Production of custom keyboard parts and accessories is not very cost-effective for designers to keep making a few of them upon request. To help them save costs and produce these designs only when their orders reach a Minimum Order Quantity (MOQ), they’ve created a structure known as Group Buying.
This guide will show you all you need to know about this process and how to go about it.
What is a Group Buy?
A Group Buy is simply when numerous customers, usually in a group, pre-order parts and accessories for their keyboards. This means that for a keyboard parts vendor or designer to get a manufacturer to produce made-to-order key parts, they must collect orders up to the manufacturer’s MOQ.
When they have enough orders, the vendor makes a one-time order with the manufacturer, who then produces the designs in bulk.
Should You Join a Group Buy?
This depends. Are you interested in the products or key parts available for pre-order?
Before you make a decision, you must know that joining Group Buys is quite risky, but then, the prospect of getting your desired custom-made parts may be worth all the risks.
However, it’s important to still know the risk you may encounter as you join a Group Buy. Often, joining a Group Buy means that you risk giving your money to a manufacturer probably halfway across the world who may not even deliver on his promise.
Your decision to join a Group Buy rests solely on how much you trust the Group Buy organizer. If you’re joining a Group Buy mainly to reduce the cost of payment, you may want to just go with the high price for a less risky venture.
However, if you choose to join a Group Buy, then be sure to ask as many questions as will satisfy your curiosity, including logistics, shipping, time details, and other things that plague your mind.
Group Buy Phases
Group Buys usually occur between two dates. The start date and end date. In between this period, certain things happen, known as the Group Buy phases.
This period is where vendors check to see if people have enough interest in their products to reach the MOQ before they initiate a Group Buy. This timeline is different for every Group Buy, and not all initiated Group Buys will get the desired MOQ.
Once the vendor initiates a Group Buy, pre-orders can start to roll in. In a normal setting, it lasts up to a month. Some keyboard accessories or keyboards may have a max amount that can be pre-ordered, while others have no limits.
Once the Group Buy stage is over, the designer reaches out to the manufacturer to begin production. The vendors can add extras to the final order if they wish to sell some of them after selling the pre-ordered items.
Here the manufacturing has been completed, and the producer ships it out to the vendor for inspection and then sales.
The vendor may sell off any remaining extras from the pre-order if he has any left. These extras are usually limited.
Round 2 (Optional)
If a set of key parts made a successful group buy, vendors might likely initiate extra rounds of group buys to cater to more orders.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What kind of delays happen, and how can that impact the Group Buy?
Usually, the fulfillment day is not specific. Anything can happen to move it further than intended. Quality control problems may occur, which means some products may have to be remade. If the workload is too much for the manufacturer, it may also cause a delay. Customs officials and procedures may also delay Group Buys fulfillment.
What if a Group Buy doesn’t complete?
In this case, the designers or vendors are left with a few options, the most common being to cancel the order or buy out the slots left for the MOQ to be completed. If the vendors choose the second option, the manufacture will proceed as usual. When the order is made, any products that didn’t have a pre-order will be sold as extras.
Can you buy after a Group Buy is closed or complete?
You may, if there are extras available. However, this isn’t quite certain since extras are usually very limited. Also, there may be last-minute buyers like you who also want to buy extras. Usually, vendors sell extras on a first-come, first-served basis, so you may not get any.
Can you change or cancel your order?
Group Buys are non-cancellable and non-refundable. You cannot change your order, and the non-cancellable rule only becomes void if a vendor cannot reach the MOQ.
When are you usually charged for Group Buys?
Group Buys are based on a pre-order basis, meaning you pay for your items before production.
Are Group Buys limited?
Group buys may or may not be limited depending on the vendor. Some vendors prefer to put a cap on the number of products you may order, while some may not.
How long do Group Buys usually take?
Group Buys are unpredictable and can last for quite a while. While the vendor may give you an estimated date, certain delays may crop up that cause the fulfillment of the order to be elongated.
Group Buys can be worth the risk if the item you’re looking to purchase is a necessity for you. It’s also necessary for you to ask as many questions as possible before you proceed to ensure that the pros outweigh the cons of joining any Group Buy.