Need Supplies? Stock Up at Sam’s Club

From printer paper to coffee filters, Sam’s Club has everything the home-based business needs for everyday operations. Now, Wal-Mart Stores Inc.'s warehouse division is simplifying membership requirements for small businesses.

Under the new guidelines, the retail chain said small-business owners can obtain a Sam's Club business membership by providing a current business card, letterhead or other documents used to manage a business, instead of providing more extensive documentation, like permits or licenses.

Shoppers pay an annual fee to shop in Sam's Club warehouses to get significant discounts on purchases.

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The retailer has been trying to appeal to small-business owners and operators, which have taken a hit amid the economic downturn. For instance, it is comparing prices in its clubs with those of competitors to show small businesses how they could save money by shopping at Sam' Club.

The company believes the simpler membership guidelines should appeal to home-based businesses, independent direct sales professionals and women- and minority-owned small businesses.

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