Shopify Dropshipping: The Canadian Guide to Starting a Business

By Amylee Silva
May 19, 2023
Shopify Dropshipping business coffee roaster

Ready to start your Shopify dropshipping side hustle in 2023? It’s simpler than you think, especially with the right guidance. Our comprehensive guide covers everything you need to know to launch a profitable online store.

By the end of this guide, you’ll have all the tools you need to start and succeed with dropshipping in Canada. Let’s make 2023 your year for entrepreneurial success.

Table of contents

  1. Why You Should Start Dropshipping in Canada
  2. How to Find the Right Products to Sell
  3. Setting Up Your Shopify Store
  4. Promoting Your Dropshipping Business
    • Use social media effectively
    • Use paid advertising
    • Get involved in online communities
    • Write helpful blog posts
    • Provide excellent customer service
  5. Making Your First Sale
  6. Starting a Dropshipping Business in Canada
  7. How to Find the Right Products to Sell

Why You Should Start Dropshipping in Canada

The dropshipping business model enables e-commerce entrepreneurs to sell products without holding inventory. As a Canadian entrepreneur, you can utilize dropshipping to launch an online business with minimal initial costs. 

Here’s why:

1. There’s a growing market for online shopping in Canada.

According to Statistics Canada, 29 million Canadians made an online purchase in 2022. This trend will only continue as more people become comfortable with online shopping. As an entrepreneur, this presents an excellent opportunity to enter a rapidly growing industry.

2. You can reach a global audience from Canada.

When you dropship from Canada, you’re not limited to selling to Canadian customers; you can reach buyers all over the world. This gives you a much larger potential customer base than if you were limited to selling locally.

3. Shipping costs from Canada are relatively low.

One of the main concerns people have about shopping online is shipping costs. Luckily, if you’re dropshipping from Canada, shipping costs will likely be lower than shipping from another country. Canada has several major shipping hubs, such as Vancouver and Toronto, which help keep costs down.

4. There are plenty of great suppliers in Canada.

When looking for suppliers for your dropshipping business, it’s important to find reliable ones that offer good quality products. Fortunately, there are plenty of great suppliers located in Canada that can meet these criteria.

Looking for dropshipping suppliers in Canada? Check out our blog post Drop Shipping Canada for our list of 13 Canadian suppliers plus five bonus niche suppliers.

5. You can take advantage of Canadian tax laws.

Dropshipping businesses in Canada can take advantage of certain tax laws that make starting and running a business easier and less expensive. For complete details, refer to the Canada Revenue Agency’s GST/HST memorandum 3.3.1.

How to Find the Right Products to Sell on Your Shopify Dropshipping Store

You must consider a few factors to find the appropriate products to sell. First and foremost, you must ensure that the products you choose are in demand and have a good potential for profitability. 

If you’re unsure how to start your research, using Amazon’s Best Sellers list could be helpful. This list shows the products that are currently selling well and could assist you in narrowing down your options.

Another important factor to consider is your target market. You need to make sure that the products you choose are relevant to your target audience and that they will be interested in purchasing them. This means doing some market research to determine what kinds of products your target market is interested in and what their needs are. Once you have a good understanding of your target market, you can start narrowing down your product options even further.

Finally, you need to make sure that the products you choose are viable for your business model. This means considering things like shipping costs, fulfillment times, and return policies. You want to make sure that you can actually make money off of the products you sell, so it’s important to do your homework before making any final decisions.

If you keep these factors in mind, you should be able to find the right products to sell without any trouble. Just remember to do your research and take your time in order to make sure that you’re making the best possible choices for your business.

Basic Steps in Setting Up Your Shopify Store

First, you’ll need to sign up for a Shopify account. This will give you access to all of the features and tools that Shopify offers.

Second, choose a domain name that is relevant to your business and easy to remember. This will be your URL, which customers use to access your store.

Third, set up the look and feel of your store. You can select a Shopify theme to use as the basis for your store’s design. You can customize the design by adding images, styling text, and creating page layouts.

Fourth, create products and collections that you will list in your store. This includes setting up product descriptions, photos, pricing information, shipping options, and more.

For a comprehensive step-by-step guide to starting your Shopify store plus competitive analysis, visit, Starting an Online Store in 2023.

Promoting Your Dropshipping Business

To run a successful dropshipping business, it’s crucial to promote it effectively. Without promotion, your business is likely to stagnate or even fail. This applies whether you’re just starting out or already running the business.

Here are some tips for promoting your dropshipping business:

1. Use social media effectively

Social media is a powerful tool that can be used to promote your dropshipping business. Make sure you are active on the major social media platforms and that you are using them to reach out to potential customers.

2. Use paid advertising

Paid advertising can be an effective way to reach new customers and promote your business. However, it’s important to use paid advertising wisely, as it can be easy to overspend and not see a return on investment if not done correctly.

3. Get involved in online communities

There are many online communities dedicated to e-commerce and dropshipping. Getting involved in these communities can help you connect with potential customers and learn more about the industry.

4. Write helpful blog posts

One of the best ways to promote your dropshipping business is by writing helpful blog posts that provide value to readers. Be sure to include links back to your website or online store so that readers can easily find you.

5. Provide excellent customer service

Finally, one of the most important things you can do to promote your dropshipping business is to provide excellent customer service. This includes responding quickly to customer inquiries, offering refunds or returns when necessary, and generally going above and beyond for your customers.

Making Your First Sale

If you’re reading this, chances are you’re interested in making your first sale. Whether you’re an experienced entrepreneur or just starting out, everyone has to start somewhere. So how do you go about making that first sale?

There’s no single answer to that question, as the approach will vary depending on the product or service you’re selling, your target market, and a number of other factors. However, there are a few general tips that can help you increase your chances of success.

First and foremost, make sure you have a well-defined target market. Trying to sell to everyone is a surefire way to fail. You need to identify the people who are most likely to be interested in what you’re selling and then focus your efforts on reaching them.

Second, do your homework. Know everything there is to know about your product or service, including its features, benefits, and pricing. You should also be familiar with your competition and understand what sets you apart from them.

Third, create a sales pitch that’s clear and concise. Potential customers should be able to understand what you’re offering and why it’s worth their money in a matter of seconds. This means avoiding industry jargon and using language that’s easy to understand.

Fourth, have realistic expectations. Making your first sale can be challenging, so don’t expect it to happen overnight. Be prepared to put in the time and effort necessary to reach your goals.

Following these tips can help you make your first sale successfully. Just remember that it takes time, patience, and perseverance to succeed in any business venture.

Starting a Dropshipping Business in Canada

Dropshipping is a great business model for entrepreneurs who are looking to set up their own businesses with little upfront investment. It’s also a great way to test out new product ideas without having to carry any inventory. And, thanks to the rise of e-commerce platforms like Shopify, it’s easier than ever to set up a dropshipping business.

If you’re thinking about starting a dropshipping business, Canada is a great place to do it. Here are some of the reasons why:

There’s a growing e-commerce market in Canada. 

The total value of online retail sales in Canada, according to Statistics Canada, amounted to an all-time high of US$3.82 billion in December 2020.

Canadian consumers are willing to spend money online. 

The average order value (AOV) for Canadian e-commerce shoppers was $93 in August of 2022, with a predicted revenue of US$62,117.6 million by 2023. If you can tap into this growing market with the right products, there’s potential for good sales volumes.

How to Find the Right Products to Sell

If you’re convinced that dropshipping is a good idea, let’s look at how you can find the right products to sell. When choosing products to sell, there are three main criteria you should consider:

Is there a demand for the product? 

You can use Google Trends or Amazon Bestsellers to gauge demand for a particular product. If there’s high demand and not much competition, that’s a good sign that it’s a viable product to sell.

Can you source the product cheaply? 

You need to be able to source your product at a low enough price point so that you can still make a profit after accounting for shipping costs and other fees associated with selling online. Use AliExpress or Alibaba to find suppliers for your chosen product.

Does the product have good margins? 

In addition to being able to source your product cheaply, you also need to make sure it has decent margins to make a profit on each sale. A good rule of thumb is that your product should have a margin of at least 50%.

Dropshipping is a great business model for entrepreneurs looking to launch their own businesses with minimal upfront investment. With the right products, you can tap into Canada’s growing e-commerce market and generate good sales volumes.

The key is finding products that have high demand, are easy to source cheaply, and have decent margins so you can make a profit on each sale. By following these tips and doing your research, you’ll be well on your way to creating a successful dropshipping business in Canada.

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