Career Testing
Career Testing
Career Testing
CAREER ADVANCEMENT / JUL. 18, 2014
version 2, draft 2

How to Import Products from China

China, one of the globe’s fastest growing economies, has become a popular business destination for many entrepreneurs. The country offers a wide range of business opportunities for both start-up and established businesses. Due to the availability of cheap goods in China, the import business has become increasingly popular with many traders. You can make a decent profit importing anything from computers, televisions and lighting fixtures to clothes, beddings and kitchenware.    

If you want to begin importing goods from China, here are some things to keep in mind:

1. Get conversant with the trade laws and barriers

Just like any other country, China has different rules and regulations governing trade. It is therefore very important to understand these laws from the onset. For instance, you need to get familiar with the shipping terms for import. In addition, you need to get conversant with your supplier’s payment terms. To make things easier, it would be advisable to hire the services of a professional importing company that has a thorough understanding of these laws.

2. Find a product to import

With the numerous business opportunities available in China, choosing a product to import can be a frustrating decision. Avoid the temptation of imitating what everyone else is doing. Instead, take time to do some research. Look for products which have a high demand in your area, but are low in supply. This will enhance your chances of making profits from your business. In addition, be sure to select items that will be in demand constantly. Avoid products like winter clothes which are seasonal. Finally, it would be advisable to work with products which are small and light. Importing bulky items such as furniture or large machines will mean a significantly higher shipping fee. In return, this is likely to lower your profit margin.

3. Find a legitimate and trustworthy supplier

After deciding what you’d like to import, you need to find a reliable supplier. For any product you choose, there are many companies in China that can supply it. However, some of these companies manufacture products of low quality. Others are just scammers who would want to con you. It is therefore very important to verify that the supplier you are dealing with is legitimate. Fortunately, there are trusted marketplaces where you can identify reliable suppliers. This includes the China Yellow Pages and sites such as madeinchina.com and alibaba.com. However, take time to verify the suppliers listed before doing any business with them. You can also identify good suppliers by attending exhibitions and trade fairs in China.

4. Contract overseas trading companies

When importing goods from China, you will face challenges such as culture and language differences. It would therefore be advisable to hire the services of an overseas trading company that has experience in conducting business in China. Since they are familiar with the culture and language, this company can negotiate with suppliers on your behalf. However, this is likely to raise the cost of your imports.    

Importing goods from china might be daunting but applying the tips mentioned above will make your life easier and ensure business success.

Image: Andy Wong/Associated Pres

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