For a small business, choosing the right global suppliers and expanding into overseas markets can be daunting to say the least. You need to make sure you’re making smart and safe choices.

To do that you need to trust your supplier and reduce the risk for your business. But how do you do that?

There are a few important steps you can follow to ensure you get the best from your supplier. By using this guide you can make sure your business moves along the path to success.

1/ Look Around Before Settling on a Supplier

Just like your business your supplier wants to turn a profit, so they’re not going to tell you where to get a more competitive rate. It’s up to you to shop around and find the best deal for you. So it’s important that you do your research and find the optimum supplier for your business, one that can supply you with goods and products at a price that’s right for you.

2/ Who To Trust and Choosing the Right Platform
Once you’ve found a competitive rate, the next step is to find out more information on who the supplier is. The best way is to use easily available platforms that hold established relationships with suppliers and can give you information on them as and when you need it. Schemes like global ecommerce platform Alibaba’s ‘Supplier Assessment’ are a great way to do this. They allow you to find out information about your supplier that comes from a trusted, verified, and most importantly, third party source.

“When I see a supplier assessment logo, it definitely does build more trust.” – Anthony Martin (businessman and founder of iCracked Inc.)

3/ Verifying Your Supply Market
In our global economy suppliers are no longer in the same state or even the same country, and it’s not always financially viable or practical to travel to countries to verify where the goods or products are coming from. Make sure that before you go into business, you can see reports or videos produced by an independent third party. These should cover everything from the company’s size and structure, to market experience and R&D capabilities so you’re not just relying on the supplier’s word.

“The verified report is really important for us, because as a small business, we need to [know] that the supplier we’re going to use is trustworthy, and you want as much information about that supplier as possible to build that trust in your brand.” – Tessa Harnett (owns and runs Vurge Jewellery).

4/ Read the Contract
Before you sign away and start a relationship with the supplier, make sure to read the contract carefully to ensure you’re not getting into something that could damage your business, like if the supply chain collapses and you’re not protected. It’s important that you check over the details so you don’t get any unexpected headaches further down the line.

5/ A Good Supplier Isn’t Just About Price
Although price is an important factor, don’t let it be the only thing that guides your judgment. Other things to consider are reliability—it’s no good getting a great price if the supplier keeps letting you down. Location is equally key—although sourcing it from other countries may be cheaper, they could take a longer time to ship you goods at short notice. So make sure you know how long shipment might take and consider this when choosing the right supplier. You might also find that multiple suppliers works for you, depending on what you want.

If you’re still unsure about what to do, watch the video below. In it you can hear testimonies from businessmen and women, talking about their experience with an online platform that provides verified reports and videos demonstrating the effectiveness of the suppliers the platform supports. Having this third party verification is essential as it means you can feel confident in all your transactions.

And it also means you can gain valuable insight before you commit yourself to doing business with a manufacturer, ensuring you have maximum peace of mind—so you can feel comfortable and assured when sourcing supplies for your business to grow, prosper and profit.

More information can be found HERE.