by Chris Malta
Earlier today, I was talking with one of the more than 500 Wholesale Distributors we list in our Drop Ship Source Directory. The owner of this Wholesale Distribution company had some important feedback for me.
Our Directory provides Internet Retailers like yourself with personally verified, legitimate holesale Distributors who will send single products directly to your customers, from their warehouses, for you. This eliminates the need for you to buy Wholesale products up front, and stock and ship them yourself.
We here at Worldwide Brands know ALL the Distributors we list, personally. We are in contact with them constantly. We talk back and forth, using phone and email, and give each other feedback on issues we think are important. This helps us to continue to provide you with the best information on Wholesale Drop Shippers available.
So, I was talking with the owner of one of these companies today, and he gave me some feedback.
In our Directory, there is detailed contact information for each of the Wholesale Distributors we list. That information includes the Email Address you should use to contact them about setting up an account if you want to sell their products.
This Wholesaler forwarded me an email he had gotten today from one of our new Directory members. At the top of the email, as at the top of most emails, was this Distributor’s email address, in the “To:” field of the email.
Here’s an example:
Sent: Today, 10:24 AM
Subject: Opening a Wholesale Account with your Company
Well, in this email’s “To:” field was the email address of the Distributor I was talking to. That’s all as it should be; it was an email from an Internet Retailer asking about setting up a Wholesale Account with this Wholesale Distributor’s company.
However, ALSO in the To field of this email were the email addresses of something like two hundred other wholesale companies.
Now, it’s obvious what the new Internet Retailer who sent this email did. He patiently gathered email addresses from a couple of hundred of the Drop Ship Wholesalers listed in our Directory, and sent the same request for a Wholesale Account to all of them at once, in a mass email.
There’s nothing terribly wrong with doing that. It’s not a good idea, since you really should research what products you want to sell first, and then contact only those companies that sell those products. But, this Internet Retailer wanted to jump ahead a bit and gather info on opening as many accounts as he could.
So what’s the problem?
The problem is that he let the Wholesaler see that it was a Mass Email.
Most people don’t understand that it takes time and effort for a Wholesale Distributor to set up a Wholesale Account for you. If you’re selling online, and you want to sell the products of a particular Drop Ship Wholesaler, you go through their process for setting up an Account, which is almost always free to you.
However, it’s not free to the Wholesaler. They have to pay an employee to process the account for you. Somebody has to sit their in their office and fill out your information on their computer system, so that the Wholesaler can open your Account.
That’s part of their business, and they really don’t mind the time it takes. As far as they are concerned, they’re getting a new Internet Retailer to work with, and that’s just great.
BUT! When it’s obvious to the Wholesaler that you are writing to hundreds of Wholesalers at once, it’s also obvious to them that the time they spend setting up your Account is probably wasted time. If you’re emailing hundreds of Wholesalers at once, that means you are not focused on what you want to sell, you do not really care which wholesalers you are getting Accounts with, and you have not taken the time to become familiar with that Wholesaler’s web site, products, and Account Setup procedures.
There’s a very good chance that most of the wholesalers who see that list of hundreds of email addresses in the To field are not going to bother responding to you!
In other words, you’re shooting yourself in the foot before you even get started with your online business.
If you MUST Mass Email a group of Wholesalers, for Goodness’ Sake, use the “BCC” field in your Email Program!
For those unfamiliar with it, BCC stands for “Blind Courtesy Copy”. That means that there will only be ONE Email Address in the To field, and the rest of the addresses will be hidden from the recipient.
If you don’t have an Email Program that allows BCC, get one! Microsoft’s Outlook Express comes FREE with Microsoft Internet Explorer, and it has this feature. If you have Outlook Express, and you don’t see the BCC field when you Create a New Email, look in the Help files.
You’ll find it. Same goes for other Email Programs. If you don’t see a way to send BCC’s, check your Email Program’s Help files.
Now, a little bit about how BCC works. When you send an email to a lot of people using BCC, you put ONE Email Address in the To field. Then you put all the other Email Addresses in the BCC field. The Email will go out to the Email Address in the To field, and all the other Email Addresses in the BCC filed at the same time. However, everyone who gets that Email will only see the one Email Address in the To field.
Okay, I know what you may be thinking at this point. What if the Email Address you put in the To field isn’t the Email Address of the Wholesale Distributor who gets the Email?
That’s obviously going to happen. When you send a Mass Email to 200 people, and you put one of those people in the To field, and 199 of them in the BCC field, that Email is only going to look right to one of the Wholesalers! All the others are going to be wondering why they got an Email that was sent to a different distributor, right?
Well, chances are that the Wholesaler isn’t even going to look at the To field if there’s only one name there. It’s not an obvious thing, and chances are no one will notice, or even care if they do notice. If it’s a slow day at some particular wholesale warehouse, someone might notice, though.
So, there’s something else you can do to ‘mask’ our Email.
Go into your Address Book, and set up a New Contact. Name the New Contact something like “Preferred Wholesale Distributor”. In the New Contact’s “Email Address” field, enter your own Email Address.
Then, when you send your Mass Email, put “Preferred Wholesale Distributor” in the To field, then put the Email Addresses of all 200 Wholesalers in the BCC field.
That way, each Wholesaler will get an Email that’s addressed to “Preferred Wholesale Distributor”, and they won’t see any of the other Addresses you sent to. Of course, you’ll end up getting a copy of the Email too, because you are “Preferred Wholesale Distributor”, but at least that’s a good way to verify that it went out properly, right?
Don’t worry if this all sounds too technical. It’s really not hard, and a good look at your Email Program’s Help Files will fill in the blanks if you’re not sure about how to do this.
Again, Mass Emailing distributors asking for accounts is not a good idea. You really need to spend time figuring out what you want to sell first, and then just email those distributors who carry those products. But, you may have other reasons to Mass Email people, and this approach works well for them as well.
If you absolutely must Mass Email distributors, this little trick is worth learning, believe me. You don’t want to alienate your product suppliers before you even start!
Worldwide Brands, Inc.