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What is Drop Shipping?

Sell what Sells, NOT what's Cool

The Wholesale Misconception

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Wolves in Wholesale Suppliers' C...

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Tradeshows the Right Way - How to Get the Most Out of Going

by Chris Malta

For online retailers, trade shows are an incredible opportunity to source goods, connect with wholesalers and manufacturers, and expand their product lines. There is a right way and a wrong way to attend tradeshows. To get the most out of your experience, you need to prepare.

Your first step is to find the tradeshow that’s right for you—there’s a tradeshow for nearly every industry imaginable. One good source for locating tradeshows is www.TradeShowWeek.com—you can search for shows alphabetically, by city and state, by industry, or by month. You can also try Googling the phrase “trade show” and your industry name. Tradeshows also advertise in the magazines and publications that cater to their market, and they’ll give you plenty of advance notice so you can plan ahead.

Requirements to Register
Because trade shows are only open to the industry insiders, you have to register to attend. You can pre-register on a tradeshow’s website and receive your badge in the mail. You save yourself a lot of time standing in line when you arrive. There’s almost never a cost to register and you will have to provide proof you’re a legitimate business:

    • your business license, or tax ID

    • your resale certificate

    • a photo ID

    • business card or check in your business’ name
A Wealth of Information
Be sure to pick up a show directory when you get there—they’ll contain contact information for every exhibitor at the show. Very often the phone numbers and websites in them are intended for retailers only and aren’t available anywhere else. Get as many different supplier catalogs as you can.

The products on display are only a fraction of their product lines. Even if you don’t see anything at their booth that interests you, they may have hundreds of other products in their catalogs that may be perfect for you.

Know What You’re After
If you aren’t looking for a specific product, start by canvassing the show and making notes on which suppliers you want to talk to. Make a list of the questions you want to ask before talking with their reps. Product sourcing expert Lisa Suttora, of WhatDoISell.com, cautions, “They get very busy at these shows so you want to be brief and to the point. Know specifically what you want to find out… so you don’t waste their time or yours.”

If you’re in the market for a specific type of product, you can look at the tradeshow’s website and see what exhibitors will be there. If you sell boxing gear and attend a sporting goods show, you might look for the suppliers that sell boxing equipment. You can get their booth order numbers and map out a plan for navigating the show to hit every supplier you want to talk to.

Have a Product Sourcing Mindset
Having a game plan doesn’t mean overlooking exhibitors who aren’t on your short list. Says Suttora, “If you’re going to look for specific products, that’s fine. But you also want to keep your mind open [and] look at all the suppliers because you never know when you’re going to come across a product or a supplier that you may not have thought about that could be very good for your business.”

 
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...