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Online shopping has been around for years now since the rise of the internet. There is a lot of promise to its success. This is because not only online shopping is very convenient but there are a lot of perks behind it as well. Statistics even say that most people do half of their shopping online. It is not impossible that in just a few years 100% of our shopping is done online.
With this, there is also the rise of retail companies. People would venture into e-commerce in a lot of platforms such as Amazon, eBay, Zappos, etc. Even brick and mortar stores are now keeping up with the trend and maintain their own shopping websites.
If you feel like venturing into this industry is daunting, you are not alone. I too have once been confused by all of it. There are a lot of things retailers have to go through before being able to sell stuff on these platforms. But of course, the most important question that first needs to be answered is where will you find your supplies? You can’t possibly run an online retail store without any supplies at all.
If you search through your reliable search engines, you will most likely find a few ones. Thing is, these few would be further narrowed down to the products that you prefer, to the suppliers that you are convinced are legit, and to the ones offering the best price. There are just a lot of considerations to make, of course since you are investing a whole lot of money. And most of the time, your options would result to only one or two suppliers.
You might be wondering how these successful online retail stores manage to find suppliers and how do they maintain and keep up on managing their stores. You know for yourself that it cannot possibly just rely on Google search results. It’s true, these wholesale suppliers do exist but most of the time it’s not going to be easy finding them as searching in Google. After all, they don’t spend money on marketing themselves. They are busy being suppliers.
Here enters SaleHoo. SaleHoo is where all these behind the scenes happenings take place. It is exactly how these retailers maintain their website and continue to earn profits without all the hassle. It is also where they manage to diversify their products given that they have a lot of options.
But SaleHoo is not the only platform in doing this. There are a lot of websites actually that offer this kind of service. In this review, I will talk about the features of SaleHoo, if it is worth considering, and my own experience of the platform.
What is SaleHoo?
SaleHoo is a wholesale supplier online directory. It offers a platform for current online retailers and for the ones who are thinking of starting with online retail. Their platform allows people to search for suppliers online and eventually buy their products.
Members are given access to a lot of suppliers that offer the best prices you can get in wholesale. Not only that, but SaleHoo also offers a market research for each of these products. This sounds totally promising for starters in ecommerce.
SaleHoo also offers a whole lot of perks and benefits for its members which I will discuss later on. Let’s get to know SaleHoo first and the team behind it.
Who is SaleHoo?
SaleHoo has been in the business of being a wholesale supplier directory for over a decade now. It was initially founded in Christchurch, New Zealand in 2005 by Mark Ling and Simon Slade. Over the years they have managed to grow their team in four different countries all over Australia, USA, and Asia. Currently, the team employs 29 staff scattered all over the countries in these regions.
The company has also gained an award as the 44th fastest growing company in New Zealand by the Deloitte Fast 50.
What are the key features of SaleHoo?
In this section, I will give you a quick explanation of each of the key features of SaleHoo and what I think about them.
First off SaleHoo offers a directory of over 8,000 wholesale suppliers. This in total gives you an option to choose from over 1.6 million wholesale products worldwide. If Google searching would give you at most 10 results, just imagine how much more products you will be able to choose from the platform.
This, of course, comes from a genuine relationship with the platform and the suppliers as they have been in the industry for over a decade now. What I like the most is that these are verified and legitimate suppliers. There is no more reason to worry if who you are talking to is a scammer.
The platform also boasts of its sleek and neat user interface which I have tested myself and it really does deliver. It’s easy to search using the search box and filters are available to give you are a more narrowed down result.
A major feature in their directory is allowing you to choose dropshipping. This is applicable to you if you do not have enough money to buy all the supplies that you need upfront. What happens is you pay the supplier through the money you earn from listing and selling it in your store, and then they will do the shipping for you directly to the customer. Over 1000 suppliers are allowing this process so you have a lot to choose from. This is perfect for when you are just starting up.
SaleHoo also offers you an insight to their Market Research Labs. In here you will be able to see for yourself if the product you are aiming for have high sales or not. You will find products with low competition and see trends happening over time. This tool is definitely helpful in coming up with your business plan and strategizing for its growth.
If you feel like you want less of a hassle, SaleHoo also allows you to create your own stores through their platform. This has a lot of benefits from what I’ve noticed. First, you will be working on just one platform and this definitely lessens all the hassle and any possible conflicts. Another is, you have much less competition compared to other marketplaces.
This feature does not even require you to have technical skills in coding, etc. There are various templates to choose from in designing it and there are a lot of marketing tools provided for you to tinker with. Making your store exactly the way you want it to be is not at all hard.
Perhaps one of the features that makes SaleHoo worth considering is they offer free online seller training and lessons. This is perfect for those who are just about to begin with venturing in the online retail industry. These lessons cover a wide range of topics from beginner to advance in both informational handbooks and video tutorials.
These do not only include lessons tailored for their platforms but lessons including setting up your eBay store and selling products through it, selling on Amazon, importing and shipping in different countries, product sourcing, business registration, customs, scam prevention, and more extensive guides for premium members.
There is also an online selling tactics video training course provided. This course is tailored for the eBay platform and provides you with a step by step guide on how to master retail through the platform and other general eCommerce techniques.
Finally, one major feature SaleHoo would not forget to offer is a good support team. This includes having access to the members’ forum to be able to learn about the frequent inquiries retailers make and also have an insight to their ideas as well. It is an online community for buyers and sellers to interact and a lot of information and insights can be earned through this.
But more than that, SaleHoo also offers a one on one support team of experts. If you have inquiries you prefer solving through an advice of the SaleHoo expert, they have a friendly support team to handle you. This even includes them doing the market and niche research for you.
These are just some of the major features I have noticed in SaleHoo and found very useful. SaleHoo is complex online wholesale directory website and it is better to tinker with all its features by yourself. Find anything that will seem useful for you and your online store.
What do you get when you join SaleHoo?
To give you a recap of all SaleHoo’s offerings, if you sign up for the website you will get:
- SaleHoo Safe Supplier Directory of over 8000 suppliers and 1.6 million products, 1000 suppliers offering a dropshipping option
- SaleHoo Market Research Labs
- Smart Seller Guides and Training
- Members’ Forum
- Personal Support from experts
All these perks are available in SaleHoo for an annual membership fee of $67. Sign up for a membership here.
Pros and Cons:
I have noticed a few pros and cons in SaleHoo. These are just some of the things that will help you in considering whether to join the platform or not.
- You will have access to a lot of suppliers and products. 8000 suppliers and 1.6 million products is sure lot to choose from. What Google results give you is definitely a far cry from what you will access on the platform and there’s a guarantee that you will find the exact supplier and product you are looking for.
- If you do not have any startup money to use, there is always the option to do dropshipping until you finally have saved enough for you to buy bulk from other suppliers.
- The suppliers are surely legit and genuine as they go through SaleHoo’s verification process.
- The platform has a very neat and easy to navigate interface both in their directory and their online store maker which saves you a lot of time and effort.
- It offers a 60 day money back guarantee. In case that SaleHoo did not meet your expectations or helped you in any way, you can always have your money back within 60 days of signing up.
- I have noticed in their product searching in the directory that I am not able to search based on location. It is not a huge problem but it would definitely make the job easier and faster. I might be considering a product and already be convinced in buying it only to find out it does not work on my location.
- There is an annual membership fee that, although relatively cheap, might still be a downside for a lot of people. It is of course not impossible to find these suppliers in search engines and even social media sites, but having them in a platform consolidated and verified for authenticity is still something I would spend for.
Frequently Asked Questions about SaleHoo
What are the billing options available?
Annual billing of your membership is allowed through major credit cards and Paypal. This does not mean that the website automatically bills you once you have reached your one year. Weeks and days before your membership expires, the website will notify you that your membership is due and ask you if you want to have it renewed or not. If you prefer not to, it is easy to contact their support team for that matter.
I don’t live in the USA or New Zealand. Can I still use SaleHoo?
Definitely! Saleshoo works from any country all over the world may it be Europe, Americas, Australia, and Africa. The platform can be accessed remotely as long as you have an internet connection. There is also no worrying about the suppliers only coming from the USA. Suppliers also come from other countries as well with the platform having over 45 countries listed already. If that still isn’t enough, 80% of the suppliers in the directory allows for international shipping.
I am just starting out with online selling, can I use SaleHoo?
This is actually what I like about SaleHoo the most. They are very welcoming of new online sellers. Aside from their interface and platform that is easy to use and navigate, they also offer a lot of lessons, training, tutorials, and guides for you to be able to venture in ecommerce. And these lessons are not only tailored specifically to their website but to both eBay and Amazon as well if you prefer their platform. Lessons not only cover selling and marketing but also lessons in customs, business registrations, international shipping, and scam prevention. You will never be lost in using the platform.
My Experience in Using SaleHoo
I have only tried online retailing a few months ago and this is through eBay. I figured I could definitely use some extra income, after all I’ve got a lot of time to spend. I started contacting suppliers from the ones that I searched in Google and I was successful in maintaining my store for weeks. But eventually, my supplier and I had a bit of miscommunication regarding international shipping.
My store was on hiatus for weeks because I had trouble looking for a new supplier that would give me the rates the old supplier did and I am not even that sure if they are legit or not. I looked into various online wholesale supplier directories and considered and weighed each of them before signing up and SaleHoo convinced me the most.
I was successful in finding a supplier for my store with the help of the support team. I even got the supplies at a very low price compared to where I was buying before. I liked that there are tutorials and tips for when the retailers would have trouble with international shipping and customs which is exactly what caused the mayhem from my last supplier.
Just last month I was able to launch new products in my store and diversify the products that I offer. This is through the directory and market research of the platform which I find really helpful. So far, running my store is going smoothly and if ever I encounter some problems there is always a members’ forum I can go to and a support team I can rely on. What’s important to me is that I don’t have to worry about shipping and communication with the suppliers anymore.
SaleHoo really offers a promising platform for online retailers. Everything is sure to work smoothly if you are just starting with your online retail business. It’s got all the right resources and an easy to navigate platform. I really recommend this to those who would want to try out online selling but afraid to risk a lot of money and fear being confused with all the procedures and process in establishing your store.
SaleHoo is also a great platform for those in the online retail industry for quite some time now. But since you know a bit better in the industry and setting up your store already, I think the only major feature in SaleHoo that you would find useful is the market research lab. If that’s the case, I think you better increase your options and look into their features as well. Really think over if SaleHoo’s feature is all that you want because you would have to spend an annual fee of $67.