Sourcing your wedding vendors can be a daunting and time-consuming process. For many couples they will have no idea where to start, what questions to ask and what to look for in terms of quality, when trying to find the right professionals to help make their wedding day a success. Hopefully below are some steps you can take to help source your wedding vendors and ensure you have a stress free experience on the build up and on the day of your wedding.
Before you start looking for vendors, it’s important to have a clear idea of how much you can afford to spend on each aspect of your wedding. This will help you narrow down your options on vendors who fit within your budget.
There is no point working with (or even viewing) a venue that costs £30k to hire when your budget is only £20K, or working with a wedding cake designer who charges 4 figures minimum for their cakes when your budget is only 3 figures.
I cannot emphasise this enough – DO YOUR RESEARCH. Don’t just work with the first vendor you come across. There are multiple online and printed resources available to you, such as wedding directories, social media, and wedding blogs etc. These will all help you to find vendors in your area. Check out the many bridal magazines that are out there. Ask friends and family members for recommendations, especially if they have recently got married or attended a wedding. Attend wedding fairs and open houses to meet vendors in person.
Remember, you are going to be spending a lot of money with these vendors and you want to make sure you are making the right decision. You wouldn’t just go an buy the first car that you came across – you would research which one fitted with your lifestyle and ideals before parting with thousands of pounds.
Once you’ve identified potential vendors, read reviews from past clients and check their references to ensure they have a good track record of delivering a high-quality service.
Make sure that they are able to deliver on the promised services.
You may also want to check that they have the required business insurance to cover any issues that may occur. They should have no issue in providing proof of their policy and in the case of your caterers and wedding cake providers they should also be able to provide proof of their Food Hygiene Rating that is received from their local environmental health authority.
Schedule consultations with each vendor to discuss your needs and expectations. This will help you to get a sense of their personality and communication style. This will also help you determine if they are a good fit for your wedding.
These consultations can be in person or over Zoom or the phone. These are not sales calls, but a chance for you to get to know their business and them as a person or as a team and to see if they align with your values and understand what you are trying to achieve for your wedding.
Once you’ve met with several vendors, compare their proposals in terms of services, price, and other important factors. Consider the value of what they’re offering and not just the cost.
Did they listen to what you wanted for your wedding? Did their values and ideals align with yours. Were they able to answer all your questions – with no waffling!!! Did they come across as passionate about their business, your wedding and the ideas you were putting across.
Once you’ve chosen your vendors, be sure to sign contracts that clearly outline their services, payment terms, and other important details. This will help ensure that everyone is on the same page and that there are no surprises on your wedding day.
Stay in contact with your vendors, and vice versa they should be staying in contact with you. Keep them informed of any changes so that there are no areas of confusion on the day of the wedding. If you are using a wedding planner then make sure they have the details of all the vendors you have sourced and that the vendors themselves have the contact details of the planner so they know who to contact on the day.
By taking these steps, you can find the right wedding vendors to help make your big day a success and remember – There is no such thing as a silly question. Ask, Ask, Ask.