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  • #995297
    LucasArthur
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    Hi All

    So i have been absent, again, of late although i am really intrigued on how you guys/gals deal with locating and/or convincing some distributors to sell to you?

    My reasons for posting are two fold, initially i have had a day of frustrations with trying to deal with a few ‘precious’ suppliers and getting an account with them and hit a brick wall twice :(. Noting that suppliers and finding items is a popular topic in here, i thought this question may help some on this same journey or at the start of one.

    Am completely aware it varies by industry, demand and whether you are bricks an mortar although most in here as FS may not have shop fronts and potentially battle this from the outset? So, how do you overcome these objections and how do you find these suppliers? (not asking for any secrets, just tips to help myself and others i guess..)

    Thanks for reading and be well everyone..

    Jason

    Jason Ramage | Lucas Arthur Pty Ltd | E: [email protected]   P: 61 3 8324 0344    M: 61 412 244 888
    #1201007
    bb1
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    I’m following this one. I have a couple in particular who I am keen to get onboard with, but because I sell on the internet, and heaven forbid on Ebay, they wont even open the door a little. Yet I have said I will sell at full RRP, and can show from my other items that I only do full RRP. But no, go away come back when you have a ”real” website. Now no matter what anyone said last time I checked there are more sales on Ebay most likely per second than what many would consider a ”real” website per year (maybe an over estimate, but possibly close).

    #1201008
    LucasArthur
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    Hey Bert

    Thanks for reply, i did see this the other day although i wanted to give it a few and see if there was any ‘assistance’ or input that would come forward.. Unfortunately, none…

    This leads me to my next comment, as i feel this type of post from someone like me (and appears you too may be in similar place occasionally?) is one of the reasons that maybe [USER=129]@Warren Cottis[/USER] raised a few points in his recent thread here.

    Understanding its a free platform with so many people willing to contribute to help out newbies, it is a let down that i cant source similar replies to what most of us ‘regs’ contribute too :(

    All good, on a lighter note i have had an awesome week with suppliers and the likes and am getting most on board for my next stage :) – its all about the approach and presenting correctly – i note i am lucky though as i have bricks & mortar along with history of a company that has been trading last few years etc..

    Cheerio, will hit you on pm later Berty Bert :)

    Jason

    Jason Ramage | Lucas Arthur Pty Ltd | E: [email protected]   P: 61 3 8324 0344    M: 61 412 244 888
    #1201009
    Paul – FS Concierge
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    LucasArthur, post: 238490, member: 34537 wrote:
    Hey Bert

    Thanks for reply, i did see this the other day although i wanted to give it a few and see if there was any ‘assistance’ or input that would come forward.. Unfortunately, none…

    This leads me to my next comment, as i feel this type of post from someone like me (and appears you too may be in similar place occasionally?) is one of the reasons that maybe [USER=129]@Warren Cottis[/USER] raised a few points in his recent thread here.

    Understanding its a free platform with so many people willing to contribute to help out newbies, it is a let down that i cant source similar replies to what most of us ‘regs’ contribute too :(

    All good, on a lighter note i have had an awesome week with suppliers and the likes and am getting most on board for my next stage :) – its all about the approach and presenting correctly – i note i am lucky though as i have bricks & mortar along with history of a company that has been trading last few years etc..

    Cheerio, will hit you on pm later Berty Bert :)

    Jason
    Have seen some of your questions go answered Jason and have felt really bad about it each time it happened.

    Hopefully you will get the love you need in the future:-)

    #1201010
    Chrispro
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    Hi Jason,
    I’ll try and add a little bit. I’ve been self-employed for the last 13 yrs and have had to purchase form a couple hundred different suppliers in that time. Some are easy to deal with and others make life difficult. I recall one supplier who I knew about already (from a previous job) who I wanted to sign up with when I started. It took several phone calls even to get an application sent out and I only ever got it sorted by calling their head office. I have been amazed so many times since by how little a lot of the disties (or their employees) care about their customers (or potential new customers), who in fact pay their wages.

    But I digress… Anyway, I think the key is working out why a *particular* supplier may be playing hard to get. And possibly the best method there (as well as picking up on any indicators they might give) is just to ask them – ‘what do I need to do to be able to purchase from you’. Different suppliers may have different requirements. It also may not hurt to mention their competitors – e.g. ‘I already deal with XYZ Co (their competitor) but have had a few difficulties lately so am looking for some better options’. It’s amazing how many reps love bashing their competition so that might at least open the door for further dialogue. Also obtaining a Credit account is way different from obtaining a Cash account (well in my current industry [which is IT] it is anyway). Terribly difficult to get credit unless you have a good trading record with them already. I know other industries are different in this regard. But when I am contacting suppliers I try and make it easy for them – jump through their hoops, fill out the forms, whatever – and I always say I don’t need credit and can pay upfront no worries (which seems to help in my game). Then when I have a better relationship with them I can address the credit side of things.

    Keep in mind that a lot of the people who deal with new accounts possibly aren’t enjoying their job that much and spend a lot of time on the phone with whinging customers. If I can be a friendly voice on the other end of the phone and attempt to make their life easy (while still getting them to do something for me) I figure that puts me ahead of a lot of other people.

    Anyway, hopefully there’s something in my ramblings for you. Cheers.

    #1201011
    Chrispro
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    P.S. On finding distributors Google is your friend. For me there are a few pretty much bullet-proof methods. E.g. assuming you’re wanting to buy purple widgets made by ABC Company Ltd:
    a) head to Google and type ‘ABC Company Ltd Australian Distributor’;
    b) head to Google and type ‘purple widgets Australian distributor’;
    c) locate the manufacturer’s website and dig in to their distributors/partners/where-to-buy section.

    It requires some patience but I can’t think of a time that I have failed to find a supplier for something. To be honest I am surprised at the number of times I’ve seen threads on these forums that say “I am starting a dress shop and need a supplier of ‘Best Dress Company’ designs” when I could almost guarantee that one of my methods above would have you a couple of disties in a short space of time.

    #1201012
    Paul – FS Concierge
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    Chrispro, post: 238520, member: 84887 wrote:
    Hi Jason,
    I’ll try and add a little bit. I’ve been self-employed for the last 13 yrs and have had to purchase form a couple hundred different suppliers in that time. Some are easy to deal with and others make life difficult. I recall one supplier who I knew about already (from a previous job) who I wanted to sign up with when I started. It took several phone calls even to get an application sent out and I only ever got it sorted by calling their head office. I have been amazed so many times since by how little a lot of the disties (or their employees) care about their customers (or potential new customers), who in fact pay their wages.

    But I digress… Anyway, I think the key is working out why a *particular* supplier may be playing hard to get. And possibly the best method there (as well as picking up on any indicators they might give) is just to ask them – ‘what do I need to do to be able to purchase from you’. Different suppliers may have different requirements. It also may not hurt to mention their competitors – e.g. ‘I already deal with XYZ Co (their competitor) but have had a few difficulties lately so am looking for some better options’. It’s amazing how many reps love bashing their competition so that might at least open the door for further dialogue. Also obtaining a Credit account is way different from obtaining a Cash account (well in my current industry [which is IT] it is anyway). Terribly difficult to get credit unless you have a good trading record with them already. I know other industries are different in this regard. But when I am contacting suppliers I try and make it easy for them – jump through their hoops, fill out the forms, whatever – and I always say I don’t need credit and can pay upfront no worries (which seems to help in my game). Then when I have a better relationship with them I can address the credit side of things.

    Keep in mind that a lot of the people who deal with new accounts possibly aren’t enjoying their job that much and spend a lot of time on the phone with whinging customers. If I can be a friendly voice on the other end of the phone and attempt to make their life easy (while still getting them to do something for me) I figure that puts me ahead of a lot of other people.

    Anyway, hopefully there’s something in my ramblings for you. Cheers.
    Awesome post [USER=84887]@Chrispro[/USER] !

    #1201013
    LucasArthur
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    Paul – FS Concierge, post: 238530, member: 78928 wrote:
    Awesome post [USER=84887]@Chrispro[/USER] !
    Have to second that comment… Nice and robust steps to locating said supply chain and hopefully foreseeing any hurdles – pre-emptively :). Appreciate the reply..

    On this, had some big wins in the last 24 hours with a few key suppliers coming onboard for me… Was a little worried about a few, although ticked all their boxes (as you mentioned above i tend to research what they need as opposed to what i need.. LOL)… Actually, on that, i think the resounding point to your post and something that comes up a it, is that when you are seeking a supplier you have to SELL YOURSELF as to why you should be on their books.. Little archaic to me, personally, as you would think they want additional sales channels to bolster their wages – as you noted ;)

    Thanks again.. awesome

    Jason

    Jason Ramage | Lucas Arthur Pty Ltd | E: [email protected]   P: 61 3 8324 0344    M: 61 412 244 888
    #1201014
    Chrispro
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    Great to hear you had a couple of wins. Yep – it is a lot about selling yourself. I find it rather an anomaly when all you want to do is pay them some money (in effect) but that’s the way it is. I think also having a decent amount of experience in your industry helps. In my game particularly there are lot’s of “Bob’s Computers” who are here today and gone tomorrow. Once you have a good track record and some longevity it tends to help.

    #1201015
    Johny
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    As a supplier, I have expectations (the main one being that I have to make a $ from the time and effort I use) and I have often told clients I can’t help them for quite a lot of reasons.

    As a buyer, if I have to beg to get acceptance then I am not trying hard enough looking for suitable suppliers. In my view, if a supplier makes you jump through hoops just to get in the door, its better to look for alternatives. It is very rare for there to only be one supplier of a product or service when the world is at your fingertips.

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