How to Find a Wholesale Distributor

By DonShook

Shop for Wholesale Lots on eBay

Because eBay is primarily a retailer site, wholesale options are only available to very small retailers. If you are just getting started with e-commerce, eBay may be the right place to start.

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It is possible that people selling directly to customers on eBay also own a business-to business side. To find out if this is the case, it’s easy for you to get in touch with them via eBay.

Check out the major B2B marketplaces

Many large B2B marketplaces are available online, where you can purchase large quantities of products at very low prices. Alibaba is the largest B2B marketplace of wholesale distributors, manufacturers, and importers. There are also other B2B marketplaces:

  • Global Sources (USA).
  • Buyer Zone (USA).
  • EC21 (Korea)
  • EC Plaza (Korea)
  • Busy Trade (Hong Kong).

Find a marketplace that is local to your area. There are also specific B2B marketplaces for each industry. These can be used to serve one country or all of the retailers in the world.

Join Industry Groups, Forums and Other Professional Networks

Small business owners with experience in the niche or industry you are interested in buying wholesalers from are often the best sources of information. But, it is unlikely that other retailers will be willing to share information about suppliers with their competitors. To find the best wholesale suppliers for your small business, invest time in networking.

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You can get great information and support from others with industry experience by joining online forums. To build professional connections, you can build your LinkedIn profile and subscribe to industry newsletters.

Subscribe to Trade Publications for Your Industry

Trade magazines provide a wealth information on businesses and relationships within your industry. Nearly all of the advertisers in trade magazines will be product manufacturers or distributors looking to reach customers. A single trade magazine issue can give the names of dozens or even hundreds of small- and medium-sized manufacturers.

Subscribe to blogs and newsletters online, in addition to magazines. These are the best way to stay up-to-date with industry news and updates, whether they be weekly or daily.

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Participate in a Trade Show

Trade shows can be a powerful way to grow and build your business. These events allow retailers to meet distributors and manufacturers.

Trade shows give you the opportunity to speak with hundreds of manufacturers and wholesalers in one day. Face-to-face meetings can help avoid misinformation and communication problems that can arise when you contact people online.

Trade Show News Network has the largest online directory of trade shows. Search by date, industry, country, or event name to find a trade show near you.

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Do not be afraid to make a mistake

It is possible that your first wholesale supplier will not be one you can work with over the long-term. It takes a lot of trial-and-error to create the perfect supply chain.