Supply chains were broken before the pandemic; Covid just gave things a kick in the pants. Companies that sell excess inventory and inventory liquidators are experiencing the same type of problems as other importers and closeout distributors in the United States. Closeout distributors are also trying to figure out how to keep their containers of goods moving and new goods coming in. There are 3 things companies can do today to try to improve flow and keep business moving. For companies who cannot figure this out they will be suffocated without new products coming in, and may be faced with closing and shutting down their warehouse and selling off their inventory to closeout buyers and closeout distributors.
Get Flexible with inventory management. It is more important than ever to sell excess inventory and have a game plan to keep the flow of inventory coming. B2B sellers need to think about diversification of their supplier base and should consider new suppliers, perhaps even in countries other than China. It may also be wise to expect longer order processing times and order delivery windows. Inventory liquidators have been forced to deal with this since 2019 when China tariffs went into affect, and other companies that sell excess inventory are also familiar with these issues. When the Trump administration put 20% to 30% tariffs on many product lines it forced companies to either raise prices or reduce volume. Many could not handle the increase and were faced with the prospect of selling overstock inventory and shutting down their warehouse. Many companies were unable to pivot quickly enough to make it through the pandemic.
Diversify your supplier base. Most importers have become comfortable bringing goods in from China due to pricing, regulations, inexpensive shipping, etc. But with all of this changing, now may be the right time for import companies and closeout distributors to look elsewhere. Sourcing alternatives may include Malaysia, India, Thailand, Vietnam and Indonesia. Importers can also buy stock lots from factories in these countries that want to sell excess inventory and clear old stock. Factories may often work with closeout distributors or excess inventory buyers when they need to sell excess inventory. Since overstock buyers are always on the lookout for obsolete inventory and closeouts, the new sources may be a welcome idea.
Improve Communications. Working closely with vendors and understanding customer demand is now more important than ever. Better communication will be crucial to improving supply chain distribution in an effort to keep new imports flowing, keep warehouse inventory levels stocked, and maintain full shelves in retail stores.. Inventory liquidators specialize in buying excess inventory from companies needing to liquidate, and sell excess inventory. Companies shutting down their warehouse and companies who have package changes or are selling discontinued inventory will also have to improve communication. These closeout products will not be sold at discounted prices if new goods are not flowing into the country as replacement stock.