Most have heard the story before. A young Australian boy achieves entrepreneurial success in the online business space. Just over 14 years ago, Ruslan Kogan founded one of the biggest e-commerce stores to date.
3 years after graduating university, Ruslan founded and became the CEO of Kogan, establishing an e-commerce empire. Soon after, Ruslan Kogan expanded Kogan into a retail, marketplace, internet and insurance company.
Fast-forward to February 2019 and Marcus Pereira, another Australian, hits his first six-figure store from his e-commerce store. Except Marcus hadn’t even graduated from high school. In fact, he was still in his senior year at just 15-years-old.
As of late, the internet has been filled with murmurs about dropshipping. ‘Is it a scam?’ ‘Is it fake?’ ‘Is it sustainable?’ ‘Dropshipping is too saturated.’ ‘Dropshipping is dead.’
Well, for 15-year-old Marcus, dropshipping isn’t dead.
In fact, he went from launching his first e-commerce store in Feburary 2019 to reaching over $100,000 in revenue in August 2019, just 6 months later, marking his first six-figure month in income.
But his story doesn’t start there. Marcus claims his success is due to his work ethic at a young age. While most 15-year-olds were playing Fortnite or Call of Duty after school, he was working on his businesses and educating himself.
Throughout middle school, Marcus established and ran a YouTube channel, primarily focused on creating viral videos and in-demand content. He scaled the channel to over 6,000 subscribers and made money along the way before retiring it.
A few years later, he began creating Instagram pages that would focus on a specific niche. He saw that there were other bigger accounts creating six-figures in income and Marcus wanted to be a part of that.
After growing out his niched pages to a larger audience, he began selling promotions to branded companies. He noticed that these stores had been selling products directly from China and marking up the price.
After conducting more research, Marcus identified that these companies were running a dropshipping business – selling a product on their store and shipping it directly from China to the customer.
One year later, at 15, he decided he would try out e-commerce for himself with his own dropshipping business. This time, he would be the one buying shout outs from influencers and Instagram pages like his own.
During his experience running an e-commerce store, he realised that the costs of advertisements, fees and Shopify costs were high for his budget.
Marcus realised he had to open a new business to cover the funds of his Shopify store. He started selling products on eBay. He would source them from local retailers and list them on his eBay store for a marked-up price.
He continued to scale his eBay business and hit over $360,000 in sales in under a year. He used the profit from his eBay store and invested it into his Shopify business.
As a high school student, Marcus figured business and e-commerce could help him pay for University. He did not want to piggyback off his parents. He wanted to be financially independent from the start. He did not want to ask his parents for money, or for them to buy him anything, and e-commerce provided Marcus with that opportunity.
He worked non-stop for the next few months scaling his eBay store to bring in more revenue, while building his Shopify store on the side.
“I honestly didn’t expect much. I would have been happy with even making $500 in my first month.”
In December 2019, he had scaled his eBay business to such a substantial level that it was doing over $30,000 a month. He continued to focus on this business model, but by the end of 2019, had launched his Shopify store.
Entering 2020, Marcus had multiple businesses running, bringing him multiple streams of income. His primary income was coming from eBay but was continuing to make income monthly from his Instagram accounts and his Shopify store.
“It was amazing. I could not believe it. It absolutely changed my life from then on. I’ve never seen these kinds of numbers. I figured, $25,000 was a huge blessing but there’s no way that this e-commerce thing can be sustainable. But when January came around, I did another $30,000 in revenue.”
As he progressed through the months, Marcus picked up a few skills in internet marketing, specifically Facebook advertisements. He knew that this was the future of his e-commerce store and that the power of ads could help scale his business to six-figures per month.
Marcus utilized these skills to grow his store and now runs both his eBay and Shopify dropshipping businesses.
Marcus attributes much of his success to watching YouTube videos of online business owners when he was younger.
“Growing up I always loved watching these types of videos where people ran their own businesses and showed how. It really inspired me and made me want to follow in their footsteps.”
“If I hadn’t watched these videos when I was younger, I don’t think I’d be where I am today. I owe everything to those entrepreneurs who taught me, and I feel like it’s my duty to do the same.”
Marcus also offers courses on e-commerce and Instagram marketing to teach people, step-by-step, how to start their businesses and follow the footsteps Marcus took.