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What is Drop Shipping?

Sell what Sells, NOT what's Cool

The Wholesale Misconception

Don't Get Taken by a Fake Suppli...

Wolves in Wholesale Suppliers' C...

Working Within the Process

Is Santa's Sleigh Big Enough for...

Beware of Drop Shipping 'Agents'...

Direct From The Factory?

4 Strategies for Seasonal Sellin...

3 Tools for Product Sourcing on ...

Tradeshows the Right Way - How t...

Tradeshow Sourcing - When the Sh...

Preparing for the Holiday Season...

What a Wholesale Supplier Expect...

Product Sourcing Using Trade Pub...

Tips for Finding and Getting Goo...

Storage Units Auctions - Buying ...

Starting an Antiques and Collect...

How EBay PowerSellers Source Pro...

How to Build Your Online Consign...

Dangerous Mindsets - Changing th...

Sourcing Customer Returns - Buyi...

Product Sourcing Strategies - Ne...

6 Common Product Sourcing Questi...

Increasing Your Profits through ...

Importing Basics - What You Need...

Selecting and Changing Your Prod...

The Inside Scoop on Trade Shows ...

How to Make Product Liquidation ...

Shopping with Uncle Sam - A Brea...

One Man's Trash... Could Be Your...

Our Town - Sourcing Products Loc...

An Intro to Closeouts - A Produc...

How to Find Authentic Suppliers ...

Beyond Borders - Sourcing Overse...

Heads or Tails? - How to Find Yo...

Five Holiday Trends - What Every...

Seeing the Whole Picture - A Who...

Drop Shipping Pros and Cons - th...

Far From Home - 4 Keys to Succes...

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The Ins and Outs of Importing - ...

How to Choose Your Product Lineu...

The Fine Art of Product Sourcing...

Sourcing The Secondary Market - ...

Local Sourcing Techniques - Prod...

Global Sourcing - Importing for ...

A Foreign Affair - Preparing to ...

Choose Wisely - How to a Pick Pr...

Made in China - Importing Option...

The Color of Money - How Color T...

The Nuts and Bolts of Liquidatio...

How to Break Into Importing - An...

Trend or Fad? What to Ask Before...

What Your Country Can Do for You...

Opportunities Abroad - China Sou...

Trade Shows Year-Round - What Pe...

5 Product Trends for 2008 that E...

Successfully Negotiating with Yo...

5 Strategies for Safely Sourcing...

Informed Compliance for e-Tailer...

Locate Qualified Drop Shippers f...

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products to sell online - 6 Common Product Sourcing Questions Answered

by Chris Malta

If you have a question about your E-Biz, you're probably not the first one to have it. Matt Hedges, customer support manager for WorldwideBrands.com, a leader in the product sourcing industry, answers the six most common product sourcing questions he gets from customers wanting to start their own E-Biz:

1. Will suppliers care if I'm a new online retailer working from home?
Generally, no. Explains Hedges, "They want to get their product out to consumers as much as possible, so they're looking to open new accounts."

2. How can I convey to a supplier that I'm a serious professional, not a fly-by-night home business?

    Before you call or email questions to a supplier, read their web site. More often than not, the answers are right in front of you. Taking up their time with questions you could have easily found an answer to yourself reflects poorly on your professionalism.

    • When you contact a supplier - get to the point. Real wholesale suppliers are very busy people. They want to help their retailers, but they don't have a lot of time for chit-chat; so try to get to the meat of your question as quickly as possible.

    Proofread and spell-check your emails. It's very difficult to look professional when your email is full of typos, sentence fragments and run-ons.

    Be patient.

    Just because a supplier doesn't respond to your questions the same day you send them is no reason to get agitated. If they think you're going to be a demanding customer, chances are they won't work with you.

3. I found a supplier I want to work with - what's my first step?
Your first step is to check for an online account setup form - then fill it out. Wholesalers need proof that you're a legitimate retailer before they can give you an account or access to their actual wholesale pricing structure. So step one is submitting your company information to them. You'll need a Registered Business Name and Tax ID to work with real wholesale suppliers. If you don't have one, they're easy to get: just contact your local County Clerks Office, and they'll help you get set up.

4. I only want to sell popular name brand items - how do I get a supplier?
You can't afford to limit yourself to selling only brands you recognize. Your research should predicate your product line. Many brands you've never heard of are very popular within certain demographics.

5. Should I be focusing on "hot sellers" like iPods, gaming consoles, and designer clothes? Can I drop ship them?
Once everyone knows an item is hot, the market for that item becomes saturated.

The demand is there, but the supply is too. So everyone tries to undercut everyone else, and the profit margins get really slim.

Also, the manufacturers of these items set astronomical buying minimums - say $100,000 each contract term. You could mortgage your house to meet the minimum, and your wholesale prices would still be much higher than those of the big retail chains that get additional discounts for buying in much, much larger volumes.

Finding a supplier who'll drop ship these items individually is almost impossible. It's cost-prohibitive for them - especially in clothing where the return rates tend to be high. And again, your wholesale rate for one item won't let you compete with the larger retailers who are buying in much larger volumes.

6. There's an item I really want to sell, but I can't find a supplier who'll work with me - what now?
Keep looking. If, after you've researched, you still can't find a supplier for that particular item, don't give up altogether on having an E-Biz - just consider other product options. There are millions of products you can sell. Advises Hedges, "You have to base your product choices off your market research; but if you do that, you can find items that you can actually compete with."

 
Archive List

ARTICLE ARCHIVE LIST

 

What is Drop Shipping?

Sell what Sells, NOT what's Cool

The Wholesale Misconception

Don't Get Taken by a Fake Suppli...

Wolves in Wholesale Suppliers' C...

Working Within the Process

Is Santa's Sleigh Big Enough for...

Beware of Drop Shipping 'Agents'...

Direct From The Factory?

4 Strategies for Seasonal Sellin...

3 Tools for Product Sourcing on ...

Tradeshows the Right Way - How t...

Tradeshow Sourcing - When the Sh...

Preparing for the Holiday Season...

What a Wholesale Supplier Expect...

Product Sourcing Using Trade Pub...

Tips for Finding and Getting Goo...

Storage Units Auctions - Buying ...

Starting an Antiques and Collect...

How EBay PowerSellers Source Pro...

How to Build Your Online Consign...

Dangerous Mindsets - Changing th...

Sourcing Customer Returns - Buyi...

Product Sourcing Strategies - Ne...

6 Common Product Sourcing Questi...

Increasing Your Profits through ...

Importing Basics - What You Need...

Selecting and Changing Your Prod...

The Inside Scoop on Trade Shows ...

How to Make Product Liquidation ...

Shopping with Uncle Sam - A Brea...

One Man's Trash... Could Be Your...

Our Town - Sourcing Products Loc...

An Intro to Closeouts - A Produc...

How to Find Authentic Suppliers ...

Beyond Borders - Sourcing Overse...

Heads or Tails? - How to Find Yo...

Five Holiday Trends - What Every...

Seeing the Whole Picture - A Who...

Drop Shipping Pros and Cons - th...

Far From Home - 4 Keys to Succes...

Product Sourcing Strategies for ...

The Ins and Outs of Importing - ...

How to Choose Your Product Lineu...

The Fine Art of Product Sourcing...

Sourcing The Secondary Market - ...

Local Sourcing Techniques - Prod...

Global Sourcing - Importing for ...

A Foreign Affair - Preparing to ...

Choose Wisely - How to a Pick Pr...

Made in China - Importing Option...

The Color of Money - How Color T...

The Nuts and Bolts of Liquidatio...

How to Break Into Importing - An...

Trend or Fad? What to Ask Before...

What Your Country Can Do for You...

Opportunities Abroad - China Sou...

Trade Shows Year-Round - What Pe...

5 Product Trends for 2008 that E...

Successfully Negotiating with Yo...

5 Strategies for Safely Sourcing...

Informed Compliance for e-Tailer...

Locate Qualified Drop Shippers f...

What is Product Sourcing? The So...

Where Do I Find Products to Sell...

Tips for Finding and Working wit...

A Beginner's Guide to Buying Dir...