If you are an entrepreneur or a businessman/ businesswoman, you have already thought about your product offerings and how it is different from others. But, one of the trickiest situations that they might face is that from where to source the products. It is hard to find a trusted manufacturer and buying from it directly from the manufacturer.
You might get stuck- from where do I start? Is buying from the manufacturer really a feasible option? How do I find the manufacturers? How do I select the right one?
Buying directly from the manufacturer eliminates the need for wholesaler suppliers or distributors. It has its pricing and buying benefits.
This article is a step-by-step guide for buying a product directly from the manufacturer. Let’s dive into the process-
Identify your needs or requirements
The first and foremost step is to be clear about what you are looking for. You would know your product offerings in and out, their quality, design, etc. Note down each specific detail of the product and approach the manufacturer in the next step.
Search for a manufacturer
Now, when you have an exact idea of what you are looking for, let’s begin the search for a manufacturer. There are some places where you can begin your search with-
• Local Directories or Business listings
The directories contain the data of thousand of B2B suppliers and wholesale suppliers. You can easily get the contacts there and it is available online as well. Example- Justdial
• Search Engines
You can search for the B2B suppliers and wholesale suppliers online with the help of search engines such as Google, Bing, Yahoo, etc.
• Local phone library
There are also local phone libraries that are payable and can provide you the information.
• Referral network
Some of the genuine leads come from the referral network. So ask your connections in professional networks to share some relevant contacts with you.
Select a manufacturer
After you have done the research, select the relevant manufacturers that can help you in manufacturing the products. You can some evaluation parameters and verify the credibility of the manufactures before making a selection. It is important to shortlist at least 2-3 manufacturers so that you have various options, compare easily, and pick the best one that fits your requirements.
Request for a quote
Once you have an appropriate manufacturer, the next step would be to get a quotation for the same. The price per unit depends on various factors such as:
Minimum Order quantity
It is the minimum number of products that require to be purchased at one time. The manufacturers will set minimums according to their convenience, so make sure you’re comfortable with this.
Cost per unit at the minimum order
It is the cost per unit to be paid when the minimum order is placed that includes the fixed as variable costs.
One of the important factors is how much the product will cost. You might want to ask for pricing at different quantity levels and how discounting will work for orders in bulk.
It is important to know how long it will take to produce the order. Depending on that, the order will be placed.
Payment terms for new customers
The longer the payment period, the better, from the buyer’s perspective. You’ll be able to sell products and pay the manufacturer with your customers’ money, not your own.
Manufacturers are bombarded with quotation requests every day, so keep your email short and clear. You can request a product sample to inspect the quality. A low price is not beneficial if the quality is so poor that people won’t buy.
Negotiate the quotations
The cost per unit decreases as the order quantity goes up. Be sure to ask for the pricing at different quantity levels. It will help you to get the products at a lower price. Another way is to offer a significant amount of deposit at the order. The manufacturer will consider that and be more willing to offer you the discount.
Don’t accept the first price offer and get quotes from 2-3 manufacturers so you can compare the rates properly.
Seal the deal
After you have analyzed everything and are satisfied with all the terms, you can go ahead and buy directly from a manufacturer.
Sourcing directly from wholesale suppliers and B2B suppliers can be a unique process and has its own challenges but it is a critical process and important decision for your business.
It might be easy to get frustrated when you won’t find what you are looking for, but in most instances, it would require you a little more patience and perseverance than usual to find the perfect manufacturer for your business.