Updated version: April 23, 2015
When you're looking for a detailed step by step explanation, including tips and tricks on how to import safely from China, then you're found the right guide. This article is a summary of all the important things to consider for your China trade practice, gathered through our years of experience in exporting electronics, gadgets and other types of products worldwide.
Whether you're a startup or mature business, there comes a point that you have to consider to consider to buy direct from China. When you've researched the prices offered by local suppliers compared to Chinese suppliers, you'll find that sourcing from the latter can be easily 50% cheaper. There are NO shortcuts when you want to order stuff direct from China at wholesale prices though. All steps starting from finding the right factory, manage financial risks, and performing quality checks to making sure you can actually import the goods into your own country needs to be looked after to succeed. While this sounds complicated, it will be all clear once you've read through all the info below. Aren't sure yet if you should import from China? Check the 5 trends below that suggests you should:
Find a China Factory or Trading Company
Your wholesale sourcing adventure starts with finding the right suppliers. This is the first, and probably also the most important step, as a good product will be the foundation of success. In case, you still have to decide what product to sell or what market to enter, see our list of product ideas. Roughly there are 3 ways to get started:
1. Browse Online
This is probably the easiest way to start finding wholesale suppliers. Simply grab your smart phone, tablet PC or notebook and search for your product. There are different websites where you could start. The most obvious one would be Google.Use the right keywords
To search for products always make sure to include the word "China". Google shows very localized results these days, and if you don't add this keyword, you're going to see many local suppliers in the search results. For example, if you're looking for sourcing electronic gadgets then type "China electronic gadgets".
Sometimes just adding "China" isn't enough to show you wholesalers. In that case also include "wholesale" in the search term. For example: "China wholesale electronic gadgets". Besides just adding these terms in the search term, it's key that you are specific in the product that you're looking for. "Electronic Gadgets" definitely isn't specific enough, unless you're still in an exploring phase.
2. Attend Trading Fairs
A trade fair, also known as a trade show or trading expo, is an event where companies exhibit the latest products. The advantage of fairs is that you can meet suppliers face to face. If the event is well known, exhibitors usually have to pay a significant sum of money. So you can safely assume, that the exhibitors are pretty reliable.
The other benefit of expos is that the latest products are shown, so you can get an heads up on what's hot the next coming months. In addition, you have the opportunity to see and test them yourself
What you have to make sure before you apply is to check whether the event is a B2B or B2C fair. Make 100% it's targeted to B2B customers as you want to find the lowest wholesale prices possible.
3. Visit China
The most adventurous way is to visit China yourself. Before you do, make sure you have already made some contacts with China factories by contacting them online or meeting them during local fairs. It also makes sense to attend fairs in China yourself. Events such as the Canton Fairs are massive, and you'll be able to meet hundreds of potential suppliers that offer the product that you're looking for.
Whatever your strategy is, don't make the mistakes that many beginners make.
NOTE: This buy from China guide is updated quarterly with the latest best practice how to import from China advice as well as compliance to regulation. We are not responsible for sudden changes in regulation. If you've questions or believe that some content is not up to date, send an email to: email@example.com
China Import Course
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Part 1: Why China?Learn why China represents such a massive opportunity for you.
Part 2: How To Find Suppliers In ChinaLearn how to find the true suppliers and avoid scammers.
Part 3: Tips On Dealing With SuppliersLearn about Chinese business culture and relationships, and avoid making costly mistakes.
Part 4: Shipping And Import TaxesWeigh up the options for shipping goods from China, and learn about possible tax problems.
Part 5: Profiting from ChinaHow to choose a profitable strategy in the global trade business, and how to profit without inventory.
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From The Desk Of Rose Li,- Author of "Import From China" e-Course
16th June 2015, Shenzhen, China