You really can’t blame someone for trying to hold onto his or her money. After all they worked hard to get it, there’s no point in throwing it away, but is holding out for the lowest selling price really the best strategy when purchasing large pieces of expensive equipment. My experience in manufacturing, sales and marketing has taught me three things:
The reason businesses are in business in the first place is to make money. This would lead me to believe that nobody is giving anything away. So if nobody is giving anything away then what are you giving up in order to achieve that low selling price. If you’re giving away product quality or after market support in order to get that low price then the lowest price strategy may turn out to be the most expensive option in the long run.
Perhaps the questions to ask are, how much does that low selling price really cost? How much money can you really afford to save? The overall cost of ownership is something to consider carefully.
Here’s a list of 10 things to consider before choosing a suppler or manufacturer:
1. Product Quality
Is the equipment well made and will it stand up to the rigors of the work that you are going to use it for? A little research may go a long way here. Investigate the brand. Does it have a favorable reputation? Don’t forget to consider future requirements as well. What serves you well today may not be what you require in the future.
2. Warranty Response
Everything these days is covered by warranty, but what is the manufacturer’s reputation about dealing with warranty claims? What is the response time? Does the company have any history about not honoring warranty? What do the people say? Ask questions in the Social Media and do a little investigating online.
Accessibility can be a key factor to consider, especially when something is broken down. Does the supplier have adequate facilities to service your requirements? Is the service department down the road, across the province or clear across the country?
4. Parts Inventory
Do they warehouse the parts that you will require or do you have to special order them from somewhere else. Do they manufacture with parts that are readily available from other sources or do you have to go directly to the supplier for specialized parts that only they can supply? Being able to get the right parts, the right repairman and the right advice is critical to overcoming obstacles and keeping you up and running.
Are they the new kid on the block or have they been around for a while. Experience counts for a lot and it’s no different with manufacturers. Over the years companies develop a solid reputation and gain experience dealing with problems from manufacturing issues to helping customers solve their production problems. The problem that is causing you so much grief today was probably someone else’s problem before and a manufacturer with years of experience has likely heard it, seen it, solved it and gotten many people back up and running as quickly as possible.
6. Service Workforce
Do they show up on your site driving a rented car with a set of screwdrivers and a crescent wrench stuffed inside of a suitcase or do they arrive in a properly outfitted service truck with the tools and equipment needed to perform the work. Are they factory trained professional service people that specialize in crushing and screening equipment or do they offer to fix your loader and the office air conditioner while they’re at your site.
7. Unsurpassed Durability
Well it looked good on the lot... How were you supposed to know it had the durability of paper Mache’ doll. There’s a lot to look at. Size, weight and construction are but a few. Take look at the results from some of the auction sites like Ritchie Bros. The prices that used equipment sells for can be quite an eye opening experience that may speak volumes about durability and brand reputation
8. 24/7/365 Service
Sometimes you just need it now. Those little “emergencies” don’t always happen at the most convenient time. Will your supplier show up when you need them the most?
Are the equipment designs tried, tested and true? Have the designs evolved into something that is the best that it can be, or is it just as good as it needs to be. There’s a big difference between the two. It’s probably the most important reason that resale value is so much higher on some brands than others.
10. Industry Expertise
Is there any expertise there? You’re obviously an expert at what you do so who do you turn to when you’re stuck? A GROUP of experts! Right!
There’s a lot to consider when purchasing equipment. Cost is important, as long as the reason that it costs so little doesn't reauire a sacrifice in some other area that may be more expensive in the long run. Don't let the decision to buy the lowest price add up to the most expensive piece of equipment that you've ever purchased. The old saying is still true. You can pay a little now, or a whole lot later.