I usually tell my clients that if a company requires an upfront investment just to get money, it’s probably not on the up and up. While this is generally a good rule of thumb, there are exceptions. For example, buying a drop ship source directly can be a very lucrative investment.
There are several reasons that drop ship companies don’t typically offer their information for free. For one thing, they make their money by selling products individually at a wholesale price. They’re able to see a return on this type of service because they deal with businesses who will send a lot of orders their way. If they are dealing with people who are simply using their services to buy individual products for themselves, they will have to deal with setting up tons of new customer files and contacts and it will bring down their bottom line.
By only offering their directories for a price, they can ensure that the people requesting the information are serious buyers. While you might not like the idea of paying for information, think of it this way : the fewer people that have access to their rock bottom prices, the fewer people your business has to compete with. After all, if your customers could buy directly from the source, they wouldn’t need you.
I’ve bought a drop source directory every year for the last few years. I find the updated information to be incredibly useful. After taking advantage of the services offered by these drop ship companies for years, I can definitely attest to these directories being a very lucrative investment.