Is AliExpress Dropshipping Dead? 5 Statistics Proving Its Relevance in 2024

May 5, 2024

AliExpress dropshipping is not dead. In fact, it achieved a 60% year-on-year volume leap in December 2023. This increase in order volume shows that AliExpress continues to thrive, and it's still very much alive. AliExpress is also expanding globally into new markets like South Korea and Saudi Arabia. According to their financial report for the last quarter of 2023, AliExpress's international wholesale segment rose by 6%, which shows a growing user base of dropshippers and ecommerce sellers. Low overhead costs make AliExpress dropshipping an attractive model for entrepreneurs, and the increasing number of websites using AliExpress for product sourcing shows its value in the digital marketplace. It's possible to stay profitable and achieve growth with AliExpress dropshipping in 2024.

However, there are many ecommerce sellers who experienced recent challenges with AliExpress dropshipping. Igor Tkachenko, Product Manager at AliTools, explains that AliExpress dropshipping is no longer as profitable as before. It's still a good place to find products or ideas for your online store, but the barrier to entry has become higher. He says that maintaining a steady profits with AliExpress dropshipping in 2024 is all about how you market your products and spend on ads.

Johnny Amicci shares a similar sentiment and claims that AliExpress dropshipping isn't the best business model in 2024. He says that there are hundreds of other people selling the same products as you. However, the benefit of AliExpress is that there are always new niches to discover and tap into. This business model is still effective if you can find the right products.

AliExpress is an online retail service based in China. Alibaba Group founder Jack Ma established it in 2011. AliExpress specializes in offering wholesale and retail products to international online buyers. It's known for low prices and a wide variety of items. Some claim AliExpress is "dead" because of challenges like long shipping times, inconsistent product quality, and increased competition. According to EcomCrew, dropshipping isn’t dead but because of these challenges, it makes it hard to succeed in this market. 

This article explains why AliExpress is still alive and provides 5 statistics that prove its relevance in 2024. It discusses AliExpress's strengths, future opportunities, and challenges. At the end of the article, I’ll introduce an alternative that offers lucrative income opportunity but offers more consistent income, requiring only minimal effort to operate.

5 Statistics Proving AliExpress’ Relevance in 2024

1. AliExpress Saw a 60% Surge in Order Volume

AliExpress saw a big jump in how much people are ordering because of a special feature called Choice. This feature makes shopping easier and better by providing free shipping and timely deliveries. It has made the platform more appealing for dropshipping. According to PR Newswire, the Alibaba Group’s financial report highlights a 60% surge in AliExpress's order volume as of December 31, 2023.

Choice orders over $10 or any three selected items get free shipping in most places. Customers in over 20 markets like Spain and France could return Choice products for free. This shows the importance of effective logistics management and customer service in the dropshipping business model. 

AliExpress Choice Positive Reviews

According to this Reddit comment, AliExpress stores with the "choice" label usually sell better quality products. In case of returns or product disputes, you deal with AliExpress directly and not with independent sellers. 


AliExpress Choice Negative Reviews

This commenter said that even though he bought from a "choice" seller, he still ended up with a poor quality item and the seller even extended shipping thrice. 

2. ePacket Shipping is Number 1

ePacket shipping is a fast and affordable delivery service from China and Hong Kong to several countries. It’s the number 1 option for dropshippers who want to send products faster to their customers. ePacket shipping features lower costs and faster delivery times compared to traditional international shipping. It’s available in over 40 regions worldwide, including the US, UK, Canada, and Australia. ePacket shipping times take an average of 7 to 20 days, depending on destination, customs, and other delays.

However, not everyone seems to be happy with their services. 

Echo Warns Against ePacket Shipping and AliExpress Standard Shipping

  • Unreliable Shipping Timeline: ePacket's shipping times are inconsistent and could sometimes take from 60 to 90 days in the worst cases. 
  • Dependent on Passenger Flights: The courier is dependent on available cargo space in passenger flights. Packages could get delayed or stuck in warehouses if there's a shortage of cargo space. 
  • Local Couriers in Destination Country: Once the package arrives at the destination country, it is handed over to the local service providers, which could lead to delays or, worse, missing parcels.
  • Communication Barrier: ePacket delivery information is often written in Chinese. So, non-Chinese customers will have trouble understanding package instructions and could even get others frustrated. 

3. AliExpress Has Expanded to 230 Territories Globally

AliExpress's international expansion to 230 countries makes it easier for dropshippers to access a vast array of products. According to Zawya, a press release from the Alibaba Group states that AliExpress has expanded its Affiliate Programme to the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) region. With this expansion, influencers will gain access to over 150 million affiliate products and numerous sales opportunities.

AliExpress dropshippers in other parts of the globe gain access to wider product and shipping options. In Brazil, there are over 12 million users who actively use the platform every month. This broadens the customer base and strengthens AliExpress's position as a global e-commerce and dropshipping resource.

4. AliExpress Has $0 Starting Costs

AliExpress dropshipping eliminates the need for a physical inventory and hefty initial investments. It’s free to dropship with AliExpress and you only need to pay for shipping fees when you meet the minimum order quantity. You can get free shipping when you order with ePacket. Setting up an AliExpress dropshipping website only costs $20 or less. This makes it a cost-effective entry into e-commerce. Dropshippers can launch and scale their businesses with minimal financial barriers. AliExpress’s extensive product range also enables sellers to explore niche markets at lower financial risk.

5. 13,463 Websites are Using AliExpress for Dropshipping

More websites are using AliExpress because it offers a vast selection of products at competitive prices. According to BuiltWith, 13,463 live websites are using AliExpress. 71,140 sites had used AliExpress previously. More dropshippers and consumers are using the platform to source products for their B2C retail stores. In December 2023, AliExpress received over 519 million hits worldwide, according to Statista. This also coincides with the growth of interest in dropshipping as a business model. According to Google Trends, there were 650,000 searches for the term ‘dropshipping’ in late 2023.

Is AliExpress Dropshipping Dead or Alive?: Two Sides of the Story

Aliexpress dropshipping is alive

Aliexpress dropshipping is dead

Shipping Options: The availability of ePacket shipping minimizes delivery times. This makes it competitive and appealing to customers looking for quicker deliveries. According to Shopify, ePacket shipping times take an average of 7 to 20 days.

Shipping Times: Delays in shipping can deter customers, especially when faster alternatives are available. Longer delivery times may lead to dissatisfaction. According to NextSmartShip, AliExpress shipping to the US can around 15-60 days.

Customer Support: AliExpress has improved its return and refund processes. They now offer clearer guidelines and support. This is also driven by AliExpress’s introduction of Choice, which is a premium e-commerce service available with better after-sales service. It lets you source AliExpress products directly from merchants and factories to shorten the supply chain. Choice is available in 215 countries and regions.

Return/Refund Process: The complexity of handling returns or refunds internationally can frustrate customers. You can’t return some orders on AliExpress. Individual customers still experience difficulties with the return/refund process.

Quality Control: There's an increasing emphasis on offering high-quality products. AliExpress and sellers are working to enhance product quality control measures. For products exported to Europe, AliExpress has specific entry points for submitting product qualifications. These include CE marks and product labels to align with international regulatory requirements.

Product Quality: The variability in AliExpress' product quality can lead to customer mistrust. Not all suppliers maintain high standards, which might affect the overall reputation. A dropshipper reports buying 10-15 of the bestselling products from AliExpress and 80% of the products were defective.

Market Opportunity: Despite saturation, there's a growing demand in emerging markets. AliExpress's global reach provides opportunities to tap into new customer segments. According to China Internet Watch, AliExpress has over 150 million active buyers.

Market Saturation: The dropshipping market is becoming increasingly saturated. This makes it harder for new entrants to stand out and succeed.

Accessibility: AliExpress continues to expand its reach, making it easier for new sellers to start and grow their dropshipping businesses in diverse markets. AliExpress’ parent company Alibaba is expanding rapidly to countries like South Korea, Spain, and Turkey to contribute to the global supply chain.

Regulatory Challenges: Increasing import restrictions and changes in international trade policies can pose challenges to dropshipping models.

Is AliExpress Reliable? 

Yes, AliExpress is reliable. It has been serving B2B and B2C buyers around the world since 2010. However, it also received many customer complaints, like poor product quality, delivery issues, and unresolved disputes and scams. 

Overall, people think AliExpress is still a good online shopping platform despite some unsatisfied customers. Experienced AliExpress buyers suggest having lower expectations for AliExpress items since they're very cheap and are lower-quality than their expensive counterpart. 

Is AliExpress Dropshipping Dead: Reddit Answers

No, AliExpress dropshipping isn’t dead. According to Reddit user UnderstandingAdept45, AliExpress dropshipping still works and people will spend on what you sell as long as you pick the correct niche. User Motown Assasin mentions that even though Amazon mostly has faster shipping, AliExpress still has products with shorter shipping times. They also advise to offer products that Amazon sellers are not selling so you can stand out from the competition.

Is AliExpress Dropshipping Effective for Shopify?

Yes, AliExpress dropshipping is effective for Shopify because of its seamless integration according to AutoDS. This simplifies the setup and scaling of your Shopify dropshipping business. It makes it easier to manage your dropshipping product and collaborate with AliExpress suppliers. Automation tools such as AutoDS, Oberlo, and Dropified streamline product importing, inventory management, and order processing. This efficiency allows Shopify dropshipping store owners to concentrate more on marketing and enhancing customer service.

Is AliExpress Still Good for Dropshipping?

Yes, AliExpress is still good for dropshipping because it offers a vast selection of products at competitive prices. According to Statista, AliExpress has an average of 431 million monthly visitors between July 2023 and December 2023. In six months, AliExpress recorded over 2.9 billion site visitors, which proves that it's still one of the most used dropshipping suppliers in the world. Unlike eBay and Amazon, the AliExpress platform is most suited for dropshipping order fulfillment. This makes it an attractive platform for dropshippers who want to tap a vast customer base. 

Why Jon Paul Believes AliExpress Is Still Good For Dropshipping

  • Shorter Shipping Time: AliExpress shipping times have significantly improved from 45 to 60 days to about 2 weeks. This shipping timeline is very competitive compared to the average shipping durations in the United States. 
  • Better Customer Service: AliExpress gives excellent customer service with short response times that minimizes chargebacks and improves dispute resolution. 
  • Small-Batch Product Testing: Testing a new product on AliExpress is more cost-effective than testing on other platforms because they allow sellers to order in smaller quantities. It's cheaper because you don't need to buy in bulk when testing the market's response to a new item. 

However, some dropshippers believe that AliExpress is no longer effective because of long shipping times, low-quality products, and unreliable suppliers.

Nazan Nazareth is a 22-year-old Shopify dropshipping mentor and founder of Outright Ecom from Richmond, British Columbia, Canada. He claims that AliExpress isn’t a good dropshipping supplier because of poor product quality and long shipping times. Relying on AliExpress for dropshipping can hinder the scalability and sustainability of an e-commerce venture. Nathan advises to establish relationships with private suppliers for faster shipping and better product quality.

Mohammed Kamil Sattar, better known as “The Ecom King” is a British Pakistani E-commerce entrepreneur. According to Sattar, the long shipping times involved with AliExpress dropshipping have led to customer dissatisfaction, chargebacks, and refunds, eroding profits. He advises that dropshippers should turn to private suppliers in Europe, the USA, and China. They can offer better shipping times, quality control, and communication with suppliers.

The key factors you should consider when dropshipping with AliExpress are identifying in-demand products, supplier reliability, shipping options, understanding laws and regulations, and customer service. You should also monitor market trends and analyze consumer feedback so you can improve your product listings. These will ensure the smooth operation of the dropshipping business.

Is AliExpress Dropshipping Still Profitable in 2024?

Yes, AliExpress dropshipping is still profitable. In a YouTube video by Zik Analytics, CEO Nahar Gueva talks about how a Lithuanian eBay seller has leveraged dropshipping from AliExpress to generate over $2,000 in monthly profit within 4-6 months. The seller maintains 1,305 active listings with a 21% sell-through rate and focuses on high profit margins, averaging 40%. The strategy includes detailed listing descriptions, targeting specific demographics like Spanish-speaking customers, and a diverse product range.

Why Local Lead Generation Will Stay Alive Longer Than AliExpress Dropshipping

Local lead generation will stay alive longer than AliExpress dropshipping because it doesn’t need to manage challenges like low product quality and delayed shipping times. Meteor Space says 33% of the 24 million online stores and businesses use dropshipping as a fulfillment model. Although this shows the potential success if you use AliExpress dropshipping, it also means it’s extremely saturated. With several established and maybe even viral stores on the platform, standing out would be difficult and require a lot more effort to maintain in the long-term. 

Local lead generation has less competition. By targeting specific local markets and niches, you can become a key player by creating websites that generate valuable leads for businesses. It’s also easy to manage because automation and digital marketing tools can streamline the process. It requires less day-to-day oversight compared to AliExpress dropshipping. Once you create a local lead generation website and it generates leads, you can have monthly passive income ranging from $500 to $2,000 or more.


With local lead generation, you create websites or content that attract potential customers. You then connect those leads with local businesses for a fee. When your lead generation site ranks highly on Google, it directly targets potential clients searching for the services you offer. This business model offers an easier income stream with less competition and more control over your success. You focus more on skillful marketing and networking to generate leads.

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Ippei Kanehara

$52K per month providing lead generation services to small businesses is for digital hustlers, industry leaders and online business owners.

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