If you are an entrepreneur planning on bringing a product to market at some point in time, you will need to find a manufacturer. Creating a product to a large scale is a reasonably complicated process, which will be made much easier by choosing the right manufacturer. In this guide, we’re going to show you exactly how to navigate the process. Let’s take a look at how to choose – and work with – a product manufacturer.
Before you consider finding a manufacturer, it is critical that you design a prototype. A prototype is essential for testing your product’s viability and ironing out any problems that might prevent it from becoming a success. Also, with a prototype, a good manufacturer will be able to advise you on what is right and, more importantly, what is wrong. Aim to create about a dozen or so prototypes for sending out to a select group f manufacturers as a reference.
Create a shortlist
Now, let’s focus on finding a manufacturer to work with. Ideally, you should build up a list of 3-4 different companies that have potential, before making your final decision. There are a few ways of developing that shortlist. Referrals are always a good bet, as a trusted acquaintance can be relied on for a non-biased opinion. You can always search online for companies that might be able to help. You should also contact the company’s previous clients to find out how they found the experience. Try the overseas market, too. In developing countries, you will see the cost of manufacturing can be considerably cheaper than it is in this country.
Try a specialist company
It is crucial that your shortlist is made up of manufacturers who have plenty of experience in creating similar products to the one you want to build. For example, let’s assume that you are creating brand new medical devices. As discussed over at Laser Light Technologies, you may need highly precise manufacturing techniques such as laser cutting to ensure your product meets strict industry specifications. Working with a specialist in their field ensures that your manufacturer can help you to overcome problems with your prototype and ensure it meets the relevant legal standards.
Making your decision
Once you have a shortlist, your chosen manufacturers will supply you with quotes. While it will be tempting to go for the cheapest option, you should weigh the balance between price and quality. Ultimately, choosing a manufacturer offering a rock bottom price could result in a rock-bottom product that doesn’t go anywhere.
Another critical factor in this process is having an accurate estimate of the volume of products you need. As a rule, the more you order, the less it will cost per product. However, there is no point in reducing the cost of sale if you overestimate your sales and are unable to build up your business’s reputation. Plus, you will end up with a massive amount of products sitting on the shelves, destined for the local waste disposal site.
Choosing a manufacturer can be tricky, as there are many decisions to make. It can take a while to find the right company but don’t rush the process. Ultimately, your initial product offering needs to be in good shape when you launch, and the right manufacturer can help you establish your name and grow your business from day one. Good luck!