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Buying on Alibaba Guide: Price Negotiation, Payment, & Shipping

Updated in May, 2018 with up to date information for buying from Alibaba in 2018. 

Alibaba is the place to go when looking for Suppliers to buy private label products in China from. Using Alibaba, on the surface, seems relatively straight forward. But how do you find reliable suppliers, negotiate with them, and get your products shipped? In this article we’ll cover all of these things.

In this article we will not cover how to find great products to import from China.

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October 2017 Events in China – Canton Fair, Networking, Conferences, & More

If you follow the podcast, you know that my family recently decided to move to China for a few months, both for business, travel, and in the hopes of our daughter (and me!) picking up better Mandarin. Our timing though also coincides with many people making their way over to China for the Canton Fair, Global Sources shows/conference, and other events in October. This post is a summary of events happening in China in October and also some brief itinerary guidance.

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How to Attend Trade Shows in China Like a Pro

April is Trade Show time in China! Both throughout mainland China and Hong Kong there are several big trade shows going on. April is a prime trade show time for buyers and importers as it gives buyers an opportunity to buy products and launch them before the Christmas holiday season.

I’m a HUGE fan of Trade Shows for two reasons. First, they’re great for meeting Suppliers not advertising on Alibaba. Second, they’re great for building relationships with Suppliers.

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Interview with Global Sources: How to Maximize Your Time at Trade Shows

If you’ve been looking for suppliers from China for any amount of time, you’ve probably run across Global Sources. Global Sources is one of  the most frequented supplier directories on the internet. When compared to Alibaba, Global Sources is often thought of as containing higher quality and more vetted suppliers. In addition to their supplier directory, Global Sources also has a number of magazines, trader shows, and conferences.

I’ll be attending the Global Sources Summit from April 17-19,

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Visiting China for Business: My Goals and Itinerary

This week I am visiting China for 10 days. Originally, me, my wife Chrissy, and our daughter Kayla were scheduled to go for about a month together to see Chrissy’s grandparents, but the pollution in Beijing was far too bad to travel with an 8-month old so the trip has been delayed until later this year. Long story short, I’m traveling alone on this trip.

My itinerary is a bit whirlwind on this trip and includes traveling to Shanghai ->

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The Three Golden Importing Regions of China

Here’s a tidbit you might not have known: China is a big country with a lot of people!

OK, you probably knew that. But even for the biggest China geography nerd, the numbers are still staggering. China has over 150 cities with 1 million people or more. So when researching a Supplier and trying to figure out where exactly your Supplier’s city is, it can be overwhelming. Where exactly is Hangzhou and what exactly is a Zheijang province?!

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Using Import Records to Find New Suppliers for Private Label Products

This past year, I’ve been using a new method to find new Suppliers – using public import records to find Suppliers. I’ve had extremely good success using this method to find high quality Suppliers with reasonable prices and who don’t actively solicit new clients.

What are public import records and how can you use these records to find new Suppliers? And why should you use this method opposed to other methods to find Suppliers?

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Part 1: Alibaba Unofficial Guide, Finding Suppliers

Alibaba, for better or worse, is the starting point (and often only point) for most individuals looking for products to import. There’s a temptation to equate Alibaba with other selling platforms we in the West are familiar with like eBay. But Alibaba is its own very unique monster and I’ll outline some basic tips and strategies for getting the most out of Alibaba.

Alibaba is Not Alibaba

Since their IPO, Alibaba has become more well known in the west.

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Choosing the Right Supplier to Private Label From

When you look for a Supplier in China, you should also be looking to build a long term relationship with them. If you build a long term relationship, you’re less likely to have problems, and more importantly, your Supplier will be more willing to find a solution to any problems. Too many new importers look only at price along with overstated promises and ignore all of the other details of a Supplier that can’t necessarily be found in a few emails back and forth.

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