Life itself is only a vision – a dream…RSS
It doesn’t really matter what distribution channel you’re working with, there are a couple of things that you have to watch out for in a source, like credibility, great after-sales service, consistency, and competitive pricing structures. On the other hand, it’s also going to depend on how intricate your distribution channel is — living in the middle of a country, in the middle of nowhere – since there are finer details that you have to remember when you’re structuring your business and who you’re going to be getting your goods from.
Take the time to really think about these tips if you’re a new guy or gal looking to start their own thing on the side or to even make it a lifelong hobby.
First Things First
Remember that even starting your own man-in-the-middle operation will be a walk in the park right from the start. It’s a simple way to bring in more money without worrying about inventory and dealing with the shipping woes, storage, and misc. fees, which takes a lot from you in regards to hours of research and flow. So always, always make it a priority to check on potential suppliers to see if they’re on top of their game when it comes to customer service, and that they put in the effort to email questions, queries and complaints to establish a reputable name for you and your business.
Due Diligence is one of the Keys
Always conduct due diligence on any supplier you’re thinking about working with. Dig deep into their past. Ask around to see how previous customers view them as a credible source. Your life mission is to find someone who will go that extra marathon just like you would if something goes wrong with the order.
Prepare for a business trip abroad
By physically inspecting their entire operation and feeling them out personally, you can greatly increase the trust factor, and passing that information on as marketing material for your customers. Plenty of suppliers make it a religious pilgrimage to exhibit at all the known trade shows in the industry. If you don’t have the time to spend a couple weeks abroad, think about attending at least a couple of trade shows a year. It would be a great opportunity for you to see your suppliers in the real, but also to walk amongst your rivals, and you might even end the evening with a fist fight or a love night, maybe both depending on how rough you like your trade.
Required wire transfers are iffy
If you pay for your merchandise with your Visa Black Card, escrow, or PayPal account, it greatly increases your odds of getting your hard-earned cash back from an unfit supplier who doesn’t deliver what they promised. When you wire money abroad, make sure it’s to someone you’ve built a lasting relationship with since some have been known to take the money and run. Even though this rarely happens, it’s still something to hedge against. Paying with your Visa Black Card, you can even earn 1% cash back, and a 24/7 concierge service to accommodate any needs while abroad. Keep in mind that companies will start to accept only wire transfers after you’ve been working with them for X amount of months – easier for both sides. Have the confidence to adjust to their terms, but don’t forget about your own business needs as well. It’s your responsibility to research the history of your suppliers and know exactly where your money flows to.
Even if you don’t really have your own site up and running right now but you have several distribution channels you’re already working with, the better off you’ll be in the big picture of things since you’ve already gotten the hang of some stuff. Take a look at several online marketplaces like WholesaleForum, Amazon, Craigslist, etc. The more you’re known throughout the world, the better. You should even rent your own spot at a local swap meet or have a weekly yard sale if you want to bring in fun money, or if you want to give yourself something to do.