Product Sourcing in Europe
What is Product Sourcing?
Product sourcing encapsulates all undertakings involved in pinpointing, assessing, and aligning with the most suitable suppliers. The ultimate goal is to secure the suppliers who can provide the greatest value for your business and brand.
Historically, a considerable volume of products sold across Europe and globally have been imported from China, a country responsible for manufacturing around 90% of the world’s goods. This prevalence has made sourcing from China a logical choice, primarily due to the lower costs at the source.
However, the COVID-19 pandemic has led to escalating prices, making sourcing from China more costly. In addition to this, some individuals and corporations prefer not to source their products from China and are actively seeking alternatives, such as sourcing from Europe.
The Shift in Sourcing and the Emergence of D2C Brands
The product sourcing landscape has seen significant changes, particularly with the advent of Direct-to-Consumer (D2C) brands and the gradual decline of the traditional wholesale model.
Increasingly, brands are relying solely on their distribution channels, bypassing additional middlemen such as resellers. Consequently, they seek full control over their product sourcing process to ensure optimal quality.
Product Sourcing in Europe vs. Asia
Products from China are typically sourced in vast quantities, capitalizing on the principle that larger quantities yield cheaper shipping rates. Production in China and other Asian countries tends to prioritize price over quality and work conditions, while European production is usually more suitable for brands aiming to launch a product line with more quality and care for regulations and traditions. Conducting the entire process within Europe could also be more cost-effective and efficient, as the shipping costs are lower, and there are fewer mediators in the supply chain.
The Advantages of Sourcing in Europe
Several benefits make sourcing within Europe an attractive option:
- Faster delivery times
- Lower minimum order quantities (MOQs) compared to Asia
- Capability for large order quantities without sacrificing quality
- Regulation stamps and “made in Europe” certifications help build consumer trust and guarantee quality
- Superior quality control measures and care about work conditions
- Typically higher-quality products
- Secure payment methods and better customer service
What to Consider When Contacting a Manufacturer
1. Be Specific and Precise: Detailing Your Desired Product
When presenting your vision to manufacturers, it’s crucial to offer detailed information about your desired product. This includes specifics about size, materials, design, and function. The more clarity you provide, the better the outcomes will be. Detailed information ensures that manufacturers can accurately understand and execute your vision, ensuring you’re paired with the perfect production partner.
2. Use Benchmark Products: Providing Inspiration and Reference
Don’t hesitate to share examples of similar products or packaging that inspire you. Whether you spotted an item in a store or saw a design online, these real-life examples can act as reference points for your product idea. Referencing other products or designs helps manufacturers grasp your vision and can provide a starting point for discussion about how to make your product unique.
3. Communicate Product Values and Features: Ensuring Desired Outcomes
In addition to physical characteristics, it’s also vital to detail the product’s desired effects, values, or benefits. This could include its environmental impact, its function or purpose, or even the lifestyle or values it represents. The more specifics you provide, the better the manufacturer can meet your expectations and create a product that resonates with your target audience.
4. Detail Your Sales Strategy: Establishing Long-term Relationships
Manufacturers are more likely to invest in projects they see as viable and lucrative. Therefore, be transparent about your distribution plan. Whether you’re selling online or offline, through your own website or a third-party platform, a clear strategy can encourage manufacturers to form long-term relationships with you. It also helps them better understand the product’s context and how it will be marketed.
5. Set Realistic Deadlines: Timing Your Product Launch
It’s important to share your product launch timeline, but it’s equally important to be realistic. Consider the time needed for different manufacturing processes, such as private label or white label, or even custom manufacturing. Each of these processes has its own timeline, and being aware of this helps set reasonable expectations for product delivery.
6. Be Transparent and Reasonable: Navigating the Manufacturing Process
Product creation is a complex process and it can be affected by a myriad of external factors, from material shortages to logistical hiccups. Recognize that product creation takes time and requires patience and understanding. Being transparent and reasonable with your expectations can foster a more effective and positive working relationship with your manufacturer.
Remember, in every request, include the following parameters for precision:
- Target price
- Total budget
While it’s best to include all, at least one is necessary for the manufacturer to provide an accurate estimate that aligns with your vision and budget.
Let Wonnda Match Your Brand With the Best European Manufacturer
Wonnda stands as the premier platform for discovering top European manufacturers for your private label product lines. Our robust digital interface simplifies the sourcing process, paving the way for successful product launches.
By meticulously curating a network of high-quality manufacturers, Wonnda ensures your business connects with the best. We’re more than a platform; we’re your partner in nurturing fruitful, long-term relationships with manufacturers who can translate your vision into tangible products.