Improving Vendor Relations

Follow these tips to stay on good terms with vendors, stay ahead of price hikes, and potentially enjoy long-lasting, mutually beneficial relationships

Interested in Business?

Get Business articles, news and videos right in your inbox! Sign up now.

Business + Get Alerts

One of the most important parts of running a home-service company is finding good vendors who can supply you materials, equipment, and office supplies, ideally at an affordable rate and a high level of quality.

Likewise, one of the biggest mistakes companies make is choosing vendors, then neglecting to check in with them on a somewhat regular basis. This can be problematic for a number of reasons, not least the reality that you might run into unexpected price changes or miss out on opportunities to save money.

There are proactive steps that home-service companies can take to maintain positive vendor relations and hopefully avoid those dreaded price hikes.

Request information regularly

It’s easy to put your equipment and supply needs on autopilot, but simply reaching out to your vendors on a regular basis and requesting up-to-date product and pricing information can go a long way.

Not only does this help you understand the ever-shifting options that are before you, but it’s also a reminder to your vendor that you’re doing your due diligence — to maintain your business, they’ll actually have to earn it.

Invite your vendors to visit

To facilitate strong relationships with your top vendors, it’s helpful to put in facetime. It’s your vendor who should put in the hustle to stay in your good graces, so it’s reasonable to expect them to travel to your office for a sit-down.

I suggest meeting face-to-face with top vendors on a quarterly basis in order to check in about the quality of the supplies, material, or equipment you’ve been receiving, and to discuss any pricing issues that have arisen.

Stay in the loop

Often, your vendors can anticipate supply chain issues that are looming on the horizon. These issues can naturally affect your business, so it’s reasonable that you’d want to stay in the loop.

Have someone from your office call top vendors every 30 to 60 days to inquire about any supply chain issues that they foresee.

Leave vendors on good terms

Sooner or later, you’re likely to find reason to leave one vendor for another. Often, this will be due to your business’ changing needs, or to your discovery of a better/fairer rate.

Any time you leave a vendor, make sure you do so on good terms. Complete the terms of your contract, thank them for their assistance, and let them know you’ll still be happy to refer them. You never know when you might need to go back to that vendor, so avoid burning bridges if at all possible.

Give timely feedback

Even the best vendors may occasionally make errors or deliver products that have defects.

If you have a concern, don’t sit on it. Offer your feedback promptly, ensuring that your vendor can quickly rectify the problem, and that you don’t become resentful or frustrated.

Reward good service with loyalty

Finally, when you do land on vendors that excel in quality, pricing, communication, and customer service, make sure they know it. Try to honor their excellence by getting as many of your supplies and materials from them as possible.

About the Author

Amanda E. Clark is the president and editor-in-chief of Grammar Chic, a full-service professional writing company. She is a published ghostwriter and editor, and she's currently under contract with literary agencies in Malibu, California and Dublin. Since founding Grammar Chic in 2008, Clark, along with her team of skilled professional writers, has offered expertise to clients in the creative, business and academic fields. The company accepts a wide range of projects; often engages in content and social media marketing; and drafts resumes, press releases, web content, marketing materials and ghostwritten creative pieces. Contact Clark at


Comments on this site are submitted by users and are not endorsed by nor do they reflect the views or opinions of COLE Publishing, Inc. Comments are moderated before being posted.