In November of last year, the New York Post revealed that one-half of millennials have some sort of side gig, enabling them to increase their savings or otherwise fund their dreams. Additionally, 52 percent of these gigs involve the selling of products, whether on or offline.
If you’re looking to join them and would prefer to create a side hustle online, dropshipping is an option to consider because it comes with a number of advantages. Here are three to consider.
 It’s cost-effective. One of the biggest obstacles to creating a second income is that, in most cases, it takes some real cash to do so. For instance, if you want to offer lawn maintenance services, there are tools and equipment to buy. Even if your side hustle involves buying and selling goods the traditional way, it can get super expensive to get enough stock in place.
This all goes away with dropshipping because you don’t have a lot of fancy equipment to purchase up front, nor do you have to pre-buy your goods. All you have to do is find your suppliers and set up an online store, which you can do relatively inexpensively. Then you’re ready to sell. And to make it more convenient for your customers, you might need to add an optimized checkout page for your online store.
 It doesn’t take a lot of time to maintain. Once you get your product images and descriptions online, your dropshipping business becomes relatively easy to maintain. Sure, you need to ensure that customer orders are handled properly and that your consumers get their goods, but other than that, it essentially runs on its own.
That being said, you still want to stay abreast of any trends related to your products. It also helps to know what your competitors are doing so you can outdo them. Pay attention to how they’re acquiring new customers, the way they use social media, and what areas they focus on when marketing. This will tell you where you need to excel when promoting your own business.
 You can travel and still keep your business. Dropshipping is also great in that you can still run your business, even if you’re not at home. That makes it a wonderful option if you like to travel for pleasure or if your main job requires that you spend a lot of time on the road.
You can handle customer questions from Fiji or add new products from France. All you need is your laptop and an internet connection and you’re good to go. Your customers will still receive their goods from your suppliers, and you’ll still be able to live your life.
Starting a Dropshipping Business
If all of these reasons sound appealing and you’re ready to start a dropshipping business from home, your first step is to choose the products you intend to sell. What items are you most passionate or knowledgeable about? What are your supplier options with those particular options?
Next, it’s time to put your company online, posting images and descriptions of all of the items you have to offer. Create content that not only shares what the product is, what it does, and its specs, but also draws the consumer in. This turns it from a want to a need and boosts the probability of a sale.
Once that’s ready to go, it’s time to reach out to your consumers and let them know that you exist. Contact them via email and on social media. Get them excited about your products and your company.
Finally, start building your brand in a way that makes your customers want to come back again and again. One that makes them want to bring their friends with them when they do.
Jeff Broth is a business writer, mentor, and personal finance advisor. He has been consulting for SMB owners and entrepreneurs for the past seven years.