Product Sourcing (Limited Availability!)

Notice: At the moment I have limited availability to pursue this, due to various other commitments, including an overload of clientele for my other services. However, do get in touch if you need this service. Just a heads up that I might refer you on if your needs require more time than I can commit. Thanks!

FirmBee / Pixabay

So you’re a local business that needs a constant supply of perishable goods? Maybe you’re setting up a new brick-and-mortar business that requires machinery? Perhaps you’re starting the next nightclub in town and need supplies to jazz it up? Or let’s say you’re a school principal who needs new benches for the cafeteria? Or could it be possible that you run a toy store and need to capitalise on the latest fad?

What’s the common denominator with all of these? If you haven’t figured out already, it’s the need for a large number of physical items! And as much as we love and want to support local manufacturing industries, the fact is that many things can be sourced from China at a fraction of the cost, even when you take shipping into account. Let’s keep it real! And no, not everything from China are made from inferior quality material. In fact, chances are that at least half the things in the room you’re in right now are made from there! Fact!

Tumisu / Pixabay

Why am I mentioning China in particular? Ask any importer and they will tell you that China is the biggest market to import a lot of goods from. We’ve heard all the jokes and about it, and the fact that they remain as jokes over such a long period is that it bears some truth! There are a lot of things you can source from there, and because many trading vessels and ships move between China and the west, things are often more affordable if they are imported!

So what’s the main barrier that’s stopping you from getting the goods from China? Well, I can think of a few:

  • Not having enough time. Unless you’re a full-time importer, time will not be on your side. Imagine if you’re an admin officer of a high school who needs to order basketballs for Phys Ed. You probably don’t have time to do detailed research, and this is brings me to my next point…
  • Not knowing the process. Not only do you not know where to start, you’ve heard all the horror stories about people dealing with Chinese and getting in trouble.
  • Not knowing how to do business with Chinese people. There is a certain way Chinese people think and do business, and they are often sly enough to get the best deal at your expense.
  • The language barrier! Need I say more? Miscommunication is a huge issue in Chinese-Western trade.
ijmaki / Pixabay

Convinced that you can’t and shouldn’t do it alone yet? Yes, doing business with the Chinese is often a minefield! I kid you not. If you don’t know how to do your due diligence, there are a million bad things that can and will happen! At best, it’s the fact that not getting the best deal from suppliers, and at worse, well, you wouldn’t want to know – trust me! I’m telling you this to protect your sanity.

Are these barriers insurmountable? Of course not. You overcome them by getting someone to help you through the entire process, from sourcing to negotiations to shipping. A good agent can deal with their end and save the headaches on yours! After all, there are the two things you want, right? A. Save money and B. not get in trouble and end up as a statistic in the book of horror stories.

So now we have established that you need a good agent to facilitate the process. And who might that agent be? Right, me! Why me? For a start, I can speak mandarin and am racially Chinese, which means that I know how they do business. But there is a more compelling reason than that;  I’m a successful completer of Peter Sun and Alex Ryan’s Importing Mentorship course. Make no mistake that these guys are business experts with tonnes of experience importing from China. Just google their names and find out for yourself!

As their successful completion mentee, I have access to their insider tips on topics such as: how to source and find manufacturers and wholesalers for the best prices, how to check that a factory exists and is represented accurately amidst the ambiguity on the internet, how to negotiate directly with factories and not middlemen posing to be manufacturers, when and how to use guanxi i.e. personal relations and contracts for maximum leverage, how to handle shipping and logistics and many more issues that are vital to importing success. Personally, I have successfully applied this knowledge and imported a few shipments of resistance and yoga bands from China.

Make no mistake about it – importing things from foreign countries, especially China, is a delicate art form in itself. You want to avoid all the unnecessary drama. Seek my counsel and I will guide you through the entire process and make sure your needs are adequately met at the lowest possible price! Or at the very least, it can be lower than what you would pay for if you source locally (depending on product of course). Drop me a message and let’s get talking!

“The way of a fool is right in his own eyes, But a wise man is he who listens to counsel.”

– Proverbs 12:15