Monday, July 11, 2016

Small Tip for Finding Distributors

This past Tuesday I posted about starting relationships with Distributors and/or brand manufacturers as a way of buying in bulk and at cheaper prices.

A few people emailed and commented that they are unsure where to begin.

I'll share how I found my first distributor and hopefully that will give you a way to get started.

Almost a year ago I saw some popcorn from Staples Clearance.  It was $5.  I scanned it with the app and it came up as selling for about $15 on Amazon with about $5 in fees with an ok rank in groceries (gated category - don't buy groceries unless you are ungated) so it was 100% return on my investment.  Always a good play!

I bought them and they sold pretty quickly.  I went back to Staples and the rest were gone.  I went to a new staples and found them and they were now $3.50 and selling for $20 on Amazon.  Fantastic!

They were still selling well for me and I went to more and more Staples stores to find my popcorn.  Unfortunately, it was in clearance they weren't going to carry this popcorn anymore which is why the markdowns continued.  No!!!!!

I kept searching online where I could find the popcorn on different sites and despite it being somewhat popular I couldn't find it available anywhere.

So I went directly to the website for the company.  On the site they had a list of distributors who were selling this popcorn and an email to contact them about bulk buying.

I emailed them with no response for weeks and weeks despite follow up emails.

I then called each of the distributors on the site.  Only one of them was still selling the popcorn, but I finally found it.  That was my first distributor relationship

Once I had a list of products that they sold I went through the list and found some other products which I buy from time to time as they are not super sellers but every little bit helps for replenishables.  

So that's one way to begin.  Find a product that you know sells well and you want to buy in bulk. Look up information from the company's website to find distributors.  Most of the time that information is readily available.

If that doesn't work, you can always try this.