How to Easily Start a Distribution Supply Business

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Starting out on a new business venture can be an exciting prospect, but the time and money you must invest can make the task seem daunting. A shrewd businessman will look for opportunities that have the potential for significant investment returns on that time and money. Opening a distribution supply business can be an easy way to get into business with low overhead. Distribution affiliate programs let a business easily enter the supply chain.

Pick the industry you want to work in or what type of product to distribute. Choosing an industry or product that you have some level of expertise in will give you a leg up since you already have an understanding of the product. For low overhead costs, choose a cheaper product, such as paper products or cleaning supplies. With the right product, you could start your supply distribution wholesale business for under $1,000.

Choose what mode of supply distribution you will use to sell your products to clients. Types of distribution modes include import and export, brokerage or cash and carry, where items sell to clients who pick up your products from a distribution center. This last choice and online sales distribution both reduces the amount of employees needed to deliver supplies and eases the transaction process.

Rent, lease or buy a warehouse space that can hold all of your distribution supply products. This space is necessary to store your inventory after receiving it but before it ships to fill an order. You may be able to use space in your home, but contact your local government to see if your residential area is zoned to allow business storage.

Apply for all appropriate business licenses required to operate your distribution supply business legally. This will include a business tax identification number and any state licenses regulating supply distributors. Obtain the services of a legal professional who is familiar with business ventures; this person will know exactly what forms to obtain and complete, as well as all applicable state regulations impacting your business.

Purchase supplies from a wholesaler that you can resell to businesses for a profit. You can find wholesalers of all different types of products through an Internet search. You will need to open up a merchant account with wholesale businesses to place an order.

Alternatively, you could contact manufacturers or large-scale supply distributors that offer business opportunities for affiliate distributors. These large wholesalers should be able to provide much needed business guidance as you set up your distribution supply business.

Contact local businesses and advertise your distribution supply business to build clients. Focus on local retail stores or industries that can use your products; for instance, if you distribute cleaning supplies, you may find profitable clients in schools or nursing homes. If you chose to become an affiliate distributor, you can benefit from business contacts made through your parent company.


  • You may be able to apply for a tax deduction of part of your mortgage or rent for the business use of your home if you store supply products there. Contact a tax professional to learn what business tax deductions you may be eligible for.


  • Do some research on your wholesaler before purchasing any items from them, especially wholesalers found online. Many online wholesalers are scams posing as legitimate businesses. Contact a professional business organization, such as the Better Business Bureau, or make some personal contact with a business representative before buying anything. Be careful to not purchase illegal items, such as bootlegged media or replica designer items, that a wholesaler claims as legitimate. If you sell these items, you will be are liable for their authenticity.


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