Drop shipping is a business model that has become very popular in recent years. The concept revolves around taking an existing company that has its own shipping department and use them as a means by which you can make money through sale of the merchandise they ship. A drop ship company can sell anything from random collectible items to firearms. There are any number of such businesses in the world today that are ready and willing to cater to the would-be middle man in the sales process.
To operate a business based on this model you either need to be the company that ships merchandise or the one finding people interested in buying the merchandise in question. The shipping company might offer discounts for bulk orders but generally most simply ship inventory to wherever an order dictates at the same price they charge everyone. The key for the individual interested in starting their own drop shipping business is that they must be able to sell the merchandise from a company that delivers goods at a price higher than both the cost of the merchandise and the shipment of it.
Some companies have decided to specifically cater to drop shippers and they will even change their shipping information to show the one ordering the merchandise as the originator of the shipment. This allows people to build a brand name for their own purposes and guarantees the original shipping company continued business. Most companies do not do this, however. They simply ship goods to wherever they are directed.
There are some individuals that prefer to offer certain items up for sale then once they are sold they order them from a company and receive them personally. After they receive these goods they will then repackage them for shipping with their own logo or company name to give the appearance of being the originator of the shipment. This costs more in terms of shipping and time spent but the end result is that the one buying and selling the merchandise has greater creative control over the process. Some people dispute the latter practice as not being actual drop shipping. Still, many who provide services and goods through this method do consider it as such.
An online dropshipper that caters expressly to the client purchasing goods may or may not be the best method of acquiring goods for sale. Many require expensive membership fees for some reason and sometimes they do not offer the best deals. However, their ease of use in comparison with dealing with other suppliers directly can often make up for the frustrations some people have with them. In the end the best method of drop shipping will be different for each individual. Some will prefer ease of use and lesser profits while others will be satisfied with higher potential profits but more work in the process.