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What Are the 5 C’s of Marketing and How Do They Apply in Dropshipping?

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The size of the eCommerce market is continuously growing around the globe as the penetration of the internet is increasing and reaching more and more people worldwide. In 2020 the size of the global eCommerce market reached 4.28 trillion US dollars and is projected to grow by each upcoming year, reaching 6.39 trillion by 2024. From this tremendous amount reached in 2020, the footwear and clothing market accounted for the biggest share, namely 24.7%, and it is expected to continue holding its leading position in the years ahead. When looking at these numbers, there is no question that you would want to have your share of this ever-growing market. In order to succeed, you will need to get ahead of your competition and stand out of the crowd in order to attract your targeted audience.

As the barriers for entering the dropshipping eCommerce business are relatively low, it means that new stores are popping up every day making the market highly competitive. When you are running a dropshipping business your supplier is the one taking care of your inventory and the whole fulfillment process, so you only need to focus on running your online store, market your brand and shop, and providing stellar customer service. In this article, we will dive deep into the marketing aspect by explaining the 5 C’s of marketing and how they can benefit you when creating a marketing strategy.

Definition of the 5 C’s of marketing

First and foremost, you need to understand what the 5 C’s of marketing stand for and the definition of this situation analysis model. These 5 C’s of marketing represent the most important areas of marketing and help you make a more informed decision when it comes to your marketing strategy. The 5 C’s stand for the following aspects of your business, Company, Customers, Collaborators, Competitors, and Climate. Analyzing these factors will help you evaluate what is working well and what areas you need improvement in order for your business to perform better on the market.

Why are the 5 C’s of marketing important to you?

Conducting the 5 C’s analysis is popular due to its simplicity and effectiveness, which makes it an excellent choice for small and medium-sized businesses across all industries. It helps you to understand the internal and external factors within the marketplace so you can forecast trends in this ever-changing environment and shape your marketing plan accordingly. For this reason, we recommend that you do a 5 C’s analysis at least once a year to keep up and be on top of the most important factors that are affecting your business.

What are the 5 C’s of marketing and how to evaluate them?

Now that you have familiarized yourself with the concept of the 5 C model, now let’s see each aspect individually and how you can analyze them.


Under “Company” you will need to analyze several characteristics of your business, such as your aim and goals, culture, product line, competitive advantage, brand, and reputation on the market. The aim is to understand if you are at a point where you can best meet your target market’s needs and wants. When you analyze yourself, it might be difficult sometimes because you can be biased as your company is like your own baby that you created and nurtured. But it is highly important to be honest and upfront with yourself to get the desired result out of this analysis. The best way to do this is to find the answers to the questions below and then see if you wish you could have answered any of them differently. If yes, make sure you make a note of it for yourself as these can serve you as a basis for improvement in the future.

  • List your major product categories and lines your business carries.
  • Are your products any different than those of your competitors and in what way?
  • What is the unique selling point or competitive advantage your company has?
  • Is your brand or shop memorable and what makes it that?
  • Do you do anything better or worse than your competitors and what is it?
  • What are your customers’ views of your business and what is your reputation like in general?
  • What are your short and long-term goals with your business?


It is highly important to identify your targeted niche and understand it the best you can to be able to satisfy their needs. To compete successfully in your niche it is key to understand what motivates your customers to make a purchase and go through the purchase decision. When picking your niche you need to evaluate factors like market size and growth, potential segments within the niche, and purchasing frequency. When you understand these you will not only be able to determine the ideal product line that your business should carry but also the ways you can potentially reach your customers through marketing. These will provide you with an idea of what tone of voice, channels, and messages you should use when marketing. And also what your targeted niche likes and dislikes in a product or service you are offering. If you ask yourself the following questions they will help you with these.

  • What is your ideal buying persona like who is after your products?
  • Who is your targeted audience versus who is currently purchasing your products?
  • Which products are the high and low performers and why do you think this is the case?
  • How do your customers behave on your website and what is behind your bounce rate?
  • Through what channels can you drive customers to your store and convert the visits into sales?
  • What is the average basket size and how often do your customers return to your store?
  • What is the most frequent positive and negative feedback your customers leave you with?
  • How can your customers get information on your products and compare them with those of your competitors?


Collaborators are those people and business entities that help you to operate your business and achieve your business goals. When you are operating a dropshipping business your main and most important collaborators will be the suppliers you are working with. So, if you are dropshipping luxury footwear and apparel, Brands Gateway as your dropshipping supplier will be one of your key collaborators. In order to monitor the performance of your collaborators or in case you are looking for a new one, you should be asking the below questions first.

  • Who supplies the products that your business sells and who is your first point of contact within the company?
  • How do your products reach your customers and at what cost?
  • How are your payments being processed and what options can you choose from when making a payment?
  • How is your eCommerce store being supported by your collaborators?
  • Does your supplier provide you with product images and descriptions you can automatically integrate into your online store?
  • Does your supplier help with improving your marketing and if yes, how do they do that?


Understanding your competitors is just as important as understanding your customers for you to be able to position your business on the dropshipping market scene. You need to know exactly who you are competing with for the disposable income of your targeted niche. Knowing their exact position on the market, strengths, and weaknesses will provide you with an advantage as it is hard to compete against an unknown opponent. Make sure you analyze all players on the market regardless of their size. There might be a couple of large, well-established companies but they are not always the biggest threat to you. Small and medium-sized companies can also mean fierce competition as they are more agile to rapid market changes. Try and answer the following questions about each and every competitor you have to gain a better understanding of.

  • Who are your established and emerging competitors?
  • What are your competitor’s unique selling points and strengths?
  • What are their weaknesses that can serve as an opportunity for you?
  • How are your competitors gaining customers?
  • How does the marketing strategy of your competitors look like and what channels are they present on?
  • Is there anything your competitors do that you can not?


When you are looking at the climate your business is operating in, you are assessing the external macroeconomic factors you are affected by, such as political, environmental, social, and technological aspects. You can best analyze your climate by conducting a PEST analysis and finding the answers to the questions below to understand the factors that are influencing the market in general.

  • Are there new laws or regulations that can potentially affect your company or the way you are doing business?
  • Are there any social-economic trends that affect your targeted niche?
  • Are there any economic factors that affect the purchasing power of your potential customers?
  • Are there new or emerging technologies that change the way to do marketing or provide new sales channels?
  • What are the trends affecting the market and your customers that you need to keep an eye on?
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About the Author

Lilla Stefanovszky

Fashion marketing professional turned digital marketer. My name is Lilla and I have been working in the fashion industry for 5 years. Currently working at BrandsGateway and helping with the development of the marketing strategy and on occasions writing articles for our audience. When away form the computer, I enjoy outdoors and running with my dogs.

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