Buying Shop Supplies Online

Being in the job shop business, you know better than anyone that time is money and there is never enough of either.

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Last week I went to the dentist and as I was leaving they asked me for my e-mail address. Thirty minutes later I had an e-mail from them with a link to an online application where I could see my next appointment, change it if necessary and even schedule an e-mail reminder a day before the appointment. I actually did need to make a change and with a few clicks I had moved my appointment to the following day. Their new online system saved both of us valuable time and provided me with a great experience. That was but one more aspect of my life moving online, saving me time and helping me stay organized.

Being in the job shop business, you know better than anyone that time is money and there is never enough of either. Time that you spend holding on the phone or humoring the sales reps that stop by your shop, eat into productive time when you should be using that time to make money for your company. While there are some sales reps that add value by providing you with valuable application expertise, many are just order takers. Most of the time, when you need to order shop supplies or equipment, you know exactly what you need and when you need it … so just go online and order it. Following are a few Web sites that can save you time and money.

Discount-Tools.com is a very well organized and trusted online store for ordering cutting tools, abrasives and more. The site is very well organized and allows you to quickly find the tools you need, add them to you cart, check out and receive them at your shop. Not only is it a very efficient process, you’ll also save money because they will not have a sales person stopping by the shop adding commission to your purchases.

OnlineMetals.com is great resource when you need to order material. Of course they’ll be happy to take your order for a truckload of material, but one of the things I like best about OnlineMetals.com is that they will sell you exactly the size and quantity you need. Even if you only need two feet of one-inch diameter titanium, you can buy exactly that and avoid having to buy a whole bar just to get the two feet.

MachineTools.com is a complete resource when it comes to equipment and tooling. Whether you are looking for new or used equipment or want to sell a piece of equipment, you’ll find MachineTools.com to be an invaluable resource. These guys are from the industry and really know what they are doing.

McMaster.com (McMaster-Carr) is where you can buy just about anything industrial. On their home page they claim “98% of the items ordered are shipped direct from stock.” You may not find the exact brands you are seeking or necessarily get the best price, but if you need it fast, chances are you will find it at McMaster.com.

MFG.com is where you find the customers for your services. Let’s face it, the real reason you bought the equipment, tooling and software in the first place is to use it to enrich yourself and provide a nice standard of living for your employees. MFG.com is the only service that can instantly match your equipment, expertise and capacity to customers looking for the exact services you provide.

I encourage you to take advantage of the deals you can find online and offer your customers the ability to do business with you online. Also, I would love to hear about some of the online services you have found valuable to your business. Send your suggestions to mfree@MFG.com.

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