April 24th, 2017
How do you go about defining the wholesale market? The wholesale market is one of those large terms that is difficult to describe or define with any degree of precision. Perhaps the most basic description of the wholesale market is best: the wholesale market refers to enterprises that supply products to the retail market at discounted prices. Retailers have many choices when they are searching for merchandise to stock their shelves with.
Business retailers can find wholesale dealers in all kinds of places. For instance, you can find wholesale dealers at tradeshows, online, or simply by nosing around the competition. The funny thing about the wholesale market is that it does not really open up to you until you launch your business and you begin to achieve a modicum of success. Once your retail business is up and running, it becomes much easier to get in touch with the wholesale market. Wholesale dealers will begin to seek you out, rather than the other way around. It's all a matter of gaining a good business reputation and putting your business' name out there.
Another little-discussed way to get in touch with the wholesale market is by seeking out counsel from your customers. For instance, once you have developed a steady flow of regular clientele, as your customers what kind of products or services they are most interested in that you are not already offering them. Taking input from your customers can be invaluable. You can take their recommended product ideas and seek out wholesale dealers that can work with you to fulfill an already-existing customer niche market.
There are many types of dealers and sellers that define the wholesale market. The wholesale market is comprised of several business enterprises that each provide different types and which specialize in different kinds of product lines. Here is a brief overview of the most common types of enterprises you will encounter as you come to know the wholesale market better.
Manufacturers: These enterprises are the crux of the wholesale market. Manufacturers are responsible for making products (obviously) and providing them to wholesale dealers and businesses at discounted prices. They generally sell their products in large quantities and require buyers to place a high minimum order. This is how manufacturers go about keeping their prices low.
Importers: Importers have become some of the most important players in the wholesale market, thanks in large part to the power of globalization. It used to be costly to import products, but now with so many products being manufactured outside the United States, it has become easier than ever to import goods. In fact, it is becoming standard in the wholesale market. You should always take caution to work with well-known importers. The paperwork involved in importing goods can become complicated at times, and shipping costs can vary widely, so make sure you know what you are getting before you sign any kind of contract.
Distributors: Many people use distributors and manufacturers interchangeably. Both are important to the wholesale market, but unlike manufacturers, distributors generally specialize in only selling a large variety of a specific class of product.
Liquidators: Liquidators generally specialize in selling a large variety of products. These types of dealers are becoming more and more common in the wholesale market due to the fact that imported items are driving down the prices of many kinds of prices. Liquidators often offer clients closeouts and truckloads of greatly reduced or sometimes damaged products to resell at a low price. Be sure you always know what you getting from liquidators. The quality of merchandise that is available from many liquidators can vary greatly.