I share a lot of information for entrepreneurs in the ecommerce industry. While most of it focuses on building your online presence, today I want to take a look behind the scenes. In this post, I’ll explore the system of suppliers that every strong business needs. It’s particularly important in the ecommerce world, but every business can learn something here.
Why exactly are suppliers so important? Well, that’s one question I’ll be seeking to answer today. If you’re running a company, you need a network of strong support systems that feeds into your business. Ecommerce stores need fantastic stock suppliers, for example. Office managers need stationery and admin supplies. Mechanics and manufacturers need component supplies. They are the essential things that keep your business running.
Why you need a strong, reliable network
Quality and innovation
In business, you are only as good as the product you put out to the world. Now, if your product relies on suppliers, then you’re only as good as your supplier! If you’re an ecommerce seller, your supplier is responsible for the quality of your product. If you’re in the manufacturing world, each component part must be the highest quality. It must be innovative and modern. In turn, that strengthens your business.
Businesses will always need quick turnaround times. A good supplier understands that, and will work to fill rush orders when necessary. When you’ve build a strong relationship, it’s much easier to ask for that quick turnaround. You’re looking for a supplier that can handle big orders on a short timescale.
As you can imagine, cost is always a big factor. It doesn’t always pay to choose the cheapest supplier on the market. Remember, you’re looking for quality and innovation. That certainly doesn’t come from rock-bottom prices. But, equally, you don’t want to pay over the odds. A good supplier will have the perfect balance between cost and quality. Always negotiate the price where possible, and ask yourself what you can do for them to lower the price.
Start building a personal relationship
Now that we’ve covered the core benefits of a good supplier network, how do you create one? It all starts by building a personal relationship. We asked the suppliers at CCTY Bearing for some advice on this article. They told us that they like to form long-term relationships with their business customers. It makes it much easier to pick up the phone, and secure an order. Visit the office of your suppliers, and get to know how they operate.
Prove yourself as a reliable customer
Suppliers are generally looking for customers that are trustworthy and reliable. That means paying your invoices on time, and answering emails on time. It means providing sufficient lead time to fulfill the order. It’s all about acting in a professional manner. That will secure you a long-term connection with good suppliers.
A strong supply network feeds your business, keeps the quality high, and the costs low. You can’t afford not to take this on board for your company.