SupplyBetter, founded by Matthew Du Pont and Robert Martinez in February 2013, aims to help buyers procure faster, cheaper, and easier, and to help 3D printing service suppliers by offering them the opportunity to quote the type of work that fits them best.
SupplyBetter announced today that they are making public a database of 100+ US 3D printing suppliers, with profiles and tags for what services they perform.
"This is our first public step towards becoming the best source for information on different 3D printing suppliers - we have over 250 suppliers in our database right now, and are growing every week. Many of the profiles are basic, but we'll be adding descriptions, machine information, reviews, pictures, and more. We've also been helping clients outside the US, and once we have those data sets finalized we'll roll out those additional countries as well." says Matthew Du Pont, the CEO of SupplyBetter.
How to use SupplyBetter's service? According to Matthew Du Pont,
For 3D printing service suppliers:
Register: Registering is very easy. Suppliers can send us an email directly letting us know they'd like to join our service. Once we've determined that they'll be a good fit, we'll work with them on their supplier profile and add them into our quoting system.
Quote: Suppliers will receive an RFQ from SupplyBetter when their company ranks high. Given the information supplied in that RFQ SupplyBetter will send suppliers these quotes in an email that conveys all the buyer information. From there the Supplier chooses whether or not to return a quote, at which point SupplyBetter pass their bid along to the customer.
For buyers - How to get a price for their design:
Users (buyers) get a price by submitting an RFQ through our website. Once we've reviewed their RFQ for correctness and determined their level of interest, we match them with the suppliers that will best be able to produce their design. Once the first quote has returned, the buyer can compare their quotes in the Order Summary page (accessible from their account). From there the buyer can choose to move forward with a quote or tell us to keep quoting.
How do you charge your commission?
Matthew: There are no fixed fees or plans - if you're not bidding on jobs, SupplyBetter is free. All charges are on a per-bid basis: if we send you an RFQ and you want to bid on it, we pass your bid onto the client, and you owe SupplyBetter 1% of your bid, win or lose. You'll have a good chance of winning since we don't ask many suppliers/quote to bid, and you'll get the contact information of the buyer even if you don't win the business. Future business with that client doesn't have to go through us, or incur any fees.
We like this system because it makes sure you only pay when you get valuable leads - if the lead isn't good enough to make a bid, you don't have to pay at all. Many of our competitors ask for a flat fee per month, and you have to pay that even if none of the leads were good.
How do you select the best quotes for the users?
Right now we use our database for a first pass to see who might be a fit for the process, project application, and speed that's best for the user, and then narrow that based on SupplyBetter's experience with those suppliers.
SupplyBetter is currently talking to their users to determine which country to release next, anyone who wants to voice their opinion can contact SupplyBetter here.
Posted in 3D Printing Services
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Lewis wrote at 1/15/2015 2:26:50 AM:
I concur with Michael. Matt, how could you ensure a buyer on SupplyBetter gets *optimum* quote for his part (assume quality and delivery time is flexible). I know a bit of machine learning, though I'm more into manufacturing. I believe just analyzing a part's CAD, you *can not* recommend who can offer the best value. Let me give you an example. I give you a STL for a model to be CNC manufactured. If it's a simple part you can use just 3-axis CNC, for bit complex 4-axis setup will be required, and for very complex part you need 5-axis setup. Cost of CNC machines could vary from $20k (like Tormach 3-axis) to over $500k (Okuma 5-axis). Depending one what machine a machinist prefers to make a part, you have no way to estimate the cost of making a part precisely.
Matt wrote at 7/17/2013 12:00:23 AM:
Hey Michael, this is Matt at SupplyBetter. We found that limiting the supplier set serves everyone best - if we ask 50 buyers per quote, those without autoquote APIs spend time RFQing, and 49 lose. That means after a few quotes most of them get frustrated with the platform and leave, and we've seen this effect on MFG.com and some other sourcing platforms. We don't want the best suppliers off the platform, since that hurts us and hurts buyers, so we make sure to pick carefully - if we only ask the top 10 'best fitting' suppliers for that order, we avoid drowning suppliers in RFQs but get a great set of choices for the buyer. Give us a try, and see if you're happy with the quality of results.
MichaelAtOz wrote at 7/16/2013 12:13:05 AM:
"You'll have a good chance of winning since we don't ask many suppliers/quote to bid" OK so buyers don't get the best service. Count me out.