If you’re a kitchen cabinet dealer, then finding the right manufacturer is crucial to your success. Manufacturers control your product’s cost, quality, packaging, and shipping. It’s very important to find the best fit for your kitchen and bath business. When looking for a cabinet manufacturer, you have a few options available.
You can seek out an overseas manufacturer, in which case your best bet is to work with a sourcing expert that focuses on the specific country you have in mind.
If you’ve decided to pursue a relationship with domestic manufacturers, you can try to attend local trade shows for the kitchen and bath industry, get acquainted with the best manufacturers, and check out their products. This is usually the place where industry experts gather and showcase their product lines, so it’s an excellent opportunity for networking and making great connections. With a little effort, you can easily come out of the trade show with many potential new deals for your business.
Did you know you can find suitable manufacturers and check out their full product catalogs on KitchenDEV?
A great way to find manufacturers you can work with is with KitchenDEV. KitchenDEV is the perfect place for you to find reputable kitchen cabinet manufacturers. We help retailers and manufacturers get in touch, get familiar with each other’s products and services, and streamline the entire B2B process. KitchenDEV offers the full kitchen manufacturers’ catalogs, so you can easily get to know the products, styles, and lines they carry and decide if they are the right fit for your business.
Every dealer has specific requirements for the manufacturers they intend to collaborate with. Before you commit to a certain manufacturer, these are the things you should consider.
What are the lead time and in-stock levels?
It’s important to know how much time does it take to produce cabinets so you can plan everything ahead. You always want a quick manufacturing time, so you can provide your clients with fast and efficient service. Another thing you should think about is do they have sufficient cabinets in stock so that they can provide you with the exact cabinets you need when you need them?
Do they have reasonable prices?
One of the first things you’re going to look at is the price. Is the price reasonable and appropriate for the quality offered? Does it work for your customers’ budgets? Will you have sufficient profit? Do they offer any financing programs that would help you close more sales and give amazing value to your customers? Always check if there are any hidden costs or set-up fees involved. Extra fees often go unnoticed, but they are very important and can quickly add up.
Do they offer an extensive catalog with high-quality cabinets?
Did you check out your future manufacturers’ catalog? Are you satisfied with the quality, styles, and designs of the cabinets? Do they offer custom products and upgrades? You want to make sure you are getting cabinets that are built to last since this is a substantial investment by your customers. Consider which are the most popular cabinet manufacturers in your area and which cabinet styles are the most loved by your customers. This will narrow down the list and help you choose the right cabinet manufacturers for your business.
Exceptional support and communication
As with any other business partnership, an important thing to consider when you are choosing a manufacturer you will do business with is efficient and productive communication. Do they have a knowledgeable and friendly staff that will assist you and offer support when you need it? Will they be available to answer all your questions and process your requests in a timely manner? Do they offer any marketing and sales support that will help your business grow? In any partnership, responsibility and reliability are key and to achieve this the communication must flow.
After you’ve come up with a list of potential manufacturers you would like to collaborate with, you need to check if you can fulfill their requirements. Just like you, the manufacturers as well have some important criteria they consider before they approve a dealer. You can usually find the dealer requirements on their website. The common dealer requirements are listed below.
Inventory requirements or minimum order quantities
You’ll want to agree on this one for sure. Minimum order quantities are very individual and may vary from manufacturer to manufacturer. Depending on the product and manufacturer, they can require a commitment to purchase hundreds of units for your first order while some can have minimal inventory requirements. It’s crucial to find a manufacturer that is suitable for you in your current business stage. Sometimes it’s possible to negotiate the minimum order quantity and get to a number that will be comfortable for both businesses. Before you start negotiating, figure out why the supplier has set a minimum. Understanding the reasons for the minimum will allow you to better comprehend their position and negotiate and present the best counter offer. Some suppliers will require new businesses to pay for the full order upfront.
Is your business financially sound?
When going into a new partnership it’s logical to consider the financial stability and soundness of your potential business partner. Many manufacturers would want to discuss and get to know you and your business before they decide if you are suitable to be their dealer. We advise you to prepare your financial reports and statements and openly discuss your business’ capacity and your plans for the future. Explain how you see this new partnership benefiting both your companies and try to come up with realistic profit projections for the first year of your collaboration.
What are your warehouse and showroom capacities?
Manufacturers will definitely be interested in your space capacities. Some of them have a minimum of 1500sq/ft requirements for the warehouse and 1200-1500 sq/ft showroom requirements. It’s important that you have enough room to store and display the cabinets in your own space, as manufacturers will rarely have enough space to hold their dealers’ stock. The stock will be sent to you right after manufacturing.
Will you put displays and promote the manufacturer in your showroom?
Just as some manufacturers will do their best to help you increase your sales and grow your business with marketing and by promoting your website and company on their page, they might also require reciprocal promotion. It is possible that they will ask you to put up displays in your showroom to promote their brand and company which will increase the visibility and sale of their products. Would you be willing to do that?
If you’ve considered all the requirements and think that you are eligible, the next step for you is to fill out an application and a representative of the chosen manufacturer will get in touch with you.
Find the right manufacturer with KitchenDEV
Now that you’ve read our comprehensive guide on finding the right cabinet manufacturers and requirements both dealers and manufacturers need to fulfill, you can jump right into the action. Sign up for our KitchenDEV FREE trial and get access to hundreds of manufacturer’s catalogs that will help you decide which one is right for you.