Online Steel Suppliers

Choosing a trusted online steel supplier

Choosing the right online steel supplier directly affects the reputation and integrity of your business. Undoubtedly, trust is a major factor in this decision and it is essential to find an online supplier with the necessary expertise and experience, track record, and ability to reliably fulfil bulk orders.

Special Metal Alloys, a UK-based International Trading house with more than 35 years of experience, has been leading the online market trend as a trusted worldwide online steel supplier, specialising in nickel alloys, super alloys, titanium, special metals, and an extensive range of seamless and welded stainless steel tubes.

Contact us for a quote online, call +44 (0)161 278 2386 or email

We can offer professional services across all industries, but our focus is on the petrochemical; oil and gas; defence; medical; and nuclear industries, and metals used by specialists with exact requirements in high-performance instrumentation. Our expert staff have unrivalled technical and practical knowledge to support our customers with commercial, technical, and financial guidance in every corner of the world.

Engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) contractors from around the world have entrusted their specialist special metals and solutions to us for decades, receiving full support with export and import documentation from our logistics partners to ensure a nimble procurement and delivery process.

Buying steel online in the 21st century

Advances in technology have made it possible for contractors in every industry to find the most professional steel solutions for each project, and have a high amount of the highest quality specialist products delivered to their sites, without having to leave their offices.

According to Statista, almost 87% of B2B buyers purchase online and in the next year globally more than 2.14 billion people will buy products and services from businesses online because of the many benefits of online procurement for businesses.

What are the reasons for the exponential growth in eCommerce, especially in the steel industry? It is well worth our time to find out why trends are shifting and why so many people prefer to buy their large steel supplies online.

Processing services for bespoke solutions

A customer can seldom buy the exact tubular, sheet metal plate, bars, or solid product they require off-the-shelf. Each project is different and requires customisation to suit the particular needs.

Special Metal Alloys also offers a variety of value-added services, such as laser cutting, and tube processing for tailor-made solutions for each individual project. Our state-of-the-art laser cutting service ensures accurate cuts to size, drilling, slotting and bevelling.

Synergistic partnerships

 Finding the best combination of products, perfectly suited to an exclusive undertaking, in the right quantities, and delivered on time, does not happen in isolation. Your online steel supplier needs to work in tandem with several mills, service providers, and logistics companies to provide you with the full gamut of your specific requirements here.

Special Metal Alloys has developed unsurpassed contacts in the sphere of nickel alloys, and special metals, and has built solid partnerships with the finest mills all over the world.  This enables us to provide a complete choice of tailored steel solutions and reliable service to all industries, particularly for those operating in the fields of aerospace, nuclear engineering, chemical, petroleum, architectural, construction, and industries working with heat-treating materials.

Our partnerships with leading industry colleagues have created a synergy that allows contractors to tap into the best resources, expertise, and supply the highest quality metal alloy products to be found anywhere in the world.

Whatever your needs for steel products, look no further than Special Metal Alloys for expert advice and customer service, competitive prices, and the widest choice of specialist solutions.

Contact us for a quote online, call +44 (0)161 278 2386 or email


Find out more about metal products available online.

Not all metals are equal. 21st-century technology has made it possible to create new special metals, perfectly suited to a multitude of applications. We will now explore some of the metals and what they are used for.

What is steel?

By alloying iron with carbon and sometimes other minerals, steel is created. It is much stronger, fracture-resistant, durable, and versatile than the pure metal. Different types of steel products are used in civil construction, infrastructure, buildings, and tools. It is used to create tools, containers, vehicles, trains, ships, tanks, bicycles, machines, electrical appliances, surgical instruments, furniture, guns and other weapons, and munitions.

Steel products

  • Steel products are manufactured in light, medium and heavy profile sections, hot rolled sheet metal, coil and plate, cold rolled sheet metal and coils, galvanised sheet metal and coil, structural tube and round pipe, cladding, beams, columns, roofing products, design details and rails.
  • Tubes, round tubes called pipes, fittings, and flanges are some of the most common steel products. These include seamless and welded carbon, galvanised, stainless, and nickel alloy -tubes and -pipes that could be cold- or hot-rolled, drawn and redrawn.

What are the different types of steel?

Carbon steel.

Carbon steel, from low-carbon steel, medium-carbon steel and high-carbon steel, is a common alloy with varying quantities of carbon added according to its application.

  • Low carbon steel, also known as mild steel, is the most widely used type, is relatively soft and cheaper. It is tough, with high ductility, and can easily be machined and welded.
    Mild steel is frequently used in automobile body components, structural shapes, pipes, construction and bridge components, and food cans.
  • Medium-carbon steel is known for its strength, hardness, and toughness, making it useful in manufacturing railway tracks, machinery parts, and gears, and also in construction.
  • High-carbon steel, also known as tool steel, is commonly used to manufacture tools such as cutters, reamers, drill bits, saw blades, etc.

Alloy steel.

By adding more than one mineral such as molybdenum, manganese, nickel, chromium, vanadium, silicon, or boron in various combinations and ratios from 1% to 50%, alloy steel products are created to increase strength, hardness, wear resistance, corrosion resistance, flexibility, heat properties, aesthetic appearance, etc.

Alloy steel, in its various forms, is commonly used to create high-performance oval tubes, round tubes, heating and cooling elements, corrosion-resistant containers, and surgical instruments,

Stainless steel.

Initially known by the colloquial term inox, stainless steel is a special type of chromium-nickel-steel alloy which is renowned for its resistance to rust, chemical, intergranular, and galvanic corrosion.

Seamless and precision tubing and pipes are used in the aerospace, defence, nuclear energy, chemical processing and chromatography, medical, instrumentation, petrochemical, oil and gas, power generation, and shipbuilding industries.

Welded stainless steel tubing and pipes are used in the food and beverage, automotive, medical, instrumentation, desalination, heating and refrigeration, power generation, and design and construction industries.

In our everyday lives, we see it in kitchen appliances and accessories, furniture, plumbing, sewerage, and decorative design.

Stainless steel tubes and pipes are available in a range of different grades, diameters, sizes, and shapes. They are supplied in any quantities, straight or curved sections or in bar or coil form.

What are metal alloys?

A metal alloy is created by combining one or more metals and non-metallic elements, of various types and in different ratios, to obtain a special metal with certain properties suited to specific domestic and commercial applications.

Types of metal alloys

Stainless Steel Alloys

 Stainless steel is an alloy composed of iron and carbon, already mentioned under steel, but there are many different types and grades for different domestic and commercial applications. Different types of stainless steel are created by adding elements like chromium, vanadium, nickel, copper, aluminium, manganese, molybdenum, titanium, niobium, magnesium, sulphur, silicon, and nitrogen.

Stainless steel is valued for its use in kitchen appliances, cookware, and other metal cutlery. Its stunning finishes range from matte to shiny for various aesthetic appearances. It is incredibly durable and easy to clean and its anti-corrosive properties keep it in pristine condition for a long time.

Main types of stainless steel

The main types of stainless steel are austenitic, ferritic, duplex, and martensitic stainless steel.


It is the most widely used, offering exceptional resistance against corrosion, pitting, and chemicals, high ductility, and cryogenic and high-temperature strength properties. It usually contains chromium and nickel, with some grades also containing manganese, molybdenum, and other minerals.

It is particularly useful in harsh environments where resistance to corrosion, mechanical properties, and durability in high temperatures are important properties. Among its uses are pipelines, tubing in heat exchangers, power generation parts, and springs.


It contains less nickel, making it more efficient and cost-effective for certain applications. For specialist applications, some grades of ferritic stainless steel contain chromium, molybdenum, niobium, and titanium.

It is popular in domestic and commercial applications too, such as kitchenware, and for exhaust systems where performance is more important than aesthetic appeal.


It is one of the most recently created alloys, combining properties of both austenitic and ferritic stainless steels. It is used specifically where the application requires higher corrosion resistance, great strength-to-weight ratios, exceptional tensile strength and toughness, good formability, and weldability. Applications will include pipelines for offshore purposes, chemical and petrochemical applications, and power plants.


It is a specialist material used where precision and hardened edges are required. Typical applications include medical and surgical instruments, high-quality knives, scissors, and razors. Its exceptional strength-to-weight ratio makes it popular in the automotive industry for vehicle frames, door beams, columns, rocker panels, cross bars, and bumpers. It is also the metal of choice for valves, pumps and high-quality machinery.


Nickel Alloys

 Nickel alloys are arguably the most versatile and most commonly used special metal in almost every industry. Created through combinations of nickel with iron, copper, molybdenum, chromium, zinc, and aluminium. The five main groups are Ni (nickel) Ni–Cu (nickel-copper); Ni–Cr–Fe (nickel-chromium-iron); Ni–Cr–Mo (nickel-chromium- molybdenum); and Ni–Mo (nickel-molybdenum) with several specialist nickel alloys.

They are used where exceptional corrosion resistance and extreme temperature performance are required. Used particularly in marine piping systems, pressure valves, pump shafts, gas turbines, nuclear plants, and medical equipment, nickel alloys are manufactured into tubing, pipes, channels, hollow sections, angles, balls, bars, and billets.

Titanium alloys

Titanium is one of the toughest and most durable metals on earth, but on its own, it is incredibly expensive and with restricted usefulness. It is therefore alloyed in various combinations with metals and minerals such as aluminium, molybdenum, vanadium, niobium, zirconium, manganese, chromium, iron, tin, silicon, cobalt, nickel, copper, and tantalum to achieve the exact properties required in environments and applications where very high tensile strength, light weight-to-strength ratios, exceptional corrosion and chemical resistance, operation at extreme temperatures, and aesthetics are of primary importance.

Titanium alloys are widely used to create tubes and pipes for use in aircraft and spacecraft, military vehicles and armament, submarines, turbines, desalination plants, offshore pipelines, medical and surgical equipment and devices, prostheses, highly stressed components in expensive cars, premium sports equipment, top-end bicycles, jewellery, and electronic equipment.

Aluminium Alloys

 Aluminium is one of the most common lightweight metals used for a variety of purposes, but on its own, it is often not strong and durable enough for a lot of applications. By alloying aluminium with elements like copper, zinc, or iron, it is still light enough, but tensile strength, durability and tolerance to extreme temperatures are added.

Aluminium alloys are commonly used in mechanical engineering, aeronautical manufacturing, electronic equipment, sports equipment, furniture, and appliances.

Bronze Alloys

 Bronze, itself a copper alloy, is improved for speciality applications by adding other elements such as tin, silicon, aluminium, manganese, or phosphorus.

Bronze alloys are valued for their hardness, corrosion resistance, and aesthetic appearance. They are easily identified by the bronze colour, used in making musical instruments, automotive parts, hardware, coins, medals, swords, sculptures, and both functional and decorative nautical, domestic and commercial applications.

What are the advantages of metal alloys?

  • Alloys are generally superior to the base metal in the alloy.
  • Alloys are much more versatile than pure metals.
  • Alloys combine the best qualities of the constituent metals to adapt the suitability for specialist applications.
  • Alloys retain the desirable qualities of the constituent metals while discarding or minimising undesirable qualities.
  • Alloys are stronger than pure metals, with greater tensile, yield and compressive strength.
  • Alloys are more durable.
  • Most alloys are more resilient than the base metal.
  • Some alloys are harder and less prone to deformation.
  • Some alloys are more ductile and formable.
  • The melting point is lowered for casting, or melting, such as solder.
  • The melting point is increased for tempering or when higher resistance to temperatures is required.
  • Operational properties at extreme temperatures are improved.
  • Electrical and thermal conductivity can be raised or lowered to meet different demands.
  • Magnetic properties of metals can be altered according to specific requirements.
  • Bonding to other metals or minerals can be improved.
  • Alloys are more resistant to chemicals and corrosion.
  • Alloys provide greater protection from natural elements and physical threats.
  • Alloys are economical because of improved durability.
  • Alloying expensive metals makes them more accessible and affordable. (The opposite could also be true when special properties are required.)
  • Incredible aesthetic beauty can be created for decorating and design purposes, jewellery, sculpting, etc.
  • The chemical activity of metals can be changed for application in electronics, chemical plants, etc.


Who should buy steel and metal alloys online?

The short answer is, everybody!

Contractors in an extensive range of industries, requiring specialist application; large quantities; regular orders of the same grade and high-quality metal; reliable availability of bulk orders or top-up orders; and time limitations to find the best quality metal, expertise, and reliable service at the best price; cannot afford not to make use of this technology.

What are the benefits of buying your steel products online from Special Metal Alloys?

Many of the reasons that general consumers and other industries are rapidly shifting to solution-driven online marketplaces apply equally to the steel industry, with some added benefits.

The benefits include seamless and cost-effective procurement of specialist products, accessibility of real-time pricing and availability, convenience and time-saving, comparing value, services and high-quality metal, customised solutions, tracking and managing orders, access to expertise and professional advice, and full transparency of the company and services you are dealing with.

Seamless procurement of specialist steel and metal alloy products

Whether you require bulk orders of the same product or tailored solutions for a specific project involving a variety of bespoke subdivisions, processable sizes, and grades mild steel, your professional online steel and alloy metal supplier such as Special Metal Alloys, can put together the best result from appropriate mills anywhere in the world and help you manage the entire supply chain and manage import/export documentation.

Online metal suppliers can source specialist products from different manufacturers and combine them in a single order.

Our user-friendly interfaces are easy to navigate and compile a schedule of all your needs. Our advanced software integrates with the back-end systems and other partners to further streamline processes.

Cost-effectiveness, side-by-side comparisons, and real-time pricing

Rather than using outdated printed price lists, you can pinpoint exactly what is available at the store at that moment and at what price, making side-by-side comparisons between suppliers.

You can instantly establish lead and lag times, manufacturing or processing times, and delivery schedules. Negotiations, revisions, and making informed decisions are personal, quick and easy, no matter where you are.

All of this combines to make online steel purchases the most time- and cost-effective method of streamlining your orders and deliveries, allowing you to focus on the critical needs of your project.

One-stop solution for steel and metal alloy products and services

You can see the entire inventory of available products and when bespoke solutions are necessary, we can source those directly from the appropriate mill or specialist metal supplier.

We also provide professional laser cutting and tube processing services to customise your order.

Ensuring the availability of products ordered

Online suppliers like Special Metal Alloys do not have the restrictions of limited storage space and outdated inventories. Our inventories are updated instantly with every order and we can source a large variety of products from one of several mills and specialist suppliers around the world, ensuring that we can supply what we promise.

Saving Time

Special Metal Alloys’ user-friendly website allows customers and you to quickly and efficiently find exactly what you need. We back this up with personal customer service and expert advice.

There is no need to travel or go through the time-consuming process of locating and contacting various steel suppliers.

By creating an account with us, you can manage billing and shipping information, easily collating information and streamlining future orders.

Ability to Track and Manage Orders

We have integrated logistics systems that allow you to easily control your spending thresholds and track and manage orders online from a single platform. You will know exactly when your order has been processed and shipped and where it is at any given time.

You will instantly be able to identify delays and the reasons, making it possible to find solutions or adapt project management schedules, without frustrating telephone calls to follow up and unfulfilled promises to deliver them.

Ordering steel and metal alloys online ensures the right quality and price

We can source and supply exactly the quality of steel you require for a specific purpose. We supply a huge variety of products of various grades, sizes, shapes, and metal alloy types.

Contact us for the best steel and metal alloy solutions online, call +44 (0)161 278 2386 or email

29 Riding Fold Lane
United Kingdom

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