How & where to buy cheap wholesale products for resale

Panna Kemenes

Wholesale is big business: the US market size rose to $10.4 trillion in 2022 from $9.9 trillion in 2021.¹

Yet, finding cheap wholesale products for sales in the USA is challenging. There are hundreds, if not thousands, of wholesalers. Choosing the right option isn’t always straightforward.

There are ways to make sure you get the best deal, though. In this post, you’ll learn how and where to find the best cheap wholesale products for resale.

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In this article

Can I buy wholesale products and resell them?

It’s legal to resell wholesale products as a business, provided you have the correct permits to do so.

Depending on where you are, the license to buy wholesale products to resell may go by a different name. Here are some of the more common terms for the permit:

  • Reseller’s license
  • Wholesale ID
  • Reseller’s permit

What do I need to buy wholesale and resell?

To get your wholesale reselling business up and running, here’s what you’ll need to do:

  1. Obtain an employer identification number (EIN)
  2. Apply for a sales license
  3. Apply for a resale license (can go by different names depending on where you live)
  4. Apply for a sales tax ID for your state

How to choose cheap wholesale products for resale

To select the right wholesale items to resell at the right price, consider the following factors:

Evaluate the profit margin

Search for areas where there’s the potential for a high profit margin. If you’re an online retailer, that should be in the region of 41.54%. For in-store retail, it would be closer to 24.32%

If you find a product that could yield a high profit margin, you can buy it in bulk for a low cost, and in doing so increase your potential sales revenue.

Assess your competition

If competition is stiff for a particular product, you might struggle to make a profit.

As such, the best approach is often to seek out those products that aren’t saturated in the market. You can use online retailers to assess the competition for different products.

Make sure there is demand

If you do manage to find a low competition product, you need to make sure there’s a high level of demand for it.

Many products with low competition don’t meet the market’s needs adequately which means there’s less demand for them. As such, conduct market research to find out whether customers want the product you’re planning to sell online.

Consider your product dimensions

While it doesn’t pertain to the quality of the product, the dimensions can be a significant factor to consider.

The heavier or larger the product, the more expensive it will be to ship it to your customers. It can sometimes be a gamble to buy many large products in bulk. You’ll face higher shipping fees which can eat into your profit margins.

🔍 Planning to buy wholesale for resale from China? You can find out about shipping from US to China to see if it's worth it for you.

Where to buy cheap wholesale products for resale

So now you know what to look for, you might be wondering; ‘How do I find cheap wholesale?’

There are many ways to buy cheap wholesale items for resale from around the world.

🔍 Did you know?
Asia Pacific is the largest region for buying wholesale goods, accounting for the lion’s share of 51% of the market in 2020.³

Buying cheap is essential as purchases account for 78.4% of business costs in the wholesale industry. As such, you need to manage your funds well and spend on the products that’ll lead to the best ROI.⁴

Using online wholesale marketplaces is an increasingly common strategy for finding cheap goods.

Here are some of the most popular online marketplaces for cheap wholesale products for resale:

Global wholesale marketplaces

Wholesale siteGreat for:
Alibaba is a global eCommerce platform that connects buyers with wholesalers. The marketplace is to wholesale what Amazon is to retail - it presents thousands of products at affordable prices.Finding cheap and reliable deals using vendor reviews and vetting services.
AliExpress is a dropshipping website that allows you to buy products that the supplier will then ship to the customer for you.Trialing different products. There’s no upfront charge for selling products purchased on the site.
💡 If you need to pay international wholesalers, then don’t lose out on unfavorable exchange fees. Pay with Wise Business and get the real mid-market rate.

Local US wholesale sites

Wholesale siteGreat for:
Tundra provides buyers with access to a plethora of US and Canadian branded wholesale merchandise for resale.The local US wholesale platform is useful for small businesses since the free shipping and affordable products make it accessible.
Faire is a boutique wholesale platform that brings artisan creators to a local US audience at affordable prices.Boutique businesses that require unique products at low cost.
🔍 You can also find more options in the guide to best wholesale websites.

What are the best wholesale products to sell?

To give you a concrete idea of what products to look for, here are some of the best wholesale goods to sell:


Apparel, which includes everything from sporting accessories to business attire, is one of the most popular wholesale products to sell. It’s always available, so it can be an easy source of repeat revenue.

Apparel will often give you a favorable profit margin since the cost of buying is low. Yet, you’ll have to buy a lot to generate high revenue.

Health & beauty

Health and beauty products are popular as it’s a huge industry. Essentials such as shower gel and soap will always be in high demand.

Buying cheap cosmetic products though might be at odds with what the modern eco-conscious customer wants.


Jewelry can be a lucrative product for resale, and can lead to high markups. You can buy jewelry at a low price and sell it with a high price tag. However, this relies on your ability to negotiate a good deal as fixed prices aren’t common.

Pet supplies

Pet supplies always have high demand, and many consumers appreciate low prices for goods they have to constantly restock. They’re often available at low wholesale prices too.

The profit margins will likely be low, which is an important factor to consider.


Electronics are highly popular and valuable. That means if you do the research, you can find products that are low in competition but have the potential for a high profit margin.

Bear in mind, though, that electronics will cost you more to purchase so there is a risk involved.

Kids and baby products

Much like pet supplies, kids and baby products will always be popular and can help you generate recurring revenue. For toys, though, demand can be highly seasonal, so timing is key.

How to buy wholesale to resell

For the process of buying wholesale to resell, there are various steps you’ll need to take to ensure ongoing success.

Decide if you want to use a global or local wholesaler

One of the first major decisions you’ll have to make is where you source your products: overseas or from your local area.

There are pros and cons to both approaches, so it boils down to what’s best for your business.

When you buy from a local US wholesaler, you may pay a premium due to higher manufacturing costs, but this higher price is often reflected in the product’s high quality.

It’s also a quick way to buy and sell products for a short-term profit spike. You might be limited in what you can find when you shop locally, though.

When you buy from a global wholesaler, you’ll often pay lower prices and have a wide range of products to choose from. Buying from a global supplier can be slower, due to shipping times.

Choose two or three wholesale suppliers

It’s a good idea to deal with several wholesale suppliers. You’re unlikely to find all the products you need with a single vendor.

Plus, if you experience a shortage of products with one supplier, that won’t cut off your revenue stream.

Request wholesale product samples

To ensure you get what you pay for with wholesale products it’s wise to request samples. Getting your hands on the product will tell you much more about its quality and viability for resale than an online image and description will.

You’ll also be able to assess the ease of communication and customer service, which can be a deciding factor.

Some wholesale platforms will let you order a free sample of the product upfront, which can help you reach a decision.

Negotiate the terms and quantity

Once you’ve chosen a product, you enter the negotiation phase. During this process, you’ll discuss payment terms and volume, among other things.

Make sure you buy enough to satisfy likely consumer demand. Don’t foget to arrange payment terms that suit both parties to avoid issues later down the line.

Pay for your wholesale goods

The last step is to pay for the goods.

Some suppliers will be happy to negotiate on price. If you feel there’s a better deal to strike, it can be worth seeing if they’ll shift on their original asking price.

Pay for international wholesale for resale with Wise

Many wholesale resellers choose to source from abroad to save money and increase profit margins.

Yet paying with your traditional bank may end up costing you more than you think. Banks can have hidden fees and don’t always use the best exchange rate.

Wise is not a bank, but a Money Services Business (MSB) provider and a smart alternative to banks. With Wise Business, you get the real mid-market rate when you buy from overseas. This helps keep your costs down, leaving more of your profit intact.

It's easy to pay from one account in different currencies, making international business payments easy.



  1. Wholesale Trade in the US - Market Size 2002–2027
  2. Operating and Net Margins
  3. Wholesale Global Market Report 2021: COVID-19 Impact and Recovery to 2030
  4. Wholesale Trade in the US - Number of Businesses | IBISWorld

All sources checked May 23, 2022.

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This publication is provided for general information purposes and does not constitute legal, tax or other professional advice from Wise Payments Limited or its subsidiaries and its affiliates, and it is not intended as a substitute for obtaining advice from a financial advisor or any other professional.

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