For merchants, the purchase of wholesale jeans is available only to those with proper documents holding accounts with reputable vendors. Buying wholesale jeans can be a complicated process that takes some research and persistence to set up, but it is generally easy once an account has been established. When stocking your store, beware of unscrupulous vendors who claim to sell at wholesale but really do not.
Items you will need
- State-issued tax ID number
- Retail business license and business card
- Debit or credit card for initial purchase
- Computer with Internet access
Attend popular trade events, such as Fashion Week or MAGIC. These events are great opportunities to find jeans that you might want to purchase, and they offer an excellent chance to meet showroom representatives with desirable lines. To attend these events, you'll need a tax ID, business license or business card to show to the counter attendant; these events are restricted to business owners.
When speaking to vendors, ask about sales website access. Most leading wholesale sellers do not have their wholesale sites indexed by Google, so they are nearly impossible to find by Internet search. A sales representative will have to set up account access.
Set up accounts for designer/vendor websites and buying access. Many designers and showrooms have wholesale websites that require a tax ID for entry; once authorized, the retailer can purchase product from the site. You will not be granted access to reputable wholesale vendors without a tax ID and/or retail business license, and you should not be charged for website catalog access.
When looking at the assortment of products on the vendor's site or in the catalog, purchase with an eye toward what is in style. For hints, refer to such websites as Style.com for the latest in international runway shows. Always have some basic, timeless styles on your buying list, such as boot-cut and straight-leg jeans, for those who need to purchase the basics.
Buy at least $250 worth of product in your first order. This quantity assures the vendor that you, the client, are not simply a consumer masquerading as a retailer. After this first order, you can then usually make smaller purchases.
Watch out for sales and other opportunities to buy stock at low prices. Trade-show vendors often sell off samples at the end of the show, and showrooms have sample sales that offer garments at cut-rate prices. However, these events can be crowded and competitive, and the public may be able to attend, so be ready to work for those jeans.
Weed out actual wholesalers from middlemen. Most Internet "wholesale" stores are nothing of the sort and actually charge a price only slightly cheaper than the suggested retail price. Be wary of any vendor that does not ask for a first-time minimum order or does not require a tax ID.
If you are in the market for premium denim, avoid any sellers from China or Hong Kong. All premium brands have sales reps in the United States, unless they have specified differently in their sales literature. Asian sites are almost certainly selling counterfeit jeans.
- 2008 bluryee / Creative Commons