Recently, I published an article by Stephanie Chandler on locating wholesale sources. It’s a good article for beginners and covers a basic introduction to product sourcing whether for online shops or brick and mortar ones. You can read it at “How To Locate Wholesale Suppliers.”
Of course, there are any number of reasons you may want to find wholesale sources. Sure, you might be starting a real store or a website in a niche market. But you might also want to get into the craze of selling on eBay and/or Amazon.com. Furthermore, you may want to source components for your own product creations — after all, why would you want to pay retail prices and taxes on your parts and supplies?
So now that Chandler’s article has reminded me of it, I’d like to say a few words on the subject.
I don’t usually write about product sourcing because there is a certain amount of controversy and conflicting information out there about it. There is also a great deal of hype. Not to mention that there are innumerable scams involving product sourcing.
The most controversy and a great deal of the misinformation and outright scams seem to revolve around the issue of finding products to sell on eBay and Amazon.
I was taught when I was a child — and believed it — that if something sounded to good to be true, it probably was a scam. If I see an offer that says “Get your eBay account today, and be making $20,000 a month within a week, without risk,” I think it is obviously impossible and a lie. But, I’ve learned that many people fall for that kind of hype daily.
Also, there is a lot of well-intentioned, but misleading advice dispensed for free in forums or article farms. So, would-be eBay and Amazon sellers come to believe that they should be able to find hot products — like brand-name video games and iPads — at wholesale, which they can get drop shipped for them after advertising them in auctions for the lowest price available. No. Uh-uh. Not going to happen. Why not is a long, long discussion.
Instead of trying to explain how it works, I’m going to refer you to two resources. They both have information products to sell, but they give you plenty of information for free. Enough information that you can figure out what you need to know on your own. Enough information that you can figure out if they are legitimate and their products are worth buying.
First, there’s Skip McGrath http://www.skipmcgrath.com/. He’s been selling on eBay and giving advice to others since eBay’s early days. He has a great straight-forward, down-to-earth style of writing. His advice is solid, practical and based on his own experience.
If you’re thinking about selling on eBay and/or Amazon, you need to read his free articles and sign up for his free newsletter. They will cover more than you get in many of the useless ebooks that others have for sale. Of course, he wants you to buy his information product and he’ll advertise them to you both on his website and in the newsletters. But, by the time you’ve gotten his free information, you’ll probably be glad to fork over a bit of cash to get more details and guidance.
I have an old copy of his manual “The eBay Wholesale Buying System.” Back in about 2002, I wanted to help my parents start an eBay business, and McGrath’s manual was the info product I selected after a lengthy investigation of the field. I found it to be a valuable resource, along with the newsletters he has automatically sent for all these years since. I’ve kept an eye on how he has developed his business and his advice and have been impressed. I don’t recommend products lightly. But, I am confident that if you read his articles and the back copies of his newsletters, you’ll be pleased with what you see.
As with anything I recommend, however, I must remind you that you are the one that has to investigate and make the final judgement. Never substitute my references for your own choices. I’m giving you a link to his home page for you to start your own research. Skip McGrath http://www.skipmcgrath.com/.
You might also like his free ebook: 77 Tips and Tools for Selling on The New eBay
Also, considering that some of McGrath’s products get a little costly, it’s nice to know he offers a money-back guarantee of your satisfaction.
My second resource is WorldwideBrands.com. (If you go to the McGrath site I recommended, you’ll find he also recommends them. His book and newsletters are where I found out about them. )
I have a membership with them, and have had since about 2003 or 2004. They provide everything they promise. And the membership, although expensive, is a lifetime membership. When I’m offered a “lifetime” anything on the internet, my first question is “does it deliver what it promises?” and my second question is “how long can it be counted on to really run — what is a lifetime?”
It wasn’t as much of a risk to me as it may be to you — I got the membership for much less than the current price.
What I can tell you is that it actually has a huge database of wholesalers, liquidators, and drop shippers. What I cannot tell you — and neither can Worldwide Brands, is whether or not you’ll find the products you want to sell from the suppliers they have listed. Worldwide does, however, have a money back guarantee.
Honestly, though, I’ve never used any of their wholesalers. So, I can’t say how their suppliers are to deal with. But that’s not because of any failing of Worldwide’s or their suppliers. It’s just plain personal. Not long after I got the McGrath manual and the World Wide Brands membership, my Dad became too disabled to try to build a new business and also had to give up the crafts business he already had going. While I know very well how to do selling on eBay and Amazon, having sold my own used books through them, it’s not my line of interest.
At least I can write about the fact that they have continued to grow their directory for many years and have constantly supplied new resources in their weekly newsletter. I recommend that you take a look at their website, where they have a good amount of free information, including articles and ebooks. In fact, here’s the link to the free ebooks. You might like to start there: Worldwide Brands Free EBooks