Finding reliable suppliers in China is crucial to running a profitable retail business, with their services having an enormous effect on product quality, pricing and supply chain efficiency. 

In this blog post we’ll take an in-depth look into navigating China wholesale suppliers to locate those best suited to meet your business requirements; 

From understanding market trends and contract negotiations through to fruitful collaborations – let’s get going on our journey of discovering how best suppliers can enhance our businesses together!

1. The Chinese Wholesalers Website for Searching Suppliers

You can find many B2B platform to find suppliers, such as Alibaba. Wozo Sourcing. Made in China. DHgate. Global Sources. For your convenience, here are a few common ones:

  • Alibaba
  • Wozo Sourcing
  • Made in China and Global Sources
  • DHgate
  • AliExpress
  • Yiwugo
  • 1688

These wholesale websites have similar processes for finding suppliers, and there are no shortcuts. You can select the one that suits your needs. The following will be a detailed analysis of the Chinese wholesale suppliers available on each website.

Alibaba

Alibaba is a must for anyone who wants to purchase wholesale products from China Alibaba is a great place to find Chinese manufacturers, but you may be concerned about its safety due to some misunderstandings. Pay attention to these things.

I. The quality of verified suppliers is not guaranteed

Alibaba used to offer a gold supplier membership. Alibaba has a “Gold Supplier” status for almost everyone. Now it’s been replaced with Verified supplier. They are merely paid memberships. It’s not a good criterion to judge a supplier.Click to enlarge

II. It is not always the best to choose the first result in a search.

Alibaba’s search engine ranking is different than Google. Its high ranking is based on its expensive advertising rates. When you are searching for suppliers, it is not always the best supplier that appears at the top.

Wozo Sourcing

Wozo Sourcing is one of the leading sourcing agents in China. There are so many suppliers that you don’t have to choose from. They will provide you with a list of wholesale China suppliers and assist you in selecting a reliable supplier. They have a wealth of supplier resources in different product categories.

Tell them the type of product that you are looking for. They will then help you choose the best factories for your needs and budget.

They can also send you different samples for a better comparison. After weighing the price and quality, you can choose which is best. Their sourcing experts can help you get high-quality products at competitive prices, whether you are an experienced importer or not.

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Made In China & Global sources

Global Sources or Made in China may be better options if the sheer number of suppliers on Alibaba is driving you crazy. You won’t see as many suppliers here as you would on Alibaba, however, the chances of finding an honest supplier are higher. Why?

Both sites charge higher fees and have stricter auditing standards. In addition to screening some of the most reliable manufacturers in the market, the likelihood of finding a factory directly is higher on Made in China and Global Sources.

The same suppliers can be located on Alibaba, Made in China, and Global Sources. The MOQs or product categories that you find on these platforms may be the same.

The latter two sites are specialized in different Alibaba products. Global Sources & Made-in-China is the place to go if you are looking for machinery or electronics.

These two sites are more effective for finding suppliers. For instance, if your goal is to design a Bluetooth headphone according to your specifications, you can find them faster. The suppliers are also more professional.

AliExpress & DHgate

Both sites have a low MOQ. You can place a small order of a few hundred bucks if you are new to business.

The quality of a product that you order from the same supplier may be different than the first time. The suppliers of the two websites usually get the same product from different factories. They cannot guarantee consistency in quality.

Don’t let a bad experience make you doubt the safety of AliExpress and DHgate. Most AliExpress and sellers on DHgate are legitimate. To avoid any issues, you should keep in touch with the seller.

Suppliers who sell their own brand products are available. They will be more attentive to product quality. It’s difficult to differentiate yourself from your competitors, because they also buy these brands.

If you run a business or sell on Amazon, I would not recommend that you purchase anything from these sites. Before buying, if you’re new to Dhgate or Aliexpress, make sure you understand how they work.

Yiwugo

Yiwugo, as the name suggests, is a website that gathers wholesale suppliers from different Yiwu markets. It is actually a website that gathers wholesale China suppliers from various Yiwu markets. Is include Huangyuan Clothing Market, Yiwu International Trading City (ITC).

Online, you can send suppliers inquiries. You can also use it to find out information about suppliers, including their contact details, store addresses, and product categories.

1688

1688 is an online wholesale marketplace that caters exclusively to Chinese buyers. It’s only available in Chinese. Some people believe that all 1688 suppliers are factories. This is not the case.

You can actually find the same suppliers at 1688 as well as Alibaba. The website of 1688 has both trading companies and factories, similar to Alibaba. You will have to deal with many problems if you want to buy from 1688. It is not suitable for non-Chinese.

2. Visit China to Find Wholesale Suppliers

Some people might want to find suppliers in China themselves even though it could be a challenge. You’re more likely to find better quality products and lower prices from direct suppliers. Here are some tips for finding suppliers based on the following methods of sourcing:

  • Trade fairs
  • China wholesale markets
  • Industrial clusters

China Wholesale Markets

In China, there are many wholesale market that cater to different product categories. You can find China wholesale suppliers at each wholesale market, just like you would search for suppliers online.

Three major cities of commerce in China are Yiwu (also known as Guangzhou), Shenzhen, and Shenzhen. These cities are great for finding wholesale suppliers. Each wholesale market in the trade cities draws suppliers from surrounding industries.

Yiwu

Yiwu is home to the world’s biggest wholesale market with more than 70,000 stands. There are five districts with three to four floors each. The layout is standard and all areas are interconnected.

If you are looking to buy toys in China all of the suppliers will be gathered in one place. You can easily compare prices and the quality of different products.

Guangzhou

Come to Guangzhou if you are a trader in clothing. bags, luggage or watches. Guangzhou hosts China’s largest wholesale clothing and luggage market. Guangzhou has a large wholesale marketplace.

Shenzhen

Shenzhen is also a great place to visit if you are looking for wholesale electronic products from China. This magical place has a huge selection of electronic products. After the release of Apple’s new product, iWatch, Shenzhen was flooded with smartwatches that had similar features.

Huaqiangbei is the premier electronics hub of China. These different buildings house the electronic wholesale markets. Seg Square is the most popular electronic market.

You should be aware of several common things, regardless of the market you choose to enter:

  • You can’t use wire transfers to pay for most products in the market.
  • You should find an interpreter to assist you in communicating with suppliers.
  • You can arrange your shipment on time by contacting the forwarder well in advance. They can also help you with import issues.
  • You can also ignore the first three tips and find a local agent who will help you make the purchase at the wholesale market. Then, arrange for shipment to your country.

Trade Fairs

In China, there are two kinds of exhibits: comprehensive exhibitions and professional displays. Let’s talk about each of them.

The comprehensive exhibitions can be easily understood. Canton Fair has become one of China’s most famous exhibitions. The fair has a large variety of products.

Professional exhibitions also only show one product category. These fairs allow you to find a variety of suppliers for a single product category. If you are looking to purchase baby bottles, then it would be better to visit the CBME rather than Canton Fair.

Industrial Clusters

China is, of course, a country with a high labor intensity. Different regions also have their own advantages. products from China have their own industrial clusters. You can also locate China manufacturers within the industrial clusters. These companies only sell their products through trading firms.

Zhejiang, and Guangdong also rank as the top two industrial provinces of China. You should go to these two places if you are interested in importing from China. In Zhejiang, there are many different industrial clusters, including Yiwu, Shaoxing, Wenzhou, Guangzhou, Shenzhen, etc.

Yiwu is the largest wholesale center in the world. If you’re looking to buy leather goods, Guangzhou is the place to go.

For your convenience, we have listed below the clusters with their respective product categories:

Industry CategoryClusterSmall Commodities & GiftsYiwuDigital & Electronics ProductsShenzhenChildren’s ClothingZhili, Jimo, GuangdongHardwareYongkangBeauty & Personal careGuangzhouHome textilesTongxiang NantongkitchenwareTongxiang, ChaozhouHome DecorFoshanBulk Raw MaterialYuyao (Plastic), Dongguan (Coatings)TextileGuangzhou and ShaoxingPackagingCangnan, Guangzhou

3. China Wholesale Suppliers: 5 types

This chapter will discuss the different types of Chinese wholesalers and their exact roles in the supply chain. I will categorize all Chinese suppliers and introduce each one.

  • The Manufacturer
  • Trading Company
  • Sourcing company or agent
  • Dropshipper or small wholesaler
  • Wholesalers with overstocks

China Manufacturer

All kinds of market suppliers get their products from manufacturers. For you, a manufacturer is a seller who offers you products at cheapest price. In China, there are two kinds of manufacturers. Let me introduce each of them.

First are the manufacturers who do not have English-speaking salesmen. They sell their products to foreigners via trading companies and sourcing agencies. They are not on Alibaba or at trading fairs. The prices are also the best.

Second, those with their own English-speaking salesmen. They often participate in exhibitions both in China and overseas. You can also find them on Alibaba or by using Google search. They usually have their own online shops on Alibaba, and some even have their own websites.

The prices at the second one are higher than the first. They are lower than those offered by trading companies, but still. The MOQ of these factories are generally high. If you find a manufacturer like this on Alibaba, the MOQ that is expected of you may be above $4000-$5000.

Chinese Trading Company

Trading Companies can also be called middlemen and help importers obtain products from China. Alibaba has many trading companies. Alibaba may have self-proclaimed factories, but they are actually trading companies.

Trading companies usually work with a lot of factories. Finding a good one is therefore not difficult. You can also get a small MOQ at first (generally between $1000-$2000) due to the long-term cooperation between trading companies and factories.

Sourcing company or agent

Sourcers/companies concentrate on sourcing service instead of selling their products. Trading companies are less flexible than sourcing agents.

Many Amazon sellers choose to use a sourcing agency that will act as their representative in China.

Just tell them what you need. You can then enjoy complete import services, including finding suppliers and arranging shipping.

A sourcing agent can be the best choice for anyone who wants to source products from China. If you are looking to buy three different products, for example, you’ll need to search for suppliers of each one. You will also need to compare five different suppliers for each product in order to find the best deal.

Imagine how many suppliers there are if you require dozens or even hundreds of different products.

Many experienced Amazon sellers choose to use sourcing agents. We have, for example, a Czech client. He began with a few hundred thousand dollars, and he has now spent over four million dollars on products. After a long-term partnership, he trusted us to maintain his supply chain and, in the meantime, he focused on marketing the products.

Hire an Agent for Sourcing in China

Dropshipper or small wholesaler

Small Wholesalers can be found on DHgate and AliExpress. MOQ is usually small on these platforms, but there are dozens of options.

Dropshipping China suppliers deliver the products directly to customers. You never have to see or touch the product. Dropshippers and wholesalers buy products from different factories. You can’t guarantee the quality of your product due to these two factors.

If your customers are looking for high-quality products, then I would not recommend that you find dropshippers or small wholesalers. You can certainly test the market in this manner when you first start your online business, but it is not a solution for long-term.

Wholesalers with overstocks

Overstocks come in two forms. Overstocks can be from wholesalers and manufacturers. Other products may have minor defects but can still be used. Wholesalers are usually forced to reduce the price of these products in order to clear them.

Some markets are specialized in selling surplus items in China. You can get a pair jeans or a toothbrush at these overstock markets for less than $1. You can then sell them on the local market in your country.

Guangzhou, and Yiwu are the two biggest overstock markets. Go to Guangzhou if you are looking to purchase overstock clothing. If you’re interested in daily consumer goods then visit Yiwu. Yiwu is home to two overstock markets: Wuai, and Jinfuyuan.

Be aware: Some products will have trademarks, such as Nike or Adidas. Private labels. You should avoid buying these products, or have your suppliers remove their logos for you. The Customs clearance is not always easy.

4. Select China Wholesale Suppliers according to your Business

Each business has its own unique requirements. The type of supplier you choose will also depend on the uniqueness of your business and the timescales.

I have classified importers into five different categories. You will receive practical advice on each category. Then, analyze your business model and read the instructions that correspond to it.

  • Profitable sellers on eBay, Shopify and Wish (multiple SKUs)
  • Amazon Sellers
  • Importers that specialize in certain products such as AUTO PARTS
  • Importers that want to create a product using their own ideas
  • Importers who plan to open local supermarket chains

Sellers of eBay, Shopify and Wish

You should store as much inventory as you can when selling on Ebay Shopify or Wish.

Big sellers are able to easily buy and maintain a large stock of products. Small or medium sellers, however, do not place large orders, as they are testing the waters to see how the product will perform on the market.

To test the market, each product only needs a small inventory. You can then purchase the goods that received a positive response in a larger quantity after the test period.

In this case, DHgate or Aliexpress is the best place to start for small and medium sellers.

Amazon Sellers

Are you an Amazon Seller? Today you will leave with a ton of useful and practical tips that can boost your business. I’ve served over 1,500 Amazon Sellers and have lots of advice to offer.

Amazon’s marketing strategy is fundamentally different from those of the other three ecommerce platforms. Amazon wants to give users the best possible experience, both in terms of products and customer service. The mantra for success is:

Good product + Right marketing strategy = Good Ranking

For Amazon sellers, having a quality product and a reliable supply chain is important for the beginning of your business. I’ve met young clients who have sold only one or even two products on Amazon, and they have already earned their bucket of gold.

You should be aware that many China suppliers will offer you a high MOQ at first if you purchase from Alibaba. This can even reach $2000. Don’t give up. Try to talk with the suppliers instead. There is usually some room for negotiation, even if you get a 20% price increase.

You shouldn’t worry about high prices if you are satisfied with your supplier and product quality. As soon as the volume of sales for your listing becomes stable, you may increase your minimum order quantity (MOQ) to reduce your unit cost and boost your profit.

Importers that specialize in certain products such as AUTO PARTS

To evaluate the quality of certain products, such as auto parts, it is important to know about various technical parameters and materials.

You should look for suppliers who have a lot of experience in this product category. You can search for suppliers online or hire a sourcing agency. Both options come with their own advantages and disadvantages. Both options have pros and cons. You need to weigh both options and choose the one that is most suitable.

You can also let suppliers source related products on your behalf, particularly if you have many product lines. You can then take advantage of their experience and resources as suppliers to save time.

A sourcing agent can also be hired directly. You should also look for a sourcing agent who is very experienced and professional in this field. It is not enough to find a sourcing agency that specializes in daily consumer products. They tend to be slower and find less satisfactory suppliers.

Importers that want to create a product using their own ideas

It is not enough to print a logo on the product or replace the materials. I’m talking about product innovation in terms of performance and appearance.

You can find manufacturers in China if you are looking to design and manufacture a product. Manufacturers will give you lots of advice about product design, and they will also assist you in developing the product for the lowest price.

You can hire a sourcing agent if you cannot find the manufacturer that you want. We once helped Osmay develop a baby bottle with an automatic stirrer under the brand name ” Babbley”.

The agents will search for the best manufacturer in China according to your design specifications and budget. It’s surprising that agents can locate suppliers you won’t find at fairs or on Alibaba.

They can also take you personally to the factory and help you negotiate directly with the manufacturer. You can even visit the showrooms of the newest products. They can act as a translator, negotiator and supervisor to make sure that your needs are met.

Of course, you can also find suppliers at some of China’s largest fairs. To find these suppliers, you need to visit China every year at a certain time and attend the fairs.

Importers who plan to open local supermarket chains

Importers that open local supermarket chains need to purchase tens or hundreds of thousands of items. Some of the products can be purchased from their home countries but most are from China. Importers with little or no experience in China worry about finding the best suppliers.

It is a very daunting task. Outsourcing is the best option. Most large retailers, such as Walmart, Costco and Carrefour do not purchase their products directly from China but instead buy them through trading or sourcing firms.

5. Five tips to verify reliable China wholesale suppliers

What if I paid $100 for a new iPhone X? It’s a scam. You can identify anything that does not conform to market logic.

Most Chinese suppliers now do legitimate business. You should be looking at whether the supplier is worth long-term collaboration. Here are some tips on how to find a reliable supplier.

  • Quality and price in balance
  • Expertise of the salesperson
  • Communication efficiency
  • You can also Contact Us
  • Background of the Supplier

Quality and price in balance

There will always be cheap products available on the market. You won’t buy products that are 15 percent cheaper than the lowest prices in the industry. You get what you paid for. Your budget should be adjusted to ensure product quality.

A seller on Amazon sent us a request for surveillance cameras a while back. We offered him three options. He thought the price was too high, so he found another supplier who offered him $1.85 less than ours.

We received an email 3 months later from him stating that he purchased 1000 surveillance cameras but only received 927. Even worse, some of the products were defective. He asked for our advice. I want to tell you to not try to save little and lose a lot.

Salesman’s expertise

I believe that a salesperson who is qualified should have a good understanding of the products they are selling. He should have some knowledge of the products he is selling, including the pros and cons, costs and certificates needed for import and/or export.

No matter if you are at a fair or on Alibaba, the salesman that is assigned to your account by the supplier will be random. If you prove that you’re a large buyer right from the start, the supplier will assign you a salesman with a lot of experience.

You can request a more professional and better salesman if you find it difficult to communicate.

Communication efficiency

Effective communication is essential because time is money. Communication is key to resolving most problems and making the process run smoothly.

Emails are the main communication tool in international business. A large time difference can cause responses to be delayed. This problem can be solved by using a chat tool. Some Chinese suppliers use Whatsapp and Skype but may not be able to check their messages in time. Others don’t even use these tools.

Installing a Chinese application like WeChat on your smartphone is my recommendation. In Europe and America not everyone uses Facebook for communication, but everyone in China uses WeChat. You can contact them at any time of the day or night.

It is a good idea to use a similar phrase

A responsible supplier will treat all orders equally. He will be positive about all orders, no matter how big or small they are. This is because he wants a long-term relationship with you.

A supplier’s attitude to these problems will also reflect their level of responsibility. A good supplier is aware of the win-win principle and will take responsibility for any mistakes. He may even lose money because of unexpected problems, but will not allow you to suffer unreasonable losses.

When customizing or purchasing products with existing brands from China, there are certain to be challenges and obstacles. This is especially true during the production process.

The factory might print your logo incorrectly or make changes that do not meet your specifications. It is for this reason that choosing a reliable supplier is so important.

Background of the Supplier

You should thoroughly check your suppliers before placing an order. This includes checking their references and requesting samples. You can’t avoid all risks but you can minimize them.

You can ask a potential supplier on Alibaba if they accept Trade Assurance. If the supplier is happy to make you a promise, this means that they are confident in the product.

You can, for example, check the business licenses and certificates of products that were exported under the company’s name. This can show that the supplier has been selling the product for some time.

6. Four tactics to deal with your long-term China wholesale suppliers

You should always strive to create the best conditions possible for your business. In this article, I’ll share some tips that I have learned from years of dealing with suppliers .

Ask for better payment terms

Cash flow is important for all importers. This is especially true for businesses that are based on e-commerce, like Amazon and Shopify.

Amazon requires that you pay the full amount when you place your order. The shipping is estimated to take between 1-1.5 months while the products are expected to be sold out within 2 months. Amazon will then release the funds (assuming 30 days). Your return on investment should take no more than 4 months if everything goes according to plan. Your business’s growth will be limited if you borrow money from a bank, or if no one invests in your company.

You can also negotiate longer payment terms with your suppliers to improve your cash flow. It’s difficult to gain their support at first. You can ask for a longer term of payment from your supplier if you’ve reordered a product more than 3 times.

Our company, for example, sources goods from a European company. After six months of successful cooperation, we have built trust between us. They don’t have to pay a deposit anymore, but they only need to pay for the order before the containers arrive in the Hamburg seaport.

There are usually three different types of payment terms.

  • Pay 70% of balance before shipment via wire transfer (Pay 30% before production and pay 30% before shipment).
  • Payment by wire transfer (Pay 30% before production and 70% before goods arrive in your port)
  • LC and OA

Before shipment: 30% by wire transfer

The supplier will ask you to make a 30% down payment when placing your order, and the remaining balance is due before shipping. China wholesale suppliers then arrange for shipping to your country. This payment term is used by most suppliers, but it won’t improve your cash flow.

Wire transfer 30% 70% (Before arrival at the port)

You will also need to pay 30% as a deposit, and 70% of the balance before your shipment reaches your port. You then take the Bill of Lading from the supplier to pick up the goods at the port. You can win of shipping time if your goods are shipped to the West Coast of the United States.

LC

L/C, in short, is the payment promise issued by the bank based on the requirements of the importer. L/C is a form of financing guarantee because the importer guarantees to pay the supplier in the future.

OA is a rare payment method. In this case, the supplier is paid after the product has arrived. The creditworthiness of importers is very important, as well as the capital flow of suppliers. Wal-Mart uses OA a lot.

This gives importers an alternative to wire transfers 30% 70% (Before they arrive at the port).

When the exchange rate fluctuates a lot, negotiate with your supplier.

The exchange rate is a dynamic data which changes in real time. Normaly, the exchange rate fluctuates between 5%-10% every half-year or year. If the fluctuations are not significant, you don’t have to worry because suppliers will not adjust their prices for minor exchange rate fluctuations.

If the exchange rate falls from 6.5 to 6,2, it won’t affect your prices much. If the rate drops a lot, and you have high-value goods, then you can ask the supplier to adjust the price. For example, one day the exchange rate was 6,9 and then dropped to 6.2. The supplier will adjust your price at this point.

Before sourcing any new items, ask your regular supplier.

hould also make the most of your resources. You can consult your old supplier when you need to purchase a new item. Let him do the shopping for you. This not only reduces the risk but also saves you time. He can also provide you with information on other suppliers who are reliable, which is very helpful.

When developing a new product, get suggestions from your suppliers

Ask your supplier about the latest products in the current quarter. Suppliers always improve their product in response to feedback from customers. Keep an eye out for trends and products that your competitors sell.

Customers of the supplier may, for instance, insist on the use of leather as the bottom of a diaper bag made of canvas. You may want to consider upgrading your products at this time.

In the fashion industry, you will earn more if you are the first to sell popular products. The information you receive from your suppliers will help you to develop new product ideas.

Finding the best product supplier requires effective communication, as well as a deep understanding. In reality, you may not be able to tell if a supplier will work well with you until after the fact. Wozo Sourcing is a great tool to help you with this.

We are the leading sourcing company for China. We have helped over 4000 clients in the past to find high-quality products. We have a database of suppliers who have been through strict Factory Audits, and have performed well with us on many occasions. We can help you quickly find the best supplier at the most competitive price.

We can also help you monitor the production process and supervise the factory so that goods are delivered at the agreed date. Control product quality. Arrange transportation.

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