Hi everyone. My name is Carl Fusou. I have a small shoe company in London. We don’t have a footwear factory, and overseas factories make all my shoes. We sell a wide variety of shoes, including sneakers, heels, sandals, boots, and more. Last year, our company’s annual sales reached 6.8 million pounds.
Someone asked me the key to my business success. A reliable supplier is one of the important keys to my footwear company’s success. We need professional and reliable suppliers. With the right strategy, we can find professional shoe manufacturers and companies and turn them into our suppliers.
What is a good shoe supplier?
A good footwear factory can offer you the following:
●Good product quality: A good supplier’s most important characteristic is the product’s high quality. If the product quality is good, your customers are satisfied with your shoes, and you don’t have to worry about returns.
Many Reebok shoes, New Balance shoes are also produced in China.
●Acceptable prices: Proper product purchase price means that you can sell the product to more customers and get more profit. The quality of shoes from European factories is very good, but the cost is too high, so that you can choose Asian suppliers, such as factories in China, Vietnam, and India.
In comparison, the quality of shoes produced by Chinese shoe factories is the best.
●Excellent service: A good supplier always quickly responds to inquiries and keeps promises. And when a problem occurs, a good supplier always tries to find a solution. I have worked with footwear factories in China, Vietnam, and India and am now most satisfied with the Chinese footwear supplier. They communicate promptly and ship on time.
The ways to find footwear factories
There are many ways to find a footwear factory, and below I offer you 8 ways. I hope these methods are useful to you:
1. Online Directories: Search for online directories that list footwear manufacturers, such as Alibaba, Global Sources, and Yellow Pages. These directories provide detailed information about the manufacturers, including their location, contact information, and product offerings.
2. Trade Shows: Attend shoe trade shows and shoe exhibitions focused on footwear and leather goods. These shows provide an opportunity to meet and network with manufacturers, suppliers, and other industry professionals.
3. Industry Associations: Join industry associations, such as the British Footwear Association (BFA) and the National Shoe Retailers Association (USA), and attend their events and conferences. These organizations can provide access to industry information, resources, and networking opportunities.
4. Local Business Centers: Contact local business centers, such as chambers of commerce, to find out if they have a list of footwear manufacturers in the area.
5. Google Maps: Use Google Maps to search for “footwear factory” or “shoe factory” in your target area. This will give you a list of factories, along with their locations and contact information.
6. Social Media: Use social media platforms like LinkedIn and Instagram to connect with footwear industry professionals and manufacturers. You can also use social media to search for groups and communities related to the footwear industry.
7. Referrals: Ask friends, family, and colleagues if they know of any footwear factories in your area. You can also ask other businesses in related industries, such as leather goods manufacturers.
8. Local Newspapers: Check local newspapers for news and articles about new or expanding footwear factories in your area. This can be a good way to find new manufacturers and stay up-to-date on the latest developments in the industry.
How to find a good footwear factory?
You can follow the steps below to select the right footwear supplier when you have found many potential shoe factories through the methods above.
Step 1: Pick some potential suppliers
When you find a lot of shoe manufacturers, you can pick out two or three of the better ones. How to choose?
● The company has been established for over 20 years so the factory will have rich experience.
●Choose the company name without “trading” or “import and export.” Because we need a company with a real factory. Many companies on Alibaba are trading companies.
●The supplier should have their official website. You can search for their company name on Google. If you can find the official website of this company, then it means it is a real and competent supplier.
Step 2: Contact and ask the supplier of your choice
Before you contact these potential suppliers, you can prepare a list of questions such as their product price, payment terms, minimum order quantity (MOQ), shipping time, etc. You should get specific answers from them when you ask them these questions. And it would help if you also took notes of their answers.
Step 3: Learn more about the potential supplier
You can visit their factory to learn about their factory, production process, materials, and quality control. If you can’t go to their factory, you must ask for samples from the factory.
Step 4: Start ordering from the supplier of your choice
If a footwear factory meets your requirements in all aspects and you are very satisfied with the quality of the samples. You can start ordering from this factory. But in the beginning, you can place a small trial order first.
Step 5: Build a relationship with the supplier
You must build a long-term relationship if you want to work with them for a long time and get a good deal. This means timely communication, immediate problem-solving, and on-time payment.