In case you missed it, LinkedIn is implementing a new feature to help freelancers and small businesses boost awareness of their services. The feature will enable them to add services to their profile, which are then searchable for general LinkedIn searches. The most exciting news is that this feature will only be available to small businesses and freelancers in the United States. (If you are interested in exploring these features the Inc. article includes instructions on how to apply the feature)

As a small business owner, I am excited about the prospect of utilizing another marketing tool, especially one designed for small businesses.

But as a business owner, I also know the value of choosing vendors with whom to work. In both my career working with businesses and as a business owner, I know that working with a vendor can be about saving money, but I also know we are working upon missions and general preferences. These missions and preferences can include wanting to invest more in your local community/local businesses, looking to work with vendors that share your green values, or wanting to have a way of limiting what products your employees can purchase in order to maximize your savings. I’ve even had clients say they prefer small businesses because the big businesses have been less receptive and responsive to suggestions and requests for help. These extra considerations can guide us toward more satisfying relationships.

That is why when we reach out to vendors, we not only ask them to bid on your most common purchases, but we also request them to respond to a series of questions that range from overall description of their business to if they process returns under $25. The responses then are presented to your during our recommendation meeting. While our recommendation is most heavily appraised on total savings, we understand that that may not be your only consideration with the cross comparison – leveling the playing field for all vendors, big or small.

It also helps build confidence if you are considering moving to another vendor, in two ways:

1.  You go in knowing more about what this vendor is about, beyond just their products and services. You can compare the questions and find the differences and maybe discover a bridge in a gap in service when compared to your current vendor.

2.  The factoids can be leveraged to easing the transition with your staff – especially if you have shared frustrations with a previous vendor.

Though to be completely transparent, the information provided is not secret – Silverback just provides you a full service of both the savings analysis and information on the vendor. Which saves you the time and hassle, leaving you only a decision of what direction to take your business. If you are ready to save time, hassle, and money, Silverback is ready to help.

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