Matchboard, a web-based start-up matching buyers and suppliers, launched in September. It has already attracted users ranging from large enterprise to small businesses. Most entrepreneurs will agree that finding the right supplier to fill a particular business need is often a time-consuming, costly, and sometimes haphazard process, no matter how large the company.
According to the Managing Director, Sharon Melamed, Matchboard solves a fundamental business problem: “So many people wish they could just type in exactly what they are looking for, and get connected to the best suited companies to speak to. We have turned that wish into a reality. Our matching engine enables a company to submit their purchasing need through a targeted questionnaire, and get matched with a shortlist of the best-fit suppliers to assist. The Matchboard supplier database is dynamically updated and rich in information including supplier capacity, capability, experience, locations, strengths and target markets.”
How does Matchboard connect buyers to suppliers?
As a means of finding suppliers, Matchboard offers a compelling alternative to search engines. It matches key words rather than business needs. Matchboard goes even further to vet the suppliers. This minimizes the risk of picking a dubious supplier, that in other search systems, could still be ranked near the top in an online search.
“Our research says that after the Internet, “asking around” is the most common method used to find suppliers. However, this can be a very hit-or-miss approach. Our new technology puts some science into sourcing, and makes a complex process simple,” explained Melamed.
For now, Matchboard is focusing on the sales, service and back office niche. Popular requests include outsourced telemarketing and customer service; consulting and training services; and technology such as CRM and contact centre systems.
The service is free to use for buyers, and is funded by suppliers looking for a cost-effective, faster and simpler lead generation channel than traditional marketing.
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