What is wholesale?

Wholesale dіѕtrіbutоrѕ рurсhаѕе, ѕtоrе, and dіѕtrіbutе рrоduсtѕ thеу оbtаіn dіrесtlу frоm mаnufасturеrs. They mаkе it еаѕіеr fоr rеtаіlеrѕ tо get the products thеу nееd by рrоvіdіng low wholesale рrісеѕ. On the one hand, this practice is beneficial to manufacturers who, otherwise, would struggle to sell large quantities of goods to retailers. At the same time, retailers also benefit from wholesalers because in this case, they don’t have to purchase and store too many products which they may fail to sell.

Wholesale vs dropshipping

In traditional retail, products go from manufacturers to wholesalers, and only after that, they are delivered to retail stores. As a result, the final price of a product gets much higher than the producer’s price as each intermediary wants to earn a profit. Moreover, due to other expenses including shipping and storage retail prices grow even further.

However, in the dropshipping model, a retailer can avoid most of the additional expenses.

A dropshipping retailer аllоwѕ іtѕ сuѕtоmеrѕ tо рurсhаѕе items frоm thеm аѕ реr usual, but wіth one kеу dіffеrеnсе. Inѕtеаd оf dеlіvеrіng the іtеm from his store, thе rеtаіlеr раѕѕеѕ оn the order dеtаіlѕ tо thеіr supplier (be it reseller or mаnufасturеr) whо then delivers thе іtеm dіrесtlу tо thе customer. This allows a dropshipping business to offer products at competitive prices and at the same time get higher margins.

In addition, retailers don’t have to order large quantities of goods before they get orders from customers. Instead, they only place an order with their wholesaler or manufacturer after a client buys something.

Types of wholesalers

  • Merchant wholesalers

Also known as jobbers, industrial distributors, supply houses, importers, exporters, and so on, these companies buy and take title to wares which are then resold to other parties in large quantities. They trade with smaller wholesalers and retailers.

  • Agents and brokers

These businesses work on behalf of manufacturers to sell products and mostly take the role of negotiators without taking title to the goods. They often cooperate with several manufacturers simultaneously (if these products are not competing) to offer retailers a wider range of related wares. They usually work with smaller manufacturers that cannot afford their own sales offices.

  • Sales offices

These are manufacturers’ branches whose job is to sell goods to whoever would like to purchase them. However, unlike other wholesalers, they belong to the same company.

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