In drop shipping, out of stock situations occur frequently. To what extent, then, do business owners plan for this eventuality?

In most cases, that is.

Most dropshippers don’t plan for this to happen, so they freak out when it does.

You have to find out how to deal with things like this in the future. If you don’t, you might lose your reputation and your customers.

In this manual, you’ll find everything you need to know to handle the dropshipping stock-out problem.

Therefore, let’s not waste any more time and dive in!

Ways to Overcome Dropshipping Out of Stock Issues 

When it comes to stock outages, most dropshippers don’t think ahead. Here are 5 options if you find yourself on the same boat:

Quickly Find an Alternative Supplier

When a dropshipper runs into supply problems, the lack of a backup vendor is usually the root cause.

The old adage, “better late than never,” seems especially appropriate here.

We advise looking into alternate suppliers if your current one is unable to provide a definitive answer or is taking too long to replenish stock.

Contact Customers to Provide a Proactive Solution

As a dropshipper, we know you can’t be in charge of everything.

In addition, addressing the needs of dissatisfied customers can present its own unique set of difficulties. But that shouldn’t stop you from making an effort.

Don’t keep your customers in the dark if you run out of a product they want to buy.

Instead, you should get in touch with them and suggest a proactive solution, such as suggesting a similar product you sell.

Or you could just tell them that the product they want to buy isn’t in stock in the best quality and will take X days to arrive.

However, if you do say this, double-check with your supplier to make sure you’re both on the same page.

If the original supplier can’t make it happen, try to track down another who can deliver in time.

In the end, the success of your dropshipping business depends on how well you serve your customers.

Consider Keeping Some Inventory 

Although it goes against the very tenets of dropshipping, it is a good idea to keep some stock on hand just in case.

We’re not requesting that you stockpile a lot, but having a couple of dozen on hand at home can come in handy if you ever find yourself in a jam.

While this approach has its advantages, it is not practical for high-price items.

This can buy you time if you’re selling low-priced goods while you figure out what to do next.

Sell Similar Products on Your Store

Finding out from your suppliers if they stock a similar product is a great way to keep your current clientele happy.

If they do, you should include that item in your catalog and provide customers with a link to it as a substitute.

Make sure the new product isn’t of low quality, and be honest about its features and benefits.

Don’t make the customer think the product is better than it is if it doesn’t.

Openly Communicate with Your Supplier 

It is preferable to acquire the goods from the manufacturers themselves.

However, manufacturers typically favor sales with a high minimum order quantity (MOQ), making this option unavailable in dropshipping.

At the very least, be forthright in your dealings with the vendor. Verify stock levels before agreeing to a final price.

Last but not least, before committing to a provider, do some preliminary research on their reputation online.

Why Planning Ahead is Important for Dropshipping Stock Issues?

That old adage about prevention being preferable to treatment is absolutely true. Therefore, rather than having to deal with an out of stock situation, here are some reasons why it is best to avoid it in the first place.

Protects and Increases Your Ratings

There is a lot of competition in the market, so it is important that your store establishes a good reputation.

However, disappointing customers and harming your reputation can result from cancelling orders frequently.

And that’s why it’s crucial that you get ready for stock issues ahead of time.

It can assist you in boosting your customer satisfaction levels, which in turn can boost your ratings.

Increase Chances of Repeat Customers

Getting customers to buy from you again and again is the lifeblood of any business.

And that’s why avoiding stockouts of products is so important.

Obviously, if you don’t have something in stock, your customers will go elsewhere.

Once a customer has made a purchase elsewhere, it can be exceedingly challenging to win them back.

Accelerates the Growth of Your Business

There is already a lot of competition in the dropshipping market.

Timely order fulfillment is crucial if you want your company to expand.

This will help you build credibility in your target market and encourage your customers to spread the word to other possible clients.

Furthermore, if you don’t have the product in stock, spending money on marketing is pointless.

How to Preserve Sales in Dropshipping When You’re Out of Stock? 

Can sales be maintained even if a particular item is temporarily out of stock? As for whether or not this is a good outcome, that’s up to you. Here are a few things to keep in mind:

Don’t Say That You’re Out of Stock

Try to avoid telling customers that you’re out of stock if at all possible.

Aside from hurting your ratings, this can cause customers to cancel their orders. So, what are some alternatives?

The problem is that most of the time, your clients have no idea that they can ask for a refund.

We’re not expecting you to lie, but we are asking that you act reasonably.

Say that your shipment hasn’t arrived yet and it will take a few days rather than that you’re out of stock.

Meanwhile, you can have the product shipped to your client from a different vendor (s).

Deal with Customers Positively

Don’t just tell customers “no” if you’re out of stock. Make an effort and provide them with a useful solution instead.

Keeping it this way can help you maintain sales and set you apart from the competition.

You can simply suggest a comparable product or inform them of the estimated restocking time, as we discussed above.

Try to avoid sounding desperate when communicating with clients, and go for an upbeat tone whenever possible.

Keep Some Time for Yourself

Honor your commitments to your clients, and build in some buffer time for yourself.

Just what do we mean by that? If your supplier says they can restock a product in 3-4 days, but you tell your customers it will take a week, you’re being dishonest.

This is to protect you from looking bad to your customers in the event that your supplier lets you down.

Dropshipping What to Do When Products Are Out of Stock

Why Do Dropshipping Suppliers Run Out of Stock?

The following are the most common causes of stock-outs from suppliers:

There is a greater need for the product than there is of it on the market.
Manufacturing-side technical issues have arisen.
There has been a holdup in product shipping.
Therefore, even the best suppliers occasionally experience stock outs. For this reason, it is generally advised to have a backup plan.

Final Thoughts

The out-of-stock problem in dropshipping is often overlooked.

Nonetheless, it’s not as uncommon as you might think.

The best thing to do is to stay calm and try to buy some time from your customers.