Here are the steps you should take for choosing your supplier:
International vs. Local Suppliers
- Understand the differences between using an international vs. local supplier.
How to Use Your Suppliers Sheet to Vet Suppliers
- If you haven’t already, download the Choose Your Supplier spreadsheet.
- Open the Suppliers Sheet.
- Download the Suppliers Sheet Instructions.
- Familiarize yourself with the Suppliers Sheet by reading the Suppliers Sheet Instructions.
How to Find International Suppliers on Alibaba
- To find international suppliers on Alibaba, first create an account at http://www.alibaba.com.
- Search for your product. Refine your results by:
- Trade Assurance
- Gold Supplier
- Assessed Suppliers
- Add each supplier you are interested into the “Compare Box”.
- Choose your favorite suppliers by comparing the product details, reviews, supplier website and private labeling options.
- Add favorite suppliers to the Suppliers Sheet.
How to Find Local Suppliers on Google
- To find local suppliers, Google your product name + supplier.
- Narrow down your search by using exact keywords and exclude big supplier databases such as Alibaba .
- When you are on a local supplier website, conduct a similar supplier analysis as you did for in the Alibaba “Compare Box”.
- Add favorite international suppliers to the Suppliers Sheet.
How to Contact Suppliers
- Check your mindset: be a professional.
- Make first contact, by sending an email to each potential supplier. Contact one supplier at a time. Use the initial email template, which includes the 6 things you need to communicate.
- Respond in a timely manner to supplier responses.
- Schedule follow up phone calls on Skype.
- When you contact a supplier, especially when you are on the phone with them, make sure you get as much information as possible. For inspiration, go over the 20 things we recommend you should discuss when contacting suppliers.
- Record all of the responses and complete your Suppliers Sheet.
How to Choose Your Supplier
- Review the answers to your questions in the Suppliers Sheet.
- Choose your favorite supplier.
- Calculate your (estimated: it does not yet include marketing/giveaways) profit margin using the Income Statement.
- If your profit margin is below 50%, consider choosing another supplier
- Fill in your Yearly Income Goal in the Summary Sheet, to see how many daily sales you need to make.
Getting a Sample
- Ask the supplier of your choice to send you sample, unless your product is an existing, ready-to-ship product that can’t really be altered (for example: a supplement).
- Negotiate that you can deduct the sample price from your first order, should you choose to go ahead with this supplier.
How to Finalize the Order Price & Delivery Schedule
- Get a final order price from your supplier.
- Get an outline of the delivery schedule. It is important to have a clear understanding of what needs to be decided now, prior to placing the order, and what will happen after.
- Finalize the quote with the order price including labeling, packaging and shipping preparation. Hold off on placing your order for now. Detailed steps are in the following modules to assist with knowing what’s expected here.
You may be thinking: Wow, that’s quite a few steps to find that one supplier! But trust us, it’s absolutely worth spending your time on. Right now you are laying the foundation for your FBA business. If you do things right at this stage, everything else will just be so much easier once you actually start selling!
If you have followed all the action steps in this Module, you now have everything set up for your first order. But you haven’t ordered yet. Why did we hold off on ordering for now?
Because you haven’t put much thought yet into how you can sell a differentiated, unique product. This is what we will be covering in the next two modules:
See you there!
Now Let’s Learn How to Create Your Brand!
Great job finishing up this third Module. Next up, we’ll show you everything you need to know in order to create your brand!