For many manufacturing, fabrication and construction needs, few materials can beat the unique combination of reasonable cost, high strength, and superior durability offered by steel.
If your business depends on large quantities of steel stock and related products, it is often best to find a local supplier that has a diverse selection of steel products and understands the unique challenges faced by your business, rather than a distant supplier that cares only about its sales volume.
By forming a long-lasting business relationship with a local supplier, you can expect better customer service, greater flexibility and better attention to the needs of your business.
Here are a few of the ways that a local steel supplier in the Houston area can help your business:
1) They Can Supply a Wide Variety of Readily-Available Materials
With distant steel suppliers, there are often large minimum orders, a narrow selection of products and an extensive amount of time required between placing the order and receiving the shipment, not to mention additional shipping costs. This can lead to project delays, higher costs and the need to store excess steel due to the minimum order requirements.
A local steel supplier can offer a much wider selection of products, in the quantities that you need, and you won’t wait for shipping or pay extra shipping costs when you pick the order up yourself. Many also offer free delivery for large orders. Here are just a few of the products you can expect to find at a local steel supplier:
- Angle iron
- Steel channel
- Steel bars and strips
- Steel plates
- Square and rectangular tubing
- Round and square bars
- Hex bars
- Standard and wide I-beams
- Steel tees
- Sheet steel
- Steel floor plates
- Steel grating
- Expanded metal
- Pipe fittings and flanges
Some steel suppliers offer other metals, including aluminum, copper or zinc, as well as related supplies, such as welding rods, welding wire, and fasteners. Most materials are available on demand, and can be cut to length for a small fee, or for free, depending on the supplier and the size of the order.
2) They Can Be More Cost-Effective for Your Business
With large minimum orders and long-distance shipping requirements, any savings offered on the initial price of the materials from out-of-town suppliers may be negated by the extra shipping costs and the need to store larger amounts of steel, which may degrade over time when unused.
Local steel suppliers can often offer competitive pricing to distant steel suppliers, without the long wait times or extra shipping costs. They can also offer additional benefits, such as a wider selection of materials, individualized customer service, special deals on surplus or lower grade steels, and the ability to order special or custom products.
They can also work with your business to keep your projects on track by supplying the right products at the right times, minimizing delays and any related costs.
3) They Offer Greater Flexibility
Steel suppliers outside the Houston area can only offer limited shipping options, and may have a much narrower selection of products. Local suppliers can offer a wider selection of products by dealing with multiple manufacturers both local and national, and they can offer both in-store pickup and a range of delivery options, depending on the supplier. They can also offer a variety of other products that you may need to complete your projects, and may offer special orders or discounts.
This makes local steel suppliers in Houston much more flexible when it comes to fulfilling your business needs than distant suppliers could ever be, and because the supplier is part of the local community, you can expect better customer service.
4) They Often Offer Special Deals
Most out-of-town suppliers mainly focus on new steel products and rarely offer discounts. Local steel suppliers can often offer special discounts on products like less than prime or lower grade steels that have minor imperfections or use slightly lower-quality materials. They can also offer discounts on closeout products, and they often buy and sell surplus steel, which may have been sitting for a while or may be slightly used, but is still in great condition for many uses.
If you do not need prime steel, these discounted products can be a great way to save money on a project where the results do not need to be absolutely perfect.
5) They Offer Better Customer Service
A distant steel supplier simply cannot offer the same level of customer service that a local steel supplier in Houston can. By choosing a local steel supplier and forming a long-lasting business relationship, you can be sure that you receive the best possible prices, and that the products you require are in stock when you need them.
A local steel supplier can work with your company to make sure that all of your needs are met, and they will work hard to make sure you are satisfied since you are a part of the local community. They can also offer additional services, such as help loading your in-store purchases, quick delivery to your job site or business, or custom cutting and pipe-threading services.
Finally, if you have any issues or problems with the products you receive, it is much easier to resolve them with a local steel supplier than it would be with a distant supplier. Having to ship back defective or incorrect steel products to a distant supplier can be expensive, time-consuming and frustrating, and there will often be additional costs, such as return shipping or restocking fees. It also may take time to receive any refund or credit for the return, introducing further delays to your project. A local supplier eliminates this hassle, allowing you to get back to work faster.
These are just a few of the benefits that a steel supplier in the Houston area can offer to your business. By choosing a local supplier that has all the products you need for your business, and offers all the services you require, such as delivery and custom cutting, you can be sure that your projects will be completed on time, with quality materials at a reasonable cost.