Question by Mac: How to find wholesalers for an online business?
So I have been making my own crafty things and have come to develop a bit of a collection. I would like to open a website to sell them, but I know I don’t have enough to offer all together. How do I find wholesalers to add items to an online business? I’ve done some google searching but all the ones that come up seem like garbage. There must be a way that other businesses find items. Are there fairs or catalogs? If anyone has information, I would definitely appreciate it!
Answer by Belinda
The internet is not the best place to find wholesalers, contrary to the get rich quick hype. The traditional offline methods are the way to go.
I would start with a trade fair. Here are a couple of websites which tell you where they are:
http://www.eventseye.com/ and http://www.biztradeshows.com/ but you should also check out the exhibition venues in your area.
You might not find what you are looking for exactly, but you will find many other sources of information. Trade magazines will be an excellent source of information and the big ones tend to be at the fairs so you can find out what they are and pick up a free copy.
Visit shops which already sell what you are interested in stocking. Pick up the items and turn them over to see who made it. You can often find the manufacturer or brand name on the internet and then contact them.
Try to attend networking events in your local area for more ideas. You can also try to source specialist directories – in my area the local enterprise agency has directories of local businesses.
Finding and establishing a good relationship with wholesalers / manufacturers is a long term endeavour and your contacts will become like gold dust to your business. Hope it works out for you.
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