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Top 9 Air Courier Companies in China: DHL, FedEx, EMS & More

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Looking for a reliable and cheap air courier for your imported products? In this article, you’ll get a complete overview of the largest American, European and local air courier companies operating in China – including the following:

  • DHL
  • FedEx
  • UPS
  • TNT
  • China Post
  • Hong Kong Post
  • SF Express

We also cover Amazon’s plans to step into the international logistics market, and how you can find the air courier with the best prices and service.

DHL

DHL or DHL Express is a German based courier service founded in 1969. The head office of the company is based in Bonn, Germany.

DHL is also ranked as the world’s largest courier service with its presence all over the world including China.

DHL has presence in China for last three decades with its regional head office located in Beijing. It’s now known as one of the leading courier and logistic companies in China out of 35,000 companies working in the same market.

Some of their core delivery and air freight services include:

  • Worldwide delivery service and international shipping
  • DHL eCommerce that includes international and domestic parcel pickup, delivery, and return solutions specifically designed for businesses.

The other  DHL air freight options include DHL Air Priority, DHL Air Connect, DHL Air Economy, DHL Air Charter, DHL Air Thermonet, DHL Air Freight Plus, Lifeconex, and DHL Air Combined. Continue Reading →

How to Order from Alibaba in 3 Steps

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Do you have a product that you would like to order from a supplier on Alibaba.com? Ordering from Alibaba.com might seem like a simple task but a quick search on Google or the Alibaba forum proves the opposite.

This article provides you with a step by step guide to ordering from Alibaba.

Step 1. Sourcing products on Alibaba.com

There are three ways to source products at Alibaba. Product Search, Supplier Search or by posting a Buying Request. The Supplier Search is the latest Alibaba search option and in my opinion superior to the other two, below I explain why. Continue Reading →

Importing Bamboo Textiles from China: A Complete Guide

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Bamboo textiles are used in a wide range of products, from t-shirts and knitwear, to rugs and towels. Bamboo rayon fabrics are widely seen as both fashionable and ecological.

But that’s not the whole story.

In this article, you will learn how to find the right bamboo textile manufacturer, labeling requirements in the EU and US, trade shows and MOQ requirements.

In addition, I’ll also explain why bamboo fabrics are not as ecological or ethical as you might think.

Bamboo Textiles Manufacturers in China

Bamboo textiles are used for a wide range of products. A few examples follow below:

  • Clothing
  • Rugs
  • Towels
  • Knitted textiles
  • Beddings
  • Curtains

It’s rare to find suppliers that exclusively work with bamboo fabrics. Instead, some apparel factories can offer bamboo textiles, through their network of fabric suppliers.

In most cases, only a portion of the output consists of products made of bamboo fabrics.

Of course, this is not only how it works in the apparel industry, but also for beddings, rugs and curtains.

That said, only a relatively small percentage of all suppliers in the textile industry work with bamboo fabrics. Basically, they don’t have any bamboo textiles supplier in their subcontractor network. Continue Reading →

[Our Customers] From Idea to Product Launch: The Story Behind TheDrawBag.com

john k founder of drawbag

The life of every product begins on the drawing board. While most products also stay on the drawing board, that is not John had in mind for his product, The DrawBag.

In this customer success story, John explains how he managed the process, from finding the right supplier and making product samples, to design patents and trademarking.

I believe this product will become really big, so don’t forget where you read about it first!

(And btw, you’ll get something extra at the end of this article)

John, please tell us a bit about your background and why you ended up moving to China.

I’m American, and grew up on the east coast of the US. I worked professionally as an artist, actor, and director in NYC and regionally before moving to Sydney, Australia in 2017 where I helmed the Creative Arts department of a large private school for four years.

I then moved to Guangzhou, China to help launch both the Art and Drama programs at two separate international schools here.

While here, I realized I had the great opportunity to try my hand at manufacturing some of my own design ideas.

Classic version

Interior (Classic)

Signature version

Signature version

I was really impressed the first time I saw your product. How did you come up with this concept?

The DrawBag is basically three existing things combined in a new way: a backpack, kraft paper, and writing/drawing utensils. I had seen kraft-paper emerge as a usable material in fashion bags in the months leading up to my conception of the DrawBag, and while out idea-hunting at the Canton Fair early in 2017, I suddenly made the connection between these three existing elements, which to me as an artist seemed an obvious combination worth creating.

My initial design idea was to create a graduation-specific backpack for high school seniors with which to collect signatures and well-wishes from friends in the last week or so of school, but this idea quickly expanded into a bag that was less specific in its application, and more open and inviting to the unique personality and creativity of each owner in how they might design and use it. Continue Reading →

Product Labeling Regulations in the US, EU and Australia

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About to import products from China or elsewhere in Asia? Then you need to ensure that the products are properly labeled.

In this article, we explain what every importer must know about labeling requirements in the EU, US and Australia.

We also explain why you cannot rely on your manufacturer to ensure compliance on your behalf. In fact, most of them don’t even know how products must be labeled in your market.

Keep reading, to ensure that your products are not seized by the customs authorities!

What is ‘Product Labeling Requirements’?

Most countries have legal requirements for how a product shall be labeled. A label can, for example, inform the customer about the following:

  • The manufacturing country
  • If the product meets certain legal safety requirements (i.e., compliance marks)
  • Size, material and other general product information
  • Warning labels and user instructions

Some labeling requirements apply to all, or a wide range of, product categories.

For example, all products in the US must be labelled with the country of origin (i.e., Made in China). In the European Union, many products must be CE marked.

Other labeling requirements apply to specific products. Examples include toys, electronics and textiles – each with their own set of unique labeling requirements.

Notice that labeling requirements are usually just one of many requirements that importers must fulfil to ensure compliance with certain regulations.

In addition, you may need to keep track of the following:

Technical Compliance: This means that the product is manufactured according to certain technical standards, or substance restrictions. The product is therefore able to pass the necessary tests.

Documents Requirements: The Importer is required to create and store a set of documents. Such documents may include circuit diagrams, component lists, design drawings and risk assessments.

It is important to underline that this article does not include information above the two points above. Continue Reading →

Importing GOTS Organic Cotton Textiles from China

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Looking for GOTS certified organic cotton manufacturers in China? Then keep reading. In this article, you will learn what GOTS is, and how you can find GOTS certified suppliers online.

In addition, I will also explain how you can verify a GOTS certificate, and why should not assume that all cotton fabric suppliers in China are certified.

In fact, only a small fraction are.

What is Organic Cotton?

By definition, organic cotton is grown using methods that leaves a smaller environmental footprint on the environment. For example, organic cotton is only defined as such if the following criteria are met:

1. No use of toxins

2. No use of persistent pesticides (POP)

3. No use of chemical fertilizers

4. No use of GMO seeds

In the textile industry, organic cotton is the exception, not the rule. Further, the reduction of POP and chemical fertilizers reduces yields, and therefore results in higher prices.

Hence, you should expect to pay more for organic cotton, than non-organic cotton.

What is GOTS?

GOTS is the acronym for Global Organic Textile Standard, which is defined as follows:

1. Only fabrics that contain at least about 70% organic fibers can become GOTS certified

2. All chemicals such as dyestuffs and auxiliaries used must meet certain environmental and toxicological criteria

3. A functional wastewater treatment plant is mandatory for any wet-processing unit involved and all processors must comply with social criteria

A supplier can be GOTS certified, if they pass a factory inspection performed by an accredited third party. There are only a handful of ‘GOTS accredited’ inspection companies with offices in China:

  • CERES GmbH
  • Control Union Certifications b.v.
  • Ecocert Greenlife

Continue Reading →

Importing Sunglasses & Eyewear from China: A Complete Guide

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About to import Sunglasses from China? In this guide, you’ll learn what you must know before getting started, including:

– How to select the right Eyewear manufacturer

– Frame Materials, Lens Specifications and general design customization options

– An introduction to Product Safety Standards and Labeling Requirements for Sunglasses in the EU and USA

Finding the right Sunglasses Manufacturer in China

Most major sunglasses manufacturers in China are based in Zhejiang province, south of Shanghai – and the cities of Wenzhou and Linhai in particular.

Wenzhou is the world’s largest manufacturing cluster for Sunglasses. There are hundreds of manufacturers, trading companies and component suppliers in the city.

However, with so many manufacturers to choose from, how can you identify those that are qualified?

When sourcing Sunglasses, this is what you should take a look at:

1. Product Compliance

Is the supplier experienced in manufacturing products according to applicable regulations in your home market?

The truth is that most suppliers are not. As you are required by law to ensure that all imported Eye wear is compliant with all applicable product safety standards and labeling requirements, you need to be sure that the manufacturer has the basic capability to manufacture ‘compliant products’. Continue Reading →

Selling on Amazon.com From Overseas: By Ariel B. C.

Almost half of our readers are located outside of the United States and the European Union. Yet, the majority of our customers in these countries are mainly selling in the US or Europe. Or both.

One of our subscribers, Ariel, is one of them.

In this article, he explains how he started selling in the United States, on Amazon.com, while being based in Israel and Europe.

Please tell us a bit about yourself and what you did before starting with your current business

I was born in France, and moved to Israel about 20 years ago.

I always had a passion to travel, so, logically, I always searched for source of incomes that can be managed from any places in the world.

I studied economics, but worked a very briefly as an employee. Only about 2 years, then I began to import goods from the United States, to France for several years when I still lived there. Essentially motorcycles and accessories.

When I arrive in Israel, I first worked in software for a big company.

In parallel, I began to sell online about 10 years ago, at Ebay France, managing the shop digitally from Israel while having a partner in France taking care of all the “physical” work.

Then I discovered Amazon FBA nearly 4 years ago, and I found it was a perfect fit for me.

It allows me to be free of all the worries about warehouse to stock my inventory and also I don’t have to deal with packaging and shipping every unit sold to the customer.

It also can be run from any place, so I can make a living while travelling around the world.

About a year ago, I was able to quit my job as an employee and work full time on my online business.

For half a year, I have a VA from the Philippines helping me with recurring tasks and social media. Continue Reading →

How to Return Goods to Your Chinese Factory

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You just received a new batch. You did everything right, including clear product spec sheets and a pre-shipment inspection. And still, the supplier manages to mess up your order.

Sometimes, quality issues slip through, and you need to know how to deal with situations that involve returning defective items to your supplier.

In this article, you will learn how the entire process works:

  • How to report defective products to your supplier
  • Why you should not even ask for a refund
  • How to write a ‘product remake action plan’
  • How to incentive your supplier to remake or repair the defective items

1. Check your products and report defects immediately

Defective or damaged products must be reported immediately. Preferably within 48 hours of receiving the shipment. The longer you delay, the harder it will be to support a claim that the supplier is responsible.

You don’t need to do a visual check on every single unit, but check at least 10% of the quantity.

If you find any quality issues, that are not in line with the pre-shipment inspection result, you must provide the following:

  • List of defects
  • List of defective units
  • Value of defective units
  • Images
  • Video

This must be sent by email to the supplier immediately.

Now, keep in mind that I always assume that you have ordered a pre-shipment inspection, and yet discover additional quality issues. An inventory check-up is not a substitute for a quality check. Continue Reading →

Procurement and Purchasing Agents in China: A Complete Guide

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The Procurement Agent is a freelancer, or part of a larger organisation, arranging various aspects of the trade between China and the buyers around the world. There is no set standard for what exactly a Procurement Agent shall do.

For the sake of clarification, I list a few examples below:

  • Supplier Identification & Price Research
  • Sample & Prototype Development
  • Quality Assurance & Quality Inspections
  • Social Compliance Audits
  • Product Compliance Consulting & Product Testing
  • Shipping & Logistics
  • Customs Procedures & VAT

This industry, which has grown very big in Asia in the last few decades, includes everything from rogue agents to major trading houses. The purpose of this article is to explain what a Procurement Agent can be expected to do for your business, and how they differ.

Continue Reading →