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Portals

The use of portals for purchasing goods and services can be particularly attractive to small business. In some cases these portals have been assembled to enable heavier discounts to be applied to goods, as a result of pooling the leverage of a number of customers. Such portals are commonly organised by trade groups, associations, trade magazines or commercial distribution organisations.

Some examples: for professional services 4C associates , for agriculture Global Farmers, for office equipment Euroffice, or for gas & electricity: eEnergy.

You can locate portals relevant to your business by using Yahoo or Google, search on "portal" and "your interest" For example: truck portal, machine tool portal etc.

There are also specialist purchasing websites that seek to match buyer and supplier, and facilitate online transactions. Useful for more industrial scale purchasing, or more complex deals. Check out: Buy and Supply.

At the other end of the purchasing spectrum, are the auctions. Trade auctions are well known as a source of cheap equipment. Click here for your favorite eBay itemsAlthough aimed largely at the consumer, you can find some useful second hand equipment: copiers, computers, etc at online auction sites such as:eBay

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