Reaping the Benefits of Working with Local Vendors

Just this week I heard from two Denver-based companies who used vendors who were not local.  One vendor was out-of-state and one was actually out of the country.  In both cases they had less than desireable outcomes and were contacting me for assistance.

The first company I heard about this week was a company who contracted with a web developer outside the country.  Price most likely drove his decision.  The website had many mis-spellings, grammatical errors, poor copywriting, poor design and many more problems.  The company had to pay this vendor, let them go, and had to hire another vendor locally.  Now the company is spending more money to fix these problems. 

The second company hired an out-of-state vendor to work on their website.  This company received a referral from a friend of the vendor.  The vendor was not vetted thoroughly and the outcome caused many problems.    We usually trust referrals and rarely qualify them to make sure they are good referrals.  The best thing to do when you receive a referral is to interview them, ask for references, ask to see samples of their work or case studies, and check them out just as you would anyone else.  Ask for a proposal/estimate and get a face-to-face meeting with them

In both these examples, face-to-face time was missing and the ability to vet the vendor thoroughly was missing.  When you do not work with someone local, there is no face-to-face time, a key component to a successful outcome.  Additionally, when you work with a local company, if they have a bad or excellent reputation, word is usually out about it.  Using a vendor that is not local does not allow a company to find out this information as easily, if at all.

There are many advantages to working with local vendors versus vendors out-of-state or out of the country:

1. A local vendor has a thorough knowledge of your local market.

2. If they have been in business for some time, they should have local references that you can easily contact.

3. You get valuable face time with your service provider, which greatly reduces misunderstanding that happen via email.  Communication barriers no longer exist.

4. You can check with the local Better Business Bureau (BBB) if there are any complaints about the company and the status of those complaints.

5. Selecting a vendor with a proven track record is important.  A vendor with an excellent reputation is usually known in the local community and a vendor with a bad reputation is also usually known in the local community.

6. Hiring an out-of-state company and/or out of the country company, does nothing to stimulate the local economy.  If a reputable vendor can be found locally, they should be used.

There may be times when you cannot find a local vendor that meets your expectations and using an out-of-state vendor makes sense when you desire a company with the highest reputation and credentials.

If you have a story you would like to share, we love to hear about it.

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