FAQs

How do I get my social enterprise listed on the site?

Social enterprises can register for free to become a supplier on the Buy Social Directory. Only social enterprises that meet our criteria are eligible for a free listing. Follow the steps below to register your social enterprise.

  • Step 1 - Please check the directory first in case your organisation is already listed.
  • Step 2 - Click on the 'Register as a supplier' tab on the right hand side of the header menu.
  • Step 3 - Provide your username and email address and check you meet the criteria outlined on the first page of the registration form.
  • Step 4 - Continue to fill out all six sections of the form. The information you provide will help buyers find you, so think about the keywords buyers might search for and make sure you use these in the text fields to optimise your profile.
  • Step 5 - Once you've finished all six sections, click on the red 'Create new account' button at the bottom to submit.
  • Step 7 - Your registration form will be reviewed by a site manager who will check you meet the criteria and approve your registration.
  • Step 8 - You will receive an email to let you know your registration has been approved and providing you with a one-time log-in to access the site.
  • Step 9 - Use the one-time log-in to set your password.
  • Step 10 - Check all the information in your profile is correct and remember to keep it up to date to ensure that buyers can find you.

My social enterprise is already listed on the site, but I need to make updates and don't have the log-in details. How do I get this information?

Your log-in details will have been sent to the contact email address listed in your profile. You can contact this person directly using the 'Email supplier directly' link in your supplier profile and ask them to make any necessary changes. If you would like to change the contact email address listed in your profile because it is no longer active, please use the 'Contact us' button in the top right corner of the page to ask the site manager to reset this for you.

How do I make changes to my profile?

Once you have your username and password you can update your profile at any time and we recommend you do this regularly.

  • Click on the Log-in link in the top right of the page.
  • Use your username and password to log-in to the site (this will have been set using the one-time log-in when your account was approved)
  • Click on the 'My account' tab in the header menu.
  • Use the 'Edit' tab to edit your account details such as email address and password.
  • Use the 'Supplier profile' tab to change the public details in your supplier profile.

How do I change my password?

To change your password click on the login page and the ‘Request new password’ tab. You’ll be sent a link taking you back to the Directory allowing you to change your password and/or username. You’ll then be able to edit your profile. Your username is not your email address, if you've forgotton what your username is click on the 'Contact us' tab and we can send you the details. Once you get your username click on the 'Request new password' tab, enter your usernamne and you will then be emailed a link back to the Directory.  You can then change your password, username and profile.

How do I contact a social enterprise listed on the site?

Buyers can use the Buy Social Directory free of charge. Follow the steps below to find a social enterprise supplier.

Step 1 - Go to the 'Directory' tab in the header menu.

Step 2 - Use the main search box to search for social enterprises by keyword, location, sector or CPV code. You can also filter your search using the pre-defined sector and location categories running vertically down the right hand side of the directory. This will narrow your search to give you more specific results.

Step 3 - Click on the company name to find out more about the social enterprises in your search results.

Step 4 - All supplier profiles have contact details so you can phone or email them directly to find out more or ask for a quote. The social enterprises on this site are keen to work with you so please get in touch.

How do I know the organisations on this site are genuine social enterprises?

We have used Social Enterprise UK's membership criteria to ensure that all suppliers listed on this site fit our definition of a social enterprise. All suppliers must agree to the following criteria and their registration is checked by a site manager before they are approved for listing on the site.

  1. Our business has a clear social or environmental mission that is set out in its governing documents.
  2. We are an independent business and we earn more than half of our income through trading (or we are working towards this).
  3. We are controlled or owned in the interests of our social mission.
  4. We reinvest or give away at least half our profits or surpluses towards our social purpose.
  5. We are transparent about how we operate and the impact that we have.

If you have any concerns about a particular supplier, you can use the 'Flag as inappropriate' button on their profile page to let us know.

Do you charge buyers who find a social enterprise using the site?

The site is free to use for buyers and suppliers, and there is no charge for buyers who find social enterprises through us. Simply use the contact details in the supplier profile to get in touch with them directly.

How do I remove my profile from the directory?

If you would like to remove your profile from the directory, please follow these steps:

  1. Login and go to 'Edit'.
  2. Scroll to the bottom of the form and click 'Cancel account'.
  3. To confirm, click 'Cancel'.
  4. An email will now be sent to the registered email address confirming that the account should be cancelled, follow the link within the email to confirm account cancellation.

What are the accreditations used on the site? 

Current accreditations on the site are from Social Enterprise UK and Social Enterprise West Midlands. Further information on the criteria SEUK members must conform to can be found here.  Social Enterprise West Midlands criteria are very similar and state that members must be “A legally incorporated non-profit distributing business with a declared social or environmental purpose earning at least 50% of turnover through trading activity OR an organisation working towards fulfilling this definition within 12 months.”

What are the sector codes used and why can’t I add more? 

The sector codes have been created using CPV codes. These are an internationally recognised procurement classification used widely across the public sector. As such, they can’t be added to and can be slightly awkward in terms of classifying your business so the best thing to do is pick multiple categories (if possible) or go with the broadest term you can. You can search the full list here

The codes are only part of the way in which you’ll be found by buyers – having an updated profile full of keywords is equally effective in terms of helping buyers find your products and services.

Similarly, for buyers the codes are just one way in which you can find potential suppliers - key word searches will be equally effective.