China Market Entry 101

China Market Entry

How to Send Money to China

How to Send Money to China

Chao Cheng

China Market Expert Expert, Senior Partner at SinoStep
Author of Sell Online To China (Your Opportunity in China’s Booming Cross-border eCommerce Market) andHow to Build A Right Chinese Website That Works In China.

Cheng Chao has extensive expertise in China market entry, global translation & localization, cross-border business development, and global digital marketing.

Chao founded ChineseTrans, where he led a team of senior linguists to establish ChineseTrans as the market leader in professional Chinese translation services.

Since 2011, Chao has served as the managing director of SinoStep, a consulting agency helping foreign investment enter into the China market. Backed up with a strong team of China business consultants experienced in different sectors, Chao has successfully introduced dozens of overseas brands into the China market, established their operations in China on early stage and adapted their businesses to the China market.

see Chao's Bio

Latest posts by Chao Cheng (see all)

This is a comprehensive guide listing options on how to send money to China.
If you’re trying to transfer money to China.
Reading this guide is a must.


Use the links below to jump to each section:


How to Send Money to China Online

How to send money to China fast?

Without going out your door?

You can easily send money to China online using your laptop computer or mobile phone.

Important:

  • If you want to send money to yourself. You need to have a Chinese bank account or a Hongkong bank account.
  • If you already have one, be sure to enable online money transfers functions.

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1. Payoneer: Easy & Quick

 

Payoneer is a quick and easy solution to receiving payments worldwide. It’s a new and an alternative way of getting paid for performing services.

Payoneer also gives you an alternative way to pay people directly without using a third party payment service.

  • You can set up either business account or individual account.
  • US company
  • Send payments in over 150 different currencies to more than 200 countries, and offer your beneficiaries customer support over chat, email and telephone in 35 languages.

Withdrawal

  • min. $50, 1-3 working days. can be as fast as 15 mins.

Mastercard

  • Payoneer users can apply for an ATM Debit card with the Mastercard logo.
  • You can withdraw the funds at any ATM machine that accepts Mastercard.
  • Annual fee$29.95, not recommended for the high cost of withdrawal.

The Cost of Payoneer

  • Free transfer between Payoneer accounts, within 2 hours.
  • Withdraw fee to local bank account 1.2-2% of total amount.

Payoneer-withdrawal

New User Signup Promo!

  • Get $25 bonus! when you receive $100.
  • Withdraw fee to local bank account 1.2% of total amount instead of 2% through official website

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2. PayPal: Widely Used

A widely used option is PayPal.

To get started, simply create an account and send it to the receiver using his/her email address.

The transfer is instant, but it takes a couple days to withdraw the money into the bank account.

Cost to use Paypal

  • Exchange rate: PayPal allows you to see the current exchange rate at Manage Currencies under Paypal balance.
  • Fees: PayPal charges a cross border fee due to extra costs involved in processing multi-currency payments. Cross border fees on international money transfers using a PayPal balance or bank account ranges from 0.5% to 2% of the payment amount. For payments made with a credit or debit card, the fee runs from 2.9% to 7.4% plus an additional fixed fee based on the country of the payment recipient. In China, it ranges from 2.9-4.4%+$0.3.
  • Time: Instant virtual transfer; 3-5 days to withdraw to the bank account.

Why Paypal? Or Not?

  • It is a popular choice when there are not many alternatives.
  • It is a good choice small amount of money transfer, and between friends.
  • e-Check can also be cost effective.
  • the cross border fees can be expensive for sending large amounts.

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3. Xoom, A Paypal Service

With Xoom, you can instantly deposit money to your recipient’s UnionPay credit or debit card in mainland China. The card is provided by most major banks, including Bank of China, Industrial and Commercial Bank of China, and China Construction Bank.

Simply create a free Xoom account to start sending money. Then:

  • Select the amount you’d like to send
  • Pick your payment method (bank account, credit, or debit)
  • Enter your recipient’s bank card number
  • Enter their family name and given name in Pin

Additionally, you can send money to bank accounts in Hong Kong.

Recipient have to be a Chinese citizen

Your recipient must have Chinese citizenship. If you send money to someone who lives and works in China, but isn’t a Chinese citizen, your transaction will be cancelled.

Renminbi or U.S Dollars?

Xoom converts your U.S. dollars into renminbi.

How long will it take for my transfer to arrive?

Deposits are instant when you send money during bank processing hours (7 a.m. to 10 p.m., Beijing Standard Time).

If you send money outside of this time frame, your transfer will go through when the bank begins processing. For instance, if you send money at 11:59 p.m., BST, your transfer will be processed the next business day at 7 a.m., BST.

The Cost of Xoom

xoom

New User Promo: Get a $20 Amazon eGift card!

xoom-gift

If their first transfer is $400 or more (transaction fee excluded), you’ll get a $20 Amazon eGift card.

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4. TransferWise


TransferWise launched money transfers to China in the fall of 2016.

TransferWise now supports Chinese Yuan (CNY) transfers to Chinese UnionPay card accounts. It’s fast, as fair as ever, and – with a fee starting from ¥24 – it’s great value, no matter how much you’re sending.

China is currently the most expensive major currency corridor, according to the World Bank, with the average cost of sending $200 (£140) from the UK to China standing at a staggering US $19.6 (£13.70) or 9.8%.

Everything you need to know about transferring to Chinese Yuan (CNY) with TransferWise

Basic Information Notes
TransferWise Fee 1.5% (or 24 CNY for under 1600 CNY) When sending from currencies where the fee would normally be 0.5%, the fee is instead 1.5%.
Delivery time* 8-9 Working Hours  *After payout. Please keep in mind that TransferWise can take up to two working days to convert your funds from receiving the deposit
Maximum amount (per transfer) 31,000 CNY Maximum Limits for CNY – 5,000 USD (or equivalent) per transaction, 10,000 USD (or equivalent) per day, 50,000 USD (or equivalent) per year as above.
Countries we can send to China only
Additional Receiving Banking Fees None
Required Details
Recipient Full Name Yes First name and surname – English characters only
Recipient UnionPay Card Number Yes Card number should be 16 to 19 digits
Features
Amount Lock Transfers Yes The currency you’re sending from must also be able to send fixed amounts. 
Business payments No We can only send CNY to Private recipients, not businesses.
  • You can only make CNY transfers to recipients who have a UnionPay bank card.
  • Your recipient must be a private individual – you cannot make CNY transfers to a business.
  • You can only make transfers to Chinese Yuan from this list of eligible countries.
  • Recipients with UnionPay can only receive an amount of 10,000 USD (or equivalent in CNY) per day, or 50,000 USD (or equivalent in CNY) per year, from any remittance provider. If your recipient has previously received international transfers, via any provider, this will count towards this limit (for example, if they have received 20,000 USD already this year, their limit is 30,000 USD).

Sending money to China? Save with TransferWise

  • TransferWise will charge 1.5% for transfers with a delivery time of 1 to 3 days.

Anybody with a UnionPay account will be able to receive transfers.

transferwise

Supported Banks excluding these

TransferWise can send funds to many banks in China, however there are some exceptions. There are some banks that do issue UnionPay cards, but do not accept overseas remittances, meaning that we are not able to support transfers to:

  1. Agricultural Bank of China
  2. China Merchants bank
  3. China Minsheng bank
  4. Industrial Bank Co
  5. Shanghai Pudong Development Bank
  6. Bank of Communications

TransferWise, coming soon to WeChat

With the TransferWise Official Account on WeChat, you’ll be able to send money straight from the WeChat app.

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5. WorldFirst

WF

Not Losing money through poor exchange rates Again

At World First, you can get very competitive exchange rates compared to the big 4 banks, which means you’ll end up with more money in your pocket after your transfer is complete*.

Strong at USD, CNY and CNH

WorldFirst specializes in sending USD, CNY and CNH into China.

and you can even chat to one of our friendly Chinese-speaking currency specialists who can help you with your transfer.

Cost of WorldFirst

  • No other costs but exchange rate loss.
  • 1% for converting major currencies: USD, GBP and EUR to Chinese YUAN
  • 1-2.5% for converting other currencies to Chinese YUAN

Advantages

  • No annual cost
  • Support more currencies.
  • No withdrawal limit.

 

Note: Before doing any online banking in China, particularly if you’re on a public wifi, we suggest that you consider securing your activities from hackers using one of these VPNs.

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How to Send Money in Person

Here are a few options for sending money to China in person.

1. Wiring Money from Your Bank to China

  • Formal, traditional way to send the money.
  • suitable for large sum of money.
  • slower than some other new ways.
  • less efficient.

Cost of Bank Wire Transfer

  • each transfer will cost around USD30-45.

Special Notice

Wiring money from your bank account to China is a pretty straightforward process.

But make sure you do it right.

  • Make sure you confirm with the recipient on the account number and account name before you send the money.

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2: Write A Check

Sending a check from your bank to China is a perfectly cost effective way to get money into China.

Cost Efficient

The receiving China bank will probably charge you around US$15 for each cheque and it will cost you nothing as a sender.

Mind the Time

  1. The cheque takes anywhere between 30-60 days to clear. Plan it well enough ahead.
  2. It takes time on road if you send the cheque to your receiver in China, he shall be patient enough too.

 

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3: Western Union

Western Union is a good option for sending money to China too.

Western Union has operations in over 200 countries around the world and here in China.

Their large presence speaks convenience.

Instant Transfer

Unlike other options that take 3 to 5 days to complete the transfer, money sent through Western Union is immediately available making it a great option if you are in a hurry.

WU

How it Works

Bring the sum of money you want to send in cash to an agent, present your passport, complete the money form, and list whoever will pickup the money in the recipient country. The agent then provides you with a tracking number (MTCN), which the designated recipient uses to collect the cash.

Cost of Western Union

  • Fees: Anywhere between US$15-$40, depending on the amount being sent.

Special Notice

  • You must list the recipient’s entire name as listed on their identification.
  • Inform your recipient to call the Western Union agent if the sent money amount is a big one. They do not have much cash on hand.

 

Check out Western Union

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If you have any questions, feel free to let us know!

 

Why You Cannot Learn Mandarin at Duolingo?

Why You Cannot Learn Mandarin at Duolingo?

Chao Cheng

China Market Expert Expert, Senior Partner at SinoStep
Author of Sell Online To China (Your Opportunity in China’s Booming Cross-border eCommerce Market) andHow to Build A Right Chinese Website That Works In China.

Cheng Chao has extensive expertise in China market entry, global translation & localization, cross-border business development, and global digital marketing.

Chao founded ChineseTrans, where he led a team of senior linguists to establish ChineseTrans as the market leader in professional Chinese translation services.

Since 2011, Chao has served as the managing director of SinoStep, a consulting agency helping foreign investment enter into the China market. Backed up with a strong team of China business consultants experienced in different sectors, Chao has successfully introduced dozens of overseas brands into the China market, established their operations in China on early stage and adapted their businesses to the China market.

see Chao's Bio

Latest posts by Chao Cheng (see all)

Three years ago, I casted my doubt on the English learning method at Duolingo for Chinese.

I posted my questions on

We can see the arguments between two sides of the debate.

If it was still puzzling for me then.

Now I am pretty sure to say this model can not help Chinese people to learn English, if there is no big technology change.

And Duolingo could not succeed in the China Market.

 

What is Duolingo

Duolingo is a freemium language-learning platform that includes a language-learning website and app, as well as a digital language proficiency assessment exam.

Duolingo offers all its language courses free of charge.

It is suitable for beginner-level foreign language learning.

Now you can study 28 languages from English as the source language. (You have other source language options)

The best of Duolingo’s adaptive experience lies in its gamified elements.

It makes language learning fun for some learners.

Many people aiming to be polyglots love this platform.

duo1 duo2

 

 

The Cost: Illusion of Success at Duolingo

Duolingo is a good tool for the entry level language study.

But only for the entry phase and shall not be the only way to do language learning.

It is suitable for you to learn between western languages.

I have spent quite a long time on Duolingo and enjoyed the learning style there.

However, I found it was just a dream.

or, just a game.

I’ve learned several languages through Duolingo from English as the source language.

Let’s see my achievements there.

  • French: Level 14 (I’ve already learned it before Duolingo)
  • Spanish: Level 12 (I’ve already learned it before Duolingo)
  • Portuguese: Level 11
  • Italian: Level 10
  • German: Level 10
  • Dutch: Level 6
  • Danish: Level 1
  • Swedish: Level 1

Learn Mandarin Duolingo not feasible

Sounds impressive, huh?

If you only rely your hope to learn a new language on Duolingo.

It is impossible.

Let’s review what I have learned through Duolingo.

Let’s start from German, which I had no learning experience before I know Duolingo.

I spent quite a long time to achieve level 10,

But I could only remember the following:

  • Ich bin…I am
  • Guten Morgen…Good morning!
  • Guten Tag…Good morning!
  • Mein Name ist…My name is
  • Guten Abend…Good evening.
  • Wie heisen Sie? What is your name?
  • Danke…Thank you!
  • Entschuldigung…Excuse me.

And, nothing more…

The key is, I am not sure whether the pronunciation there on Duolingo is correct or not.

Let’s talk about Dutch.

I got level 6 at Duolingo.

To be honest, I could not remember anything right now.

If it is only a game.

It’s not a big deal.

But for language learning.

I don’t think it’s a good idea.

 

My Doubt on Duolingo

Duolingo’s learning method works for languages in close families.

But it totally does not work for English Learning from Mandarin, or Mandarin Learning from English other languages ( they do not support Mandarin learning yet).

The same failure will happen to English learning from Japanese, Koprean learning from English etc.

I casted my doubt on Duolingo community three years ago

And I faced fierce challenges from Duolingo supporters.

It is easy to understand that you are challenging their learning model in their home.

I wanted to figure this out.

So I posted further discussions on Zhihu and my own blog.

And I did further research on this.

I talked to many English learners, Polyglots and Duolingo users at different levels in China.

This topic has been the hot one in all the major Duolingo online communities in China.

 

The Criticism

The criticism mainly comes from two kinds of people.

One believes in machine learning can rule the world.

The other trusts Duolingo’s magical power.

The funny part is.

Both of them do not learn English from Mandarin.

The reason why they truly believe in the success of English learning from mandarin is:

  • They achieved “big progress” in their German Learning from English and Spanish Learning from French.
  •  There should be no exception.
  • We should believe in the big technology change.

Be grownups!

I am not so pessimistic about the future.

And I did not deny the whole learning model of Duolingo.

I am just sharing my observations and we can only get progresses by overcoming the limitations.

The huge differences between different language structures are the reasons behind.

I’d like to ask another question.

Did you learn English from Mandarin on Duolingo?

 

Who Are Victims?

I’d talked to over two dozens of China English learners on Duolingo.

They are confused and not sure whether this could work for them.

It seems nothing changes and there are many bugs with the English learning from Mandarin.

It is not that fun, to be honest.

I shared some obvious mistakes at the post Is it kidding to use Duolingo to learn English from Chinese? – Sinostep .

I am not sure what big changes Duoling could have now.

The real victims are those Chinese people who want to improve their English through Duolingo.

Anyway, we need to face the reality before solving the technology issue and model problem.

 

China Market for Duolingo

Another victim is Duolingo itself.

English learning in China is a huge market.

Many Chinese spend a lot of time and money on English learning but get poor results.

Duolingo is just a trial for most people.

If Duolingo can really solve the problem, even for the entry level learning.

Dulingo can achieve a great success.

Practices ( Time) will become the final judge.

Three years passed, We did not see any successful stories to learn English from Mandarin.

The real Duolingo users are mainly a small group of zealous fans to be polyglots.

They are good at English and want to learn more European languages.

It is a very limited number of people and a very small niche market.

 

Learning Mandarin Duolingo

What’s the next target language?

In Duolingo, Most people expect Mandarin to be the next target language.

But it is still not the right time.

There are problems in both technology and the model.

 

Chao Magic: Exploring the effective ways to learn foreign languages

I spent years in finding effective ways to learn foreign languages.

And they can be much better than Duolingo.

Best Way to Learn Chinese

 

 

It can also be free.

It is possible if you can follow your study plan and apply Chao Chinese Magic to build your Mandarin Chinese environment.

Of course, there is a more effective way to do it if you can not keep on doing it.

Finding a 1on1 Online Coach at Chao Magic English is a very effective way to make your learning more efficient and faster.

Many people are looking for secrets to learn a new language fast.

The real secret is using the right method and keep working on it.

Chao Magic English: Best Way to Teach English Online in China – Sinostep

Best Way to Learn Chinese – Sinostep

Chao Magic English: Best Way to Teach English Online in China

Chao Magic English: Best Way to Teach English Online in China

Chao Cheng

China Market Expert Expert, Senior Partner at SinoStep
Author of Sell Online To China (Your Opportunity in China’s Booming Cross-border eCommerce Market) andHow to Build A Right Chinese Website That Works In China.

Cheng Chao has extensive expertise in China market entry, global translation & localization, cross-border business development, and global digital marketing.

Chao founded ChineseTrans, where he led a team of senior linguists to establish ChineseTrans as the market leader in professional Chinese translation services.

Since 2011, Chao has served as the managing director of SinoStep, a consulting agency helping foreign investment enter into the China market. Backed up with a strong team of China business consultants experienced in different sectors, Chao has successfully introduced dozens of overseas brands into the China market, established their operations in China on early stage and adapted their businesses to the China market.

see Chao's Bio

Latest posts by Chao Cheng (see all)

Why Teach English Online in China?

Teaching English online has a few advantages over traditional classroom teaching.

It’s flexible, efficient, and it’s also becoming a new trend for English learning China.

 

How to Teach English Online in China?

Most Chinese students can not speak or write good English, even after more than 10 years in English learning.

The core value of Chao Magic English is 6 ways to learn real English for Chinese students.

Teaching English Online is possible.

It’s more efficient and cost effective.

Chao Magic English

Traditional English teaching in China schools is proven to be a failure.

Most English learners in China are struggling to find a right way.

At Chao Magic English, English learners in China can improve their English listening, speaking, reading and writing skills within a very short time.

Philips, graduated with an MBA from MIT’s Sloan School of Management, found this model very impressive and promising after checking the online 1on1 coaching interface and detailed communication history. “I’m sure it’s the right and effective way to learn a foreign language.”

“Is it feasible for Chinese learning too?” he followed with this question.

The answer is Yes.

It is the Best Way to Learn Chinese.

We had applied the same methods in mandarin Chinese learning and the result is awesome.

 

What’s the Secret?

It’s quite simple.

  • We Use English, not learn English.
  • And Use English Everyday, 365 days a year.

How Long Does It Take to Learn English Fluently?

It’s really fast if the student can follow the study plan strictly.

Basically it takes at least 30 mins every day.

And every student can get impressive progress after several months.

What’s the Magic of Chao English?

Backed by a consulting team of English experts and cross-border pros.

We found the magic suitable for English learners in China.

1. Story Listening
2. Recite and Retell
3. Writing Daily Journals
4. Practical English Writing
5. Use of English-English Dictionary instead of English-Chinese Dictionaries
6. Use of Google Search

1on1 Online English Teaching in China can be very effective.

1on1 Online English Teaching in China can be very effective.

1on1 Online English Teaching in China can be very effective.

We found the weakness easily through 1on1 Online English Coaching at Chao Business School Magic English 

Chao Business School of Magic English: Best 1on1 Business English Course in China

In Chao Business School, Business English learners can improve their English listening, speaking, reading and writing skills within a very short time.

Online Magic English

With Chao Magic English, Business English learners can learn anywhere, any time without traveling to the classrooms to meet their English teachers.

Effective Goal Setting

We help students set realistic goals and improve their self-confidence.

Business Oriented

It’s real business English.

English learners will be familiar with all relevant business scenarios.

Confidence in Business Communication

Enhancing specific business vocabulary.

Put students ahead of the competition.

1on1 Online Coaching

Customized study plan for every student.

Tailor made assignments and lessons for every student.

How Do We Coach Online?

  • Study Plan: Customized study plan for every student according to the real situation.
  • Mini Lessons: Online text lessons customized for the student.
  • Assignments: Tailor made assignments, workouts and tasks.
  • Q&A: Questions and puzzles on English learning.
  • Weekly Progress Report: Keep track of progress everyday.
  • Weekly Reviews: Comprehensive comments on the progress.
  • Listening: Dictation is the most effective method. we select suitable audio and video materials for students.
  • Speaking: Recite the story, and retell the story.
  • Writing: Rephrase the story, and write daily journals.
  • Business English Practices: Improvements on search skills, Email writing, self Introduction, proposal writing, presentations, meetings, and research writing etc.
Teach English Online in China

Chao Business School: weekly Magic English Assignments for a student

Testimonials

Ms. P, Age 36, Senior Sales Manager, Shanghai

My business English writing had never been improved before I came to Chao Business School.

I had been attended many English schools but Chao Magic English is very different.

Now I know what I should do everyday to improve my business writing.

Persistence and confidence are two biggest benefits I got from Chao Business School.

I can handle my daily emails, and reports by myself now.

And most important is, I have a dedicated coach all the year round.

Mr. W, Age 32, Freelance Sourcing Agent, Shenzhen

It is amazing to decode the secrets of English Communication through Chao Magic English.

With the help of Chao Business School, I improved my freelancing profile, and got better at proposal writing.

The instant change is that I increased my hourly rate from USD15/hour to USD35/hour under the guidance of Mr. Cheng Chao.

And I earned more than USD 10,000 in the past three months.

It is amazing, because this amount is double than my total freelancing income in the past year.

Mr J, Age 28, Owner of a private company, Hangzhou

Chao Magic English is magical.

I can speak and write now.

It is impossible for me do this before I met my coach at Chao Business School.

Now I understand the best way to learn English is to use it in my real life.

In the very beginning, Mr. Cheng gave me many animal stories and daily homework.

Wolf, duck, dragon, goat, monkey…

It seemed so funny and so simple.

But it really took me some time to finish.

They are not that simple when I really want to use them.

My improvements at English helped me a lot in my business.

I am really thankful and I will continue to study hard.

For Chinese Kids: Chao English Magic Castle

Right Concept

We help Chinese kids and their parents understand the essence of English learning.

  • How important is English
  • What is the role of parents?
  • What the parents should do?
  • What is the real English communication?

Right Methods

Many Chinese parents are misled by English training schools.

We are working through our 1on1 online coaching, membership club sharing and Chinese social media to show them what are the effective ways for their kids.

Perseverance

Your English will be perfect when using English becomes your habit.

Most failures lies in the lack of interests and a good environment.

Why Online Teaching?

Offline teaching is not effective and wasting time.

What you need is daily use of English, instead of one lesson every week.

Younger Kids: Involvements of Parents

The success of mastering English for Chinese kids lies in a good English learning environment.

For younger kids, Parents are the key to this.

Students Aiming for Better Grades

We truly believe our students can achieve better grades with much less time.

And we go way beyond than the test grades.

Love It and Use It

Your Child will love English and Use it in real life.

It is not just a class, or a test in the school.

 

Level 1: Magic Castle Online Club

Join the club, and study together with other Chao Magic English learners.

As a parent, you will know what to do and how to guide your kids.

At Magic Castle Online Club, you will get

1.) Magic English Tips

My Promise: One English Magic Tip Everyday

What can the magic tips be?

  • Typical questions and answers
  • Mini lessons on specific subjects

2.) Assignments & Review

  • Today’s assignments
  • Analysis

3.) Community Sharing

It is a sharing community.

You can share your progress with other magic learners.

  • What did you listen today?
  • What did you speak today?
  • What did you read today?
  • What did you write today?
  • What did you learn today?
  • Write your English journal
  • What is your progress on English learning?

In the meantime, you can get updates from many other magic learners on the same.

4.) Q&A

You can ask questions and get guidance on effective Magic English learning.

 

Level 2: Magic Castle 1on1 Online Coaching

Customized study plan for every student.

Tailor made assignments and lessons for every student.

How Do We Coach Online for Chinese Kids?

  • Study Plan: Customized study plan for every student according to the real situation.
  • Mini Lessons: Online text lessons customized for the student.
  • Assignments: Tailor made assignments, workouts and tasks.
  • Q&A: Questions and puzzles on English learning.
  • Weekly Progress Report: Keep track of progress everyday.
  • Weekly Reviews: Comprehensive comments on the progress.
  • Listening: Dictation is the most effective method. We select suitable audio and video materials for students.
  • Speaking: Recite the story, and retell the story.
  • Writing: Rephrase the story, and write daily journals.
  • Practical English: Learn something useful.
An English Poem by a 6-year old Chinese Girl from Chao English Magic Castle.

An English Poem by a 6-year old Chinese Girl from Chao English Magic Castle.

Testimonials

Ms. Lisa, Age 32, with a 7 year old son, Sales Manager, Guangzhou

Chao Magic English is Amazing.

I followed all the methods shared by Mr. Cheng and it works.

Now I am clear what I should do every day with a good plan.

and my 7 year old son is very excited to learn English every day after school.

I believe that he take this as a game, instead of learning.

Mr. Zhang, Age 37, with a 12 year old son, VP, Shanghai

Chao English Magic Castle is meaningful for both my son and myself.

Eason, my son, was enrolled in one of the best middle schools in Shanghai.

Eason have been learning at Chao Magic Castle for half a year.

And his improvements on English is too impressive to believe.

Now Eason can start speaking English without hesitation, and he is confident in expressing himself.

He loves Mr. Cheng and his teaching methods.

Ms. Zhou, Age 36, with a 8 year old girl, New immigrant, Toronto, Canada

Finally I realize what Mr. Cheng said to me are true.

Now Tabitha is getting fast progress here in the school here at Toronto.

Patience is what I really need right now.

I am improving my English too.

Chao’s English Magic is very effective for Chinese learners and it’s especially useful to build my confidence.

 

 

7-Step Formula to Uncover Your Profitable Niche Market in China

book-7-Step Formula to Uncover Your Profitable Niche Market in China

7-Step Formula to Uncover Your Profitable Niche Market in China

Chao Cheng

China Market Expert Expert, Senior Partner at SinoStep
Author of Sell Online To China (Your Opportunity in China’s Booming Cross-border eCommerce Market) andHow to Build A Right Chinese Website That Works In China.

Cheng Chao has extensive expertise in China market entry, global translation & localization, cross-border business development, and global digital marketing.

Chao founded ChineseTrans, where he led a team of senior linguists to establish ChineseTrans as the market leader in professional Chinese translation services.

Since 2011, Chao has served as the managing director of SinoStep, a consulting agency helping foreign investment enter into the China market. Backed up with a strong team of China business consultants experienced in different sectors, Chao has successfully introduced dozens of overseas brands into the China market, established their operations in China on early stage and adapted their businesses to the China market.

see Chao's Bio

Latest posts by Chao Cheng (see all)

This is the most important part of Ultimate Guide to Finding Your Profitable Niche in China.

The goal of my 7-Step Formula is to help you answer this question:

Is this MY PROFITABLE market?

  • Step 1. Ideas: Describe your niche as specific as possible.
  • Step 2. Needs: Are there real problems and people want to solve?
  • Step 3. Money: Will people pay for this? How much will they pay? How Big is the Market?
  • Step 4. Feasibility: Is this opportunity suitable for you?
  • Step 5. Strength: Are you confident to be the no. 1 in this niche market? How?
  • Step 6. Client: Find your first client.
  • Step 7. Optimization: Confirm your market and adjust.

Step 1. Ideas: Describe your niche as specific as possible

First, brainstorming some ideas for your potential niche markets in China.

One question I always ask my new client is:

What inspires you to explore the China market?

I am sharing you with several useful tips for your brainstorming stage.

  1. Expanding your existing business to China.
  2. You know some successful business in China from your father, your brother, sister, cousins or friends.
  3. Understand the market trends in China from professional reports and news.
  4. Get ideas from your life experience.
  5. Your travel/working/living experience in China.
  6. What are your skills?
  7. What are your hobbies? or interests?
  8. What do Chinese people might want?
  9. Problems you found in Chinese consumers from your observation.

Remember to describe your potential niche as specific as possible, it will be meaningless if you are listing a very vague and broad niche.

Some typical ideas:

  • I can write and edit academic writing, esp. medical papers, and I think many Chinese doctors, university students might need this service.
  • My uncle is an owner of several pecan orchards in Texas, USA and Sonora, Mexico, and it seems he made a lot of sales in China, I want to sell pecans, or some other tree nuts to China too.
  • I am native French raised in Paris. I am a perfect French and English fashion copywriter. I might help Chinese fashion companies to write their web copies.
  • I am running a web store selling nutritional supplements and it is quite successful in the US and Australia market, can I promote it in China?
  • I have the high-end medical resources in Germany and US top hospitals, can I send Chinese cancer patients for medical treatments?
  • I am selling real estate properties in Brisbane and Melbourne, Australia, I want to expand my sales leads from China.

Step 2. Needs: Are there real problems and people want to solve?

Now you have some ideas, let’s step further to verify whether it is a real market instead of an imaginary one.

Figure out whether real problems exist for your target Chinese people or companies and are they willing to make some change.

There are several ways to check:

  • Are there sufficient people talking about the problem?
  • Could you find these topics in Baidu, online Chinese communities, Chinese forums, Weibo, WeChat and other social media in China?
  • Do they need what you can offer?
  • Are there similar products or services in the market?
  • Are they sold on Chinese eCommerce platforms like Tmall, Taobao, JD etc?
  • How many competitors in the market? Are they foreign merchants too? Are they Chinese local ones?
  • What is their current solution for the problem?
  • Do your target customers really care if this problem solved or not?

A common mistake is to sell to a market that nobody is working on. You might argue that it would be more profitable if it is some virgin market.

It might be right, but it means you need more resources and takes more risks. If you are a small to medium company, a startup, or a freelancer, your chance of success will be extremely low.

I strongly recommend you to choose your first business in China in my way.

So make sure you can find similar products or services, or some competitors in the market. It means you find some market that can make money, otherwise these competitors won’t be there.

Whether Chinese Customers are Different?

Your foreign experience might work for Chinese customers, might not.

Study your potential customers and find out the possible differences.

  • You are selling weight loss solutions in western countries, and you are targeting on Age 45-70 women in the US. Is the same market segment of Chinese people interested in your weight loss solutions?

Step 3. Money: Will people pay for this? How much will they pay? How Big is the Market?

Now let’s move to the money potential questions:

  • Whether your Chinese customer will pay for what you provide? and how much?
  • How many people will pay?
  • How big is the market?

The most convenient way to do this is to study further on your findings in Step 2.

Whether your Chinese customer will pay for what you provide? and how much?

  • What is the purchase behavior difference on these products/services between Chinese customers and western customers?

Check the pricing of existing products or services in the China market and whether they are selling well.

  • How many items were sold if they are sold in eCommerce platforms like Tmall, Taobao, JD?
  • What are the best selling items?
  • What is the pricing? Find it through their websites, web stores, send inquiries to get it, play as mysterious customers to get it…

How many people will pay? How big is the market?

  • How many competitors are in the market, either foreign and local?
  • How many people talking on this in Chinese communities, online and offline?
  • What is the Baidu Index of the keywords of your niche market?
  • Are there any online/offline ads in your China market niche? Where are the ads?
  • How do your competitors send their message to the market? How do they promote?

You can find the potential market size through proper market research and analysis.

Step 4. Feasibility: Is this opportunity suitable for you?

OK, Now you’ve got a profitable niche in China, but whether is this your real opportunity?

Let’s do something further based on your findings, again!

Analyze the existing competitors in your niche with special attention on their web copies, product/service descriptions, videos, articles, blogs, customer reviews, comments, news, and reports.

Write down what you likes and dislikes about them and what Chinese customers like and dislike about them.

Find out whether you have the knowledge and resource to do the same things as your competitors, or do better than them.

You can come up with ideas how you can do the business differently, yes, that will be your unique selling points.

I Don’t Know the Chinese language.

Is it a big problem? I am sharing a cost-effective solution with you.

  • First, you can easily get a rough idea of many information from machine translation like Google translate, and it is totally free.
  • Make notes and copy important pieces of information you want to know better, make it in a single document.
  • Find some translator on upwork.com for a fair translation (or upload to Chinesetrans.com and place a quick order to get the professional translation), you can read the translated information again and make sure you get the points.
  • Hire a China virtual assistant to do the research and translation and seek for his/her advice. This is a very cost-effective way.

If you want to go further, here is an advanced solution

After the research and analysis, If you are still comfortable with this niche market.

You can go to the next step.

Step 5. Strength: Are you confident to be the no. 1 in this niche market? How?

Let’s talk about confidence and your capability.

Unique Selling Points

Do you have unique selling points? If not, why?

You must develop your unique selling points and deliver something special to your target market.

  • Look on the products and service your competitors are selling. Do you have anything better than them or something useful for the target market but not available in the market?.
  • Are your competitors good marketers? Do they work well on eCommerce platforms? Do they play well on Chinese social media? Do they have hot WeChat marketing accounts? Do they have a strong sales and business team? Do they good at writing Chinese PR articles?  Do they hold offline events often? You can beat them if you are strong in marketing.
  • Do your competitors make stupid mistakes? Wrong positioning, wrong pricing, wrong products, or wrong places to sell? Poor government relationship or Wrong choice of local partners?

Is your niche too broad?

You need to avoid the fierce competition in a seemingly profitable business.

If you are offering the same products/services (actually it is only your dream in most cases, your competitors are way much better than you.)

  • A crappy online English training website won’t bring any client for you. English training is a very profitable business in China. Online English training is a big niche market and it is booming in China. If you are small, be smart to choose a much smaller segment, you need to choose your own niche market and have a right strategy.

You can never compete with tycoons who are investing thousands of millions in marketing when you are small.

Big online English training schools are investing heavily in their China Marketing (image: A Metro Ads for an Online English Training School in East Nanjing Road, Feb. 2017, by Chao)

Big online English training schools are investing heavily in their China Marketing (image: A Metro Ads for an Online English Training School in East Nanjing Road, Feb. 2017, by Chao)

Review your choice of the niche again and describe it again, as specific as possible.

You will have a good business if you can be the no. 1 of a niche with sufficient Chinese customers.

Step 6. Client: Find your first client

Now it seems that you have everything.

Let’s turn your opportunity into a real business, a profitable business.

Start finding your first client, or getting some leads. You need to verify your market before your heavy investment.

See whether you can get some leads and how it goes, what people say, and what you see, hear and read will definitely help you plan for the next step.

This takes some time, depending on how well you prepared and what exact niche you have chosen.

When you can sell the first business to your first client, you can conclude whether it could be your business worth your fight in the coming years.

Step 7. Optimization: Confirm your market and adjust.

Finally, we can say you found your perfect niche in China if you do not regret in Step 6 struggling for your initial leads.

You still need to do a lot of things to set up your business.

  • Have you created a comprehensive China market entry strategy?
  • Implement your strategy and follow your action plans.
  • Optimize your products/ services and localize them for the Chinese market.
  • Go through all necessary procedures and get all the approvals and certifications as required by the China government.
  • Set up your China local team.
  • Find local partners.
  • Happy Selling!

Regulation and Joint Ventures

For some market segments, you need necessary approvals and certifications, and you might find a local partner to set up a joint venture. You need to be fully prepared for this and it takes the time to trust a local partner and go through all the procedures.

A Big Challenge: Localization and Implementation.

  • Do not apply your western model completely in China.
  • “This is how we do it in US/France” normally won’t work in China.
  • Localize your operations and adapt it to the China market.
  • Be sure to localize your business and make your offerings attractive to Chinese customers.

Cost Effective Solution for Your China Local Team on Early Stage

Your local team needs to be well trained and proper coaching before they can fight for you.

You can outsource some jobs to external resources to form a remote team to save your time and cost on early stage.

How to Start Your Business in China

Optimize and Establish Your Own Stable Team

  • Optimize your business and make it fully localized.
  • Be present in the important meetings.
  • Be good at marketing: Make full use of your skills in consumer insights, branding, and pricing to differentiate from your competitors.
  • Protect your intellectual property (IP) and find a strategy for the China market since it is a challenging work.
  • When the business grows bigger, put a 100% trusted senior partner in China responsible for daily operations and smooth communication, you need the real market feedback in the first time.
  • Long-term commitment in China will help you win friends: Too many short-term speculators wanted to make a overnight fortune in China failed and earned a bad reputation.
  • Don’t do anything to compromise your reputation.
  • Make you bring real value to your target Chinese customers.

Wish you a good luck and make a fortune in China!

Thanks, please let me know if you have any questions.

Understanding Market Trends in China

book-Understanding Market Trends in China

Understanding Market Trends in China

Chao Cheng

China Market Expert Expert, Senior Partner at SinoStep
Author of Sell Online To China (Your Opportunity in China’s Booming Cross-border eCommerce Market) andHow to Build A Right Chinese Website That Works In China.

Cheng Chao has extensive expertise in China market entry, global translation & localization, cross-border business development, and global digital marketing.

Chao founded ChineseTrans, where he led a team of senior linguists to establish ChineseTrans as the market leader in professional Chinese translation services.

Since 2011, Chao has served as the managing director of SinoStep, a consulting agency helping foreign investment enter into the China market. Backed up with a strong team of China business consultants experienced in different sectors, Chao has successfully introduced dozens of overseas brands into the China market, established their operations in China on early stage and adapted their businesses to the China market.

see Chao's Bio

Latest posts by Chao Cheng (see all)

Understanding market trends in China is critical for your China market entry strategy and business development.

I am sharing some insights on the market trends in China and you might sense some new opportunities.

Understanding Market Trends in China

Understanding Market Trends in China

  • The Rise of Chinese Middle Class

Chinese middle class is starting to pay more on services and luxury products, other than new homes and cars only.

  • Chinese Millennials: Divided Generation

Chinese Millennials are facing unprecedented prosperity and struggling with the growing pressure.

Unlike their previous generation, The New Youth in China are living on mobile phones, they are familiar with various apps and social media, know the world fashion culture and they are willing to pay for services.

It is more challenging to market to this generation but you have to. Because they are the future of China market.

5 years ago, I could not imagine that Chinese readers will donate to my Chinese articles. More than  50% of the donators to my articles are born in the 1990s.

  • Looking For a Better Life

Chinese consumers are more diversified and start to pay for quality stuff.

They are looking for better life quality, including better healthcare, better education, better food, better air quality, better relationship…

More and more people buy foreign products from overseas.

  • Buying Everything Online, Home and Abroad

This isolated internet island is way more interesting than a newcomer could imagine. It is the playground for many innovative internet-based companies, too.

Chinese consumers have switched to buying online in a lightening speed, I am not telling the joke. Chinese consumers can buy almost everything from their mobile phones, or computers.

Cross-border eCommerce is booming since Chinese consumers are buying more and more from overseas market.

My new book: Sell Online to China helps you understand what you need to prepare.

  • Challenges for Traditional Chinese Companies

It’s a new era full of changes.

Many traditional Chinese companies are struggling to find new business models.

Emerging businesses, esp. online businesses force traditional companies to make changes.

Many people are worried about their jobs and it is supposed that millions of white-collar jobs will be eliminated in the next few years.

  • Rise of Startups and Freelancers

China is full of opportunities for small to medium companies, startups, and freelancers.

More and more Chinese start-ups find their way, so do Chinese freelancers. More and more overseas Chinese students are coming back China to make their fortunes too. People can make decent money from simple business models, like working as Daigou agents.

“Freelancer” in China is not the nickname of the jobless person any more. (Road of Chinese Freelancers: Online Roundtable Meeting at Zhihu)

  • Government Still Plays an Important Role

You will inevitably handle the relationship with the government. Follow the rules and do not play any tricks.

Get the support from them and keep updated of any new favorable policy.

 

Ultimate Guide to Finding Your Profitable Niche in China

book-ultimate guide to finding your profitable niche in China

Ultimate Guide to Finding Your Profitable Niche in China

Chao Cheng

China Market Expert Expert, Senior Partner at SinoStep
Author of Sell Online To China (Your Opportunity in China’s Booming Cross-border eCommerce Market) andHow to Build A Right Chinese Website That Works In China.

Cheng Chao has extensive expertise in China market entry, global translation & localization, cross-border business development, and global digital marketing.

Chao founded ChineseTrans, where he led a team of senior linguists to establish ChineseTrans as the market leader in professional Chinese translation services.

Since 2011, Chao has served as the managing director of SinoStep, a consulting agency helping foreign investment enter into the China market. Backed up with a strong team of China business consultants experienced in different sectors, Chao has successfully introduced dozens of overseas brands into the China market, established their operations in China on early stage and adapted their businesses to the China market.

see Chao's Bio

Latest posts by Chao Cheng (see all)

Looking to start a business in China but not sure what niche is suitable for you?

Read this guide today and you will find a perfect and profitable niche market in China.

I will show you how to choose the right niche in China and what risks you should minimize.

Ultimate Guide to Finding Your Profitable Niche in China

Ultimate Guide to Finding Your Profitable Niche in China

Secret to My China Consulting Business

I was interviewed by China Daily, Paypal, GQ, Jiemian and many other reporters and journalists in the last several weeks.

Almost everyone asked why I can grow from a $5/hour cross-border freelancer to an established strategic consulting business? Is there any secret?

My answer:

It is simple: helping foreign clients to find and verify their profitable niche markets in China.

People need my services.

People buy my ebooks, book my consultations, pay for my discovery contracts, research, expert reviews, and strategies, subscribe to my monthly plans. And they refer new clients to me.

This is my own profitable niche market.

 

Understand Market Trends in China

I am sharing some insights on the market trends in China and you might sense some new opportunities.

  • The Rise of Chinese Middle Class
  • Chinese MillennialsDivided Generation
  • Looking For a Better Life
  • Buying Everything Online, Home and Abroad: My new book: Sell Online to China helps you understand what you need to prepare.
  • Challenges for Traditional Chinese Companies
  • Rise of Startups and Freelancers
  • Government Still Plays an Important Role

read full article of Understanding Market Trends in China

 

No One Can Succeed In China without a Working Strategy

You can not succeed without a right online and offline China market entry strategy today.

  • An English Online Tutoring company wanted to sell 1on1 English tutoring courses to Chinese English Learners. They made a crappy website and started running a Baidu PPC campaign, but it is way too costly to get a single lead, and they’d got NO real student to buy their classes, after spending a lot of money.
  • A Medical Tourism company wanted to send Chinese patients overseas to get medical treatments. They tried email marketing, industrial exhibitions, online ads. It seemed all marketing channels are not working.

A Right China Market Entry Strategy should help you:

  • Boost your chance of success in business development.
  • Save time in understanding a totally different culture.
  • Save cost on unnecessary expenditures.
  • Get market insights quickly through affordable, but effective methods.
  • Obtain Guidance from the early stage of your business in the China market.
  • Have a local presence to get accurate information in the first time.
  • Avoid the common mistakes made by foreign brands with limited knowledge of China market.
  • Easy to Control.
  • Minimize the Risk.

 

Most Profitable Business Opportunities in China for Foreigners

I prepared a short list of potentially profitable business opportunities in the coming years.

You can take it as a reference in choosing your own niche markets.

  • 1. Online Shops, Trading Platforms 
  • 2. Online Business / Services
  • 3. Import and Export
  • 4. Healthcare
  • 5. Pharmaceutical
  • 6. Cosmetics, Skincare
  • 7. Education
  • 8. Tourism
  • 9. Entertainment
  • 10. Food / Wine
  • 11. Agriculture
  • 12. Logistics
  • 13. Wealth Management
  • 14. IT Services/Software
  • 15. Clean Technology / Ecological
  • 16. Electronic Products and Accessories

Read full details of Most Profitable Business Opportunities in China for Foreigners.

Many Startups are Wrong From the Very Beginning

95% of startups fail for choosing the wrong niche market in China.

  • Choose either a huge market where fierce competition exists.
  • or a niche market with little income potential.

Research a niche BEFORE you get started!

But How? Do not make assumptions only.

Finding your profitable niche market anywhere in this world is almost following the same rules, no matter it is in France, US, or China. The only big difference is that it is in China.

You can follow my 7-Step Formula to uncover your profitable business opportunities in China.

 

7-Step Formula to Uncover Your Profitable Niche Market in China

The goal of my 7-Step Formula is to help you answer this question:

Is this MY PROFITABLE market?

  • Step 1. Ideas: Describe your niche as specific as possible.
  • Step 2. Needs: Are there real problems and people want to solve?
  • Step 3. Money: Will people pay for this? How much will they pay? How Big is the Market?
  • Step 4. Feasibility: Is this opportunity suitable for you?
  • Step 5. Strength: Are you confident to be the no. 1 in this niche market? How?
  • Step 6. Client: Find your first client.
  • Step 7. Optimization: Confirm your market and adjust.

 

Step 1. Ideas: Describe your niche as specific as possible

First, brainstorming some ideas for your potential niche markets in China.

One question I always ask my new client is:

What inspires you to explore the China market?

I am sharing you with several useful tips for your brainstorming stage.

  1. Expanding your existing business to China.
  2. You know some successful business in China from your father, your brother, sister, cousins or friends.
  3. Get ideas from the news or your life experience.
  4. Your travel/working experience in China.
  5. What are your skills?
  6. What are your hobbies? or interests?
  7. What do Chinese people might want?
  8. Problems you found in Chinese consumers from your observation.

Remember to describe your potential niche as specific as possible, it will be meaningless if you are listing a very vague and broad niche.

Some typical ideas:

  • I can write and edit academic writing, esp. medical papers, and I think many Chinese doctors, university students might need this service.
  • My uncle is an owner of several pecan orchards in Texas, USA and Sonora, Mexico, and it seems he made a lot of sales in China, I want to sell pecans, or some other tree nuts to China too.
  • I am native French raised in Paris. I am a perfect French and English fashion copywriter. I might help Chinese fashion companies to write their web copies.
  • I am running a web store selling nutritional supplements and it is quite successful in the US and Australia market, can I promote it in China?
  • I have the high-end medical resources in Germany and US top hospitals, can I send Chinese cancer patients for medical treatments?
  • I am selling real estate properties in Brisbane and Melbourne, Australia, I want to expand my sales leads from China.

Read the full content of Step 2-7 in 7-Step Formula to Uncover Your Profitable Niche Market in China

Take a look at some major points:

Step 2. Needs: Are there real problems and people want to solve?

  • Several ways to check
  • A common mistake
  • Whether Chinese Customers are Different?
  • An Example

Step 3. Money: Will people pay for this? How much will they pay? How Big is the Market?

  • Money potential questions:
  • Whether your Chinese customer will pay for what you provide? and how much?
  • Check the pricing of existing products or services in the China market and whether they are selling well.
  • How many people will pay? How big is the market?

You can find the potential market size through proper market research and analysis.

Step 4. Feasibility: Is this opportunity suitable for you?

  • Whether is this your real opportunity?
  • Analyze the existing competitors in your niche
  • Find out whether you have the knowledge and resource
  • Your unique selling points.
  • I Don’t Know the Chinese language.
  • An advanced solution

Step 5. Strength: Are you confident to be the no. 1 in this niche market? How?

  • Develop your unique selling points and deliver something special to your target market.
  • Is your niche too broad?
  • An Example of an online English training business
  • Review your choice of the niche again.

Step 6. Client: Find your first client

Start finding your first client, or getting some leads. You need to verify your market before your heavy investment.

Step 7. Optimization: Confirm your market and adjust.

  • Set up your business.
  • Regulation and Joint Ventures
  • A Big Challenge: Localization and Implementation.
  • Cost Effective Solution for Your China Local Team on Early Stage
  • Optimize and Establish Your Own Stable Team

Wish you a good luck and make a fortune in China!

Thanks, please let me know if you have any questions.

Most Profitable Business Opportunities in China for Foreigners

book-most profitable business in China

Most Profitable Business Opportunities in China for Foreigners

Chao Cheng

China Market Expert Expert, Senior Partner at SinoStep
Author of Sell Online To China (Your Opportunity in China’s Booming Cross-border eCommerce Market) andHow to Build A Right Chinese Website That Works In China.

Cheng Chao has extensive expertise in China market entry, global translation & localization, cross-border business development, and global digital marketing.

Chao founded ChineseTrans, where he led a team of senior linguists to establish ChineseTrans as the market leader in professional Chinese translation services.

Since 2011, Chao has served as the managing director of SinoStep, a consulting agency helping foreign investment enter into the China market. Backed up with a strong team of China business consultants experienced in different sectors, Chao has successfully introduced dozens of overseas brands into the China market, established their operations in China on early stage and adapted their businesses to the China market.

see Chao's Bio

Latest posts by Chao Cheng (see all)

I prepared a short list of potentially profitable business opportunities in China for foreigners in the coming years.

You can take it as a reference in choosing your own niche markets.

Business Opportunities in China (Nanjing Road, Shanghai, 2017, Image by Chao)

(Nanjing Road, Shanghai, 2017, Image by Chao)

Profitable Business Opportunities in China

1. Online Shops, Trading Platforms 

China’s e-commerce has recently surpassed the US’s in size of annual revenue. It’s no surprise that more and more foreign companies are targeting this highly lucrative and rapidly growing market.

Choose a right niche market, you can open a web store or a platform to make some good money in China.

You can get the most advanced technology and convenient support that favors online businesses.

Your Opportunities

Key to Success

The Chinese Internet landscape is different from that in the West.

You will need

Sell Online To China

2. Online Business / Services

Many Chinese starting to offer online services since Chinese consumers/companies are more willing to pay for service than before.

It is especially easy for foreign small startups and freelancers to offer some special and unique values in the China market, and it would be easy if you are creative.

Your Opportunities

  • You can sell academic copywriting services.
  • You can provide consulting services in various areas: business investigation, overseas study, legal etc.
  • You can sell various design services if you are capable enough.
  • You can provide professional legal services.
  • You can start a headhunting service in China.

It is a light asset business model.

The key is to Find Your Profitable Niche in China, and make full use of your skills, knowledge and resources.

You can start right now without spending a lot of time and money in obtaining licenses or certifications.

Key to Success

Build A Right Chinese Website

3. Education

The education market is a golden mine in China, and a prime area is left for foreign business.

All Chinese parents are willing to spend a lot on education for their children.

Private schools are expanding, and Chinese are also more willing to pay for their own self-improvements.

  • English
  • Art
  • Music
  • Science
  • Foreign Tests
  • Technology

etc

Teaching English in China

Foreign English teachers are given work in various institutions in China:

  • Kindergartens
  • Boarding Schools
  • Summer Camps
  • Universities
  • Private schools

Foreign English teachers earn more than average local English teachers.

An English tutoring service in China requires small capital to start and run, and it might be a good choice for you.

Online Education

Online courses are accessible to more people.

Online education is more scalable and it is booming now in China.

It will be a great opportunity in the next 20 years.

Your Opportunities

  • Offer after-school private tutoring services.
  • Starting your own evening English Classes for business people.
  • Teaching English online in China targeting on millions of Chinese students, kids, and businessmen aiming to improve their English.
  • Inspired by the best way to learn Chinese, 1on1 Chinese coaching is another business opportunity.

Key to Success

4. Tourism

Nowadays Chinese tourists are traveling everywhere.

Most middle class Chinese choose overseas destinations instead of overcrowded, traditional domestic destinations, especially in public holidays.

Chinese international travel will become a major source of growth for travel providers in destination countries.

Hotel, restaurants, air flights, car rentals, travel shops, tour guides and many other travel relevant market niches will benefit from this.

Your Opportunities

The travel and tourism sector in China is still relatively undeveloped, it offers some of the best opportunities in the consumer industry. Companies entering now will be able to set standards and guide consumers in their shopping behavior.

  • Overseas medical tourism
  • Overseas summer camp
  • Business tours
  • Theme tours
  • Invest in hotels in China
  • Promote your hotels to China travelers
  • Online booking services

Key to Success

5. Import and Export

You can either source from China and sell in the other part of the world, or sell products to Chinese big buyers.

  • Chao represents some biggest tree nuts buyers in China, most of them from LinAn, buying hundreds of containers every year for macadamias, pecans, walnuts, almonds.
  • It is not that difficult to find a factory in China to OEM your products and you can start building your own brands. Chao had successfully help foreign business owners to find Kitchenware, Wigs, Baby Shoes, Home Appliances.
  • Chinese meat processing factories bought a huge volume of beef/pork from overseas.

Effective Guide to Your Successful China Sourcing

Key to Success

6. Healthcare

Chinese consumers are more health-conscious than in the past.

China Healthcare Market is still in an early stage, and Chinese people are expecting more diversified products and services.

The mainstream public healthcare system in China can not satisfy the needs of Chinese patients.

Many good nutritional supplements are not produced in China.

Some niche markets

  • Foreign hospitals, clinics
  • high-end Medical second opinion
  • Aging market needs a lot of awesome products
  • Medical equipment
  • Nutritional supplements
  • Anti-pollution products
  • Overseas medical tourism

China HealthCare Consulting

Key to Success

Healthcare is a minefield of regulation, corruption and/or other assorted difficulties.

 

7. Pharmaceutical

Everybody knows It is a very profitable business.

However, you should be ready to go through all the obstacles before acquiring a license.

You can access to a more broader market when you become a real local player.

 

8. Cosmetics, Skincare

Everybody wants to stay young and be beautiful.

Chinese consumers, especially women, spent tons of money on cosmetics and skincare products.

Take advantage of it.

9. Entertainment

China is the second-largest movie box office market in the world.

 

10. Food / Wine

Everyone loves and needs food, and Chinese consumers are looking for better and safer food.

It is amazing!

All kinds of foreign food /wines in the China market sell well if they are allowed to be sold.

All our clients are fighting through the local requirements to get their food product into China.

 

Wine is especially popular in the large cities of China (Beijing, Shanghai and Guangzhou) and has great potential given the increasing disposable income of local people.

Key to Success

 

11. Agriculture

China is facing continual food-safety crises and it will be a long-lasting challenge for Chinese.

New technology is encouraged in this field, especially on value added products.

China has relaxed its land-ownership rights for farmers.

We can expect quite some changes in the next decade.

Farmers will be able to trade their lands, which will give way to larger farms and provides a boost in rural communities’ economies.

Your Opportunities

horticulture

  • green houses
  • professional lighting equipment
  • productivity enhancing services including education and technology.

12. Logistics

Good supply chain management is urgently needed for many sectors in China.

You can find various niche markets in this area and it is very close to money return considering the booming e-tailing in China.

 

13. Wealth Management

High-net-worth individuals in China still has limited access to investment skills.

They are eager to broaden their investment portfolios.

Banking and wealth management have now become one of the biggest areas of foreign direct investment in China.

Your Opportunities

  • Financial services on banking, insurance, funds management, securities, securitisation and futures.
  • Overseas property sales

 

Key to Success

 

14. IT Services/Software

Most Chinese companies, either big or small,  want better software and IT services.

They will resort to external resources to solve their technology challenges.

For some specialized niche markets, you can make a fortune from Chinese buyers who needs professional services.

The biggest challenge in China is localization and pricing.

Many Chinese consumers and businesses are not willing to pay high prices for software while Chinese local developers sell software at rock bottom prices.

However, highly specialized industrial/commercial software is recalling selling well in China even with the same global pricing.

Top 20 Must Have Apps in China for Travellers and Expats

Key to Success

15. Clean Technology / Ecological

China has its pollution problems as we all know.

The air pollution and Deterioration of drinking water quality continue to be major problems in China.

China government is investing in the development of new green technologies to battle against pollution.

The green technology is a strategic industry in China and offers subsidies and incentives to foreign companies with the right solution.

Your Opportunities

  • Clean energy,
  • Anti-pollution products,
  • Afforestation projects,
  • Garden landscape engineering,
  • Waste water management
  • Water filtration systems.

Key to Success

It is challenging to get through some policy and connection problems before you can break into the China market.

 

16. Electronic Products and Accessories

Electronic products and accessories are generally cheap in China.

A mature profitable business model is to source electronic products and accessories like memory cards, batteries, USB cords and sell to the rest of the world.

How to Choose A Right, Profitable Niche Market in China For You?

Follow my 7-Step Formula in Ultimate Guide to Finding Your Profitable Niche Market in China to uncover your profitable business opportunities in China.

If you have some idea, you would need a right China Market Entry Strategy.

From $5/hour Job on Upwork to My Million Dollar Cross-border Consulting Business

From $5/hour Job on Upwork to My Million Dollar Cross-border Consulting Business

Chao Cheng

China Market Expert Expert, Senior Partner at SinoStep
Author of Sell Online To China (Your Opportunity in China’s Booming Cross-border eCommerce Market) andHow to Build A Right Chinese Website That Works In China.

Cheng Chao has extensive expertise in China market entry, global translation & localization, cross-border business development, and global digital marketing.

Chao founded ChineseTrans, where he led a team of senior linguists to establish ChineseTrans as the market leader in professional Chinese translation services.

Since 2011, Chao has served as the managing director of SinoStep, a consulting agency helping foreign investment enter into the China market. Backed up with a strong team of China business consultants experienced in different sectors, Chao has successfully introduced dozens of overseas brands into the China market, established their operations in China on early stage and adapted their businesses to the China market.

see Chao's Bio

Latest posts by Chao Cheng (see all)

I had been working on upwork since 2011, starting from $5/hour job as my entry strategy, and now I am ranking among the very few top earners from China.

In the past 5 years. I was invited to more than 10 countries, including USA, France, Belgium, Mexico, Thailand, for business travels and it is amazing and I really enjoyed working in this way,

After I earned around $100,000 from Upwork, my own consulting business is established and I am not dependent on freelancers’ marketplace.

From time to time I can still get pocket money for some interesting projects from marketplaces like Upwork.

I got many interviews from website, magazines, companies when more people in China knew my stories.

I was also invited to Zhihu, the Largest Chinese Knowledge Sharing Platform, yes, similar to Quora, to run a column on Freelancers and Startups.

Last November, I was invited to share my insights into the freelance business and advice for Chinese cross-border freelancers on Road of Chinese Freelancers: Online Roundtable Meeting at Zhihu.

My First Job on Upwork

It took me years to get my first job upwork.

I am not kidding.

First, it is quite difficult for non-English speakers to understand the game rules.

Second, I also doubt whether it could be a goldmine in freelancers’ market place while zhubajie, China’s biggest freelancers’ marketplace gave me very poor impression since most people can not earn a decent living from it.

After I registered my accounts on odesk/elance/freelancer etc. I set my hourly rate to be USD30 in the very beginning, sent some proposals, there were some replies, but the competition was so fierce and I could not get any job.

I don’t think I have very special skills at that time, so it was quite hard to persuade clients to click the “hire” button.

I am starting on sending proposals to English-Chinese translation jobs and website design jobs.

My competitors are everywhere, especially from India, Philippines.

It is ridiculous for an Indian guy to take English-Chinese translation jobs from western clients at a low price and then outsource to a Chinese freelance translator at an even lower price.

I don’t want to play such games.

But I really want to know how those successful freelancers can earn so much.

I changed my mind.

First I should learn how it works. Then I can make a living from it.

I chose the most simple and easy strategy

Lower my price!!!

My first job on odesk, I just took this snapshot from upwork this morning to write this part.

Yes, I started the job from USD5/hour from a German client.

It was really a very happy experience since it works for me for the first week when I adopted the new strategy.

It gave me great confidence and I was willing to devote more time on odesk.

Second Job, Third, and More… and My Hourly Rate Increases

When you got the first job, you are among the top10%

About 90% of upwork freelancers never earned a penny from the platform.

You are truly started from this moment.

It is happy to see my second job coming in, and third, and more jobs.

And I set a pricing strategy for myself.

Increase your hourly rate every month, if not every week.

And this is what I did, exactly.

I charged USD20/hour from Nov. 2011.

I charged USD35/hour from the end of 2012.

I charged USD55/hour from Mar. 2014.

Now I set the price to be USD300/hour.

Planning My Consulting Business

When your hourly rate increases, you can work less and earn more if you balance the work and life.

Before you can lead a decent freelancing life.

It is imperative to use your brain to think and plan in the early stage.

I started to build my own Consulting business from Day One when I got my first job on upwork.

It seems very promising since we can see so many potential clients out there.

I know it is a bouncy bumpy road, but it is worth trying.

I built a website based on WordPress and started writing blogs first.

Initial Questions

Every day I am asking myself the following questions.

  • What are their problems to solve?
  • Why do they have these problems?
  • How can I help them?
  • What should I prepare?
  • How to persuade them to trust me?
  • What are the fun parts?

Research & Learn, Not Just Work

To be honest, it is quite busy when I started accepting more and more jobs from upwork.

When you are charging the hourly rate at about USD25–35/hour, an affordable rate for many clients, you don’t need to worry too many new jobs if you have an established profile.

  • Make an attractive profile

Make your profile attractive to potential clients.

List your successful cases you are proud of.

Make your profile easy to read.

  • Think as your Customers

You can win the heart of the customer when you think in their way.

Elaborate your skills and how you solve problems of others.

  • Standing out from the Crowd

Remember, only 10% freelancers got their jobs on marketplaces.

Study those successful ones and average ones, compare the differences.

Improve your profile all the time, and ask people to read and get their feedback.

  • Try to get your first job as soon as possible

Only when you get your first job, you can start your real journey.

Be serious with every proposal you sent for the first job.

You can tell them your situation and even consider to give some discount.

Even if it is a simple job, it is a good start.

Tips to Be Better

When you get more and more jobs.

Think how you can make better, here are some useful tips

  • Never Stop Learning, Find Your Potential

Try different possibilities and meet with different clients.

Accept challenges.

You can learn a lot from the real work, even something you had never tried before.

Find the most needed skills and learn them.

  • Find your niche market

After various trials and tests, you will find what you would love to work on, and where is your market.

  • Craft your English writing

Most freelance work needs remote communication.

Both English writing and speaking skills are very important, especially writing.

Learning how to make your English writing persuasive.

Write better proposals, profiles, emails, reports, message communications, etc.

It is not an easy job, but worth your time.

Your persuasive words are your weapons and your best salesman.

Actually, I am also helping my overseas clients in Chinese copywriting: 10 Fundamental Rules For Writing Killer Chinese Web Copy, and helping Chinese customers to make better English web copies.

Build Your Personal Brand

  • Use your real name

I don’t understand why some freelancers prefer uploading fake pictures to pretend as an attractive girl to win jobs.

It is not a dating business, but building your real startup business.

My advice is to use your real name with professional real pictures.

Don’t use cartoons, don’t use nicknames.

Trust is the top issue when talking about the business. Only when people trust you, they will hire.

  • Testimonials

Good testimonials are your best advertisements.

Be sure to win good ratings and recommendations.

I admit, not all clients are good, but most clients are kind and will give true opinions.

Build your solid online reputation and people will come for you.

  • Share your experiences and expertise

Don’t hide your expertise, write them down and share them.

It is awesome to know more friends and get more business opportunities after I began writing my blogs (both English and Chinese), attending conferences and roundtable meetings, accepting interviews and even writing eBooks and China business guides etc.

Running My Own Consulting Business

I’d say I gained many experiences from freelance marketplaces and it means like my startup boot camp.

I polished my writing and speaking skills, realized my potentials and found my own niche markets which I love.

  • Improve My Writing & Speaking

I improved my English through daily use.

I don’t need to pay a single penny to attend classes.

Speaking English over the phone or face to face meeting needs confidence for non-native English speakers.

We can solve it through working in English.

It also helps my Chinese Writing and Speaking.

Now I write every day and it becomes a habit.

  • My Potential

I found many interesting jobs and learned a lot.

I met up with many kind clients and experienced business consultants.

Working together with these smart guys also help you understand the essence of business.

I know I can do many things which I didn’t know before.

  • My Own Niche Markets

China market is so lucrative that more and more overseas companies are planning their China market entry.

However, many small to medium businesses and startups found it quite difficult to choose the right niche markets in China and could not make a suitable strategy facing the cultural and language barriers.

There are some but not many cross-border consulting firms working in this area.

And this is my chance.

 

  • My 9-Category China Market Entry Services

Now I am offering 9 categories of services to them after a complete analysis of my previous successful projects.

1. China Strategic Consulting

Help clients to develop optimal solutions for their China market entry and growth strategy.

2. Business Development & Sales Solutions

A big challenge for overseas companies in China is the implementation and localization, esp. in the early stage.

I provide business development service for the clients to do the initial big account sales and find potential longterm partners.

I also started a China Sales Starter (CSS) program to help overseas clients to have a quick solution to establish their local Sales team.

My clients can also get China Virtual Assistants to handle basic administrative, customer service, website management, writing and online marketing, trade & sourcing, and sales & research services.

 3. Chinese Content Marketing

Help Customers build their authority with right Chinese content through online reputation managementWeChat marketing, Chinese copywriting, China social media marketing and email marketing.

Customers place Chinese translation orders at www.chinesetrans.com and they find it quite easy to operate.

4. Get a Chinese Name
Get an exceptional Chinese Name for IndividualsCompany, Brand, or Products.

5. China Digital Marketing

Many customers are looking for Baidu PPC and Chinese SEO services too.

6. China eCommerce

7. Trade Service

8. China Corporate Service

9. Creative Design

 

Write Useful eBooks, Guides and Tips for My Customers

I am encouraged to share some stories, guides, and tips to my clients and they enjoyed the reading.

Coaching New Freelancers and Startups

In May, 2017, I started Chao Startup Club, a paid membership Q&A Community under my own name, focusing on startup and freelancing topics.

The idea of Chao Startup Club was inspired by a coder, who planned to start up his own business in the coming year.

I was asked to coach new freelancers and startups to start their own business with my experience.

Chao Startup Club: I Got 9 Chinese Paid Members in the First 24 Hours – Sinostep

My Club Member: From USD10/hour to USD32/hour at UpWork within 3 weeks.

Within only three weeks, I answered about 60 questions and successfully helped a club member win 2 new projects and increased her hourly rate from USD10/hour to USD32/hour at UpWork.

Be Confident and Start Your Smart Working Now!

Cheng Chao

Senior Partner

SinoStep – China Market Entry Strategy and Implementation Expert

Most Recommended China Market Entry Expert by Paypal

Most Recommended China Market Entry Expert by Paypal

Chao Cheng

China Market Expert Expert, Senior Partner at SinoStep
Author of Sell Online To China (Your Opportunity in China’s Booming Cross-border eCommerce Market) andHow to Build A Right Chinese Website That Works In China.

Cheng Chao has extensive expertise in China market entry, global translation & localization, cross-border business development, and global digital marketing.

Chao founded ChineseTrans, where he led a team of senior linguists to establish ChineseTrans as the market leader in professional Chinese translation services.

Since 2011, Chao has served as the managing director of SinoStep, a consulting agency helping foreign investment enter into the China market. Backed up with a strong team of China business consultants experienced in different sectors, Chao has successfully introduced dozens of overseas brands into the China market, established their operations in China on early stage and adapted their businesses to the China market.

see Chao's Bio

Latest posts by Chao Cheng (see all)

Ms Wang and Iris from Paypal China interviewed me in a rainy day this fall.

It is happy to see several new changes in Paypal China and they can help more Chinese cross-border startups and freelancers to expand the overseas business.

Chao's startup story and his successful use of Paypal

Paypal help me expand global business: Chao’s startup story and his successful use of Paypal

Sell My Consulting Services Across Borders

I help my foreign clients find their profitable niche markets in China and they need my service in the market entry and business growth.

I am a heavy Paypal user and I integrate various Paypal buttons to sell my service products. With the help of Paypal services, I can quickly set up my shopping cart, create my own subscriptions without big investment.

Paypal buy button

suitable for express checkout.

Chao created paypal buy button to sell his Expert Review service on Clients' Chinese websites or apps

Chao created paypal buy button to sell his Expert Review service on Clients’ Chinese websites or apps

Paypal subscriptions

create monthly plan, it is especially great for longterm contract.

paypal-subscription

Chao’s WeChat monthly plans are popular service packages for many clients

 

Paypal shopping cart

sometimes, one single product will not be sufficient for a single client, provide shopping cart so clients won’t bother to come back and forth.

paypal-shopping cart

Clients needs us to write many web copies, and prefer different service levels. A shopping cart is convenient.

Combined with shopping cart and subscription

Strategic Services

For most strategic services, I use discovery contract to do the initial study and work on the dedicated proposal for serious clients.

A Paypal button is quite convenient to work it out.

dsicovery contract

Chao Launched a China Sales Starter Program to establish a liaison sales office for overseas clients, a discovery contract can effectively understand needs before the formal proposal.

It is quite common to see many Chinese cross-border merchants selling physical products. But selling services in this way is quite rare for Chinese startups.

I think this is why they are so curious and one more thing which is important is, they know I really sell. I answered many questions on my businesses and shared some real stories.

It was quite an interesting experience since I also helped in a short interview video sharing my cross border business with Paypal experience.

Paypal Stories of Successful China Merchants

Paypal Stories of Successful China Merchants

They wrote my story, put it in Paypal Stories, and recommend me to be the choice of China market entry expert, my video was also placed on the Paypal freelancer’s homepage.

Interview Video on My Cross-border consulting business put on Paypal Merchants individual startup/freelancer homepage.

Interview Video on Chao’s Cross-border consulting business put on Paypal Merchants individual startup/freelancer homepage.

9 Market Trends of China Cross border Online Shopping

9 Market Trends of China Cross border Online Shopping

Chao Cheng

China Market Expert Expert, Senior Partner at SinoStep
Author of Sell Online To China (Your Opportunity in China’s Booming Cross-border eCommerce Market) andHow to Build A Right Chinese Website That Works In China.

Cheng Chao has extensive expertise in China market entry, global translation & localization, cross-border business development, and global digital marketing.

Chao founded ChineseTrans, where he led a team of senior linguists to establish ChineseTrans as the market leader in professional Chinese translation services.

Since 2011, Chao has served as the managing director of SinoStep, a consulting agency helping foreign investment enter into the China market. Backed up with a strong team of China business consultants experienced in different sectors, Chao has successfully introduced dozens of overseas brands into the China market, established their operations in China on early stage and adapted their businesses to the China market.

see Chao's Bio

Latest posts by Chao Cheng (see all)

Here are 9 Market Trends of China Cross border Online Shopping after the new policy released by the government earlier this year.

1. Regulated Market

We can see China Government’s efforts to head off the illegal gray-market imports and all the regulations will make the market more healthy.

Trade zones were set up to qualify for the new tax regime.  Established logistics operators are building new distribution channels to handle the expanding trade. Now products on cross-border e-commerce platforms can get instant customs clearance.

Read more: China Government Policy Evolution for Import eCommerce

 

2. Fair Play

The imports from cross-border eCommerce and general trade will be on the same arena.

 

3. Price Adjustment

Some platforms adjusted the prices of some products due to the import tax change.

Increase around 11.9%: Food, healthcare, mother and baby, daily consumption products

Decrease around 8.1%-38.1%: home appliances, personal washing.

No change: cosmetics.

 

4. Fierce Competition

Many existing players will be out of the game due to the fierce competition, and the challenge of the profit margin

Alliances will also be spurred among big players in the market.

Chinese consumers still buy a lot of foreign products from Daigou. This is a Mommy with her two sons in the supermarket in France, they are holding a sign of "European Daigou Agent"

Chinese consumers still buy a lot of foreign products from Daigou. This is a Mommy with her two sons in the supermarket in France, they are holding a sign of “European Daigou Agent”

5. From Poor Choice to Rich SKUs

The reality now is that popular best selling products on domestic cross-border eCommerce platforms do not exceed 500 SKUs, we can expect more SKUs and more new brands coming in to the China market.

Domestic Cross-border eCommerce platforms will eye on higher price mainstream cosmetics,  higher quality fast consumption products and home appliances.

We can foresee a consumption upgrade in the cross-border eCommerce in the near future.

 

6. A Wider Coverage

More and more Chinese consumers come to realize Haitao is a new lifestyle and not that difficult.

The customers are not only from first and second tier cities, but also from third or fourth tier cities.

 

7. Better Customer Experience

Consumers will enjoy better buying experience through the quicker arrival, easy return or change of goods, and the confidence in the quality.

 

8. Direct Shipping

Direct Shipping will be more popular than before.

Overseas brands or retailers can tap into the China market through official website with proper localization.

And it can be the first step of market entry trial before you spend huge dollars in the China market.

 

9. Localized Operations

Foreign merchants need more localized operations to satisfy their China customers.

Jobs include more localized team, better localized webstore, good Chinese web copy, local customer service, supporting direct shipping, return and repair service.

Read more:

 

Let’s Chat! if you want to talk more about selling online to China, and making a right market entry strategy.

 

Interested in Working Together? Let's Chat!

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