Sourcing products – building business plans and strategies
Using the net is one of the best ways to find out what’s ‘out there’ when it comes to sourcing new and innovative products for your business.
All you need to do is type your question into your search engine, such as Google or Yahoo and hit enter. For example: I may need to source a specific type of gemstone to complete my jewelry case and decide to search for blue topaz.
In the search engine I type: wholesale blue topaz
The search engine ‘crawls’ the internets and pulls up everything with the words ‘wholesale blue topaz ‘. Items that most closely match the order of your search will appear towards the top of the page. As the internet runs out of choices, it will then search for sites that have any of these words regardless of order, and then search for any of these words. So your search might not only give you the information you are looking for but the list that might also include a variety of different wholesalers and blue colour samples.
In either case, sourcing and comparing product lines is very straight forward. One thing to keep in mind though is that many wholesalers over the net require proof of business registration and may or may not charge a membership fee.
No doubt in your search you will find many websites of your competitors. This is great because you can go to their sites and find out what they are offering and develop competitive strategies to stay ahead of the game. You may notice that nobody in your region is offering the same list of products that you are, in which case, you will want to showcase your unique selling points on your website. You might also notice that your rates are way above or below the average industry standard which can impact your business at home and abroad giving you the option to adjust your prices accordingly.
The internet can also assist you in creating a business plan in order to apply for loans for start-up costs and expansion. There are a variety of free websites out there that can provide you with a template, and even take you through a series of tutorials to help you.