5 Easy Ways to Build and Maintain a Supplier Vendor Relationship

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Whether you find yourself routinely dealing with suppliers at the hardware store, lumber yard or a wholesale plumbing supply company, having a solid business relationship with those vendors can be invaluable towards the success of your projects. Relationships are developed slowly, so we offer five tips for staying on the same page as your most important suppliers.

1. Communicate Effectively

Staying connected with suppliers regularly allows you to help one another and share leads and referrals. Solid communication also allows for the discussion of existing or potential problems. For example, if a product is getting bad reviews on the job site or online tell the supplier about it, so they can get it under wraps. They’ll appreciate your help and return the favor sometime.

2. Share Referrals

We mentioned the value of sharing referrals, as this gesture is one that keeps on giving. If you recommend the supplier for parts, they’re more likely to recommend your company for contractor services that you qualify to perform. Loyalty has its rewards!

3. Make Timely Payments to Suppliers

Being late paying invoices for parts is a good way to get on the bad side of the dealers who sell you those valuable supplies. They need their money to stay stocked for you and other buyers, so paying promptly helps ensure suppliers will be more willing to work with you in times of need.

4. Give Suppliers Ample Lead Time

If you have a big project coming up and will be in need of an abundance of supplies, give the supplier a heads up so that they can be the recipient of your business when the time arises to perform the work. They might offer you a discount for the convenience based upon your budding mutual business relationship.

5. Always Be Honest

If you find yourself in a jam for supplies or simply cannot pay your invoice on time, don’t begin avoiding communication with the suppliers. Doing so can negate every bit of progress you made in forging a stronger relationship. Be honest, and use the trust you’ve developed to your advantage.

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