The use of e-commerce is skyrocketing. Well over half of all consumers already begin their product research online. And there’s no sign the trend will slow down any time soon.

If you work in retail, you know that everything revolves around keeping the customer happy. They want the product they ordered to be with them tomorrow, if not before.

While you may have your own warehousing capability for storing, picking and despatching stock, you’re just as likely to have an expanding list of suppliers who can ship direct to the customer.

This fast-growing delivery option, dropship, is great for e-commerce orders. For retailers, it means you don’t have to worry about managing a warehouse or incurring additional carriage and fulfillment costs. Some of the UK’s best-loved retail brands are turning on dropship to gain a competitive edge.

But here’s the rub: like any other aspect of your business, it’s important to ensure you are making a return on investment. To do that, you must avoid the risk of letting customers down through poor service. In short, you need continual oversight of what’s happening on your behalf.

Without that confidence, it could be a recipe for disaster for both your bottom line and your brand’s reputation.

To read more about how retailers and manufacturers are mutually benefiting from EDI for dropshipping, download the report ‘Has dropshipping come of age’.

The four pillars of successful dropshipping

Many of the problems associated with dropship come down to a lack of investment and planning. There are four pillars that any business considering introducing dropshipping to their fulfilment strategy should carefully consider.


Talk to your existing dropship manufacturers and create a model of supply chain management that works for both of you. Conduct due diligence on new manufacturers and make sure they share the same business ethics as you.


To enable you to manage fast-changing market fluctuations, ensure the order fulfilment processes you agree with your dropship manufacturers can step up to the mark. Make sure they have the ability to meet peaks of demand.


Once your reputation is gone, it’s difficult to get it back. Best to treat your dropshipping manufacturers as close partners, not suppliers. They hold the reputation of your company in their hands, so you need to trust them implicitly.


Dropship fulfilment relies on the manufacturer being connected at all times, with the ability to manage multiple discrete orders from consumers rather than bulk orders from the retailer or distributor. This means the IT systems involved must be able to fully integrate and process hundreds or even thousands of individual orders seamlessly and quickly.

Why Transalis?

Transalis has bags of experience helping companies install efficient EDI solutions within dropship environments.  EDI is an agile and flexible way of ensuring you can rapidly react to unprecedented change, such as a global pandemic or consumer trends, allowing you to simply and easily add new suppliers to your trading network.

Find out more about Transalis EDI Software.

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Featuring an EDI case study from simplehuman

A market report from Transalis

Has dropshipping finally come of age?

Download the free market report to find out how some of the UK biggest brands are overcoming dropship challenges to speed up deliveries and optimise their supply chain.

Download the report