I'm working on a web app that allows users to quickly build a custom quote by searching/filtering our (large!) product database.
My problem is that we will often have multiple vendors offering exactly the same product. I'm not sure if I should design it so each vendor's offering gets its own row (resulting in lots of duplicate offerings in the main view), or if there's a good way to "de-dupe" the main list and nest vendor offerings within that master list item?
Amazon deals with this problem by displaying the vendor with the best price in the main list, but allowing you to click on the product and pick a different vendor if you so choose.
We're really trying to emphasize clarity and speed (in that order) in the way we deal with this. Are you aware of any design patterns that apply here, or notable solutions to this problem elsewhere on the web?