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Shein Dropshipping: A Step-by-Step Guide to Fashion E-commerce
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by
Aleksandra -
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Chief of Content Marketing
Aleksandra teaches marketing and management at various levels in High School. She writes about marketing, the economics and logistics of the dropshipping business and ecommerce in general.
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Chief of Content Marketing
20 minutes

Want to cash in on fashion trends with Shein? Or Is Shein Dropshipping even possible and legit?  

Learn the ropes of dropshipping and decide if it’s your ticket to online success. I break it down – the basics, step-by-step guide, features, do’s, and potential pitfalls. 

Time’s short, fashion waits for no one. So, dive into the world of Shein dropshipping and discover the secrets to making a stylish fortune from the comfort of your home.

What Is Shein Dropshipping? 

shein dropshipping

Shein is an eCommerce and dropshipping supplier where you can find trendy and budget-friendly clothes and accessories. It’s basically an online store that’s all about fashion, selling stylish stuff for men, women, kids, and even pets. So, if you’re into fashion, Shein is the place to go.

Now, Shein dropshipping is when you sell Shein’s products in your own store. As a dropshipper, you can make some good money from home by getting products from Shein and putting them up for sale on your dropshipping website.

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Quick Shein Dropshipping Review

Logo

The best

  • A clothing shop with a fantastic variety of products
  • Reasonably priced products
  • Quick delivery
  • Discounts for buying in bulk
  • Works globally, available in over 220 countries

The worst

  • Comes in Shein-branded packaging
  • Unable to use their product pictures
  • Not possible to put your own label on products
  • Product quality can be inconsistent
  • Sizing problems are common

Starting from

  • Free to use

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Can You Dropship With Shein?

Well, there’s no specific answer to this question, but here’s what I can certainly say. 

In the beginning, Shein used to be a dropshipping company, but things have changed. Now, they work with different manufacturing partners instead of the dropshipping business model.

Currently, Shein does not explicitly say no to dropshipping on their website. So, as long you take your own pictures from their products, yes, you can dropship. Thus, that is why you will need to order product samples. 

According to Shein, a big no-no is using their model product photos because they are copyrighted and legally protected

Therefore, to stay on the safe side, all you have to do is take your own product photos. This way, you won’t break any of Shein’s rules and regulations. And, I will also advise you to have a chat with the supplier beforehand.

Is Shein Dropshipping Legit? 

First things first, Shein is a legitimate platform, and it has a great rating among customers and dropshippers as well. 

For instance, on Trustpilot, the platform is rated ⭐3.8/5 stars, and most of the comments are about Shein’s fast delivery, great deals, quality products, etc. 

trustpilot for shein

Of course, I always check on the negative reviews as well, and most of them point out poor customer service, no free returns, etc.

And, when it comes to dropshipping, Shein dropshipping is legit as long as you follow their guidelines and rules, and take your own product photos. Thus, if you don’t follow this, our stores might be flagged or reported

How Does Shein Dropshipping Work?

Firstly, Dropshipping is a business model where the seller doesn’t keep products in stock. 

Instead, they team up with suppliers who send the purchased items directly to the buyer. The seller lists the products at a higher price and makes a profit after paying the supplier.

how dropshipping works

Now, Shein is a platform that acts as a dropshipping supplier. In Shein dropshipping, sellers connect with suppliers on the Shein platform to get products.

However, the whole dropshipping thing on Shein has many regulations. So, to stay within Shein’s rules, it’s important to take your own photos of the products you plan to sell.

Therefore, before deciding to dropship with Shein, consider these things:

➡ Forbidden to Reuse Their Product Photos

Shein uses models in their product photos, and according to their terms, you can’t reuse these photos in any way, whether for commercial purposes or otherwise. So, make sure to take your own pictures of the products.

➡ Shein Branded Packaging

Shein products typically come in packages labeled with their brand. So, if you’re transparent with your customers and let them know they’re getting a Shein product, it shouldn’t be an issue. 

However, if you’re building your brand or want to send products in your company’s name, dropshipping with Shein might not be the best choice.

➡ Contact With The Supplier 

If you opt for Shein dropshipping, always reach out to the supplier. This way, you’ll understand what’s allowed and what isn’t. 

Also, different suppliers on Shein may have different policies, so sending a quick message before placing an order is a good practice.

Shein Dropshipping: Key Features

🔸 Extensive Product Catalog

Shein offers an extensive product catalog with over 600,000 products to choose from. Thus, here you can products for men, women, kids, and even pets. 

What’s more, I know, the platform is a fashion-based store, and it probably has products like clothes, shoes, underwear, accessories, bags, beauty products, etc.  And, yes, it has all that and a variety of choices from each product category. 

However, it recently introduced a new marketplace, broadening its product selection to feature additional categories such as home decor, office supplies, and electronics. So, this expansion aims to meet the needs of customers worldwide.

🔸 Reliable Suppliers

SHEIN is a fantastic platform that collaborates with numerous suppliers. These manufacturers specialize in creating clothes for men, women, and kids, along with home decor items. Interestingly, they also produce clothing and accessories for pets, including cats and dogs.

When choosing suppliers, always ensure they are reliable. Thus, a good supplier should have enough stock to avoid inconvenience when you receive an order. Not only that, effective communication and fulfillment are also crucial attributes to look for in a supplier.

To find SHEIN suppliers, check their social media platforms. SHEIN has a massive following on popular social media sites, with over 20 million followers on both Facebook and Instagram. Within this large follower count, you might discover manufacturers that supply products to SHEIN.

For instance, you can find supportive entrepreneurs associated with SHEIN manufacturers in Facebook groups. Engaging with these groups can offer valuable insights and connections.

Additionally, attending a fabric trade show is another effective way to connect with SHEIN manufacturers in person. At these trade shows, multiple rows of supplier booths are arranged. 

So, to meet a supplier, simply explore different booths and engage in conversations. So, it’s important to be patient at fabric trade shows since the number of supplier booths can be extensive, sometimes exceeding 100. 

With a bit of diligence and patience, you can successfully locate the booths of SHEIN suppliers.

🔸 Easy Navigation

Shein provides a website and app that are easy for customers to use when browsing products, making orders, and checking shipment status. Both the website and app are designed to be simple and modern, with an intuitive and visually appealing layout.

Moreover, their filtering options are great, and you can narrow down your search based on categories, product type, colors, price range, size, style, and more. Plus, you can also sort the results based on recommended, new arrivals, top-rated, price low to high & vice versa.

shein dropshipping

Additionally, Shein dropshipping offers a size and fit guide on its website to help customers feel more confident about their size choices when buying items. 

shein dropshipping

Thus, to use the guide, you only need to answer a few questions about your height, weight, and measurements. The website also includes pictures illustrating different belly and hip shapes, making it easier for you to find the perfect fit.

shein sizes

Well, in my opinion, this is a great way to add value for customers, and for boosting your dropshipping sales.

🔸 Shein Shopify App

shionimporter shopify app

Shein dropshipping offers an app in the Shopify app store, allowing you to easily incorporate Shein products into your dropshipping Shopify store. 

The ShionImporter app enables you to tap into the extensive product catalogs of Shein, Temu, Emmacloth, Fashionnova, and other global e-retailers for your dropshipping requirements.

So, what features does ShioImporter provide?

  • Effortlessly upload products from various merchants to your store with just one click.
  • Automatically synchronize inventory quantities and prices for each product variant.
  • Import and manage individual details such as prices, SKUs, stock counts, and images for different product variations.
  • Utilize an AI tool to create unique titles and descriptions for your products.
  • Enhance your store by adding reviews functionality and importing reviews from suppliers’ websites.

Furthermore, the ShioImporter offers a 10-day free trial, and the pricing starts at $9.99/month. 

shopify app for shein

🔸 Shein VIP Program

shein dropshipping

Shein dropshipping offers a loyalty program, known as the VIP program, which includes exclusive discounts and promotions for dedicated customers. 

Hence, joining the Shein VIP program is completely free, and it’s structured into three tiers: S1, S2, and S3. Also, advancing to the next tier depends on how much you spend on your purchases.

So, starting at S1, you enter this tier after placing your first order or spending just 1 cent. Progressing to S2 happens when you’ve spent $90 on the platform. Finally, reaching S3 occurs after placing at least five orders or reaching a total value of over $300.

The S3 tier is the highest level, offering perks such as special promotions and faster refunds once you attain it.

Shein also attracts and retains customers by introducing a points system. You accumulate points by leaving reviews for every purchase you make. These points can then be redeemed for discounts on future orders.

💡 Tip: Also learn How To Become An Amazon Product Tester From Home.

However, keep in mind that every tier is valid for 12 months from the date the SHEIN VIP member qualifies(exclude level S1); after that, identity validation is required every month.

🔸 Order Fulfillment 

Shein dropshipping handles the fulfillment process, but it’s your job to ensure the customer gets the order and is happy with the service. Your main fulfillment task is to ensure you send the order details to the Shein supplier on schedule. 

Furthermore, Shein takes over the shipping process, utilizing its logistics partners to deliver the package to the customer. Also, you may receive a tracking number from Shein dropshipping, which you can share with the customer for order tracking

shein dropshipping

Also, remember that you have communication responsibilities, such as responding to customer inquiries, providing additional information about the products, or addressing concerns related to the order. 

However, If a customer initiates a return, Shein manages the return process.

🔸 Shipping & Returns

Shein’s shipping and return policies are quite flexible, bringing satisfaction to your customers, and this positive experience will be evident on your websites. So, let’s take a look at their shipping and return options.

➡ Shipping 

Shein generally offers three shipping options: 

  • Economic is the slowest and least pricey, taking around 20-40 days. 
  • Standard is quicker and a bit more expensive, with a delivery time of approximately 15-25 days. 
  • Express is the fastest but priciest, getting to you within 3-7 days. Keep in mind, there’s a processing time of 1-3 days for orders. 

Additionally, Shein dropshipping provides tracking numbers that you can share with your customers.

➡ Return Rules

shein dropshipping

Shein allows returns within a 35-day return window. However, certain items like bodysuits, lingerie, jewelry, beauty products, and pet products can’t be returned

However, keep in mind that the return request process takes about 5 business days.

How To Start Dropshipping With Shein? ( My Process)

Step 1 – Create Your Shein Account 

From the Shein website, navigate to the right upper corner and click on the register button. From here, choose the “Sign in/ Register” option

register

Once you are in enter your email address along with a password of your choice. Also, make sure to confirm your email to complete the registration process.

registration process

Step 2 – Find Your Products 

Next, it is time to search through the Shein product catalog. So, since I am running a clothing dropshipping store for women, I will navigate to the “women’s clothing” section. 

What’s more, I usually go into the “New In” category since those are the products that are the newest Shein collection. Hence, I want to make sure I start selling before my competitors. 👇

shein dropshipping

To narrow down my search, I will use their filters and set it as I find the best fit for me. Later on, I will also use the “sort by” option. 👇

filters

Also, if you are looking for the most trending products, you can check on their Best-Seller section, or Trending-Brands section, and see what sells best. 

On the other hand, you can also use product research tools like Minea, Adserea, and others.

So, I compare prices, check on competitors’ websites, and of course, estimate my potential profit margins. 

For example, as I already did research, this dress sells for around $30 on other websites.  So, since it is only $9.65 on Shein, I really can set some good profit margins.  👇

products page

Thus, once I pick my Shein dropshipping products, it is time to choose where I want to dropship them. 

Step 3 – Choose A Selling Channel 

You can start dropshipping with Shein products on online marketplaces like AliExpress, or eBay. However, keep in mind that this way you will not be able to build a brand easily. But, you will get a lot of free organic traffic since users come to these websites intending to buy. 

Also, you can choose to sell on Shein Marketplace as well. Thus, if you want to do this, you first need to apply for a seller account. 

Therefore, to become a seller on Shein, just follow an easy and direct process. Begin by visiting the Shein Marketplace page, and clicking on “Apply Now”. 👇

Next, you need to provide information about yourself and your business. 👇

shein marketplace

However, after applying, it may take up to 7 days to receive a response from Shein. Thus, if accepted, Shein offers dedicated onboarding support to assist you in setting up your shop.

Lastly, if you want to build your own brand while dropshipping Shein products, you can build your own dropshipping store with website builders like Shopify, WooCommerce, Wix, etc.

So, since you are a dropshipper and probably want to just source products for your dropshipping store, let’s go to the next step. 

Step 4 – Build Your Dropshipping Store

Thus, as I already mentioned above, building a dropshipping store nowadays is pretty easy, thanks to the many options we have online. In fact, you can build it from scratch if you have coding skills, or if you want it more unique you can hire a professional. 

Hence, what I always do, is neither of these two above. I use website builders which is the easiest and fastest way to do it. So, you have a lot of options like Shopify, BigCommerce, WooCommerce, and many more. 

But, in my opinion, Shopify stands out as the best option for dropshippers.

The platform boasts a user-friendly interface and provides a diverse collection of visually appealing themes, available in both free and paid options, to enhance the look of your dropshipping store. 👇

shopify

Additionally, it offers an impressive array of customizable features. Their drag-and-drop editor makes it easy for you to create and tweak your store effortlessly.

👉 Learn How To Set Up Your First Store On Shopify [For Dropshipping Beginners].

Furthermore, Shopify smoothly integrates with different dropshipping apps, and there’s even a dedicated app for Shein Dropshipping, making it a seamless process to import products.

Step 5 – Import Shein Products To Your Store

Once your dropshipping store is all setup, it is time to start Shein dropshipping. Now, your next step is to import your products. 

So, based on the marketplace, or platform you chose, this process differs from one another. However, it mostly includes, copying the product title, and product description, downloading its size charts, and all the other stuff you need for the product page. 

For example, in this case, I use ChatGPT to help me write or re-write unique product descriptions and product titles

So, I will just copy the product description from the Shein product page, and ask ChatGPT to re-write it. 👇

chatgpt

However, since you cannot reuse Shein product pictures, you will have to order a sample and take some stunning photos

Also, since I am using Shopify, the whole process of importing products is very simplified. 

Thus, I use the Shopify app for Shein Dropshipping- ShionImporter, and I simply enter the product URL, and the product is automatically imported. 👇 

product importer

Also, I am able to set my price markup and make changes to product information. 👇

import products

Step 6 – Market Your Store

Lastly, whenever you choose a marketplace, or your online store as a selling channel, you must promote your products. 

Therefore, boosting traffic to your online store is easy with a variety of simple digital marketing tricks

First off, think about adding search engine optimization (SEO), social media marketing, and email marketing to your bag of tricks.

For social media, try platforms like Facebook, Instagram, and TikTok.  Thus, make cool stuff, run ads for certain groups, and chat with possible customers. Also, another good idea is affiliate marketing. Team up with influencers or bloggers who promote fashion products. Give them a special code or link to shout out your products to their followers.

Don’t forget video ads! They’re awesome for showing off your dropshipping gear in a fun way. You can also teach people how to use your stuff, show off its perks, and more.

Want more sales? Try smart moves like cross-selling, up-selling, discounts, and referral programs.

And hey, if you’re into boosting your search engine game (who isn’t?), try starting a blog. Hence, write about clothing, styles, cool combos, and more. Thus, this can seriously help amp up your SEO mojo.

Shein Dropshipping Pros & Cons

PROS
A clothing shop with a fantastic variety of products

Reasonably priced products

Quick delivery

Discounts for buying in bulk

Works globally, available in over 220 countries

CONS
Comes in Shein-branded packaging

Unable to use their product pictures

Not possible to put your own label on products

Product quality can be inconsistent

Sizing problems are common

So, in my opinion, one of the best things about Shein dropshipping is that it gives you a variety of clothes and accessories to choose from, so you can offer your customers lots of different stuff. Oh, and there’s a VIP program for loyal customers where they get special discounts and great deals.

Plus, Shein’s products are usually not too pricey, so it’s pretty chill for us dropshippers to keep our prices competitive. They’re also quick with shipping and sending orders to loads of places worldwide.

On the not-so-great side, your customers will probably get their orders in Shein’s packaging. 

But you know what? If you make your own brand stand out, it helps people remember you. Almost all customers care more about getting their order on time than what the packaging looks like when it shows up, so that’s something to keep in mind.

Top Shein Dropshipping Alternatives 

Next on this Shein Dropshipping Review, I will list the top of its alternatives. So, if you don’t find Shein as your best fit, here’s what else you can use. 

👉 Also, check out the Top 17 China Wholesale Websites & Marketplaces For Ecommerce

AliExpress

aliexpress vs shein

AliExpress is a well-known dropshipping provider and a Chinese online store. They’ve got a bunch of products in many categories– fashion, electronics, jewelry, home gear, and more. Basically, everything you need to buy stuff in bulk is on AliExpress.

When it comes to paying, they give you lots of options – credit cards, debit cards, direct bank transfers, and even PayPal and iDeal.

For shipping, you get to choose – free, express, or super-fast shipping. Thus, they work with known shippers like UPS, USPS, FedEx, DHL, EMS, China Post Ordinary, Registered, and Air Mail.

But, here’s the thing – AliExpress shipping can take a while, like 15-30 days on average, and sometimes up to 60 days.

👉 Learn How to Reduce AliExpress Shipping Times in 2023.

Despite that, many folks still like it because it’s easy to use, and they’ve got reliable sellers. Also, they’ve got these handy Chrome extensions to help you find good suppliers and sweet deals.

Alibaba

alibaba vs shein

Alibaba is a big deal in the world of wholesale from China, changing things up with a whopping 160,000 suppliers and a crazy variety of products.

So, if you need electronics or stuff for the office, Alibaba has you covered. They’ve got tons of products for different dropshipping categories like electronics, clothes, car parts, workout gear, and more.

What’s cool about Alibaba is that they ship stuff globally. Thus, wherever you are, they’ll get your products to you. The delivery time can vary – if they’re sending your order by sea, it might take a few weeks, but if it’s by air, you’ll get it faster.

When you’re shipping things from China to Europe or the U.S., it might cost more because of the long distance. And, each Alibaba supplier has their own shipping times and costs.

Also, Alibaba suppliers require an MOQ. However, with their dropshipping center, you quickly check out loads of products with fast processing, cheap shipping, and the bonus of not having to order a ton.

👉Read about Alibaba Dropshipping: A Step-by-Step Guide For Beginners.

CJ Dropshipping

cjdropshipping

CJ Dropshipping is like an all-in-one online helper for dropshipping, where you can find products, make orders, get them shipped. It’s kind of a mix of Oberlo and Aliexpress.

What’s cool about it is that there are no fees involved – no minimum orders, no monthly subscriptions, no storage fees, and no setup costs. Plus, you don’t have to pay to sell stuff.

So, CJ Dropshipping offers many valuable features, like:

  • They handle over a million orders every month.
  • More than 300,000 folks, including Shopify sellers, trust them.
  • They’ve got this shipping thing called CjPacket that gets orders to you in just 1 to 2 weeks – faster than the others.
  • You can link CJ Dropshipping with platforms like Shopify, eBay, and WooCommerce.
  • They’ve got lots of warehouses all over the world.
  • They offer over 400,000 products in 13 different categories, like clothes, electronics, home stuff, and more.

And if you’re into it, they also do this thing called print-on-demand.

👉 Check out the CJ Dropshipping Review: How Does It Work? Pros & Cons, Comparison & Features.

Shein FAQs

1. Can I Use Shein for Dropshipping?

Yes, you can use Shein for dropshipping as long as you follow their rules. Hence, you are not allowed to use their product pictures, including those featuring models. 

To showcase the products, You’ll need to order a sample and take your own photos.

2. What Platforms Can I Sell Shein Products On?

You can dropship Shein products on various platforms like eBay, AliExpress, Depop, CjDropshipping, and social media platforms like Facebook Marketplace, etc.

3. Is Shein Dropshipping Profitable?

Absolutely! Shein proves to be a profitable dropshipping supplier by offering stylish clothing and accessories at budget-friendly prices. 

In fact, the platform stands out as one of the top fashion stores in the U.S. with a global revenue of $13 billion.

4. What Shein Products Should I Dropship?

For successful dropshipping from Shein, consider popular and trending items like the Dazy Star Solid Round Neck Thermal Tee, Sequin mini skirt, Tall Solid Stand Neck Tee, etc. These products are not only in demand but also have the potential for high profitability.

Thus, you can check on their Best Seller Category and get information about their most demanded products.

5. Can I Use Shein with Shopify?

Unfortunately, Shein doesn’t directly connect to Shopify through an API. Instead, you can use SheinImporter, Importify, or search for the same item on AliExpress. After finding the item, you can connect your shop and list the AliExpress product using Oberlo or CJDropshipping.

6. What’s the Shein VIP Program?

The Shein VIP program is completely free to join and has three tiers: S1, S2, and S3. So, advancing to the next tier depends on your purchase values. 

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Conclusion

In this blog journey, you’ve uncovered the Shein Dropshipping essentials. 

From understanding Shein’s evolution to its legitimacy, regulations, and key features, you’re equipped to embark on a successful venture. 

With a product catalog boasting over 600,000 items, reliable suppliers, and a user-friendly interface, Shein is the runway for your dropshipping success.

Remember, Shein dropshipping demands compliance, creativity, and customer connection. 

Key takeaways: know the rules, communicate with suppliers, and embrace the Shein VIP program. Navigate the Shein dropshipping landscape with confidence and turn your fashion aspirations into reality. Ready to take the plunge?

About the Author

Profile picture of Aleksandra
Aleksandra Miteva
Aleksandra teaches marketing and management at various levels in High School. She writes about marketing, the economics and logistics of the dropshipping business and ecommerce in general.