It can be tough work to find a reliable supplier of whatever products you want to sell in your business. Whether you are looking to stock up a shop, become a wholesaler, or run an online business, you need to find quality products from a dependable supplier or manufacturer that you can form a beneficial business relationship with.
There are many benefits associated with choosing a supplier or manufacturer of products that are locally based. This includes dealing with shorter supply chain costs, easier monitoring, and boosting the local economy. However there are also negatives with local production costs generally being higher, leading to you being less competitive and making less ROI. Navigating the sourcing of supplies can be a daunting task and Sourcing Agencies offer tried and tested production and fulfilment lines.
Here are some ways you can go about identifying the best vendor to supply you with products.
The pandemic has hindered much movement and encouraged many businesses to go online in an attempt to better connect with prospective clients. A basic online search of the products you need and terms like supplier and manufacturer can help you easily find local sources. Most suppliers and manufacturers can discuss your requirements and offer quotations online. This interaction can also be a good way to gauge what kind of customer support you will later get if problems crop up. You will want to work with a supplier that is responsive and a problem solver, otherwise look for Sourcing Agents to navigate the space.
You can even better define your search by indicating the region you are from. This should make it easier to visit the facilities of your supplier or request for quick delivery of sample products. Face to face meetings in business are always a good idea so you can verify the information gathered online and make negotiations.
These events are a great way to interact with different suppliers and manufacturers of the products you want. They often hold presentations and have booths where you get to learn more about their products and why they are distinct from the competition. As the businesses that feature at these events are looking to make money, they are often also more amenable to negotiations.
Trade shows can be regional, national, or even international. If you are only interested in US suppliers or manufacturers, you can focus on regional and national events. They make for an excellent opportunity to find out more about the products you want to offer, if there are new trends, and network. You will also find a number of Sourcing Agents that offer turnkey services for this process.
Most industries have some trade organisations that will relate to the kind of products you are looking for. You can easily look up these organisations online and contact them for a list of members that manufacture or supply the products you are interested in. These organisations are happy to connect clients to their members and make for a valuable resource. You may even be able to look into the reputation of specific suppliers you are considering. This is because such organisations will also have standards required of their members and may have records of complaints from other clients.
Many trade organisations will also publish magazines that can be a rich source of information. They often list their members geographically, making it easy to find a potential supplier within your region. They also often profile different businesses so you get to learn more about what they do and what makes them successful. This can help evaluate prospective suppliers and provide insights into an industry you are looking to join.