Global Sourcing Companies: How to Implement a 7-Step Global Sourcing Strategy

Global Sourcing Companies: How to Implement a 7-Step Global Sourcing Strategy

24 May 2022

Gone are the days of manufacturing exclusively in one place and selling everywhere else in the world, but that doesn’t mean you have to settle for lower-quality goods just because they were made elsewhere in the world.

Learn how to implement a 7-step global sourcing strategy that allows you to find the right companies to manufacture your products at a fair price, allowing you to focus on your most important task as an entrepreneur: growing your business and generating more profit.

Define Your Demand 

The first step in implementing a global sourcing strategy is determining exactly what you need and when you need it. To do that, ask yourself: Who is my customer? What are they demanding (or will demand) from me? What can I supply that meets or exceeds those demands?

In short, find out what your customers want, whether or not you’re able to provide it. Start by talking with customers directly (e.g., visit them, call them) and then figure out how far away your goods would have to be sourced. If there’s no way for you to satisfy their needs without an international partnership, then you’ve got your answer.

Set Minimum Order Quantities 

The good news is that you have plenty of options when it comes to sourcing from China. The bad news is that most Chinese suppliers are not set up for small orders, so if you’re buying for one or two markets, you could be subject to minimum order quantities (MOQs) of 500 units or more.

At first glance, MOQs might seem like a setback—especially if your business plan calls for products in stock at all times. But it may actually work in your favor. Minimum order quantities can be advantageous because they force you to buy more and promote bulk orders instead of single purchases.

Audit Your Current Supply Chain 

What’s at stake is your brand’s reputation. Overseeing a global supply chain and ensuring that products are sourced responsibly and manufactured according to your ethical standards can feel like an overwhelming job—but it doesn’t have to be.

To make things easier, first step back and assess your existing supply chain. Take stock of what kinds of problems exist in each category (ie, sourcing from Asian countries, manufacturing goods in South America) then figure out how you can mitigate them before moving forward with any new relationships or contracts.

Conduct Market Research 

Don’t start with suppliers; start with your customer. Conduct market research and talk to as many people as you can. Survey them on what they like, what they don’t like, and which products they would be interested in purchasing.

Having a firm grasp of your customer’s needs will help determine who you hire and where that company should be located.

For example, if you’re working in luxury goods, it might make sense to seek out sourcing companies in the USA

Identify Potential Vendors and Suppliers 

Conducting research into potential vendors and suppliers will help you gain insight into what your purchasing options are. Be sure to interview several companies before making any decisions, though.

It’s very important to understand exactly what you want from your vendors and exactly how much they can provide before determining who is best for your business.

You might consider using online sourcing tools like Alibaba or TradeKey if you don’t have anyone within your company with extensive experience in global sourcing.

Verify Their Ability to Meet Requirements 

Establishing partnerships with suppliers is important for many reasons, but one of the most vital functions it serves is vetting them. Going into business with someone requires trust—and developing that trust requires verifying their ability to meet your requirements.

Ask lots of questions and request samples of work or documentation on quality control and manufacturing processes. If they can’t meet these requests, chances are they won’t be able to provide you with consistent quality in larger volumes.

If you find yourself feeling unconfident in your partner, stop working with them before investing further time and resources; it’s better to move on than take a risk on a company that might not be able to help you later down the line.

Select the Best Supplier(s) for You! 

The final step in your sourcing strategy is making sure you have selected your best supplier(s). You will have one or more suppliers in each category (product, delivery and price) that meet your requirements for each of those categories.

This is where it’s important to be flexible. As we mentioned earlier, there are many ways to get similar products at similar prices from different countries around the world.

It could be that someone beat out everyone else because they were offering a better product at an even lower price or they were able to offer what you wanted with expedited shipping. Don’t let personal feelings or brand loyalty cloud your judgment – try not to bring either into play when making your final decision.

Final thought

There are still more global sourcing companies than ever before and most of them make it quick and easy for business owners to get started with buying products from overseas. Finding reputable global sourcing companies is easier than ever, but before you start sourcing products, be sure that you have an excellent relationship with a global sourcing company.

Your importing company will help answer any questions you have about shipping and receiving goods on time. They’ll also work hard to find you some of the best deals on your products, helping you get your products quickly without having to pay a lot for them.


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