Most web stores do not sell their own goods. They rely on wholesalers or manufacturers for their inventory. Needless to say, some suppliers are better than others. So one of the best shopping cart tips we can give you is do your homework before choosing your supplier(s).
There are many B2B manufacturer and supplier listing sites on the net like Alibaba.com and Tradekey.com. However, these sites only provide lists of suppliers – it is up to the buyer to carry out adequate research before any financial transactions take place.
If you have visited these supplier listing sites, you’ll have noticed that they have suppliers that supply everything from Kevlar to cranes. The trick is to find the ones that are reliable and credible.
The Best Shopping Cart Tips #1: Fraud Check
The main complaint about supplier listing sites is that some of the suppliers listed are not entirely legit. Forums are filled with complaints of fraud and unscrupulous suppliers. Surprisingly, some suppliers are still listed even after numerous complaints have been lodged against them.
And then there are those who claim to be suppliers but are actually middlemen who get a cut out of everything that you buy. This actually reduces your profit margin and may actually be a kink in your supply chain. Be sure you deal with someone higher up in the supply chain, preferably the manufacturer if possible. The higher up you go, the lower the product price, which translates into a better profit margin for you.
One of the tell tale signs that a supplier may be trying to pull off a scam is when he (or she) is willing to deal with a unregistered buyer. This indicates that the supplier is only interested in the money. More often than not, legitimate suppliers only deal with registered companies or buyers.
The Best Shopping Cart Tips #2: Reliability Check
Good suppliers are important because they have a direct influence on a business. New home based businesses are generally small and have very little space or financial resources for holding large inventory. Because of this, many home based businesses rely on timely deliveries in order to fulfill their orders promptly.
Before engaging the services of a particular supplier, visit B2B forums and check trade bureaus for any reports against a particular supplier. If there are complaints, check to be sure that the complaints are not from a direct competitor of the supplier.
The Best Shopping Cart Tips #3: Drop Shippers
Engaging the services of drop shippers is a popular choice for new merchants who do not have the resources to store, package and send out products. A few top ecommerce solutions like InstanteStore are already integrated with at least one notable drop shipper or drop shipper supplier, so merchants need not install free shopping cart software.
Some drop shippers will even offer to provide free shopping cart integration with their software but be aware that not all drop shippers are reliable. You would do well to read their terms and conditions carefully. Some unscrupulous drop shippers sometimes hide their clauses in the fine print. Look out for return policies and non-fulfillment clauses in particular.
If you have done your homework well, you will likely end up with very good suppliers. Most of our more successful merchants have a good rapport with their suppliers. They are always thinking of ways to make the supply chain more efficient, thus either maintaining or reducing costs.
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