Amazon vs Dropshipping

15 / Jul

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Amazon FBA (Fulfillment by Amazon) and dropshipping are two tactics that stand out as leading competitors in the exciting world of e-commerce. Which path should business owners and entrepreneurs choose as they traverse the digital market? Both Amazon FBA and dropshipping present distinctive methods for selling goods online, each with its own advantages and difficulties. In this blog, we set out on a quest to explain the subtleties of these tactics and direct you toward coming to a decision that is in line with your business objectives. 

So, join along as we explore the worlds of Amazon FBA vs Dropshipping to see which route holds the path to profitability for your business

What is Amazon FBA?

Amazon FBA’s major goal is to make things simpler for online businesses to sell their goods. When a customer puts in an order, Amazon handles all aspects of order fulfillment, including product selection, shipment, packaging, and assistance for customers. Sellers keep their products in Amazon’s cutting-edge warehouses. Because of this, as a seller, you may focus on growing your business while Amazon handles the logistical issues.

How Does Amazon FBA Work?

This chapter breaks down the step-by-step process of using Amazon FBA:

  • Product Storage: Sellers ship their inventory to Amazon’s fulfillment centers.
  • Listing: Sellers create product listings, marking them as “Fulfilled by Amazon.”
  • Order Placement: Customers place orders through Amazon’s platform.
  • Picking and Packing: Amazon employees retrieve products, pack them, and prepare for shipping.
  • Shipping: Amazon ships the products, often with Prime two-day shipping.
  • Customer Support: Customer questions, returns, and refunds are managed by Amazon.

What is Dropshipping?

Dropshipping is a business method where the seller sells products without keeping a physical inventory of them in stock. Instead of buying items directly, the seller procures them from an external supplier and promptly ships them to the customer upon order placement. Consequently, the seller is relieved from the complexities of managing logistics, inventory, and storage space.

How Does Dropshipping Work?

Uncover the step-by-step process of the dropshipping model:

  • Setting Up an Online Store: Sellers create an e-commerce platform to showcase products.
  • Partnering with Suppliers: Sellers identify and collaborate with reliable suppliers.
  • Product Selection: Careful curation of products to sell, focusing on niche and demand.
  • Listing and Pricing: The online store lists products with pricing that take advantage of the seller’s profit margin as well as the supplier’s cost.
  • Customer Orders: The seller sends the information to the supplier once a customer puts an order.
  • Supplier Fulfillment: The product is packaged and shipped straight to the customer by the provider.
  • Customer Support: Sellers handle customer inquiries, returns, and refunds.

Dropshipping on Amazon – Is It Possible?

Dropshipping on Amazon is indeed possible, but it’s important to understand Amazon’s policies and guidelines. Amazon doesn’t explicitly prohibit dropshipping, but it does have specific requirements that sellers must adhere to. These include:

  • Sellers must be the sellers of record for their products on Amazon.
  • Sellers are responsible for providing accurate and timely order fulfillment information.
  • Sellers should have access to inventory to ensure prompt shipment.
  • Sellers must meet Amazon’s performance metrics for order defect rate, pre-fulfillment cancel rate, and late shipment rate.

How to dropship on Amazon?

here’s a concise guide on how to dropship on Amazon:

  • Register As An Amazon Seller: Create a seller account on Amazon in case you don’t already have one.
  • Select Your Niche: Choose a niche that interests you and has market demand.
  • Lookup For Reliable Vendors: Find trustworthy vendors that provide dropshipping services and form a partnership with them.
  • List Your Products: Create compelling product listings with accurate descriptions, high-quality images, and competitive prices.
  • Manage Orders: When a customer orders from your store, forward the order details to your supplier for fulfillment.
  • Price Calculation: Set product prices by factoring in supplier costs, shipping fees, Amazon’s fees, and your desired profit margin.
  • Customer Service: Address customer inquiries promptly and provide excellent service to build trust.
  • Monitor Performance: Keep track of metrics like order defect rate and late shipment rate to meet Amazon’s standards.
  • Expand and Optimize: Gradually expand your product range, optimize listings, and utilize Amazon’s advertising tools.
  • Continuous Improvement: Analyze sales data, customer behavior, and feedback to make informed decisions for growth.

Remember to adhere to Amazon’s policies and guidelines, and focus on offering quality products and exceptional customer experiences for a successful dropshipping business on Amazon.

Pros & Cons Amazon FBA vs Dropshipping


Aspect Amazon FBA Dropshipping
Shipping Efficiency Picking, shipping, packaging, and customer support are handled by Amazon. Suppliers handle shipping directly to customers
Prime Eligibility FBA products often qualify for Amazon Prime benefits Opportunity to offer Prime-like shipping
Customer Trust FBA products associated with Amazon’s trusted brand Possibility to build a unique brand identity
Customer Service Amazon handles customer inquiries, returns, and refunds Responsibility for customer service
Reduced Workload Outsourcing logistics frees up time for other business tasks Focus on marketing and customer acquisition
Inventory Management Amazon manages inventory, reducing storage concerns No need to manage physical inventory


Aspect       Amazon FBA       Dropshipping
Costly Fees FBA charges storage and fulfillment fees Dropshippers may face slim profit margins
Limited Control Less control over packing and branding Limited control over product quality and shipping
Compliance Requirements Must meet Amazon’s standards for order defects and other metrics Adherence to supplier agreements and quality
Inventory Costs Potential for storage fees if products don’t sell No storage fees, but lack of control over stock
Market Competition Fierce competition within Amazon’s marketplace In a congested internet market, you must stand out

Which is right for your business? Amazon FBA or Dropshipping

When deciding between Amazon FBA and dropshipping, it’s crucial to carefully analyze these elements as they each offer different advantages and difficulties based on your business objectives and palettes.

Dropshipping vs. Amazon FBA depends on a variety of factors, including your business goals, what assets you have access to, your personal tastes, and the types of products you plan to offer. Considering several instances, let’s determine which choice could be most appropriate:

Choose Amazon FBA If:

  • Efficiency and Prime: You want to offer customers fast and reliable shipping, often associated with Amazon Prime. FBA products are Prime-eligible, which can attract more customers.
  • Scalability: You plan to scale your business quickly and want Amazon’s infrastructure to support your growth without dealing with logistics complexities.
  • Hands-Off Approach: You prefer outsourcing fulfillment, customer service, and returns to Amazon, allowing you to focus on product development and marketing.
  • Brand Association: You want to leverage Amazon’s reputation and credibility to build customer trust.
  • Inventory Management: You have concerns about managing inventory and storage and want Amazon to handle these aspects.

Choose Dropshipping If:

  • Low Initial Investment: You have limited funds to start your business and want to avoid upfront inventory costs.
  • Product Variety: You want to test a wide range of products without committing to holding inventory.
  • Control and Branding: You value the ability to control your brand, packaging, and customer experience.
  • Flexibility: You prefer the flexibility to change products and suppliers quickly based on market trends.
  • Risk Tolerance: You’re willing to manage aspects like customer service, order fulfillment, and potential inventory fluctuations.
  • Niche Marketing: You’re interested in targeting specific niches and providing unique value to a targeted audience.

Ultimately, the right choice depends on your business strategy, your willingness to manage different aspects of e-commerce, and your goals for growth and profitability. Some entrepreneurs might even blend both models, using Amazon FBA for certain products and Dropshipping for others. It’s crucial to thoroughly research and analyze your options before making a decision.

What is the future of Amazon FBA and Dropshipping

Although it is difficult to predict the exact future of Amazon FBA (Fulfillment by Amazon) and dropshipping, we can foresee some patterns based on the development of e-commerce and consumer trends. Remember that these patterns are hypothetical and could vary as an effect for a number of reasons. As of my last update in September 2021, here’s how the future might unfold for both models:

Amazon FBA:

  • Continued Growth: Amazon FBA is likely to continue growing as more sellers leverage Amazon’s infrastructure and customer base. This growth could lead to increased competition within the marketplace.
  • Automation and Efficiency: Amazon will likely invest more in automation, robotics, and AI to optimize the fulfillment process. This could lead to faster order processing and reduced operational costs for FBA sellers.
  • Global Expansion: Amazon’s international presence will likely expand, providing FBA sellers with opportunities to reach new markets and customers around the world.
  • Sustainability: Environmental concerns could drive Amazon to implement more eco-friendly practices within its fulfillment network, impacting packaging, waste reduction, and energy efficiency.
  • Regulations and Policies: As e-commerce regulations evolve, FBA sellers may face changes in taxation, cross-border trade, and data privacy, requiring them to adapt their strategies.


  • Quality Improvement: To address issues related to shipping times and product quality, dropshippers may focus on establishing more reliable supplier relationships and improving customer satisfaction.
  • Niche Focus: Dropshippers could increasingly target niche markets where they can provide unique products, personalization, and tailored customer experiences.
  • Technology Integration: Dropshipping businesses might adopt advanced software solutions to enhance communication with suppliers, streamline order processing, and provide better tracking.
  • Marketplace Evolution: New e-commerce platforms and marketplaces may emerge specifically catering to dropshippers, offering specialized tools and resources.
  • Hybrid Models: Entrepreneurs might explore hybrid models that combine elements of both FBA and Dropshipping to optimize fulfillment, variety, and customer service.
  • Marketplace Changes: The e-commerce landscape will continue to evolve, and platforms like Amazon could introduce new features or policies that impact the feasibility and competitiveness of dropshipping.

In summary, while Amazon FBA and Dropshipping will likely continue to coexist, their trajectories will be shaped by technology advancements, consumer preferences, regulatory changes, and market dynamics. Success in either model will depend on adaptability, staying informed about industry trends, and aligning your strategies with the evolving needs of your target audience.


As we come to a conclusion with our research of the Amazon FBA vs Dropshipping argument, it is clear that there is no universally applicable solution. Each strategy includes advantages and things to keep in mind that are specific to various business structures, objectives, and resources. Utilizing Amazon’s enormous customer base, infrastructure, and Prime advantages, Amazon FBA has the advantage of expediting the shipping process. Dropshipping, on the other hand, excels in its simplicity, requiring little upfront expenditure and enabling a wider product choice.

The choice eventually relies on elements like your degree of inventory control, your financial capability, your branding plan, and your readiness to handle logistics. Whether you choose the effectiveness of Amazon FBA or the adaptability of dropshipping, the secret is to recognize the specific demands of your company and tailor your plan to meet those needs. 

So, if you decide to follow the FBA trend or adopt the dropshipping business model, keep in mind that success in e-commerce necessitates ongoing learning, adaptation, and a good awareness of the preferences of your target market. Your strategy should change as the online market does to ensure that your company succeeds in the ever-evolving e-commerce environment.


Which one is better: Amazon FBA or dropshipping?

The choice between Amazon FBA (Fulfillment by Amazon) and dropshipping depends on various factors, including your business goals, budget, and personal preferences. Here’s a brief comparison:

Is Amazon FBA selling easy?

Amazon FBA can be relatively straightforward to start, especially if you’re selling products already listed on Amazon. However, achieving long-term success can be challenging.

Is Amazon FBA free?

Amazon FBA is not free. There are fees associated with using the service, including storage fees, fulfillment fees, and referral fees. These fees vary depending on factors like the size and weight of your products. You’ll also incur costs related to sourcing and shipping your products to Amazon’s fulfillment centers.

Do you need a brand for Amazon FBA?

Having a brand can be beneficial for Amazon FBA, but it’s not mandatory. You can sell generic or unbranded products on Amazon. However, building a brand can help you differentiate yourself, establish trust with customers, and potentially command higher prices.

Can anyone be an FBA seller?

In general, yes, anyone can become an Amazon FBA seller. You need to create an Amazon seller account, decide on your business model, and list your products. However, there are certain requirements and restrictions, and Amazon may review and approve your seller account based on various factors. You also need to comply with Amazon’s policies and guidelines.

What is more profitable than dropshipping?

Several e-commerce models can be more profitable than traditional dropshipping:

  • Private Labeling
  • Wholesale
  • Manufacturing
  • Print on Demand
  • Subscription Boxes