There are several options when purchasing building and construction supplies online. Each option has both limitations and benefits. This short guide will talk you through the most common purchasing options for online building materials.
Traditional Builders Merchants
It is possible to order online from traditional builders’ merchants such as Travis Perkins and Toolstation. Your order is often delivered from your local branch, within a certain number of miles. While this means fast delivery, the availability of products is limited to what is in stock at your local branch. To get all the products you need for a project you may have to order from many different builders’ merchants.
- Fast local delivery.
- Knowledgeable team available.
- Variable pricing if account customer.
- Limited stock & range.
- Increased time locating all the products for a project.
- Localised deliveries.
Building Supplies Marketplaces
Marketplaces such as Go Banana and Snaffle Building Supplies provide you with instant access to a vast selection of products. These come from independent building supply brands and merchants nationwide. This allows you to order everything you need in a single transaction. Even if you place a single order on a marketplace, you’ll deal with each supplier directly. They organise delivery and customer service, which provides you with access to some of the most knowledgeable people in the industry - the manufacturers.
- Nationwide delivery.
- Place a single order to receive goods from many vendors.
- Direct contact with knowledgeable suppliers.
- Huge product range to compare and choose from.
- Multiple deliveries.
- Customer service sits with suppliers and may be less uniformed.
- Some items may cost more.
Building Supplies Retailers
Retailers such as B&Q & Wickes offer a large range of products with national delivery. For niche products, you’ll need to visit unique suppliers. The range of products found in building supplies retailers if often tailored to the DIY market. While they include trade products, you'll often not find the variety you would in a marketplace or traditional builders’ merchants. What you’ll get is a large selection of products, with fast nationwide shipping. These often cater to the DIY market and will stock fewer professional quality products.
- Large range of products.
- Cheap fast nationwide delivery.
- Top brands competitively priced.
- Some items may cost more.
- DIY materials are limited to vehicle lengths – 2.4m for all timber.
- Product range limited to warehouse capacitys & this may limit stock availability.
- It can lack the personal touch you'd find in smaller enterprises.
However, if you decide to buy building materials online, spend time researching the right products for your job. The correct high-quality tools and materials can save you time and money in the long run.