Every wholesaler knows that a good product sells well. Finding the product itself is not difficult, but finding the right product at a good price is already reserved for people with extensive experience in the industry.
Today’s article is about finding a product itself, whereas the question if it is a good price or the right product or not, will be the subject of further articles.
Let’s start with having a look at the basic mistake, i.e. searching for the perfect supplier of the product. Everyone is looking for a holy grail in a form of a producer or importer that is unknown to the competition, etc. This does not mean that these activities should be stopped or that it is impossible to find such a company. I only mean that it is less likely to achieve and that there are simpler ways to get what we want. And one of them is nurturing cooperation with the current supplier. Probably everyone knows how to do it, but let me remind you:
1. Pay invoices ahead of schedule. Yes, exactly, not on the last day. Preferably, as soon as you receive them.
2. Take part in events organised by your supplier. We should know that personal contact can do wonders. And the miracle we expect is the best prices / discounts and information about the best-selling products.
3. Treat your supplier’s salesperson as your customer. A claim attitude will not bring any benefit, and it can only harm our best interest.
Now, let’s get to the point…
How can we find a producer, importer or distributor of the product we are interested in?
For the purpose of today’s article, we will focus on searching for Tommy Hilfiger clothing.
1. Local Google search engine
Obvious? Probably yes, but are you really doing it right? Most often, we start by entering a phrase in the search engine and the more ambitious ones focus on the first 20 results. Unfortunately, this is not the right way, I’m sure you can’t reach the biggest players in the industry by that. After entering the key phrase “tommy hilfiger wholesale”, we get both retailers and wholesalers, whereas we want to find goods for wholesalers only, so these results do not matter much to us:
We can experiment in different ways, but the first result in the search engine that was valuable for me appeared only after entering ‘Tommy Hilfiger UK distributor’, and this was Safilo Group, a distributor of brands such as: Dior, Givenchy, Moschino, Marc Jacobs, Boss Carrera, Pierre Cardin etc.
What lesson have I derived from this? Experiment with keywords until you find the information that is useful for you.
2. Google search engine from another country.
And here the magic begins, you start to do more than most people. Contrary to appearances, this is not simple, but we do not need to know all the languages of the world and buy IP packets so that the search engine thinks we are in e.g. the Netherlands (for clarity, to get 100% results from the Netherlands, you would have to do it, but for our needs it is redundant). So how do you do that? The example applies to Google Chrome:
- We change the language settings, e.g. to French. On the bottom right we go to “Settings” and select “Search engine” and then “Search Results” and change the region in “Region Settings” to France, and then we click “Languages” and choose the French language (in which language do you want to use Google services?) and click “save”. All you need now is a Google translator, so that you can copy the French phrase “importateur tommy hilfiger” or another ones to the search engine. We don’t need to be concerned that Google ads continue to display in our native language. It’s because we cannot change our geolocation, and this is the basis on which Google displays these ads. Now, we can see:
Merkandi B2B platform in France is quite something. But I don’t want to be biased because it’s our platform, so let’s keep looking…
2. We can approach Google search in different ways. Creativity counts! We can look for e.g. clothing producers in Germany. We change the settings for the region and the German language and enter “Bekleidungshersteller”. In TOP 10 search results we will find an interesting list of producers:
This is not Tomy Hilfiger clothing but in the list we can find an interesting distributor Ahlers-Gruppe (Baldessarini, Pierre Cardin (Lizenz), Otto Kern, Pioneer, Gin Tonic u. A.)
You can do this endlessly, searching in different countries. Here I can only advise you to do a list of contacts acquired in Excel or CRM. Google results are dynamic and what you have found today easily can be on very distant pages in the search engine tomorrow. Today, you are looking for Tommy Hilfiger clothing and tomorrow you may need to find GUCCI products. So it’s better to save everything you find.
3. Find the website of the producer, owner of the brand.
If you have high ambitions and a thick wallet, you can contact directly the owner of the Tomy Hilfiger brand, but such maneuvers can be afforded by players such as Zalando. For the average wholesaler, there is only one options, i.e. to send an request, in this case to PVH Corp. (https://www.pvh.com/), for a list of distributors in your country, and then contacting them directly. For less popular brands, of course, we have a good chance of buying the stocks directly and even signing a contract for exclusive distribution in a specific region worldwide.
4. Order searching for the supplier of the goods at the broker agency.
Agencies that specialise in searching for goods have mastered the Asian market pretty much, but in our case (Tommy Hilfiger) they are unlikely to be useful to us. The exception is to find a factory where the brand name clothing is froduced, and which offers a possibility to manufacture the clothing without branding. We will have the same quality and design, but without the logo, yet this is probably not what we meant. In Europe, I cannot recommend any particular information brokerage agency, but when choosing, the deciding factor should be the remuneration for a specific effect, i.e. finding a supplier of the Tomy Hilfiger brand.
5. The Chamber of Commerce will find a supplier in the country of your choice, for free.
Yes, they will do it for free and with pleasure. Unfortunately, this way we won’t find Tommy Hilfiger clothing, but all types of brands that are not global. Here, I can honestly recommend the British Department for
International Trade https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/department-for-international-trade
6. People help for free on Facebook, online forums etc.
People help for free on Facebook groups and online forums. It is worth finding the right places that bring together wholesalers who are willing to exchange contacts. Of course, no one will give us their hard-earned business contacts on a silver tray, but I assure you that you can find real treats over there more than once.
I recommend Linkedin to contact the sales departments of a distributor or producer directly. You can reach interesting people who will be happy to help you find the right product. It is also worth joining the groups, e.g. I belong to International Export Import which has nearly 320 thousand members https://www.linkedin.com/groups/27040/, if you are only interested in clothing https://www.linkedin.com/groups/3085565/. These are obviously examples, there are many other groups, and they are very diverse.
8. Trade fairs
If you are not in the habit of going to the fair, I recommend going at least once. If you do not know, for example, German and you want to go to a local fair: for example: https://www.messe-duesseldorf.com/
You have three solutions:
- you know English at a communicative level; it will not guarantee you success, but you will do the basic things
- you walk around the fair and pretend you don’t need anything and stealthily collect catalogues and business cards
- you go there with an interpreter (expensive but effective)
Another way is to view the list of exhibitors and contact them by email.
9. B2B platforms
In Europe, I can honestly recommend our platform merkandi.com and our competition in Germany, which is restposten.de. It is worth having access to offers published on these portals.
On the date of publication of this article on merkandi.com, there are 242 offers with Tommy Hilfiger clothing
Restposten.de has a bit fewer offers, there are only 75, but I think it is worth using both platform.
Finally, I want to add that by using various ways to find the best suppliers, we guarantee a constant supply of interesting goods at good prices.
However, if you do not have time and do not want to use the translator, I recommend our product search service at https://merkandi.com/stock-searching
Best wishes and a lot of success in your business