Wholesaler vs Manufacturer: What's The Difference? Explained!

Wholesaler vs Manufacturer: What's The Difference? Explained!

Posted by Big Brand on 30th Nov 2021

We are often asked if we are a manufacturer of the authentic designer brands we carry.  When we reply "No, we are a wholesaler" people tend to be confused, so I am going to explain the difference today. 

A manufacturer is a company that physically creates the items. A manufacturer works in a warehouse and has machines to produce the merchandise.  For example, a manufacturer who makes t-shirts would have bolts of fabric and spools of thread.  They would cut the fabric then sew it to make the tee.

A Manufacturer typically does not sell the items directly because their main purpose is to make the items so once the products are created ("manufactured"), the manufacturer usually uses a Distribution Company ("Distributor") or a Wholesaler to sell the shirts to businesses.  Think of it this way; although Spirit Airline pilots fly the airplanes, they do not also build or service the planes; instead, a manufacturer builds the airplanes, Spirit buys them and a pilot flies them.

A Wholesaler is not usually a manufacturer. A Wholesaler is a company who purchases the items then resells them to businesses. This is known as "B2B" sales, which stands for "Business to Business".

The businesses who buy from a wholesaler then sell the items directly to the customer, which is referred to as "B2C" and means "Business to Consumer", although many refer to it as "Business to Customer", either way, it means the same thing. 

So, if you are looking to purchase bulk merchandise to resell online or in your physical store you want to look for Wholesalers or Distributors because it is unlikely that you will be able to purchase directly from a manufacturer, although there are a small quantity of manufacturers who do distribute the items they produce.  On we specialize in designer brand wholesale and liquidations.  If we do not have what you are seeking, we have many lists to help you find a wholesaler that works best for you:

59+ Wholesalers with Spreadsheets / Manifests

43+ Wholesalers that Drop Ship - INSIDE THE USA!

80+ Amazon FBA Prep Services in the USA!

64+ Wholesalers that Sell (and SHIP on) Pallets!

150+ Womens Clothing Wholesale Companies

70 Purse, Handbag, Tote Bag Wholesale Companies

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