Everything You Need To Know About Product Sourcing For Your Business

As a retail buyer, sourcing the consumer packaged goods ( CPG ) products to stock your shelves is integral to the success of your storehouse. Without the justly products, you won ’ thyroxine have customers. And without customers, good, you won ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate have a business .
today ’ south CPG landscape offers myriad opportunities for buyers to reference modern products. Suppliers boastful and little are fix and waiting to get their products on storehouse shelves and in on-line shops, which can be overwhelming for buyers. It is all-important that buyers understand where they are sourcing their products from, and how that ultimately affects their clientele. here ’ s what you need to know about product source .

What is product sourcing?

Simply put, product source is finding the products you want to sell in your storehouse, buying them from a supplier, and then reselling them. If you ’ re a retailer — brick and mortar, on-line, or both — then merchandise source is the linchpin of your business .

Where to find wholesale product suppliers

Finding the right supplier for your commercial enterprise can be a challenge. The number of suppliers worldwide boggles the judgment. And for retailers, there is no single supplier who can provide every unmarried product you ’ ll motivation to malcolm stock your shelves and meet the needs and wants of consumers.

You will besides need to meet your own occupation needs, whether it ’ s managing a little commercial enterprise, an on-line storehouse, or even an on-line marketplace. It makes feel then, when looking for multiple product suppliers, to check multiple avenues to informant those suppliers and products .


It seems that these days, everything starts online. Product source is no exception. When looking on-line for places to source products for your retail clientele, there are two options :

  1. Supplier websites
  2. Online supplier platforms

While any clientele deserving its salt these days has an on-line presence, it ’ mho time-consuming and absolutely arduous to try and find the proper intersection for your business plainly by searching websites. A single intersection search can turn up thousands of results .
today ’ south grocery stores can carry upwards of 40,000 items in a one shop, and while buyers aren ’ metric ton adding that many raw products, there ’ s an average of 30,000 new food products that roll out every year, ripe for the retailer pluck .
As the CPG industry has changed, on-line intersection source has a well. The launch of platforms that streamline product source makes the process easier for buyers and suppliers alike. Using a platform like RangeMe, for exemplar, retailers can log on and enter specific search standard around the type of newfangled product they are searching for. With more than 125,000 suppliers in the system, the results they get are the ones that most closely match their needs, and in many cases have been verified by RangeMe so retailers know that these suppliers have the capabilities to meet the retailer ’ mho needs from the startle .

Trade shows

While trade display attendance has been on the descent in holocene years, they remain a viable and significant generator for new merchandise research and acquisition for buyers. Trade shows allow buyers the opportunity for immediate information, seeing the product firsthand, and creating a kinship with suppliers. Trade shows besides provide retail buyers with the opportunity to get a heads up on the latest trends, so they can be surely they ’ re stocking their shelves with the hot products of the stage and future .

Six steps to successful product sourcing

Sourcing newly products can seem submerge — it ’ south not a bare as just finding a bang-up product and putting it in your stores. But there are steps that retailers can take to make the march flow smoothly .

1. Research your product

first base and foremost, retailers need to understand the intersection. Market research is essential to success ; sourcing products without the necessary research is asking for failure. The research retailers need in-hand should be all-around. This can include :

  1. Store data. What are the numbers telling you from specific stores ? Is there adequate matter to to drive sales and increase in your retail stores overall ? Or would certain products work good for certain stores ?
  2. Consumer demand. What are your consumers asking for ? What are they talking about on social media ? What are their concerns in surveys ? What kind of feedback are you getting through different channels ? What topics engage them most ? And, linking second to storehouse data, how does what they are saying actually compare to what they are purchasing ?
  3. Trends. What ’ south swerve in the product class, and which companies seem to be addressing these trends ? Are these trends crossing over into any other categories ?

With this information in hired hand, buyers can make more inform decisions when it comes meter to initiate reach with suppliers. The more a buyer knows about the intersection he or she wants, the better the result will be.

2. Contact any potential suppliers

Before contacting suppliers, know precisely what it is you, as the buyer, need. Yes, contribution of this is doing research on the intersection, as mentioned above. But the other separate of it is knowing what you want out of this initial touch with the supplier. Are you looking for information ? For samples ? specific products ? Knowing that, and being upfront about your needs, will help the process go smoothly .
This step is besides where buyers put their contacts from trade shows to use, reaching out to suppliers they ’ ve met or been in contact with. It ’ mho besides a time when they can engage on platforms like RangeMe, as RangeMe streamlines the process so buyers can inquiry products and easily reach out to suppliers all in one spot .

3. Ask for samples

Would you test drive a car without buying it ? No. As a retail buyer, you ’ re not going to put a product in your shop without sampling it. When contacting suppliers, part of the ask should be for samples therefore you can get feedback from team members, view the product up airless and personal, and see how the supplier handles this first transaction before you make the decision on whether to include it in your product mix. Asking for samples is an crucial part of your sourcing scheme and a beneficial way to test the quality of products .

4. Choose supplier to trial-run an order

once a retail buyer finds a product that shows likely, ordain a trial-run for that product. This can mean the buyer asks for a certain number of units to be trialed across a retail chain, or it can mean a intersection is being tested in only certain stores. A buyer may choose to only test certain products from the supplier ’ s overall batting order, quite than the lineup in its entirety .
Buyers should set parameters and key performance indicators around the trial ladder, including how long the trial will run, sales ratios, and consumer feedback, for example .

5. Evaluate supplier

Whether or not a buyer chooses to move advancing with a supplier and form a more long-run kinship depends heavy on how the supplier performs during a trial run. Having the parameters mentioned above will help retail buyers better evaluate suppliers when the trial run ends. Did the product meet the expected goals ? Did it overperform or underperform ? How was it received in the stores ?
In addition to these questions, retail buyers need to ask questions about the relationship with the supplier. Were they timely and clean in their communications ? Did shipments arrive on time and with the proper products and counts ? Where the products intact when they arrived at the shop ? Was the quote monetary value on target ?
These details can make or break a buyer-supplier relationship. And if a buyer chooses not to pursue a relationship with a supplier, honest, constructive feedback can be helpful to understand why the relationship international relations and security network ’ metric ton moving forward .

6. Keep other supplier options!

Businesses merge, or disband completely, supplies can be unmanageable to get, or sometimes product quality goes down. These things are to be expected from suppliers in the wide worldly concern of CPG, where trends and products can change arsenic frequently as the wind. And when a consumer expects to always see a intersection on the ledge and abruptly international relations and security network ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate, it can be a huge blow, shaking consumer trust in the retailer .
It is all-important, then, for retailers to keep their supplier options open. Having more than one supplier for a merchandise ensures that not only is the retailer getting what they need, but consumers are a well .

Benefits of having multiple sources for your products

When sourcing products, retailers don ’ metric ton want to be at the clemency of a single supplier dictating the terms. Retailers are most refer with getting the products, their consumers want, on the shelf, and to do that may mean having more than one supplier providing certain products .
And that ’ s not inevitably a bad thing. Think about it. A multiple-supplier situation can provide :

  1. Better prices. When more than one supplier is in the mix, there is the opportunity to bring costs down on products .
  2. Insurance for supplies. If one supplier has an return getting the necessary parts or ingredients for their intersection, it can cause a trickle-down effect of product delays, increased logistics costs, or more. But with more than one supplier on a product to pick up the abate, retailers should never, then, be without that merchandise .
  3. Quality control. When there is more than one supplier for a product source, retailers can well and quickly compare the quality of the two ( or more ) products, to ensure that both are still meeting the specification set forth from the beginning.


Sourcing products for CPG retail international relations and security network ’ triiodothyronine always an easy, aboveboard process, and even after a retail buyer has found a bang-up supplier and established a strong relationship, the workplace doesn ’ triiodothyronine end there. intersection sourcing doesn ’ t intercept once the product is source — maintaining the quality and integrity of the product is essential, equally good as strengthening the relationship with the supplier .
Buyers should always be on the lookout to develop newfangled supplier relationships and keep in heed the all-important steps that will guide them toward success .

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