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The Truth About Getting the Best Price on Dental Supplies

Updated: Jul 22, 2022

Getting the Best Price on Dental Supplies
Getting the Best Price on Dental Supplies

When was the last time you negotiated prices with suppliers? Is your practice committed to purchasing from just one supplier? Or do you typically shop around every week looking for the best offers?

As a dental professional, going to the bargaining table and putting your negotiation skills to the test may not be your idea of fun - especially if you struggle to think of yourself as an entrepreneur.

But truth is, if you’re running a practice, you’re the owner of a dental business.

This means you have many business functions to oversee. And negotiating with suppliers is no different than managing your marketing, accounting, or customer service.

In this post, we’ll explain why supplier negotiations can benefit your practice a lot more than shopping around for the best prices on a weekly basis.

We will also guide you through 4 easy steps to drive down your dental supply expenses with successful negotiations.

Ultimately, we’ll explain how Invedent can help you find the best deals on supplies while also building positive business relationships with your suppliers.

Table of contents:

  1. Why does your dental practice need to negotiate the right deal with suppliers?

  2. 4 simple and easy tips for winning supplier negotiation

1. Why Does Your Dental Practice Need to Negotiate the Right Deal With Suppliers?

Finding the Best Deals on Dental Supplies
Finding the Best Deals on Dental Supplies

As they say, everything is negotiable.

In today’s competitive world, many people see negotiating as a zero-sum game. But this couldn’t be further from the truth. Working to achieve win-win outcomes for your contract is the hallmark of successful negotiations that satisfy both sides.

Supplier negotiations are therefore mutually beneficial.

You might be asking yourself, “Why should I negotiate with suppliers instead of just finding the cheapest deals when ordering?

Here’s the underrated truth about shopping around for the best prices: Buying at the lowest possible price is not always worth the effort.

While negotiating with your suppliers doesn't necessarily mean getting what you want at the lowest possible price, your practice can benefit from a well-managed supplier relationship in many ways.

Think - What makes a good supplier “good”? While price is important, there are many other key qualities to consider when selecting your suppliers, such as value, location, communication, delivery times, and payment terms.

If you shop around for the best prices from week to week, you risk ordering from a supplier that does not meet your needs (for example, a supplier that sets high freight costs unless you purchase a specific amount of items).

That’s why your dental practice should stick with one or a few suppliers rather than ordering from different suppliers based on the discounts and offers that are available.

To wrap it up, here are the main reasons why it is important for your practice to negotiate with suppliers:

● A mutually valuable relationship with suppliers can help you achieve long-term cost savings.

● As the relationship between both parties develops, your supplier gets to know more about your practice. This enables them to increase efficiency and easily resolve any issues that may arise.

● Good supplier relationships allow you to avail of discounts and other attractive deals.

● A well-managed relationship with suppliers results in increased trust and improved communication.

That being said, let’s explore some simple and effective tips for negotiation with suppliers.

2. 4 Simple and Easy Tips for Winning Supplier Negotiation

Dental Practice Owner Negotiating With Suppliers
Dental Practice Owner Negotiating With Suppliers

1. Understand how much stock you use on a yearly basis

In order for your practice to get the best price on supplies, it is important to understand how much stock you use per year.

Here is where effective dental stock management comes into play.

When you are using an automated dental stock management system, you get insights on how much stock you should be using so that you can know exactly what items you need to order and in what quantity.

Then, you can use all the data you collect to negotiate with your suppliers for the whole year.

Put simply, having access to relevant data enables you to predict stock levels for the coming year. This, in turn, helps you avoid sinking too much cash into unnecessary inventory, as you are able to negotiate only for the items you actually need.

2. Lock in a contract for a larger amount of items

Most of the time, suppliers offer you a discount for bulk orders.

This means that if you lock in a contract for a larger amount of items, they are likely to get you a better price. This is the easiest and most effective way to get cheaper prices on the items you need.

For this reason, it is extremely important that you understand how much stock your practice is using on a yearly basis (see tip no. 1).

When you know exactly what you need in a particular year and do not need to shop around fortnightly or monthly, you ca