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How to Buy Wholesale Clothing

May 23, 2024 7 min read

How to Buy Wholesale Clothing - Wholesale Accessory Market

Stocking your boutique can be fun, exciting – and exhausting! Knowing how to buy wholesale clothing is challenging, but once you've acquired a few tips and tricks, things get a whole lot easier.

Whether you're just starting out or looking to expand your inventory, understanding the finer points of buying wholesale clothing for resale is crucial. In this comprehensive guide, we'll explore everything you need to know about sourcing quality apparel in bulk, from identifying the right suppliers to securing the best deals.

By the end of this article, you'll learn how to buy clothes wholesale like a pro, ensuring your boutique thrives in the competitive retail market.

By Steven Roper

The Benefits of Buying Wholesale

There are plenty of reasons to buy clothing wholesale. Naturally, cost savings are at the top of the list, but there are other advantages:


When you buy in bulk, suppliers offer substantial discounts that aren't available when purchasing smaller quantities. This pricing structure reduces your per-item cost, significantly enhancing your overall profit margins once these items are sold at retail price. Additionally, with larger orders, you can negotiate better shipping rates or additional discounts, further lowering your overall expenses.


Another significant benefit of buying clothing wholesale is the wide variety that becomes accessible to you. Wholesalers typically have extensive inventories that include a wide range of styles, sizes, and colors. This variety allows you to cater to various customer preferences and market demands without being limited by the constraints often found with smaller or more specialized suppliers.


Purchasing from clothing wholesalers allows you to restock your inventory quickly and efficiently. Unlike manufacturers, who might require longer lead times for production, wholesalers usually have products ready for immediate shipment.

How to Buy Clothes Wholesale

Let's break down the process of how to buy clothes wholesale into three parts. It all begins with doing your homework.

how to buy wholesale clothing

Market Research

Before you start purchasing, you need to thoroughly understand your target market's preferences. This involves figuring out who your customers are, what they prefer in terms of fashion, and how much they're willing to spend in your store.

Additionally, analyze what your competitors are offering. Understanding their product selection, pricing strategy, and promotional activities provides valuable insights and helps you identify gaps in the market or areas for potential differentiation.

Finding Suppliers

For most people, the internet is their go-to starting point, but if you search "where to buy clothes in bulk for resale," you're going to get millions of results. Fortunately, there are a few approaches that work a whole lot better.

  • Trade Shows: Attending trade shows and fashion expos is a direct approach to meeting and connecting with several clothing wholesalers and manufacturers at once.
  • Online Directories: Sites like ThomasNet and Alibaba are platforms for finding suppliers worldwide. Just be sure to do your due diligence to ensure the legitimacy of the suppliers and the quality of their products before ordering.
  • Networking: Leverage your existing industry contacts to get recommendations for reputable suppliers. Networking can often lead you to trusted suppliers that may not be easily found through other channels. Getting referrals from other business owners can provide reassurance about a supplier's reliability and service.

Evaluating Suppliers

Reliability is essential when choosing a supplier. Check online reviews, request customer testimonials, and ask for references to evaluate their reputation and dependability. Consider factors like their track record for on-time deliveries, their response times to queries, and their ability to handle order issues or returns. Pro Tip: Be mindful of where the supplier is located. Their prices may be amazing, but if their products are being shipped from overseas, you may lose sales while waiting for your shipment to arrive.

Quality is also paramount when selecting a wholesale supplier. Ask the supplier to provide samples so you can assess the quality of the clothing. Consider the materials, craftsmanship, and overall durability of the samples provided.

Finally, ensure that the supplier's pricing fits within your budget and allows for a profitable markup on resale. While it's important to negotiate favorable terms, always be mindful of the balance between cost and quality to maintain customer satisfaction.

Negotiating With Suppliers

Negotiating with suppliers is a critical step in the wholesale buying process that leads to better prices and helps to establish a stronger relationship with your clothing supplier, which is beneficial for future transactions. Here's how you can navigate the negotiation process:

how to buy clothes wholesale

Leverage Order Quantity

The quantity of your order is a powerful lever in negotiating better prices. Suppliers will often lower their prices for larger orders because it guarantees them significant sales and reduces the inventory they need to manage.

Flexible Payment Terms

Offering to pay sooner than standard terms can sometimes incentivize suppliers to offer you a discount. If upfront payment isn't viable, negotiate for extended payment terms that could help ease your cash flow. For instance, instead of net 30, you might propose net 45 or 60, giving you more time to sell the inventory before the bill is due.

Highlight Ongoing Business Potential

If you plan to order regularly, make this clear to the supplier. Ongoing business can be a tempting incentive for them to offer you better pricing. Outline your future business plans and how the supplier fits into these plans.

Be Informed and Respectful

Come into negotiations well-informed about standard industry pricing and practices. This knowledge will help you understand when a supplier is offering fair terms and when there's room to ask for more. Always maintain professionalism and respect in your communications.

Terms of Sale

Before agreeing to any terms, thoroughly understand the supplier's return policy. This includes conditions under which items can be returned, who bears the cost of shipping returned items, and the timeframe for accepting returns.

Shipping Costs & Logistics

Shipping costs can add a substantial amount to your total purchase. Discuss these details up front to find out if you can consolidate shipments to save on transportation costs or if the supplier offers any concessions for bulk shipping. Also, consider the logistics of delivery: Does the supplier ensure shipments through reputable carriers and provide tracking information?

Maximizing Your Purchases

Effective purchasing strategies go beyond just finding the right suppliers and negotiating prices. Here's how you can optimize your buying process:

where to buy clothes in bulk for resale

Buy Off-Season

One strategic approach to buying wholesale is to purchase out-of-season merchandise. Suppliers often discount last season's items to clear out their warehouses for new stock. These discounts are offered because the demand for off-season items is typically lower, and suppliers are eager to liquidate old stock.

Stay Updated

Most wholesalers and manufacturers send out newsletters to their clients, which include information on upcoming sales, new arrivals, and special promotions. By subscribing to these newsletters, you'll be informed of the best times to buy and get access to deals that aren't always advertised publicly.

Following your suppliers on social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter can also provide a wealth of information. This direct line of communication allows you to react quickly to any opportunities that arise, ensuring you don't miss out on low-price offers.

Reasons to Choose Wholesale Accessory Market (WAM)

Here's why WAM should be your go-to choice for stocking up on stylish and affordable women's apparel:

  • Selection, Selection, Selection: WAM has clothing and accessories in every fashion category, from the latest fashion trends to timeless classics. Our inventory caters to a broad audience. Whether you're looking for comfy shackets, fun, flirty graphic tees, or even Western wear, you'll be pleasantly surprised by the breadth of our selection.
  • Competitive Pricing: WAM is committed to offering competitive prices without compromising quality. This commitment ensures that you can maintain a healthy profit margin while offering attractive price points to your customers.
  • Quality Assurance: Quality is a cornerstone of WAM's business philosophy. Each product is selected with a focus on durability, fabric quality, and craftsmanship. This attention to detail ensures that the items you purchase will meet your standards and satisfy your customers, leading to repeat business and a strong reputation for your store.
  • Excellent Customer Service: We pride ourselves on our exceptional customer service. Our team is knowledgeable, responsive, and dedicated to supporting your business needs.
  • Easy Ordering and Fast Shipping: The ordering process at WAM is streamlined and user-friendly, making it easy for you to find and purchase the products you need without hassle. Fast shipping options ensure that your orders are delivered promptly, allowing you to keep your inventory well-stocked and ready to meet customer demand.

How to Buy Wholesale Clothing: Additional FAQs

Below, we've answered a few additional questions on how to buy wholesale clothing.

How Do I Ensure the Quality of Clothes When Buying Wholesale?

Request samples and consider small test orders to assess quality before committing to large quantities.

What Are the Common Mistakes When Buying Wholesale Clothing?

Overbuying, not checking for hidden costs, and neglecting to negotiate terms can all lead to issues.

How Can I Find Trustworthy Wholesale Clothing Suppliers?

Look for suppliers with strong customer reviews. You can also ask for business references and attend industry events.

How to Buy Wholesale Clothing

How to Buy Wholesale Clothing? Make WAM Your First Stop

Once you know how to buy wholesale clothing, the next logical step is to click over to WAM. By partnering with us, you get with a supplier who understands and supports your business objectives. Explore our products and services today and learn how we can help you achieve success in the competitive retail landscape.

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