Product Bids & Quality

BRANDING QUESTION OF THE WEEK (BQW)

Topic of Concern

Product Bids & Quality

Question:

My company requires I get three bids for any custom product order I want to make. The problem I’ve run into is that I don’t want my decision based on just price (the lowest bid) but quality of the product. I don’t want to keep reordering the same custom product every year, I want it to last a least a few years. How do I make sure I’m getting quotes for the same quality product so I can make an accurate comparison?

Solution:

I appreciate this question more then you know. I’ll try to keep this simple and straight forward with 4 steps.

Step 1: Ask people you know

Do you know anyone who has the product you are looking for and can provide a review and a company from where they made the purchase? Whether its custom apparel, promotional items, custom displays, etc., this is always a great place to start. You will not only get the inside scoop on the quality, but you don’t have to search for where they purchased the product.

Step 2: Ask Google

When you don’t have a resource to personally speak to the quality of a product, google is a great place to search for answers.

Type in specific features and details you want in a custom product and see what google sends your way. For example – full color print custom canopies. Often there are reviews and details about the product that specify quality, size, weight and other features.

Step 3: Ask the seller

When contacting businesses for custom product details and quotes I always recommend calling the company verses filling out a form. When speaking to a representative you can ask specific questions and get details that perhaps you are unclear or want more information about.

Its always great to ask for a comparable example to the product they are offering.

For example, clients that purchase our custom canopies appreciate that they can’t buy our version of a canopy in retail stores. We offer a high-end product that isn’t sold in your local Walmart, sporting goods stores or Costco.

Get a sample. Sometime companies will send custom product samples at little to no cost. Ask what their process is and see if you can’t get your hands on the product before you make a bigger purchase.

Step 4: Compare product details on your quotes

You’ve contacted three or four companies that told you about their custom product and provided a quote. This is the perfect time to compare product details which should be featured under each product you are considering to order.

If the company didn’t provide the specific features like weight, size, fabric type, print style or special features, etc. I would contact the company again and ask them to add the information so you can make a fair comparison of product quality and price.

 

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