Monday, September 22, 2008

Finding OEMs in the Black hole of the web

I would have never thought the web were a black hole. I always thought you could find anything in a matter of seconds/minutes on the web. Well, when it comes to finding GOOD, regional original equipment manufacturers to help you with your products... try again. These companies are the stereotypical manufacturing plant with tons of machinery and a few people taking orders over the phone/fax. They do not invest in internet technology - some don't even have their own email domain! They may have a non-interactive webpage that is like a business card - here is our phone number - but it doesn't give you detail on what they do and it is not really searchable because it is not optimized.

So you can search until you are blue in the face... I should title this "SPINNING YOUR WHEELS" because that is how finding OEMs seems. If you take good notes and build solid lists, you can narrow your list and find a handful of good options to do the tighter price/timeframe/customer service/references comparison to make your decision on the best company to partner with... because they will be a partner!

Here are some resources to help:
  • Retail Packaging Association
  • (has a China section if that is what you are into)

Many other directories exist, but I like these the best. Some industries have their own directory or two, such as retail packaging association. Just note that these sites take listings as advertising and it is not comprehensive. More of the small mom and pops don't advertise like this (and they don't have a searchable site... if at all) so check our your local yellow pages or call around to local companies who may supply products to them (paper to a book binder or textiles to a seamstress) and see if they will help one of their customers out.

Local is better - less shipping costs, more of a partnership cause you do business face-to-face, and your support your local economy. What could be better.

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