Sign Up Free
Sign Up Free
How to Make Money Dropshipping: What Does the Dropshipping Endgame Look Like?
March 27, 2024

When climbing a mountain for the first time, it's uncertain what you'll find at the peak. For most folks starting their dropshipping careers the only milestone they focus on is that of the first sale. What comes next?

The second sale? More customers? More products? Everything you do will be reactionary– and reactionary businesses don’t grow. What you need is an endgame.

How exactly do you plan on making money dropshipping? The thing is, many people don’t consider the long term goals of dropshipping. After all, influencers online tend to do one-and-done burner stores that they abandon as soon as their product stops flying off the shelves. Then they go onto the next product.

In reality, this method is highly inefficient and leaves very little room for scalability. Scalability is how side hustles become digital brands. Is such growth achievable? Aren’t dropshipping stores notorious for their low quality, nonexistent customer support, and generally untrustworthy standing? That may be true for some stores, but you’d be surprised to hear that many large brands actually had their start as dropshipping stores.

Scaling your store into a big name brand is one of the few ways you can make tons of money dropshipping. In this article, we’ll show you 5 examples of dropshipping stores that successfully reached their endgame, turning small shops into multi-million dollar brands (and how they got there).

But What Is Dropshipping?

Dropshipping, a retail fulfillment method in the e-commerce industry, spares the seller from holding inventory. Simply put, the seller doesn’t have to hold inventory. Whenever a customer orders a product, the seller will put the order in directly with a manufacturer to have the product shipped right to the customer.

This means that you, the dropshipper, only need to work on getting customers and marketing your product. 

As your store grows bigger, you can start branching out into private label goods. Many of these brands grew their stores doing just that.

Here Are 5 Dropshipping Stores That Turned Into Global Brands

Azura Runway

Azura Runway is a luxury clothing brand that successfully grew a dropshipping store into a global brand. How? By taking advantage of data-centric marketing and customer success. 

With a selection of over 1,200 designer brands, their business model involves selling luxury fashion without holding inventory. As they grew, they even expanded their offerings by creating Azura Exchange for fast fashion and Azura Fit for athleisure.

By focusing on measurable and actionable metrics to inform their business decisions PLUS focusing on ensuring their customers stay happy, Azura Runway is now one of the largest brands of their kind in Australia.

Where many dropshippers will forgo sustainability and social responsibility, Azura Runway partners with charities to support various causes around the globe. Azura is now eyeing expansion into new markets and preparing for an IPO, demonstrating their continued ambition for global presence​.

And really, it just goes to show how important it is that serious dropshippers pay attention to factors outside of just revenue. Customer support, customer satisfaction, quality control, social causes, and other factors can help elevate your brand’s status.


Gymshark is probably the most well-known shop to have evolved from dropshipping store to global brand. What started as a British fitness apparel brand, quickly rose to a global sensation, now valued at over £1 billion. 

Gymshark was founded in 2012 by Ben Francis and leveraged social media and influencer partnerships to engage with fitness enthusiasts. Though their results may not be as reproducible today, smart usage of direct-to-consumer fulfillment, savvy digital marketing, and an understanding of audience needs can easily help dropshipping stores find the growth they’re looking for.

Many hold the idea that influencer partnerships and social media tools are too oversaturated to produce profitable returns. This could not be further from the truth. Every day, more and more people strive to become successful influencers. This means that more and more partnership opportunities with mid-tier influencers appear with each passing day. 

Leveraging these outlets can help build a strong online community and a notable social media presence, allowing small brands to rapidly expand in much the same way Gymshark did. In fact, Gymshark continues to scale up using these same methods today.


Aesthentials is an online fashion retailer specializing in aesthetic, ‘kawaii’, pastel, and ‘daebak’ merchandise. Some of you might be wondering, what does that mean?

Funnily enough, that’s exactly why this store managed to grow so big, so fast. Aesthentials managed to corner a very specific niche that catered to a demographic that emphasized fashion and style. Kawaii means ‘cute’ in Japanese, and Daebak means ‘awesome’ in Korean slang. These two words represent an increasingly popular style of streetwear largely untapped in the United States.

As such, Aesthentials is known for their vibrant, youthful designs, featuring items like T-shirts, swimwear, crop tops, dresses, and more. With an offering that extends to include accessories like jewelry and phone cases, Aesthentials caters to a young, trend-focused demographic that values unique and expressive fashion.

As an e-commerce store, Aesthentials also provides free worldwide delivery, promoting their brand to a global audience that capitalized on the booming popularity of anime, vtubers, and kpop. This, combined with a varied and frequently updated inventory, appears to be key elements of their strategy for scaling up as a global brand. 

Their official website showcases their latest offerings and serves as the primary platform for sales, emphasizing direct customer engagement and a digital-first retail approach. Aesthentials is a masterclass in capitalizing on popular trends with passionate tribes and knowledgeable insider information.


Zola is, in a word, genius. And it goes to show that dropshipping doesn’t have to be as one-dimensional as owning a Shopify store.

Technically speaking, you can consider Zola to be a hybrid between ecommerce store and a software product. Founded in 2013, they’re an innovative online wedding registry platform that simplifies the process of buying wedding registry gifts. Couples can register for gifts, experiences, and cash funds, as well as add gifts from other stores. With a focus on easing the stress of organizing marriage ceremonies, Zola has expanded into offering free wedding websites, invitations, and items for the wedding day.

By dropshipping these products, shoppers don’t have to stress about getting the right gift, while couples can leave the entire thing in the hands of the company.

The company stands out for its user-friendly services that cater to the modern couple's needs, ensuring a seamless process from engagement to wedding and even in decorating their first home. Zola has made its mark with an estimated revenue of $397.4 million, supported by funding of approximately $145.8 million, indicating a significant presence and impact in the wedding industry.

So how did Zola succeed? Aside from the genius idea of leveraging dropshipping in a creative way, their success can be attributed to a customer-centric approach that provides an easy-to-build and easy-to-manage online registry with products that people actually want. 

Beyond that, they've made strategic partnerships with the likes of Pinterest on a wedding trends report, demonstrating their commitment to staying at the forefront of wedding planning trends and consumer preferences.

In short, customer service, clever ideas, strategic partnerships, and a niche full of devoted customers.


Grafomap is the only print-on-demand dropshipping business on this list, but don’t let that downplay how powerful print-on-demand can be.

One of the biggest difficulties with print-on-demand is coming up with a design that people will want to buy. On that front, it’s significantly harder to find success with POD than traditional dropshipping. So how did Grafomap scale to a multi-million dollar business without having to worry about any design skills?


Grafomap is a Latvia-based design company established in 2016 by Rihards Piks and Karlis Bikis. It offers a unique service that combines OpenStreetMap data with various design filters, enabling users to create personalized map posters of any location in the world. These custom maps are then printed and shipped from Los Angeles and Riga, catering to a global customer base looking for a bespoke touch to their home decor. 

Grafomap's innovative approach to customizable design has allowed it to carve out a niche in the personalized goods market, appealing to those who wish to commemorate special places in a visually appealing way. Not to mention, most POD businesses will focus on apparel, which is difficult to profitize given how saturated fashion has become. By branching into personalized goods, they circumvent this market entirely, tapping a popular, yet not as saturated market.

Getting To Your Endgame

After reading through these entries, you may have noticed a few common trends that all of these successful brands exhibit. Things like customer service, clever ideas, and smart marketing are ubiquitous tools that contribute heavily to the growth of a brand.

The dropshippers who adopt a mindset of long-term growth will likely succeed more often than those who seek short-term profits.

So how do you get to your endgame?

Educate yourself on the fundamentals of ecommerce. Don’t know where to start? Check out our Completely FREE Beginner's Guide to Dropshipping In 2024. In this guide, we lay out everything you need to know to start and grow your own ecommerce business. I can confidently say that this is one of the most comprehensive guides on dropshipping that you can get for free.

Once you have the knowledge, put it into practice. Learn from your failures to stack up your successes, and before you know it, you’ll be sitting atop your own ecommerce empire.

Get Zendrop for Free
Start and scale your own dropshipping business with Zendrop. Choose from over 1 million products to sell and easily fulfill your orders with the fastest shipping in the industry.
Sign Up Free