Blog

Drop Shipping & eCommerce Blog

Tried-and-true tactics for finding the best products in the Doba marketplace

Written by Josh Summerhays on September 18, 2015 in How to Sell Products Online

When we talk to new Doba customers, we hear a very common anxiety: “How do I sift through so many products to find the ones that will help me get some early sales?"

I am here to end your anxiety forever. While there’s no shortcut to true expertise in product research, Doba has created tools and helps within our platform to put you on the path to gaining experience and getting some quick sales.

Doba Deals

Our Marketplace team is constantly working to identify products in the Doba Marketplace with great margins across a wide variety of product niches. As a Doba customer, you will get a weekly list of some of these products via email, but you can also check them out front and center on the Catalog tab in your account.

I’m sure you’re thinking: “Everyone is going to see these products and tons of retailers are going to start selling them at the same time.” Yep. Lots of retailers will take the easy route and just dump these products into their Inventory feeds hoping to snag a few sales before the marketplaces get saturated.

You’re not going to do that. You’re going to put in some work and rise above the crowd.

Each of those highlighted products comes from a supplier who, more than likely, has other products for you to list. Click the supplier’s name on that product page and you’ll be taken to the Supplier Profile screen. Pause to check their performance on things like fulfillment rate, average time to ship, and how often they update their feed — it’s valuable info that you should know before you list their items.

You can filter the catalog to see only this supplier’s products by clicking the “Browse Supplier” button right at the top:

Spot-check some products with available inventory to see if the margins are similar to that first product you saw in Doba Deals. If so, you can branch out and offer something unique that the shortcutters will have completely missed.

Featured products

We reach out to our suppliers regularly to urge them to give you, the Doba retailer, lower pricing or reduced shipping or dropship fees, anything that will make it easier for you to increase sales.

You’ll see this list every time you log in to Doba, so take advantage when you see products that fit your niche! This list is refreshes frequently with new products. Also, products that sell well often retain the lower pricing, so this is your chance to show a supplier whose products you favor that they can just go ahead and leave those prices down.

As with Doba Deals, you can often beat the competition by looking past the highlighted product to other products by the same supplier or similar products from another supplier. A little extra hustle goes a long way!

Catalog filters

Hundreds of potential filters to narrow down your product set: supplier, brand, price range, available quantity, average days to ship, no dropship fee, deals only, in stock only, free or fixed shipping, and the list goes on.

Early on, don’t get caught up in filtering by Suppliers and Brands (unless you’re set on those things for strategic reasons). Get into your relevant category, of course. Pivot on your free or fixed shipping (fixed shipping is a signal that you could use a bundling strategy with products from a single supplier and improve your market positioning, merchandising, and margins that way).

If you’re an Amazon seller, you’ll need valid UPC codes, so make sure you check that box.

Price point filters are particularly valuable for identifying similar products within a top-level category or subcategory. A well-defined price point filter helps weed out irrelevant items within search results.

For example, let’s say I’m looking for a silver cuff bracelet with a lower price point and not considered a gemstone, etc. I would use the category filters to get to Jewelry and Watches, like this:

Then, I would apply a price point filter of $0-100, like this:

At this point, I begin using keyword search filters. First, I search for “silver”, making sure to check the “Search within results” box before I click Go. I would then enter a second search within those results for “cuff”.

My results give me 22 styles of silver cuff bracelets under $100, after which the catalog fills in with related silver jewelry items (earrings and so forth).

Search by keyword

Doba’s Director of Marketplace, Meshell Long, shares her tips and tricks for drilling down to relevant products within the Doba catalog:

Start with the obvious keywords and identify synonyms for those terms

Meshell explained, “I found a great set of Bohemian style products for a retailer who was having trouble locating items in her niche. I began by searching “bohemian”, but didn’t find too many products. I then researched “bohemian style" on Google and identified other terms that were used to describe the style itself. I found words like "fringe", "leather", "hobo", "floor coverings", "area rugs", "organic", "morrocan", "lantern", “hemp", etc. I was able to locate many other products with our catalog by using those terms."

Don’t get too narrow with category filters when using keyword searches

The Doba catalog has several levels of subcategories that enable you to look at very specific subsets of products. However, products do occasionally show up in subcategories that are related but not the best fit and you might miss them if you’re over-reliant on category filters.

Back to Meshell: "I also use the 'search within' in order to find relevant products within a category with a large amount of SKU's. For example, browse to ‘Electronics’, then (search within) “tablet", then (search within again) "Asus". This allows me to locate Asus tablets even if they might be in a different subcategory other than tablets & computers.

Layer searches with “Search within results"

As mentioned in the previous silver cuff bracelet example, this is a powerful tool that will get you to relevant results more quickly.

Meshell: "For brand names, I usually search the general item type first. For example, I would first type in ‘headphones’, then search a single descriptive word like ‘beats’, then search ‘dre' which will result in 'beats by dre' headphones. But just typing in the whole phrase at once doesn’t always find all of the relevant products."

Doba Curated Lists

Sales pitch alert: If you don’t feel like going through any of these steps yourself and you’d rather have someone else do it, we’ve got you covered. Our Marketplace team will curate a customized product list just for you for a nominal fee. List sizes and prices vary. If you’re a Doba customer and are interested in learning more about this option, call Customer Support at 877-321-3622 to get the details and/or request a list of your own.

Develop a system that works for you

The Doba Marketplace is big. It holds a ton of potential to help you accelerate your sales. Over time, you'll develop your own feel for finding products, but if you start with the tactics and tips in this post, you'll get off to much faster start. Now go get those products!


The Dos and Don'ts of Drop Shipping whitepaper

Get blog updates sent straight to your inbox