Sourcing products from China could be a bit of a problem when done by novices. It is always good to prepare yourself before tying up with any wholesale item suppliers from China. If you wish to do some sample sourcing, even then there are issues you have to face before establishing a successful business relationship with the Chinese suppliers. Here are some useful tips to avoid committing mistakes while trying to find sourcing agents.
- No Assumptions– Do not make assumptions while communicating with the vendors regarding product availability. Talk to them directly regarding the availability because sometimes they sell products that are not displayed online while at other times they do not have the products displayed on their website. Sometimes the vendor’s website is not updated and hence for sample sourcing, the best way is to talk to them and find out about the available products. Do ask questions regarding product availability.
- Do Not Judge Instantly– When it comes to vendors, you have to invest some amount of time before you can pass a judgment on them. Earlier Chinese would not understand much English which created a problem in terms of communicating with them. But now with increased business relations, they are quite capable of conversing or writing in English thus making communication easier which helps you to form a clear picture about the vendor. Do not have reservations against them.
- Trust Your Instinct– When you talk to a Chinese vendor regarding sample sourcing he may appear too amiable in the beginning. But that might be the effect of cultural differences. However, if you are feeling really eerie about a particular behavior, trust your instinct on that. There is probably something seriously wrong about the dealer.
- Being Specific Helps– Be very clear about the things you wish to buy and talk about those from day one. Direct all your queries towards those Chinese wholesale items. Also, when you are communicating through emails ensure that you customize each template according to your query. Chances are that if you are not clear about what you want, you will end up with inferior quality products.
- Wire Transfers– Majority of dealers will allow payment via PayPal. However, they do not disclose the fact until asked. Hence, make sure you ask them before making payment. It is wise to ask at the sampling stage so that confusions can be avoided later on. However, there is a difference between allow and prefer. The dealers always prefer T/T or Western Union transfer. If possible choose T/T particularly for smaller payments.
- Acquire Samples– Acquiring samples before striking a long-term deal with a supplier is important. Samples require investments but when they make through to the market post the evaluation it is worth it. The task might seem appalling but the reward is higher particularly for online stores. Acquiring samples for the best-selling products will be comparatively easier.
- Do Some Acting– Some amount of harmless pretension is good for your business. Refer to your business as we in your emails to make the suppliers understand the scale of your business which will profit you in the end. They take larger companies seriously.
- Manufacturers vs. Trading Companies– Learn to distinguish between manufacturers and trading companies. The ones that refer to themselves as “Import/Export Co” are usually traders and not manufacturers. The manufacturers are more eager on building a wholesome trade relationship while the trading companies have a pushy sales approach. Apart from these, there are the MOQ and price differences to be noticed. The trading companies may run out of stock anytime and the FOB prices are higher too.
- Be Cautious about Shipping Prices– You may end you paying more than you should if you are not cautious about the shipping prices. Remember to fix the shipping price during sample acquisition lest you have to pay an arbitrary amount later on.
Actually preparing a list of questions for your dealer is the ideal approach to finding a trustworthy Chinese dealer. Also, ask yourself a few questions like who did you like working with the most and which vendors were ready to speak about their products openly. Also, shipping the product is an issue which you should take seriously while shortlisting the vendors.