Why should I source goods on Verdant Trade?
Our goal is to make it easy for you to find suitable and ethical wholesale suppliers. We put all the information you need to make an informed decision in one place. You can throw away your old brochures, earmarked catalog pages, and post it notes. If you like a supplier or product, put it on you favorites list and revisit it at any time. You never have to write a check again or keep track of data on an excel sheet because you can order everything electronically through our online-system and store your vital history in the cloud.
However, it's important to understand, you are buying directly from one of our conscious suppliers, not from Verdant Trade. Each supplier has their own policies on payment forms, lead times, etc., which you can view on their storefront.
What does it cost me to use the Verdant Trade platform?
It's free for buyers.
How do I use your site to find products and suppliers?
We are thrilled to bring you one of the most flexible systems for browsing sustainable goods. As you would expect in any marketplace, you can browse by product category. You can narrow down your search for products in a specific U.S. region, state or metro area. By working with local suppliers you can both reduce shipping costs and environmental impact. You can search for products that support a particular cause or are manufactured by a minority, veteran or woman owned business. Once you find a product you like, you can easily see other products made by that supplier by going to the supplier's storefront.
What do I need to know about purchasing a product?
Products are typically sold in bulk. You can see the individual unit price of a product but you will be ordering by the minimum shipping unit, which is usually a case or pallet. Please read the "Ordering Info" tab on a product's page, to see how many individual units are in the minimum shipping unit. To purchase, select the purchase button and go through the ordering process. There are a few special features we offer to help you complete a wholesale trade. You will be given the option to attach your reseller certificate or other crucial paperwork during the order process to let the supplier know that you are eligible for wholesale pricing and elimination of sales tax. Your funds will not be transferred until the supplier approves the order.
By completing a purchase you are agreeing that you have read and agreed to the supplier's and Verdant Trade's terms, policies, pricing and conditions. You are agreeing that you are an authorized company representative and can make purchases on the company's behalf. You are agreeing to be of clear mind and in compliance with regulatory rules concerning trading.
In addition, you might want to visit the "Product Support" tab. This lists any complementary products you might consider ordering including merchandise displays, storage containers or insurance options.
I would like to get a sample before ordering in bulk. Can I do this?
Yes, you can request a sample from a supplier, using the "Request a Sample" button. Please visit the store's "Policies" tab to review their policy on giving samples. We encourage you to provide information about your business along with your reseller certificate so a supplier can quickly see if you are an eligible buyer.
If you are in a state that doesn't issue reseller certificates, please write a message to the supplier to let them know your situation.
What are my payment options?
You can choose to pay by credit card or with your bank account. It will take 1-2 business days to verify your bank account. You can enter both payment methods and can include multiple credit cards or bank accounts if you prefer. You can choose which method you want to use to pay for any particular order.
To set up your payment, go to the "Payment Sources" tab in your dashboard. Please note: you will be processing your payment through Stripe not Verdant Trade. Also keep in mind it may take up to 5 business days for the bank to process an ACH (bank account) payment so take that into account when thinking about your ordering timeframe. If you have the insufficient funds in your bank account or a similar problem, the seller gets charged $4. We are asking you to be a good neighbor and reimburse the seller, if a problem on your end costs them money. We are not able to enforce this, at this time, but it we get multiple complaints about irresponsible behavior it may be grounds for termination.
Can I attach a purchase order number to an order?
Yes, you will have the option to enter a purchase order number upon checkout.
How will my goods be shipped?
Upon checkout, you will have the choice to select from among several drop shipping options, including carriers such as; USPS, Fedex, and UPS. You can charge shipping to your own carrier accounts, which you can enter in the "Shipping Options" tab in your dashboard. Alternatively, you can pay for shipping upon purchase. You can also arrange alternate shipping such as hand delivery by the supplier by doing a customized proposal.
What if I want to a supplier to do corporate branding or another kind of custom option for us?
You can request this. Please message the supplier through the "Contact Supplier" button and tell them what you want. They can send you a custom bid called a "Proposal." You can send them a reply if you want something adjusted. Once you are happy with the proposal, you can press "Accept & Pay" to commence with payment.
How do I redeem a promotion or discount offered by a supplier?
Some suppliers may offer promotions, such as paying for shipping or throwing in a free product with a minimum order. If you are interested, please contact the supplier and tell them you are interested in redeeming the promotion. They must send you a special "Proposal" (see the question above) in order for you to redeem their promotion. You can accept this proposal and pay as you normally would.
How do you vet suppliers?
We leverage work done by other third party certifiers. There are more than 500 separate certifications that audit different aspects of a supply chain. We've gathered all that information in one place so you don't have to search for it. View the blue box in the middle of the page to see certifications held by that product. If you click on the certification name, a window will open up with more information.
In certain instances, we may invite a supplier to the site that does not hold a third party certification. It may be because there is no existing certification that covers that part of the supply chain. Or it may be because an emerging company is compliant with the practices of a certain certification but is waiting to go through the auditing process. Keep in mind that if a supplier does not have an official certification it typically means that no independent body has certified their claims. Our goal is to give you transparent information and leave it up to you to make a suitable decision.
What happens if I want to dispute a charge?
Disputes are largely resolved between you, the seller, your respective banks and Stripe payment processing. Please try to first resolve disputes directly with the seller. In terms of damaged or inaccurate shipments, we recommend you take a time stamped photo to aid in dispute resolution. If you believe fraud has taken place, please contact your bank to dispute fraudulent charges. Verdant Trade is unable to intervene in fund returns or disbursement. However, if one of the site's users is shown, through evidence submitted to us, to be conducting dishonest business practices, we have the option to suspend or terminate their account.
If you initiate a dispute about a bank account payment, the seller you are disputing is charged $15 by the payment processor. Therefore, please do your best to work out a problem with the seller before initiating a dispute with your bank. If it's shown that the dispute was invalid, we are asking that you reimburse the seller that charge. We are not able to automatically monitor this, at this time, but if we receive a lot of complaints from sellers about nuisance disputes then it may be grounds for termination from the site.
What do I need to return a product?
If you need a return, please send a message to the seller. They are responsible for administrating returns.
Please conduct ethical business.
As you are interacting in a community of buyers and suppliers, please be nice. If you are determined to be sending vulgar, obscene, harassing, defamatory, or abusive messages, you may be permanently barred from doing business on the site. If you violate someone's privacy or intellectual property rights you may also be removed from the site. If you falsely represent your company or it's ability to conduct business you may be barred from the site. Placing orders with suppliers you met on the site, outside of the platform may be considered fee avoidance (even though you don't pay a fee, the supplier does) and may lead to suspension or termination of your account.
Can I invite my current suppliers onto your site?
Yes! What a great way to automate your procurement! Better yet, you can earn money back from those suppliers. Visit the "My Referrals" tab on your dashboard. Send your customized link, via email or social media, to your suppliers or other colleagues. If they sign up, you receive 2% back from every purchase they make in the next 24 months. Keep in the mind, that Verdant Trade must approve suppliers to join the marketplace. To be approved, a supplier must have an existing sustainability or quality certification or make the case that their product has taken substantial strides to be environmentally and/or socially conscious.
What are the benefits of selling on Verdant Trade?
There are a lot of wonderful companies creating products with the specific aim of making the world a healthier, more humane, and more environmentally conscious place. We created Verdant Trade after seeing these companies face incredible barriers when trying to get their responsible products distributed in the market. With Verdant Trade you can find business buyers interested in products like yours without paying a single dime upfront. We want you to succeed in finding businesses buyers, because we want this planet to succeed.
Do I need to be approved to sell on Verdant Trade?
Yes. We are looking for companies and products that have taken measurable strides to reduce environmental impact and foster positive social conditions. Upon sign up you will be asked for a few simple pieces of information, including which third party certifications you hold and a description of why your products are a good fit for the site. You will receive an email if you are approved to sell on Verdant Trade, at which point you can begin setting up your shop.
Can I sell both wholesale (for resale) and retail products on the platform?
Yes with some restrictions. The platform is designed to enable trading of wholesale goods. We encourage (but do not require) buyers to attach their reseller certificate with each standard purchase. You will receive that certificate with the order request and it will be available for download. Sellers retain the ultimate responsibility for collecting information from buyers to ensure they are eligible for wholesale pricing and tax free status. The standard purchasing process does not collect sales tax.
If there is an item that requires the collection of sales tax, you can use the customized "Proposal" method to sell. Please select the "Contact for Pricing" box on the product page. This means that buyers cannot purchase this product without a customized proposal from you, the seller. You can manually add appropriate sales tax in your proposal.
What is the cost to sell on Verdant Trade?
There is no upfront cost to sell. It's completely free to market yourself on Verdant Trade. There is an 11.9% fee on transactions (shipping fees and tax are exempt). Our payment processor, Stripe issues payment processing fees of 2.9% + 30 cents on credit card transactions. ACH payments (bank account) are charged .08% with a $4.00 charge for failed payments. We've asked buyers to be prepared to reimburse you if ACH payments fail because they have insufficient funds or some similar problem on their end. However, this is a suggested good neighbor policy as we are unable to enforce reimbursements at this time. To get reimbursed, you will need to send them a customized invoice, through the proposal section. If you find you are having problems with particular sellers who are acting irresponsibly please inform us. You will need to set up an account through Stripe, a third party API, in order to receive payment. Here is more information from Stripe.
Can I choose which forms of payment I accept?
You can choose whether to accept credit cards or ACH (bank account) payments or both. The more flexibility you give buyers, the more likely they are to want to do business with you.
What if I want to customize an order or provide special promotions?
Verdant Trade has a fantastic feature called "Proposals" that allows you to send a customized bid to a buyer that has contacted you. This feature allows you to add promotions, discounts, customizations, alternate shipping, services and more. Buyers can accept and pay for a proposal directly on the platform. We give you flexibility to woo buyers with amazing offers.
What do I need to know about setting up a storefront?
The platform is designed to easily walk you through the process of setting up a storefront with products. Please do your best to fully fill out your profile, as a key part of responsibility is providing transparent information about your supply chain, ingredients, and social and environmental impact.
What do I need to know about offering samples to buyers or other similar policies?
You set your own storefront policies including when and how you provide samples. Be very clear about your policies on providing samples, giving refunds, lead time and other aspects of doing business with you. Whether or not you have abided by your own policies, is a key piece of information considered when reviewing disputes.
What are the ways I might receive an order?
Buyers can place orders per minimum shipping unit. The minimum shipping unit is often a case, but you can decide what it is. In our system, the minimum shipping unit must be drop ship-able. If your minimum unit is a pallet or something that requires a different kind of delivery mechanism, please select "Contact For Pricing" (although you can list your pricing in your product description if desired) as you will need to use our "Proposals" function to send a customized bid to the buyer. Customized proposals can include special pricing, alternative products, discounts, alternate shipping and more.
You will receive an order confirmation from any purchase, standard or customized, that you then must approve to have payment transferred.
What do I need to know about shipping goods?
You, as the seller, are responsible for fulfilling and shipping orders. Upon checkout, the buyer will have the choice to select from among several drop shipping options, including carriers such as; USPS, Fedex, and UPS. Shipping will automatically be charged to buyers' carrier accounts, if available. If buyers do not have an applicable carrier account, your carrier account will be charged. You can enter your carrier accounts in the "Shipping Carriers" tab in your dashboard. If neither you, as the seller, nor the buyer has a carrier account, the platform's accounts will be used and you will be sent payment for shipping along with the cost of goods, when you approve the order.
Drop shipping fees are determined using the shipping unit dimensions: the weight, and place of origin you enter in your dashboard. If this shipping is inaccurate, any shipping fees in excess of the label amount may be deducted from your account. Please include any handling fees in the price of your shipping unit.
Once you are ready to ship an item, press "Ship" on the order. This will generate a shipping label/s that you can print. It will also generate a tracking number that is automatically shared with the buyer. This tracking number provides valid proof of shipping for you and the buyer.
If your goods are unsuitable for delivery by drop shipping carriers, then please select the "Contact for Pricing" box on the product page. This means that buyers cannot purchase this product without a customized proposal from you, the seller. You can manually add shipping costs into the proposal. If you are doing a special promotion for a product that is normally available for drop shipping, such as free shipping or hand delivery to local buyers, then please put these terms in your policies and instruct buyers to message you for a customized proposal. You can create a customized proposal with alternate shipping arrangements.
Please ship promptly according to the lead times provided in your policies. If you run into delays, let buyers know. In absence of communication, buyers might believe their order will not be shipped and initiate a dispute. Do comply with applicable local and international shipping and trading regulations.
What if I get an order from a buyer that I am not able to fulfill?
Every order must be approved by you, the seller, before payment is transferred to your account. If you cannot fulfill an order, select "Cancel." You cannot cancel an order after you approve it. By approving an order you are agreeing that you have the capability to fulfill it. Refunds must be conducted outside the platform, so do not approve an order if you are doubtful you can fulfill it.
What do I need to know about resolving disputes?:
Disputes are largely resolved between you, the buyer, your respective banks and Stripe payment processing. Please review Stripe's policies on dispute resolution. You will be charged a $15 fee from Stripe if there is a chargeback or dispute issued against you on a credit card payment. They will reimburse you the $15 if a dispute is ruled in your favor.
Contesting disputes for ACH payments is bit more difficult. However, those disputes are very rare as bank accounts are pre-verified. Stripe cannot reimburse you the dispute fee for a bank account payment. We have asked buyers to be prepared to reimburse you those fees if they shown to be in error, which you can collect through the proposals function. However, this is a suggested good neighbor policy as Verdant Trade is unable to intervene in fund returns or disbursement. If you find a buyer is acting irresponsibly, please inform us. If one of the site's users is shown, through evidence submitted to us, to be conducting dishonest business practices, we have the option to suspend or terminate their account.
Please conduct ethical business.
As you are interacting in a community of buyers and suppliers, please be nice. If you are determined to be sending or posting vulgar, obscene, harassing, defamatory, abusive content, you may be permanently barred from doing business on the site. If you violate someone's privacy or intellectual property rights you may also be removed from the site. If you falsely represent your company, product specifications, or it's ability to conduct business you may be barred from the site. Placing orders with buyers you met on the site, outside of the platform may be considered fee avoidance and may lead to suspension or termination of your account. Misrepresenting the type of goods, in custom proposals, in order to avoid fees will also be considered fee avoidance and may be grounds for termination from the site.
In addition, Verdant Trade prohibits the trading of certain items. Without limitation, you may not offer, sell, list, link to, or post any items or related materials ("Prohibited Products") that:
Infringe any third-party intellectual property rights (including copyright, trademark, patent, and trade secrets) or other proprietary rights (including rights of publicity or privacy);
Constitute libel or slander or is otherwise defamatory;
Are counterfeited, illegal, stolen, fraudulent, or highly regulated;
Are internationally regulated;
Encourage or promote illegal activities;
Are dangerous, including hazardous materials, recalled items, and weapons;
Are racially, religiously or ethnically derogatory, or that promotes hatred, violence, racial or religious intolerance;
Are obscene and/or pornographic in nature;
Do not offer a product or service for sale, such as advertisements solely for the purpose of collecting user information.
Can I invite my current buyers onto your site?
Yes. What a great way to automate your entire wholesale ordering process! Better yet, you can earn money back when those buyers purchase your own products. Visit the "My Referrals" tab on your dashboard. Send your customized link, via email or social media, to your buyers or other colleagues. If they sign up, you receive 2% back from every purchase they make in the next 24 months.