In my position, I talk to many business owners who manufacturer, distribute, or otherwise sell equipment. And most of them are small enough that they really don’t have an in-house financing department. Meaning their B2B customers pay cash (or otherwise arrange their own equipment financing.)
Naturally, these companies would like to offer credit. So they look on the web for companies like mine that they can partner with in offering credit. So far, I’m likely not telling you anything new – I have discussed this before in The Lease Guy blog.
But here’s something interesting I have found out. Many of these places that businesses turn to in offering credit are nothing more than lead aggregators. In other words, you, as a small business, are looking to offer credit. You find a company who says “sure, we can offer your clients credit”. Everything seems fine, but in reality, this “credit company” turns out to be nothing more than a form that captures your customer’s name, and sells it to hundreds of credit companies.
So here you are, thinking you are doing your clients a favor by proving a means to get credit, when in fact, you are increasing their spam. And subjecting them to endless phone calls.
This is somewhat troubling, because typically, “lead aggregators” used to be more consumer-based (mortgages and car insurance and such). In fact, I even blogged about this a few years back. But now they have moved to preying on B2B businesses.
So here’s what you need to look for – the company you partner with in offering credit needs to be the company who does the actual lending. No middlemen. If you have a “get financing through company xyz” button on your website, then company xyz needs to be the one providing the funds. That’s how my company does it, and it’s how all honest equipment financing companies do it.