Create and manufacture your own products to increase margin with Nathan Resnick of Sourcify (episode 165)

Nathan Resnick is the founder of Sourcify, a platform/service he’s built to guide you through the process of sourcing your products. And he has some serious skill in this area – having run three different eCommerce companies, bought dozens of products to market, and even been involved in Kickstarters that have raised over 7-figures.

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Starting Out

Nathan was still in high school when he started selling products on Amazon and eBay. Eventually he decided to create his own product, starting with a leather watch band that grew into a 6-figure Shopify store in the first year. Familiar with the challenges of creating your own product, Nathan set out to help companies of all sizes with the process. Sellers submit the product they want to manufacture to Sourcify, which has vetted factories around the world and helped bring to market everything from shoes to bunk beds to hair extensions. Nathan is also currently working on a plug-in that streamlines the freight forwarding process.

The Process

If a seller has a spec sheet for a product they want to bring to market, that’s great. Others might just submit links to similar products they’ve seen on Amazon. Either way, Sourcify secures price quotes from factories. The sampling process follows to insure the product’s quality before moving into production and importation. 30% is paid to start production and the remaining 70% is paid before shipping. How much cash you need to get started depends on minimum order quantities and the product itself.

Listen to learn about bringing products to market with as little as $3,000.

Retailers and Wholesalers

Sourcify enables its clients to make the most of the ecommerce industry as traditional manufacturing and sales channels are changing. Retailers are now often cutting out wholesalers and going straight to the factory. At the same time, wholesalers are realizing they can make more money by going directly to the consumer. While all of this fuels the ecommerce industry, time will tell who comes out on top.

Recipe for Success

The most successful products have three things in common:

  • They are products that shoppers are comfortable buying online.
  • They have good margins and are profitable to sell online.
  • They have brand recognition.

Listen to learn the importance of brand equity.

Manufacturing Overseas

Manufacturing abroad can improve your margin, saving you 30-50%. That savings can then be spent acquiring more customers, so the benefit has a compounding effect. There are also benefits to working directly with a factory. It gives you the ability to customize your product however you want. It also allows you to tell the story of the making of your product. The story behind a product can be impactful to the consumer, and those who buy from wholesalers don’t have that story to tell.

Listen to learn why China is still the go-to for manufacturing, versus India and Pakistan.  

Drop Shipping and Freight Forwarding

Understanding your supply chain and where your products are going is key to creating a fluid process. Third party logistics facilities can assist with shipping in your market country. Drop shipping manufacturers are not great with customized products and it often takes a month for customers to receive their products. This creates a poor customer experience and points to an imminent decline in drop shipping.

When it comes to getting your product across borders, link with an experienced freight forwarder. Both you and your freight broker must understand customs and tariffs as they relate to your specific product. Information on US tariffs can be found at https://hts.usitc.gov/.

Common Pitfalls

When it comes to sourcing products, there are lots of mixups. Quality is key, so be wary of who you work with. 70% of manufacturers on Alibaba are actually trading companies,  not real factories. Do your due diligence and have a strong understanding of the supply chain.

eCommerce Book Top Tip

eCommerce Traffic Top Tip

  • Cross promotions through influencers. Utilize promotional giveaways with similar brands and influencers so that you can tap into each other’s audiences.

You can hear about all this on the podcast, for free – right now…

Tool Top Tip

  • Slack

Growth Top Tip

  • Don’t spread yourself too thin. Narrow your focus on a channel and demographic.

Listen to learn when the time is right for scaling up.

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