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In order to purchase wholesale products, you will generally need a Tax ID number or some other form of proof that you are in fact eligible to make wholesale purchases. Wholesale prices are not usually available to the average consumer. Once you have your identity as a wholesaler established, you can begin looking for items from a variety of sources. These products can then be sold at retail for a profit.
The Internet is a great source for locating wholesale products. It is also a tool used by those who scam people out of their hard earned money. If you choose to look for wholesalers online, be prepared to research the history and standing of the company. Check with the Better Business Bureau and other organizations, read customer reviews, and find out how long the company has been in business.
Be wary of those who charge a periodic fee or require some form of membership or start up kit. Generally, you shouldn’t have to pay for the privilege of buying from a company. There are some buyers’ clubs and other organizations that do require membership or fees. Some may be legitimate, but be careful to learn whether or not any given company is reputable before joining or sending money.
Online auction sites can be good sources for finding wholesale products and there are also several business directories available. Many offer a rating system or provide reviews. Trade and retail magazines also feature popular wholesalers. You can attend trade shows too, which may be a better option, since you can meet people and examine wholesale products in person.
You may find that a drop ship company is a good solution for you and there are several choices featured in magazines, online, and in television infomercials. The items are offered to you at wholesale prices. A suggested retail price is available although you can charge whatever price you deem appropriate.
One advantage of this method of obtaining wholesale products is that you do not need to stock an inventory. Items are drop shipped directly to your customers, in your name. Having no need for a big office, staff, or warehouse for storage, means you can keep overhead down and earn bigger profits. However, it may be a good idea to order at least a few items to determine the quality of both the products and the service before using a drop shipper to supply your customers.
Talk to other retailers as well. They may not give you all their secrets, but many small business owners are happy to share their experiences and advice with others. They may even offer to sell you some wholesale products or go in on an order with you, if you aren’t directly competing with them.