Tips and Advice

Supplier relationship, essential for the success of the company

12 October 2021 / per Cerdá Group

All store managers need suppliers; even manufacturing businesses (that create or assemble the products they’re going to sell) need raw materials, tools, and so on. The supplier, however, is not just an external subject to whom we place orders: the relationship with your supplier is a full-fledged exchange.

The exchange between entrepreneur and supplier goes both ways. It is limiting to think of the supplier as the person who supplies you with the products and nothing more. The exchange also takes place in the opposite direction: the entrepreneur increases the turnover and customer base of the supplier, the supplier makes products available to the entrepreneur, proposes innovations, keeps up with trends and so on.


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This exchange is not always easy; there can always be questions, issues, possible delays, misunderstandings… It is on these occasions that the quality of the relationship you have built with your supplier will make the difference between overcoming the problem or complete failure.

A good relationship with your supplier or suppliers depends on a few factors. The first, both in chronological and importance order, is the choice of the supplier: the reliable and experienced supplier understands how important the exchange with you, the entrepreneur, is and contributes to the quality of the relationship.


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How to choose a good supplier

If you want to build a good relationship with your supplier, the first step is to choose a reliable, quality and experienced one… just like Cerdá!

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Like Cerdá, your supplier should never limit itself to making your products available to you. You must be able to count on the supply company as a point of reference. The entrepreneurs who choose Cerdá for their supplies, for example, know that this wholesale distributor, in addition to the products in its catalogs, provides knowledge, educational material, constant research behind the creation of catalogs, market research and analysis, and innovation.

When you choose a supplier, part of the work - for example, reading the market in search of new trends - is entrusted to it. This is why the choice of an experienced and quality supplier is essential. For example, Disney provides a lot of educational material (such as this article about the importance of having Disney products in your store) and keeps you update with the new trends.


It may interest you: Looking for a Disney distributor? Cerdá is here!


How to build a lasting good relationship with the supplier

As we have already mentioned, the supplier relationship is an exchange; choosing a good supplier is, therefore, important but not enough. You, as an entrepreneur, must do your part and cultivate a good supplier relationship, a healthy and cooperative exchange between you and the wholesale company that provides the item you sell in your store.

But how do you cultivate a good relationship with the supplier? The exchange with your wholesale distributor should be based on trust and reliability, as well as on constant dialogue.



Maintain the agreements made

First, it is always good to maintain the agreements made. For example, if there is an agreement between you and the supplier for the payment of an invoice by the end of the month, you will have to respect this promise.

How can you make sure you’ll be punctual with the payments so that you can nurture a good relationship with your supplier? Well, good accounting management will be very important. You will need to keep track of your income and expenses in order to always be aware of the status and progress of your accounting. Only in this way will you be able to give exact information to suppliers and in this way comply with agreements.

If you think about it, the times you can’t respect the dead ends is when you’ve failed to get well organized. When you have a well managed accounting, you avoid the risk of promising payments and take agreements when you don’t have the resources to respect those agreements.


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Clear communication

Especially when we are at the beginning of our career, we can make the mistake of taking some things for granted. With time and experience, we learn that not everyone has our same assumptions, our same ideas or habits… for this reason, to make sure we get what we want, it is important to communicate clearly and punctually with the supplier.

Even the simplest aspects can become a reason for disagreement due to a lack of dialogue. Do not expect that your supplier will send the invoice right after they’ve received the payment: ask for it!


Discover: Key factors in your business communication this year 2021


Create a relationship of trust

Sometimes it takes very little to build a relationship with the supplier based on trust. Habits such as alerting with an email or a phone call in case of late payments, or confirming receipt of the goods with an email, can facilitate the supplier's work and contribute to increase the perception they have of you as a reliable entrepreneur.


It might interest you: Relationship marketing: how to create lasting relationships with your customers


Constant comparison

Creating a good relationship with your suppliers also means letting them know when you are not happy, if something has happened that does not suit you, or what aspects you would like to improve. Even if you aren’t officially partners, you and your supplier should become a sort of a team, partners working together on the same project.



A good relationship with a supplier: the advantages

A good relationship with a supplier is not just a matter of "giving"; in exchange for your efforts - which are always minimal - you will get positive aspects in return that can be useful, especially in times of difficulty.

If you have made sure that the supplier perceives you as a reliable entrepreneur, you can afford - if it happens - to delay a payment without going to damage your relationship.


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And when you have a good relationship with your supplier, you get what you need better, with less effort, and faster.

The supplier who trusts you is much more open to listening: he knows how to better meet you with regard to your specific needs, and can offer you more advantageous discounts.

A good relationship with your supplier is a win-win condition for you and for the supplier. A good partnership will result in growth for both of you.



Conclusions of supplier's relationships

When you run a shop or sale business you have to take care of many aspects. The relationship with suppliers is one of them. Cerdá understands this need well and remains very open to listening and collaborating with its customers.


It might interest you: 10 key points from Cerdá advisors to manage your store


Cerdá's goal, rather than working for the customer, is to work with the customer. In addition to this, Cerdá - with its 30 years of experience - has become a real point of reference for business managers. In this sense, in addition to being a collaborator, Cerdá is a guide for all those who choose to rely on this wholesale distributor.

For other tips on how to improve your store’s performances, see other articles such as Innovation that you can implement on your store, and How to use visual merchandising.

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