Product Sourcing Ideas – Distributors

Every product market has their own unique distribution channels. The key to effective sourcing is to know who to contact when you are sourcing a new product.

Here are some examples of different sources in a distribution network:

Manufacturer
In many cases, if you are going to source a new product, you might want to start at the top of the food chain – the manufacturer. Sometimes contacting the manufacturer will net you a positive response including a list of their recommended distributors. Depending on the size of the company, they may also be looking to sell directly to retailers. Remember, it doesn’t hurt to ask!

Distributors

If they provide you with a list of their distributors, choose one and send them a quick email introducing yourself and asking for some basic information. What you are looking for is:
Minimum order quantities (also referred to frequently as MOQ)
Pricing

No response? Don’t despair. Move down the list until you find another distributor who responds in a timely manner.

Another way to search for distributors is through Google or another search engine. Look for “Product name or brand name distributor”. Look for a wholesale or distributor link on their home page or ‘contact us’ page. Contact them as recommended above.

Next up: Trade Shows

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