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Are Sheet Metal Parts a Commodity? A Dead-End Road?

Commodities are the raw essentials. They’re the basics, the unbranded, the indistinguishable.

A sheet metal part is a commodity. A cut, a bend, maybe a weld. That’s it.

Anyone can make these parts. All it takes is a CAD file and a machine. Location, operator, craftsmanship—it doesn’t matter. To the buyer, it’s all about price.

Here’s the hard truth: unless you slash operational costs to the bone, you’re playing a losing game in the long run.

Sure, maybe you’re doing fine now. Local connections, loyal customers, economies of scale—they’re keeping you afloat. But look around. The squeeze is coming. The margins are thinning.

So, what’s the way out? It’s not in the part itself. It’s in the service, the system, the solution. Extend your offering. Go beyond just sheet metal.

Use sheet metal in system supply. Offer it in a welded assembly. Or, the game-changer—self-service. Your clients, designing, ordering, and receiving parts with minimal human touch.

Yes, some clients need hand-holding with design files. They need you to draft, cut, and bend. But for how long? Soon, they’ll figure it out. They’ll turn to platforms, webshops, big players who can do it cheaper, faster.

So, redefine your value. Think service, not just parts. Embrace digitalization. Automate. Offer self-service.

This isn’t the end of the road. It’s a pivot. From commodity to indispensable. From basic to exceptional. From parts to possibilities.