I am starting up initially using drop shipping.

Will be using products supplied from more than one supplier or dropshipper, as don't want to rely on one company. Also, a single dropshipper won't have the range of products I am wanting to sell online.

When a customer comes to my website and places an order with multiple items, potentially they come from different suppliers and possibly (suppliers) based in different countries. This could raise issues such as delivery charges and potentially import duties. Other eCommerce owners likely to face same issues.

My questions are as follow:

- How did you handle calculating shipping charges on your website?
- How to handle scenario i.e. your website shows item in stock, customer comes and places order at 8pm. There is a delay as next morning admin comes in the office and starts looking at new orders. They log into drop shipper website and manually place orders from customer, but find item out of stock! The most obvious is to contact the customer - potentially disappointing customer. (I don't think many dropshippers will have live feeds or access to the system to link with eCommerce website)
- How best to minimise dropper from stealing your customers - use some form of agreement? (If so, where to obtain?)
- For returns, should shipping costs in general be borne by the customer? (products I am looking can vary in size from small electrical to larger, but not really heavy i.e. just consumer aimed products. Don't think likely to ask the customer to return back to drop shipper. (Likely to ask customer to ship to my business, then I have to ship to dropshipper).

Any advice/tips would be welcome.