Finding wholesalers for your home business
An important element to creating a long-lasting profitable business is finding good wholesalers willing to work with you.
But, after a while, things slow down and you hit a wall. You find yourself chasing after prospects and wondering why it is taking so long to convert prospects into clients.
However, the process of finding a good wholesaler is not easy. There are a lot of scams out there, such as middlemen charging fees for the “privilege” to buy from them and inflating wholesale prices.
Even if you find a legitimate wholesaler, they may not want to deal with a small business much less a home-based business. This is actually the biggest challenge of small business when looking for a wholesaler, especially if the wholesaler is already servicing big businesses. Why bother with the small fries when you’ve got the big boys knocking on your door?
So how do you find good wholesalers?
1. Attend tradeshows: Tradeshows are a great way of finding suppliers, manufacturers and drop shippers for your business, especially if you require more specialized products. There are a number of tradeshows out there specializing in various segments – from kitchen and bath, to apparel to construction supplies.
Note though that some tradeshows are not open to the public, and you need to show proof of business identification. You may be asked to present your recent invoices, business cards, credit reference sheet showing companies you purchase from, and tax registration (Certificate or Business Registration Certificate indicating you are retail business). If you are just about to start your home business, you may show letter of intent from an attorney or bank on official letterhead stating the intent to start a new retail business.
To find tradeshows in your industry, you may want to check:
2. Industrial Directories. If you are looking for wholesalers in industry sectors, check out industrial directories. Thomas Register http://www.thomasnet.com is the most respected of industrial directories out there, and their web site offers about 67,000 product categories that you can search from.
Other industrial directories
Grainger Industrial Supply http://www.grainger.com
3. eBay. An easy way to find wholesalers is through the online auction site eBay http://www.ebay.com . Wholesalers are everywhere on eBay, even dominating most if not all of the categories with their vast number of listings. Each category – from home and garden to clothing and accessories to cell phones – has a sub-category called wholesale lots where most of the wholesalers list their items.
4. Trade Magazines. Get hold of copies of trade publications on wholesaling, as they typically feature wholesalers, manufacturers and drop shippers. These magazines are mostly free, and feature a lot of ads from wholesalers that you can contact.
Web Wholesaler Magazine http://www.wholesalecentral.com/wwfree.cfm = operated by WholesaleCentral.com
Wholesale Source Magazine http://www.wsmag.com
The Wholesaler http://www.thewholesaler.com
Examples of trade magazines include:
5. Online Directories. The web is full of online directories that list wholesalers, manufacturers, drop shippers and suppliers – with some more reliable, updated and screened than others. Make sure that you use specific keywords in your search (e.g. hair band wholesaler) instead of the very general terms (fashion accessories wholesaler) to help you narrow your search. Be careful though as some will sell you list claiming to be verified and updated listings of wholesalers.
About the Author:
Nach Maravilla is the CEO and Founder of PowerHomeBiz.com, an online magazine for home business entrepreneurs.
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