Wholesale includes companies that supply retail and commercial customers with large quantities of consumer goods. The large purchase volumes ensure that the wholesaler can obtain the consumer goods at low prices.

What is wholesale?

Wholesalers procure goods directly from manufacturers and resell them to commercial customers or bulk buyers. In a functional sense, wholesaling performs a distribution function in the supply chain and offers retailers or other large consumers the opportunity to purchase very large quantities of consumer goods for a comparatively low price. Wholesale in the institutional sense describes the institutions whose activities can be attributed to wholesale in the functional sense.

What are the functions of wholesale?

Wholesale is the link between manufacturers and retailers. It performs the following tasks:

Logistical tasks

Wholesalers perform all logistical tasks for retailers. It delivers the manufactured products to the retailers and makes the goods ready for sale to the retail trade.

Storage of goods

Wholesalers have the possibility to store significantly more goods in large warehouses than retailers. This gives the retailer the advantage of being able to ensure rapid subsequent deliveries.

Design of the assortment

The assortment is designed directly by the wholesaler, which results in significantly shorter ordering processes for the retailer.

Market development

Through permanent contact with retailers, wholesalers can obtain important market information and pass this knowledge on to manufacturers. This enables the manufacturer to develop new products and successfully launch them on the market.

Forms of operation in the wholesale

Buying-up wholesale

Procurement of raw materials from agriculture, forestry and mining, or used and waste materials. The materials are later returned to the companies as raw materials.

Pick-up wholesale

The customer can pick up his goods directly from the wholesaler and benefits from a favorable price.

Wholesale market

Wholesale markets are permanently at one location and offer mostly fruits and vegetables, but also other foodstuffs.

Warehouse wholesale

Goods are purchased and stored by the wholesaler. Sales are made directly from the warehouse. 

Assortment wholesale

Large variety of goods based on the needs of the customer. Example: food wholesale

Specialty wholesale

Focus on a specific product group, specialized range. Example: Specialist wholesaler for fruit and vegetables

Delivery wholesale

Wholesale consumers can order their desired goods and have them delivered by a delivery wholesaler.

Is it possible to buy things in the wholesale as a consumer?

Usually, wholesale is only available to commercial customers (associations, schools, universities, etc.). This is mainly because wholesalers and retailers do not want to destroy each other's business, because they profit from each other. In the age of the Internet, however, there is the possibility online for private customers to buy wholesale as well.

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