Posted on February 3, 2016 by Michael Boik

Is Global Sourcing for Custom Packaging Really a Good idea?

the-bitterness-of-poor-quality-remains-long-after-the-sweetness-3Please understand, I agree we all benefit from a global economy, and to some degree, I sincerely believe competition makes us all better. I do however get upset when I hear about packaging companies that do not deliver what they “sell” leaving customers hurt and disappointed. This seems to happen more often than not when buyers, eager to save money, purchase packaging made overseas at what appears to be a great price.

A Bad Week for the Other Guys

Last week I spoke to two customers who were calling in search of a quick solution for a serious problem. Both were in a bind and about to blow a deadline, because their off-shore suppliers had disappointed them.

Trucks are always faster than shipsLong Lead Times

One lady I spoke to had been waiting for her packaging since last November and was looking for a small quantity of custom printed product to hold her over until (literally) her ship came in. She was not happy with our minimums or higher prices compared to what she had paid for the late product. Perhaps you can get an old guy to tell you the joke that ends with a punch line of, “When I am out of hammers, I sell mine for only $1.99”.

The crux is that the price you paid does not matter if you are not able to get the product you need. It is important to note, our minimum was actually less that the quantity she had ordered to get that bargain price.

Quality Inconsistencies

Again, keep in mind I am not painting all off-shore packaging suppliers with the same poor quality brush, but my second caller discovered that many of the products he had received were unusable. This meant that they were going to run out before their customer’s order was fully satisfied. What is the cost of a lost customer?

We typically find out how good our supplier is when there is a problem, NOT when all is good. I genuinely felt bad when he told me he had been calling and emailing his foreign source several times, in an effort to get some additional product rushed to him. Sadly, I think he had already realized that was not going to happen.

Thanks to modern technology and communication tools, we are able to overcome language barriers and time differences, but we are not able to make up distance and time when it comes to delivery. We ship most new custom printed orders within two weeks of final art approval. Most containers shipped from abroad take a minimum of four weeks to arrive and get through customs.

We never claim to be perfect and certainly we have made a few mistakes in the past, delivering product that was not satisfactory to our customers. In every case, even when the “fault” was questionable, we did everything reasonable, as quickly as possible, to help correct the problem.

Please contact us at Salazar Packaging or call us at 630-551-1700 to discuss your needs. We can promise you our pricing will always be competitive and our service and support exceptional.

Related posts: