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Amazon FBA vs Dropshipping: Comparing Pros and Cons

Wed Dec 20, 2023 Amazon Tips

Are you planning to start an e-commerce business but confused about whether to use Amazon FBA or dropshipping? You’re not alone! Both are popular methods, but which one is right for you?

This article’ll compare Amazon FBA and dropshipping, highlighting their pros and cons. So you can make an informed decision and choose the best method for your business when analyzing Amazon FBA vs Dropshipping.

What is Amazon FBA?

If you’re an online seller who wants to save time and effort in storing, packaging, and shipping your products, then Amazon FBA (Fulfillment by Amazon) is the perfect solution.

This excellent service lets you store your products in Amazon’s fulfillment centers, and when someone orders your product, Amazon handles the packaging and shipping for you. This means you can sit back and relax while Amazon takes the heavy lifting. With Amazon FBA, you can focus on growing your business without worrying about the nitty-gritty details of storing, packaging, and shipping.

Pros of Amazon FBA

  • Prime Eligibility: Products fulfilled by Amazon are eligible for Prime shipping, which can attract more customers and increase sales.
  • Faster Shipping: With Amazon’s vast network of fulfillment centers, products can be shipped to customers quickly, improving the overall customer experience.
  • Customer Service: Amazon handles all customer service inquiries and returns, taking the burden off of the seller.
  • Scalability: With Amazon FBA, sellers can quickly scale their business as Amazon handles logistics and fulfillment.
  • Trust and Credibility: Customers trust Amazon, so selling through FBA can give your products more credibility and increase sales.

Cons of Amazon FBA

  • Fees: Amazon charges fees for storage, fulfillment, and other services, which can eat into profits.
  • Competition: With millions of sellers on Amazon, competition can be fierce, making it challenging to stand out.
  • Limited Control: As Amazon handles the fulfillment process, sellers have limited control over the packaging and shipping of their products.
  • Product Restrictions: Amazon restricts certain products, so not all products can be sold through FBA.

What is Dropshipping?

It’s a retail fulfillment method where the seller holds no inventory. Instead, when a customer orders, the seller buys the product from a third party and has it shipped directly to the customer. This way, the seller does not have to worry about handling inventory or shipping. Dropshipping It’s a good way to start a business without any upfront costs!

Pros of Dropshipping

  • Low Startup Costs: Dropshipping has low startup costs because there is no need to purchase inventory upfront.
  • No Inventory Management: With drop shipping, sellers do not have to worry about storing or managing inventory.
  • Wide Product Selection: As sellers do not have to purchase inventory upfront, they can offer their customers a wide selection of products.
  • Flexibility: Dropshipping allows sellers to work from anywhere, as long as they have an internet connection.
  • Easy to Get Started: With platforms like Shopify and Oberlo, it is easy to set up a dropshipping business.

Cons of Dropshipping

  • Lower Profit Margins: As sellers do not purchase products at wholesale prices, profit margins can be lower.
  • Shipping Times: As products are shipped from a third party, shipping times can be longer, leading to customer dissatisfaction.
  • Customer Service: As the seller is responsible for customer service, they must handle any inquiries or returns.
  • Product Quality Control: As sellers do not handle the products, they have limited control over the quality of the products shipped to customers.
  • Product Sourcing: Finding reliable suppliers can be challenging, and sellers must constantly monitor and update their product offerings.

Dropshipping vs Amazon FBA

Amazon FBA and dropshipping differ in terms of product sourcing. With Amazon FBA, sellers have to buy products upfront and send them to Amazon’s fulfillment centers. This requires sellers to have capital to purchase inventory and take on the risk of not selling all of their products.

In contrast, dropshipping doesn’t require sellers to purchase inventory upfront. They can source products from third-party suppliers and buy them only when a customer orders. This means sellers don’t have to worry about inventory management or the risk of not selling products.

Fees and Costs

Selling products through Amazon FBA and dropshipping can come with fees and costs. Amazon FBA charges fees for storage, fulfillment, and other services, which can vary based on the size and weight of the products sold.

Dropshipping also has fees, which are generally lower than Amazon FBA fees. With drop shipping, sellers pay for the cost of the product, shipping, and any transaction fees from the platform they are using. However, since there is no need to purchase inventory upfront, the overall costs can be lower for dropshipping.

Control and Flexibility

Selling products on Amazon through their FBA program can be frustrating as sellers have limited control over the fulfillment process. Amazon takes care of everything from packaging to shipping, leaving the seller with no control over the quality of packaging or shipping times.

On the other hand, drop shipping offers more control and flexibility to sellers. They can choose their suppliers and have more control over the packaging and shipping of products. This allows for a more personalized customer experience and can help sellers stand out from the competition.

Customer Service

One of the main differences between Amazon FBA and dropshipping is customer service.

With Amazon FBA, Amazon handles all customer service inquiries and returns, taking the burden off of the seller. This can be beneficial for sellers who do not have the resources to handle customer service themselves.

On the other hand, dropshipping requires sellers to handle all customer service inquiries and returns. This can be time-consuming and can take away from other aspects of running the business. However, it also allows for more personalized customer service, which can lead to increased customer satisfaction.

Which One is Right for You?

Deciding between Amazon FBA and dropshipping depends on your business goals and resources. Suppose you have the capital to buy inventory upfront and want to benefit from Amazon’s vast customer base and Prime eligibility. In that case, Amazon FBA may be the right choice for you. On the other hand, dropshipping may be a better option if you’re starting and have limited resources. It allows for low startup costs and flexibility but requires more work regarding product sourcing and customer service.

Speak With An Amazon Seller Attorney at ESQgo®

If you want to start an online business, we recommend you talk to an attorney specializing in Amazon sellers. By enlisting an experienced attorney, you can be confident that you will be guided through the process and helped to comply with Amazon policies.

At ESQgo®, we are the Amazon Seller Attorneys who can help you regain your selling privileges. You can contact us today by calling 866-254-6503 or through our contact page. We provide a free 30-minute consultation to start.


When it comes to selling products online, both Amazon FBA and dropshipping have their own set of pros and cons. Ultimately, your right choice will depend on your business goals and available resources. It’s essential to consider the factors discussed in this article carefully and choose the best method for your circumstances. With the right strategy and execution, Amazon FBA and dropshipping can lead to successful online sales.