issues of deliveries, storage and shipments. Its activity is limited only to customer service, promotion and brand development.

The whole process can be reduced to 5 basic steps:

  • The customer orders the product in your online store.
  • You receive a payment from him for the ordered product.
  • You buy a given product on AliExpress, providing your customer\’s address.
  • The AliExpress seller sends the goods to your customer.
  • You keep the margin as profit.

The pros and cons of dropshipping in AliExpress

The dropshipping model offers a lot of benefits that beginner sellers will especially enjoy. Unfortunately, when deciding to buy products on AliExpress, you also have to accept a few inconveniences.

The advantages of dropshipping from AliExpress include:

  • A very wide range – you can find literally anything in the product database.
  • No fees for conducting sales in dropshipping.
  • Very affordable prices, translating into high margins.
  • The offer includes the latest market novelties.

The disadvantages of dropshipping on AliExpress include:

  • Long waiting times for products ordered from China.
  • Quite a long credit card verification process when setting up an account.
  • Communication barriers due to the fact that not all providers know English.

What products to sell in dropshipping from AliExpress?

If you plan to sell products from AliExpress in dropshipping, first of all, you need to choose a niche for your store. This is one of the most important points in organizing your business, because it will determine the interest in your offer.

So try to find a niche that is not too common or prone to returns. Familiarize yourself with the categories available on AliExpress and decide which goods will be most popular in your country. Remember to avoid branded products as they may well turn out to be counterfeit.

To be sure about the selection of products, consider the number of orders for a given product to date, as well as the average of its ratings. An item bought at least 200-300 times and with a minimum of 4.5 stars will probably prove to be a safe investment. Also pay attention to the price – the lower, the higher the margin you can impose on the offered goods.

Also, do not forget that the supplier of your choice should offer quick delivery.

AliExpress dropshipping – basic rules

To enjoy the benefits of dropshipping on AliExpress, follow a few basic rules to ensure your brand\’s success:

  • Bet on communication – although the entire process takes place via the Internet, it is worth talking to your suppliers. In many situations, their help will be necessary, and you can also get other benefits from good relations – for example, discounts for buying larger quantities of goods.
  • Compare Prices – On AliExpress, many sellers offer the same products at different prices. A little patience during research will allow you to save a lot – on a monthly or yearly basis, even small amounts will make a big difference.
  • Write your own product descriptions – the quality of the product is not your responsibility, but its marketing is. Original product descriptions will position your website higher in search engines and encourage customers to make transactions.
  • Offer free shipping – the prices on AliExpress are so affordable that thanks to the high margin you can safely offer your customers free shipping. This will give you a considerable advantage over your competition.
  • Contact your customers – delivery times for products from China can range from a 10 days to several months, so make sure your customers are well informed about the status of their order. Well-configured transactional e-mails will help you with this.

Returns and complaints in dropshipping from AliExpress

For obvious reasons, you have to deal with complaints and return requests yourself.

As long as they\’re not too frequent or the product not too expensive, you can offer your customers a refund. If such cases become commonplace, verify the quality of the products sold and their compliance with the descriptions in your store.

AliExpress dropshipping – customs duty and VAT

Obviously, importing products from China sometimes involves the payment of customs duties and VAT. So make sure to inform your customers about this in your shop policies. Although these are rare cases, the shipment may be detained at the border, which will require the customer to bear these costs.

Customs duty applies to goods worth more than a certain amount. However, VAT applies to all products ordered from AliExpress, although it can sometimes be avoided. Chinese sellers sometimes mark their shipments as a gift from a private individual (\”gift\”) and use the help of intermediaries in the EU and USA. For goods with a value not exceeding EUR 45, this may exempt the recipient from paying VAT.

AliExpress – Dropshipping Store

You already know all the most important rules for selling in dropshipping with AliExpress. So it\’s time to think about the form in which to offer products from AliExpress to your customers. Note that they often don\’t even know where the goods they buy are being shipped from. Therefore, you must do everything possible to adapt your store to their needs. Take care of a clear interface, fast transaction process and functional integrations.

You can create an intuitive online store thanks to any SaaS platform. This type of software provides a number of advantages that will make it easier for you to manage your sales and customer service.


You may be wondering why consumers should buy from your store and not directly from AliExpress. This is because you take care of the whole – seemingly uncomfortable – process on their behalf. It covers communication with Chinese sellers, organizational issues, and possible complaints. So, follow the tips above to ensure your customers get the best experience possible!

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