So you are about to start a project and are in the market for a supplier that has a good reputation for providing solutions for steel. You’ll, of course, need to negotiate the most favorable terms. As you go about it, keep in mind that a negotiation is not a contest to be won, but an attempt to arrive at an agreement that works for both parties.
Here are four tips to go about it.
From the outset, make sure that communication between you and the supplier stays solid. Build a good rapport with the supplier by being responsive to issues as they arise. This approach should help you gain leverage when negotiating again in the future.
Have the deposit ready
As you start the negotiating process, make sure you have more than half of the amount to pay for the supplies, in this case, steel products. A deposit could earn you more negotiating power.
Add value to the supplier
You’re bringing your business to the supplier, which by itself already puts you at an advantage. But you can gain more when you redefine the relationship. One way to do this is to help your supplier enter a new market. In doing so, you could ask for concessions on rates. This is especially critical at a time when tariffs are affecting the steel industry.
Prove you are a dream client
Suppliers want to sell as much product as possible. If you can show that you are a resource that has a proven record of meeting the needs of their target industry, then they’ll be eager to partner with you. Keep in mind that a client that displays dollar signs is most attractive to suppliers and will attract the best rates.
Dealing with a supplier can appear intimidating to the inexperienced, but that doesn’t have to be your situation. By mastering a few basics in the beginning, you can begin to get good deals without much of a struggle.