We know exactly how difficult it can be to quickly compare supplier prices for the best deals as search result listings are never quite what they seem. To help buyers, we have put together our top tips checklist to minimise your costs for catering supplies and equipment – and save your valuable time.
Use Product Codes in your searches: The same product codes are used widely between suppliers (including us) so If you know exactly what you are looking for, enter a brief product name / phrase with the product code into search box (e.g. Google). This will reveal more suppliers (& possibly promo codes) with the specific products you seek
Look down the listings: You will usually see the big name suppliers' prices at the top of the search results, these are the paid-for, promoted Ads. Although many searchers rarely look at more than page 1 or 2 of results, it does pay to look down the listings for suppliers who have not paid to make the top positions - often with lower operating costs, they can offer keener prices - with stock sourced and delivered directly from the same warehouses!
VAT included or not?: Check whether VAT is included in the prices quoted, annoyingly it is not always clear and makes comparison more time consuming as you have to do the maths and / or check out a site.
Delivery Charge Threshold: Check suppliers’ minimum order for free delivery. It varies from zero to over £200. It’s not always clearly stated (until checkout!) but can make a significant difference to your total invoice bill. Lowest quoted price but paid-for delivery is rarely your best option.
Delivery Options: Is Next Day Delivery standard or is it 4-7 days? Does Next Day cost you extra? Does your postcode put your delivery charge up? Is there a weight limit on your Free Delivery?
Items In Stock?: Check that your order items really are in stock as not all suppliers have proper inventory control. A “sorry this item is out of stock” email after you’ve paid in advance, in good faith, is not only extremely annoying but has wasted your time. For more expensive & urgent items just confirm stock is present with the supplier (e.g. through the instant chat line) - before paying at the checkout.
Use a benchmark supplier for comparisons: E.g. Chefswarehouse (our prices are consistently low across all product ranges and brands. Delivery options are upfront - so we make a good benchmark.)
Price Matching: If your order basket adds up to a sizable amount, try asking for a price match - with online chat boxes on most sites, it doesn't take much to ask for a bit more discount. With a highly competitive market for your custom, its very likely that you will succeed in getting an extra. If you 'abandon' your basket, its is quite common to receive an automatic offer an hour or so later anyway!
Happy Shopping from chefswarehouse.co.uk - do let us know if you have any more tips to share.