I would always advocate marketing American made products whenever possible but the fact is, no matter where you go today, products from China have become a standard. Over the past Decade, China has gained a major place as a manufacturing center to the world. Because China has focused on International markets, they have developed the ability to produce products of a wide range at very competitive prices. These attributes have propelled them into a global front page source for importers. Given this vast resource, now even small, home-based Internet merchants can use China as a profitable outsource supplier. There are several recent developments that have made China a more desirable simpler, straightforward process for obtaining products than ever before:
• many trade barriers have been eased or removed sense China joined the World Trade Organization.
• shipping from China is now faster, cheaper, and more dependable.
• There are now, easer safer ways to make payments. Many manufacturers are now using merchant accounts and online payment solutions like Pay Pal.
• As competition increases for the U.S. market, Chinese manufacturers have been forced to bring products up to western standards.
English is becoming more common amongst Chinese business people making language less of an issue.
According to George Bailey, Sales Manager for Chinavasion.com, these combined circumstances set the stage for huge opportunities for small business people who sell on the Internet. Bailey Advises, “The key is finding reliable suppliers for your own e-business. It’s critical that you’re dealing with legitimate companies, so you don’t get burned.”
Finding Honest, reliable Manufacturers
There are many resources available that will help you locate and contact reliable suppliers, such as: catalogs, trade magazines, international trade fairs, and Business-to-Business (B2B) websites. Because many B2B sites allow anyone to advertise there, you need to ensure you’re only sourcing from companies that have been validated by the portal service. These vetted suppliers usually have an identifying mark or seal of authentication.
While there are many excellent vendors in China that will deliver quality goods, but beware for every legitimate vender there are at least five scammers, advertising popular branded merchandise like Sony, Apple iPods, etc. Be very cautious because even though these goods may be manufactured and freely distributed in China, their distribution in the United States are vigorously controlled by their parent companies. Any overseas supplier claiming they can provide you with these brand-name products is either selling knock-off, defective or gray-market goods. The former is against the law to resell; the latter won’t clear Customs – and may cause you legal troubles, as well. Name brand items are protected by U.S. patent and must be obtained from a licensed dealer.
A safer Wholesale Alternative for Small Businesses
A better way to go for small business resellers is to find an import wholesaler, like Chinavasion.com or GlobalSourcesDirect.com, which allows you to purchase goods in small, affordable quantities. It is even possible to have products drop shipped to your customers, just as you would with a domestic wholesaler.
It is true that wholesale prices are higher than factory-direct prices but the additional expense is justified by a number of factors:
• You’re not responsible for import taxes or harbor fees.
• You’re not responsible for guaranteeing that your goods meet Customs regulations which considerably reduces your liability.
• The wholesaler is responsible for handling quality control, so you don’t have to worry about inferior or illegal products. Also, if you find the products quality to below your expatiations, there is a better likelihood of working out a return agreement than you would working directly with a foreign manufacturer.
To determine where to look for an importer for your on-line business, you need to evaluate where your business is apt to go and how much responsibility you’re prepared to take on. It might be prudent to start off small to test the waters before making a big commitment.
Room for More
There are many opportunities in working with the Chinese market. Whether or not you are new or an experienced importer, now is a great time to take advantage of the many great benefits that sourcing from China offers. As George Bailey states, “Online sellers have barely begun to tap into the products that are available. There’s room for a huge explosion of start-ups and one-man businesses to make a major dent in their markets – just because they’ve found the sources to make it work.”
Options other than China
China is not the only source as a supplier. There are many good sources in Europe and Mexico that offer good products. No matter where you get your products from, the importation will be basically the same. If you find a source in Mexico, you may be able to go directly to the manufacture and pick up the product, just make sure you have the correct papers for passing customs. Which ever way you decide you are in for a great and challenging experience. Good luck.
Donald Yates, Former Director of Business and Leadership Development for Imperial Research, is now retired but continues to assist young people in engaging life through self discovery, Life course planning, intuitiveness and fulfillment. Learn how you can build a powerful organization of your own. See How To,
Run Your Car On WATER- click here Success Tips And Self Employment