Checking Wholesalers - Tips & Tricks

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Hi

I'm quite new to all this, but like many here have found so many "wholesalers" which after checking I wouldn't touch with a barge poll.

I thought a thread containing details about performing checks on these might be useful?

I personally.

Look for Trading Address
Look for Contact Telephone Number (better if standard and not 08--)
Realistic Prices

If they claim to be a LTD company, I search the companieshouse records.

I then perform a Whois hoping to match the details with that of the site.

Next if a Postcode is avaliable I Multimap to see if there based in an Commercial/Industrial Area... I've nothing against home based businesses but the chances are worst.

Next comes a Search on the WayBack Machine(http://www.waybackmachine.org) - this gives a good indication of how long the website has been operating in it's present state.

Now if all this seems in order... I email them asking

Are you VAT registered and if so what is your VAT number
Is your business registered? , and if so under what trading name & number (Depending if I already know this or not)
How long has [Company] been trading?

Any reputal company in my eye's can provide stuff like Price/Stock Lists, if they can't i assume they don't have proper systems in place and who knows what there really like to order from.

If they reply to the email the IP address from it is then checked using Visual Route and hopefully unless I know otherwise it should come from the country I'm expecting.


Now how am I doing? .... I've not been stung yet but if anyone knows any other ways of "online" checking I'd be very happy to hear them.

Martin
 
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Some good tips there,

Another thing to do is search the wholesalers trading name/regestered name on google and msn you might find disgruntled customers posting in other forums and news groups.

But beware of any praise you may find this way as it may not be posted by a genuine customer.
 
Dec 25, 2003
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I think this needs sticking

Mod Edit- Done
 

James

Banned Member
Jul 15, 2004
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Hmm... My tips

Ok. If the prices are too good to be true, they most probably are. Branded Consumer electronics have an incredibly low profit margin. A few %. You will not find them for 50% of the RRP.

Products such as Apple Ipods are available to authorised distributers only. Not available Wholesale. If there is a site offering many products such as this, I would be extra careful. It just doesnt happen.

Will add more when I think of them
 
Another thing I look out for.

Is Free Email addresses.... If a site is www.XYZ.co.uk but the contact email address is (E-mail hidden for privacy) then this looks unprofessional, and i don't want to deal with unprofessional companies.
 
MartinD said:
Hi

Look for Contact Telephone Number (better if standard and not 08--)


Poppy **** Martin we use 0845 numbers for the benefit of customers so that they only pay local rate charges from anywhere in the country, along of course with the added benefit that should we need to expand yet again, we can divert the calls straight to the new telephone numbers without having to pay off BT with extortionate charges for redirecting which costs around £220 per number for 12 months.


Although I can agree with some of your comments, I think your going to the extremes just to confirm a trader is legitimate, why not just call trading standards or the local authority in that area for confirmation a company exists?
 
James said:
Hmm... My tips

Ok. If the prices are too good to be true, they most probably are. Branded Consumer electronics have an incredibly low profit margin. A few %. You will not find them for 50% of the RRP.

We sell a Branded Product of our own "The Driver Hour Guard" I'll give a few secrets away here as I honestly respect this site.

Purchase Price per unit USD$6.00 each (Manufactured directly for us)

Cost of landed goods in UK £5.00 after shipping costs Vat and Duty

We sell trade price £11.75 + Vat

Distributor sells £17.00 + Vat

Shop Sells £29.99 inc Vat


We supply 3 E-bayers at £15.00 inc P&P & Vat so it shows how well they do from the product (I've got 1600 in stock if anyone wants to try them ;-)

So as you can see from this one product, it only costs £5.00 to get into the country, but, the final shop price is £29.99 Branded Electronics are exactly the same, it's not the importer making the money its the retailer at the end of the chain.
 
Davey-D (Nit wit)

I fully understand the reasons for using 08 based numbers, but they are also free to setup and with no background checks made these numbers can be in use by anyone and pointing anywhere.. (Understand now?)

I also never said there's anything wrong with them, but seeing a Local Code shows there trying to hide nothing and B2B should'nt really need 08 numbers.

And believe me I do make the checks you've suggested, but not everyone is a registered company but operating as sole-traders so unknown to local authorities.

You may think I've noted far to many checks to make, but I haven't been stung yet, I have good wholesalers who operate professionally and will still be operating for the foreseeable future. Now I can see just from the posts on this board not everyone has been this lucky.

It's for these people I made this thread.

Thanks for reading.

Martin
 
Jan 14, 2005
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Sorry MartinD but I have to disagree with you.

I am in the process if setting up my own website and along with my address I have my mobile number listed, as I do not want anyone to have my home number (I am a sole trader working from home), there are a lot of people just like me who run a business from home but do not want to have their home phone tied up.

James
 
jamhun I can fully understand your reasons for not wanting to disclose your real home number.

But please understand, that you have the option of installing a second line. Not only is this cheap, but will give your business a much more professional image.

Opting to list a Mobile number gives me the impression you 1). Haven't fully investigated the options. 2). Are on a tight budget. 3) Haven't disclosed to the local council the change of use to Part-Commerical of your property.

And please remember the context that these comments are on this thread are for. Wholesalers don't sell to the public, so the need to have 08-- or local rate calls is reduced.

We are not talking about selling to the public.
 
Aug 16, 2005
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Apr 3, 2005
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you have to remember that some so called wholesalers are only brokers. in that case, you might not find any information about them on that site.

the site that you've mentioned, isnt that site only for UK companies; not for wholesalers all over the world?
 
Oct 17, 2004
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guru4us said:
you have to remember that some so called wholesalers are only brokers. in that case, you might not find any information about them on that site.

the site that you've mentioned, isnt that site only for UK companies; not for wholesalers all over the world?

I believe you can choose your location on one of the links he has supplied...

Welcome back btw harry... :)
 
Woohoo... More info to the thread !

Nice one businessfirm

regards,

Martin
 
Aug 16, 2005
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Of course, for the UK companies. For other country, you have to search from the links above
 

BillyA

Retired Moderator
Jan 9, 2006
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One other thing. Payment options. If a supplier only offers T/T, Western Union, or some other form of non-secure payment option, chances rise that they are not on the up and up. Most legit suppliers, in the US anyway, offer some form of secure payment method such as CC, escrow, or Paypal.
 
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