If you’ve spent any time in the metal supply industry, you may have noticed three letters strung together: MOQ, or “minimum order quantity.”
It’s a phrase we use often. But what does MOQ mean in manufacturing? And how does Mead Metals’ MOQ policy benefit you?
Let’s explore why this purchasing feature exists, and how it can benefit you as a customer.
What Does MOQ Mean?
MOQ usually stands for the minimum amount of product (metal, in our case) a manufacturer will allow a customer to purchase in order to fulfill their order. Every single metal at Mead Metals has its own MOQ, which is listed on its individual product page.
For example, our minimum order quantity for brass is 5 to 7 pounds. This concept isn’t unique to metal suppliers and is found among wholesalers and providers of nearly all raw material.
Why do minimum order quantities exist?
MOQs protect wholesalers from running a net loss on sales, especially on lower-cost items where profit margins are slim. Every deal made with a wholesaler involves labor and other costs associated with sourcing, processing, selling, packaging, and shipping those goods. At a certain (lower) price point per unit, it becomes unprofitable or even detrimental to the wholesaler to sell below their MOQ.
MOQ also helps wholesalers move their inventory more quickly. It costs money to store goods, and sometimes those goods have specific (and expensive) care requirements to keep them in a sellable condition. The sooner wholesalers can do a full turnover of their inventory, the less they’re paying for storage and maintenance.
How do buyers benefit from minimum order quantity?
When you work with a metal material vendor who works with MOQs, you avoid the exorbitant fees that sometimes accompany smaller orders of specialty metals. We don’t refuse material orders on the basis of size. Instead, we’ve developed what we believe to be a fair and effective process for meeting the varied needs of our customers.
At Mead Metals, we do our best to keep our MOQ as low as possible so that we can serve low-volume specialty metals based on your project. By selling high-quality metals in customized order quantities, we’re able to better serve all of our customers.
1. MOQ eliminates overstock storage
When you need only a small quantity but are forced to place a larger order, what do you do with the surplus? Some businesses might not have the space or capabilities to store extra materials — but we know that’s not the case for all of our customers.
Buying in smaller quantities eliminates the stress of storing or dealing with overstock. Plus, storing materials improperly leaves them vulnerable to damage that could compromise their quality.
2. MOQ helps with cash flow
It’s not a secret that ordering smaller quantities might cost you more on a per-pound basis — but what about all that money tied up in aging inventory?
Inventory turns, JIT production demands, and LIFO/FIFO considerations help justify ordering only what’s needed for the job. Carrying costs vary by product, but inventory on your shelf could be costing you money in your pocket.
3. MOQ lowers shipping costs
With smaller quantities, customers can significantly lower shipping costs by using UPS instead of a trucking service. Take for instance our Cold Rolled 1008/1010 Steel, which you can purchase from Mead Metals in quantities around 30 to 60 pounds for a minimum lot charge. If you order 30 pounds of CRS, it can be shipped via UPS, saving you money on transport.
What is Mead Metals’ minimum order quantity policy?
We take pride in offering low quantities to our customers. Let’s look at how our MOQ policy works.
If you’re looking to purchase 4 pounds of brass, full hard, at 0.025 gauge, we can provide that quantity at those specifications and you would be charged at the current minimum lot charge (as if you had ordered somewhere between 5 and 7 pounds).
Every metal product we provide has its own MOQ, which is displayed on each metal’s product page. While we can (and will) support orders for quantities smaller than this, our minimum lot charges are often budget-friendly and can be easily found by contacting us. Additional variables do apply, and the final cost will depend on material thickness, width, and additional processing.
Get metal materials in low volumes with Mead MetalsBecause customers can source the exact amount of metal material that they need from our facility, the burden of dealing with, reselling, and/or inventorying surplus metal products does not fall onto our customers. We understand that some projects and requirements use just a small volume of certain metal types, and we are happy to provide our customers with exactly what they need.
If you find yourself in need of high-quality, low-volume specialty metals, and you’re having a difficult time finding a metal service center who will work with you to accommodate your request, consider working with Mead Metals. With us, you can avoid inflated fees and receive excellent customer service in the process.
As we like to say, whether you need three sheets of metal material or 3,000, you can source your high-quality, specialty metals from us.
Interested in working with us to fill a small- or large-volume order? Request a quick quote today.