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How Do You Choose Your Suppliers
Most businesses will choose their suppliers by going to the Yellow Pages or through a recommendation.

You can also gain information about suppliers from the following sources:

  • Personal referral.
  • Business directories.
  • Specialist publications.
  • Trade publications.
  • Business advice agencies.
  • Your own research.

You can conduct your own research by finding out how long a business has been established or finding out how secure they are or seeing what their credit rating is. Then come up with a short list that you can investigate further before making your final choice.

Unfortunately the reality is that most small business will take the first name that comes along and they will learn about any problems that the supplier may have later on – sometimes to their detriment.

Dealing With Different Types of Suppliers

If you are to build a good relationship with your suppliers, think of ways to benefit both them and you. It takes time to build a good relationship with your suppliers so you need to concentrate your efforts on your key ones. The key ones are those who provide the price that you cannot go without and the service that you need. It has often been said that 20% of your suppliers will account for 80% of your supplies and costs.

This means that your key suppliers are likely to be those who fall into the 20% range. This can also be applied to the point of view of suppliers. 20% of their customers will present 80% of their business. It means that if you are one of their key customers it will be in their interest to build a good relationship with you.

Tips and Traps Regarding Suppliers
Here are some tips:

  1. Don’t rely heavily on one supplier.
  2. Research your potential supplier to make sure that they will be able to provide you with the goods that you need.
  3. Monitor their performance because if they don’t perform then it is time to look for someone else.
  4. Check your supplies after you have received them so you can resolve any disputes quickly.
  5. If you have an agreement for a fixed price for certain goods then remember that these prices should be able to be increased if external factors occur. If you do this your supplier will appreciate it and look after you.
  6. Your supplier relationship cannot be built over night. The benefits of a good relationship are endless.