As one of the most important world expert powerhouse, China is the target for many companies around the world, whether giant multinationals or small to medium companies, to source products.
I’d been working with many clients in the past ten years to help them source and coach them with a better approach in their China sourcing activities. There are many interesting stories and I am sure these always happen when two different cultures meet.
I’d like to share some tips and welcome your feedback.
You will meet up with many challenges in your China sourcing activity from the first day you decided to do it.
You can either do it through web research, or you can come over to attend the trade fair directly.
However, you will find It’s painstaking for you to find the right potential supplier for you.
some times the available choices seems to be many, some times you could not even find one choice.
and most importantly, you need to verify whether the information you got is correct or not, and whether the supplier is a reputable one that you want.
The time zones are different, if you are in the States, you need to stay late up late at night or get up very early to talk to your potential suppliers, it is similar in other regions.
Some people from the suppliers do not speak perfect English, misunderstanding always happens.
Some suppliers may produce the products you want, however they had not sufficient experience with international companies.
Sometimes, it’s very difficult for you to confirm who are the decision makers or owner of the suppliers. There might be many trading agents trying to work with you.
Some suppliers will over commit and can not meet with your standards finally.
Some can produce good samples but you will not get the same during the mass production.
You will also face many barriers in cultural & business aspects.
So, What to do?
You are choosing the right supplier, and They are choosing you as well.
Unlike the western world where people tend to protect them more dependent on laws and regulations, in China, trust and personal relations are more important.
This is so important a job worth your travel. and this will also make your suppliers happy and trust you more.
Before payment, always confirm the account number first. I’d got complaints from clients that were told wrong emails had provided other bank accounts to them to request for money.
What do you think?
Readalong: Sinostep Sourcing from China Service
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