10 Best Practices For Purchasing Packaging Supplies
1. Order 1.5 x The Stock You Need
One of the biggest mistakes we see is that people often order the bare minimum when it comes to packaging supplies.
This can have a big impact on the productivity of your business!
The right packaging supplies may be seemingly insignificant items within a business but this couldn’t be further from the truth.
Imagine that you run a business that uses cardboard cartons to pack and ship your products. In the event of running out of cardboard cartons, this would have a large impact on the productivity and revenue of your business! The solution? Order 1.5 to 2 times the cardboard cartons required for a given period to ensure you don’t run out.
This is true for all your packaging supplies, so we always suggest you order that little bit more than you need.
2. Measure Twice, Order Once
The second biggest mistake that we see is, customers do not have the correct measurements for the products that they are ordering.
Whether it’s the length of stretch wrap film, width of steel strapping, the number of cardboard cartons or even the amount of disposable gloves you will need, ensure you have the correct measurements and amounts prior to ordering.
There is nothing worse than having down time due to being out of stock on your packaging supplies!
Keep the golden rule of purchasing packaging supplies in mind….
Measure Twice, Order Once!
3. Consult With Sales Team
Because the packaging supplies industry covers such a vast range of products, there can often be many different types and variations of products to choose from.
We suggest that you talk with a sales member about the best solution for you at that time.
This way you can save yourself time and money while ensuring you get the most appropriate product to suit your needs!
4. Purchase Based On Quality, Not Price
The packaging supplies industry is also a highly competitive one with many businesses working in the space.
Unfortunately, this means that there are suppliers that try to gain a larger percentage of market share by offering the cheapest products possible.
The issue with cheap products is that they are normally not made to a high quality standard.
We have heard many times that businesses have purchased the cheapest product and and it has had a negative impact on their business!
For example, there was a business sourcing poly strapping who found a cheap supplier.
They required the strapping to secure some heavy equipment during transport. On this occasion, the strapping was not good quality and broke easily under pressure. This had the potential to put the equipment, workers and transport staff all at risk. Often products are cheaper for a reason!
Quality products may cost a little more to purchase, but will end up saving you money in the long run!
5. Trial Samples Before Purchasing Bulk
Making sure that you are purchasing the right item can often come down to trialing a sample before making a bulk purchase.
Test, measure, then make an informed purchasing decision!
6. Vendor Managed Inventory (VMI)
VMI is a system where your packaging supplier will manage your stock levels and ordering for you!
It works by you setting a minimum and maximum stock level and your supplier will ensure that those levels are maintained for each item.
VMI allows you to rest assured that you will have stock on hand when required and also to maintain control of your budget at all times.
7. Set And Forget Ordering
In a similar setup to VMI, (Vendor Managed Inventory), Set and Forget ordering is exactly as it sounds.
You set up a standing order with set amounts and then decide on the frequency, whether it be daily, weekly, monthly etc.
You then ‘forget’ about having to re-order each time as your supplier will automatically process it for you!
8. Check The Specs
A very important part of ordering any product is to check the specifications to ensure that you are purchasing an appropriate item.
This can be a critical factor when choosing the right type of strapping for example, to ensure that you purchase strapping with a high enough break weight.
Ask for a Product Specification or Material Data & Safety Sheet to ensure you have the figures you need to make an informed decision.
9. Ask Your Customers For Feedback
One of the best ways to know that you are purchasing the right packaging supplies is to ask your customers if they are happy!
Are they happy with the packaging that they receive their orders in?
Are their customers happy with the packaging supplies that they are sourcing from you?
Not only is the feedback valuable, you can ensure that your customers are happy to prevent them from potentially shopping elsewhere!
10. Not Working With A Supplier That Cares
As a business owner, you always want your business to be in a position to win!
In order to achieve this, you need to work with suppliers that care about the performance and success of your business.
It’s important to build strong relationships with your suppliers in order to source the best products, at competitive prices with great customer service!
Having your packaging supplier in your corner means that you can rest assured that you will be looked after each and every time!