How Much Money Do You Need to Start Dropshipping? ($100? $500? $1000? $3000?!)

We answer the question: how much do you REALLY need to start dropshipping with Aliexpress?
►► Free $10,000/Month ebook:
►► Step-By-Step Dropshipping course:


►► Start Dropshipping with $50:
►► How to Create a Shopify Store:
►► 8 Side Hustles:
►► Free Logo Maker:
►► How to Pick Products with Fred Lam:

When dropshipping, you have 3 major costs/expenses/things to budget for:

1) Setting up your store.
2) Marketing your store and testing products.
3) Purchasing the products that customers buy.

***How Much Does it Cost to Create a Store?***

Most viewers watching this video will be looking to build their store with Shopify. That means it will cost $29/month for the subscription, and then $14 for the domain name. That means you need just $43 up front.

However, there are two optional costs that are good to consider:

1) Purchasing a logo from Fiverr for $5.50

To build your store, you will need a logo. You can make a logo for free using a free logo maker. But a professionally designed logo will look a lot nicer in your store. For such a low cost, it is well worth it if you can afford it.

2) Purchasing an Upsell Shopify Plugin for $47/month

The SMAR7 Bundle Upsell is very beginner friendly. But it’s also more expensive than a Shopify subscription! UGH! However, once you stumble upon a winning product, putting upsells on top of it will more than pay back the cost of this plugin.

So what you can do is you can leave this off your buy-list and purchase it once you’ve found your winning product. You can then install this app and then put an upsell on top of your winning product. You don’t need to buy it up-front.

***How Much Does it Cost to Market & Test Products?***

While you can use free traffic sources, they are slow. To take advantage of paid traffic, it is going to cost you money. In this video, we discuss Facebook ads. We recommend being prepared to test at least 20 products.

When we say “test products” with Facebook ads, we mean adding a product to your store, and then running a small ad for it on Facebook promoting it. If the ad is profitable, you scale that item up and it becomes a “winner.” If it loses you money, then you kill the ad and test something new.

To run ads, I normally recommend starting with a $5/day budget and running it for 4 days. That means that each test will cost $20/product. So to test 20 products, it is going to cost $400. Along the way it is very likely you’ll make some sales of products even if they turn out to be “losers” – but it’s good to budget for this just in-case.

If this is quite a lot of money (we understand!) here are some tips for you:

1) Plan to split it up over 2-3 months. You don’t need to run all of the 20 product test at once: you can do it gradually at your own pace.

2) Use side hustles to save up the extra cash. It will definitely be work – but it is well worth it. There are ways to pick up jobs from home and to save up this money to reinvest into a business.

***How Much Does it Cost to Buy Products Customers Purchase?***

Something that a lot of people don’t talk about when discussing this question is the cost to purchase items that customers buy. If you spend all of your startup money on marketing & setup costs, then you’ll have nothing left to purchase the products customers buy. And if this happens – your business is sunk!

Unfortunately, money that customers pay you will not be send to you instantly. Stripe pays out every 7 days, and PayPal is likely to hold your money for 3 weeks (potentially more) until they trust you. This means you’ll need to have money prepared in the meantime to pay for items until the money the customers paid you has cleared.

One of the most common reasons new businesses fail is due to cash-flow issues. If you don’t want to be part of that statistic, then make sure you prepare in-advance by doing one of the following:

1) Have a credit card. You will get the money the customers paid you well in-advance of when your payment will be due on it. Plus you’ll get bonuses too (such as free air miles and cash back rewards to offset fees).

2) Have a debit card with $200-300 on it prepared in-advance to purchase the items from Aliexpress.


ssentongo mark says:

If I have enough capital for the whole business how much would I need to make the store take off with lots of traffic online and make lots of money from the start?


Hello Sarah i dont get this part 1) Have a credit card. You will get the money the customers paid you well in-advance of when your payment will be due on it. Plus you’ll get bonuses too (such as free air miles and cash back rewards to offset fees).

Rodney Forte says:

IMPORTANT QUESTION! So if when your first starting dropshipping, you have to pay for your customers items ( the 3 week hold), how can you be confident that the customer’s credit card won’t bounce while your waiting for Shopify and Paypal to clear it?!? Are there any built in safeguards?

Vihan R says:

This channel is incredibly useful. You have a new subscriber. Real content.

G Dumaguing says:

question..when you purchase the product in aliexpress (the product that the customer ordered) who pay for it? you or is it using their billing details? and also, who’s name will be on the product when they receive it? does it say aliexpress?

Hunter Smoak says:

So much value dropped on this channel!!! Thank you!

Baldoxxx4000 says:

Thats creepy 2:20, but I wish she looks like this the whole video ^_o

ShhCalmDown says:

Isn’t it possible, if you have a winning item, that you’ll end up selling more than you’re able to pay? What if you put 300$ aside to pay for the items that you sell but because it was a winning item you owe the the distributor 600$ What would you do in this situation?

James Hawkins says:

In reference to your point at 9:00 when you were mentioning a hold being placed on the money from your customer and you the middle man not having enough money to cover the actual purchase of the item from the supplier – you said make sure to have 200-300 ready for this in case it happens. What if you run an advertisement and your campaign explodes and you have thousands of customers purchasing your item, even in your first day. What in the world do you do then?

Gabriel Ciovica says:

You rock Sarah! Great video. One question: a lot of dropshippers say you have to use $10/day ads which must have you find that true? Or do the $5 ones work just as well??? With or without videos?

Reginald Williams says:

i like her.. shes chill and knows what she’s talking about ..and what i got from this vid is to get a good start you need abt 1k

Ozzie Lomeli says:

Do I need a landing page when I get started? if so, any recommendations?

MrObvious says:

Is it nromal practice to have say 20 products in your store but only a few are “winning products” and you still keep the non-winners for filler? Or do you want to just remove the non-winning products entirely and replace them with new “test” products? Is there a “sweet-spot” for the number of “Winning” products you should have on your store?

Devin Forte says:

What is the best bank or checking account to use when starting a drop shipping business?

Dav Z says:

What about the cost of a business license, retail certificate, federal and state Tax ID#, and an LLC, especially if you live in the US? These expenses can be 300-600 dollars.

Manny1222 says:

I love how you are realistic and positive in a very genuine way. I’ve been having a hard time. Went through a huge depression episode – actually still in it. Your information has become very important to me in giving me hope. I’ve learned much more than just e-commerce. I actually have a something to strive for. Struggling with money and worrying how you’re going to survive is not fun – I’m there, after all. Hope. Maybe that’s what I needed. I’ve recently set up my store in kind of a book setting niche. I’m hoping something works, or else I’m off to making Fortnight videos. loooool

aston lish says:

I’m just learning about dropshipping and Ive seen a lot of people have good success with it but it seems to be rather scarce in the UK and that’s where I’m from! Is it best for me to only cater to the US and only ship there as shipping times and costs are much better as aliexpress shipping to the UK will mean it’ll have to go through customs which will slow the shipment down even more and take longer than it already does

Vihan R says:


Wholesale Ted says:

Hey guys – don’t be shy, if you’ve got any questions please ask them. We’ll try and answer as many as we can 🙂

Xavier Maximin says:

I just love the faces she makes lool when she say And That’s how you get rich 8:00 AHahwahhahaha She hilarious oh my God lol

Saidakine says:

I am living in the USA. ( Hawaii ). But I am planning on moving to Thailand , can I still have the Shopify for USA clients .

Road Reaper says:

Should I test 10 Different sites with Different niche related items or should I test 10 products from the same niche related site?

Sazz Sa says:

I just need some confidence and tons of money rolling in. I have put up so many products that I am exhausted. They are just lost in the sea of EBay and bonanza.

fattyz1 says:

10:00 cash flow. Excellent job. I ran a small business for 10 years and you have to play the cash flow game. You get comfortable after a few years when you know you’ll pay yourself back lol. I was seasonal too so I had to budget for winters off. Thank you very much.

Daniel Graves says:

Business licenses and tax is numbers are needed to have a legal business too. Even for drop shipping,Right? To be legal.

Issam Feisty says:

hi there and thanks for the content you provide but if we tested products using 20 $ for each products is not going to be enough because we will be using one interest for each adset ? don’t we need to test many adsets with different interest ? for every adset we need one interest and we should test at least three different interest which means we need 60 $ for every product we tested ? does this make sense to you ?

Allan manoj says:

Hi, I have a small doubt, you said $5 per product for a day. So, if that is for 20 products which means $400 for 4 days?

DIY Gears says:

I love you!

Te Amo Sarah says:

Hello Sarah,
Great videos…..
Quick question: can i use someones credit card (like a sibling’s) on my shopify account? or will that be considered fraud or will they close my account?

1miashley says:

Hi Sarah, I want to start a shopify page but I’m not to sure on what would work better: a trend or something that doesn’t have much competition. Can I ask your honest opinion?

Purplegum says:

you answered exactly what i needed to know ! i was looking all over the place for the cash flow answer … i don’t have a credit card nor 200$ to start but i will take the measures before starting it i thought paypal made the $B availableughh

MrDonald911 says:

What if I decide to sell items that are not directly related to each other ? In this case I don’t need the Upsell plugin right ?

Christopher Rinaldo says:

Is mercari potentially another viable option vs shopify initially in hopes the link on ad of Facebook leads customers to your store

Lorenzo Doss says:

Hello I just wanted to thank you for your open and honest information about drop shipping using shopify and other platforms. You are 100% correct. I have a team building 2 stores for me right now and I did not realize the huge cost of marketing “if you want it faster” so now after spending money for the team and getting the store built I know have to SIDE HUSTLE to get ready for the ad spend budget. I go however realize the principle of investing in your dream so I am on it. But hey thanks again great video!!!!! See you at the top lol

Grimshaw Grummage says:

did you get sponsered by shopify? you mention this shitty company on all your videos.

That one Sherpa says:

Thanks for being so truthful and really good advices

MrLappis says:

Question: Is it still possible to start a successful print-on-demand t-shirt/clothing company? Is it even worth it to start one?

MEDlNA says:

Whats a plug in? And how do i put up items on the shop if i do not have the items yet?

Brandon Murphy says:

Hey Sarah, is a plug-in the same as clickfunnels?

Sha Aka says:

Another brilliant video from wholesaler Ted. She just hits the nail on the head. I have just spent over $600 to build aliexpress drop shipping website. It web developer uploaded 4k product to the site. Now I can’t seems to work out if they are e-package or not and site is on WordPress and it’s a general store big error. Any advice very much appreciated please.

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