If you’re running a business – maybe you want to sell on eBay or sell on Amazon – you’ll need to source your stock at the lowest possible trade prices. Being able to buy at wholesale is one of the easiest ways of sourcing at low cost. Here I tell you the secret to successfully buying from a wholesaler.

Tips To Help You Buy at Wholesale Prices – or Less!

* Do your research. Make a list of all the wholesalers you can find who sell the products you want to source, so you can get a sense of the market. Use online searches, the phone book, check paper directories at libraries and also The Secret Source Directory.

* Don’t forget to look for clearance wholesalers and bankrupt stock wholesalers. These sell stock such as catalogue returns and end-of-line products which can be great for eBay selling. It’s not unusual to be able to buy these from specialist wholesalers at even less than the original trade discount price!

* It pays to try online wholesalers. Some of the best wholesalers don’t operate from big warehouses anymore. They operate only over the Internet. The money they save on rent, rates, premises and staff can benefit you in the form of lower online prices.

* Look for wholesalers abroad. They have some of the cheapest prices, even after allowing for the cost of transport. Nowadays with the Internet it needn’t be much more difficult to buy from abroad than from the UK. Just remember to allow for duties and taxes on top of the price (if the wholesaler is outside the EU).

Here’s an article you will find useful on using Alibaba – a sort of directory for wholesalers abroad

* Unlock low trade prices. A trade card will usually be needed to get you trade prices at a cash and carry. Usually these aren’t too difficult to get. You’ll only need ID. If you’re not get a trader, telling the wholesaler that you are in the process of starting a business should be enough to get you access.

Remember though, wholesale prices usually exclude VAT which is charged on most items with a few exceptions (such as most food and children’s clothing).

* Take ticket prices with a pinch of salt! Whether you’re buying from a wholesale catalogue, website, or in a cash and carry wholesale warehouse you should never, ever take marked ticket prices as the bottom line.

If you’re buying in quantity, or can offer the wholesaler a certain money value of business each year, then you should always try to use that as a lever to secure a discount from the wholesaler. With wholesalers, there’s nearly always a deal to be done or a discount to be had… you won’t offend them by asking and in fact they will probably EXPECT you to!

If you’re looking to source cheaply here’s another article I hope you will find helpful: My Six Top Product Sourcing Secrets.