Finding wholesale sources is among the key stumbling blocks facing new small businesses. A casual search on the internet uncovers hundreds of thousands of businesses, but on deeper inspection, most internet suppliers are not genuine wholesalers at all. Some are small businesses themselves, providing off-brand products at inflated prices. Others tend to be members of one plan or another, all developed to pull in as much money as is possible for the actual wholesale business while employing re-sellers as middle men.
A few directories charge members a monthly or annual fee for finding wholesale sources on their behalf, but there is actually no need to buy the information. Wholesalers need your business; they only appear to “hide” to be able to discourage the public from purchasing in their stores and on their sites.
Look online for wholesale directories, then discount those that impose a regular membership fee. You can expect to nonetheless wind up with a substantial amount of wholesale listings that are not true wholesalers, but it really doesn’t require a lot to distinguish a re-seller. Try to look for over-inflated prices, excessive shipping charges, and sites that don’t ask for a retail ID, and remove these businesses from your list. What you’ll have remaining are very good wholesale suppliers.
An additional alternative will be to become a member of a retailer’s group, and subscribe to magazines that serve small business and retail store owners. Both of those alternatives will get you a wide variety of wholesale supplier advertisements, which you’ll be able to search through at your leisure. Lots of retail groups remove scam ads off their pages when they receive a complaint, which means that your odds of finding genuine suppliers are a lot better than when you look for suppliers on your own.
Your community library’s business section can also be a very good place for finding wholesale sources. There are lots of print directories readily available to choose from, which list not only company names and addresses, but also offer a brief review of every single company. Print directories are generally found either in the reference or business sections of libraries; in the event your community library doesn’t have any, ask them if they could order them for you.
Don’t forget to examine your local Yellow Pages as well. Many metro areas have at least one or two local wholesale companies, and many are well worth looking into. Working with a local wholesaler has many benefits; it is possible to buy smaller lots, try out items before you sell them, and in quite a few cases, build up a personal relationship with the company. A number of local wholesalers give in-store credit to dependable customers, and may special order products they do not generally keep on their shelves. This means that you can offer your customers far better service and better products without adding to your expenses.