Choosing which products to sell is one part of the process—but from where will you get those products? Between wholesale and retail, you have a slim margin from which to make a profit. Developing relationships with the right distributors is a must.
For instance, if you plan to sell camping supplies, you might consider working with Maurice or HuntFishOverstock to get low prices on large quantities of goods. And there are distributors and wholesalers across every retail market—the trick is to find the most reliable partners.
Follow the tips below to start building up your network of wholesalers.
Research wholesalers and distributors in your product category.
A simple Google search should return a good starting corps of wholesalers who may be potential suppliers for your business. You can search for distributors by type of product or major brand; in fact, you should do both. Compile a list of potential wholesalers and read reviews that other retailers have posted about them.
Ask the wholesaler for their business.
It’s as simple as that; find the right contact and ask to work with them. They need your business as much as you need theirs.
Evaluate drop shipping options.
If you come across wholesalers and distributors that offer drop shipping, consider them as an easy option with a smaller upfront investment. With drop shippers, you post the product for sale on your online store without first purchasing the item. When a customer buys the product, the drop shipper sends it out for you. You make a smaller commission, but you have to put less money down upfront.
Visit in person and maintain a good relationship.
If you’re evaluating a wholesaler, try to set up a face-to-face meeting to get a feel for the company and form a concrete basis for a strong relationship. Be sure to maintain that relationship with constant contact between your store and your representative at the distributor.