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Made-in-China.com is a Nanjing-based supplier directory, that some may see as an Alibaba.com clone. That is not accurate, as Made-in-China.com launched in 1998, one year before Alibaba.
That said, Alibaba is by far the largest supplier directory today, both in terms of suppliers and services. Still, Made-in-China.com remains a top 5 supplier directory, and certain buyers prefer to source suppliers on this platform.
In this article, you will learn more about their product categories, supplier verification, payment options, and other services.
Q&A with Chris Georgiou (Made-in-China.com Business Development Manager)
We reached out to Chris Georgiou, Business Development Manager at Made-in-China.com, to ask some questions about their platform and online expos.
How does Made-in-China differ from Alibaba.com?
Both are the leading B2B e-commerce platforms in China. Made-in-China.com was founded in 1998 and Alibaba.com was launched in 1999.
In terms of the supply chain differences: Alibaba.com has suppliers from other countries besides China on its website, but Made-in-China.com only works with Chinese suppliers. So, we believe Made-in-China.com has a deeper understanding and focus on the Chinese market.
As for the industry differences, both are comprehensive sourcing platforms but Made-in-China.com has more advantages in industries such as manufacturing & processing machinery, industrial equipment & components, construction & decoration, auto parts industry, etc., while Alibaba.com has advantages in light industry and daily use.
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What kind of buyer services does Made-in-China.com provide?
There are a host of tools and services ranging from matchmaking to supply chain development, and secure transactions. These include ‘VR’, the ‘3D Interactive Showroom Outing’, ‘Online Payment Service’, 11 language websites, and video sourcing meetings. For example, the ‘3D Showroom Outing’ is an immersive self-navigating replica showroom tour with direct merchandise links.
As for inspection, all members have free access to the third-party audit reports of over 20,000 senior member suppliers with on-site factory inspection conducted by professional specialists from SGS, Bureau Veritas, and TÜV Rheinland.
This August, Made-in-China.Com will also be hosting its largest ever Smart Expo, with features specifically designed to restore the offline Expo experience as much as possible.
What features can visitors expect at the Expo?
This service utilizes 360° panoramic displays, 3D, and VR to simulate the setting of the traditional offline exhibition hall.
In the Smart Expo, buyers can feel the offline expo experience, contact suppliers directly, digitally sign a letter of intent as well as make payments without traveling to China.
Moreover, this August, visitors will be able to quickly build trustful relationships with over 3,000 suppliers with new e-business cards, communicate in their preferred language across 8 multi-language halls, as well as place instant orders on a range of light industrial products.
In addition to a variety of promotions such as free samples, shipping, and coupons, visitors can utilize a tailored matchmaking service for face-to-face multi-lingual video meetings.
Which product categories is Made-in-China specialized in?
We are a comprehensive website covering 27 industries and over 40 million products. And we have more advantages in industries such as manufacturing & processing machinery, industrial equipment & components, construction & decoration, auto parts industry, etc.
You are a matchmaker, but does Made-in-China.com platform provide any payment functions for those buyers who would rather not pay the supplier directly?
We are an integrated trade platform helping buyers achieve a full-circle sourcing journey. For those buyers who are concerned about payment safety or would prefer to pay online, Made-in-China.com offers a secure payment Escrow and inspection service, which will hold the payment until the buyer’s agreed point of release.
Do you have different tiers of membership?
Yes, all membership is free. However, businesses who update their basic business information can become ‘Star Buyers’, who are clearly distinguishable to our suppliers. Large and professional buyers are eligible to join the ‘Diamond Club’.
How will membership of these clubs improve members’ sourcing journey?
‘Star Buyers’ and ‘Diamond Club’ members will benefit from ‘Free Sample Requests’, ‘Discount Coupons’ and ‘Waived Fees’ for specialized services as well as networking and knowledge-sharing opportunities.
Our ‘Select Sourcing Connect’ will handpick 2-5 suppliers according to the buyers’ sourcing requirements and host a private video Zoom meeting between them.
With travel to China not currently practical, our bespoke ‘Personal Showroom Tour’ will take ‘Diamond Club’ members to the factory of their choice, and live stream for them as they tour the showroom and discuss with the supplier directly.
‘Diamond Club’ members will also have access to a ‘Special Request for Quotation Channel’ (within 24 hours) and also receive one-to-one bespoke support during each step of the procurement journey from a ‘Personal Sourcing Assistant’.
Apart from medical equipment, what trends in inquires have you seen since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The COVID-19 pandemic has caused the work-from-home economy to grow significantly. According to data from Made-in-China.com, the inquiries for small household appliances, fitness equipment, home decoration, and household products witnessed large growth.
Made-in-China.com Product List
Made-in-China.com cover the same categories as most other directories, but with more of a focus on industrial and construction products, rather than consumer goods:
Global Sources, which goes back all the way to the early 1970s, operates the second-largest supplier directory, Globalsources.com.
Many buyers prefer to source electronics, toys, and certain other categories they are focused on. That being said, their main advantage is the annual Global Sources trade shows, where you’ll find some of the best manufacturers in Asia:
How does Made-in-China.com compare to this?
They have a really good trade show calendar, showing upcoming trade shows in Asia, Europe, and the United States. But they don’t have their own trade shows as far as I am aware.
What kind of supplier information can I find on Made in China?
Made-in-China.com suppliers are often third-party verified, for example by TUV, which can help you assess if a supplier is qualified or not.
This is what you’ll find on Made-in-China.com:
Business type (i.e., Manufacturer)
Number of Employees
Year of Establishment
Management Certification (i.e., ISO 9001:2015)
Product test reports/certification
In addition, you can also find product images, specifications, factory images, and uploaded certificates.
Are Made-in-China suppliers more reliable than others?
No, they are not more reliable, or qualified, than suppliers listed on any other supplier directory. Nor are they any less ‘reliable’ than any other directory.
That being said, I don’t think there are any ‘reliable’ or ‘great’ suppliers, anywhere. Instead, the key is to find manufacturers that are qualified to make your specific product.
The key is to implement the quality assurance process, stretching from creating a clear product specification sheet, to supplier sourcing and final quality inspections.
In that sense, there’s no difference between Made-in-China.com suppliers and those listed on other supplier directories.
Do they integrate payment options?
Yes, Made-in-China.com has an Escrow system allowing buyers to pay by card or bank transfer.
After the buyer receives their order confirmation from the supplier, they can click the “Complete Purchase” button and subsequently submit payment online via their Virtual Trade Room.
There is a logistics section, but at the time of writing, you cannot get live quotations or book shipping directly on the platform.
There are plenty of listed, exclusively Chinese, shipping companies on Made-in-China.com, that can be contacted via a message form.
Made-in-China.com is much more than just another Alibaba.com clone. While smaller, and not as sophisticated when it comes to trade services, Made-in-China.com is home to thousands of qualified manufacturers in a range of industries.
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Co-founder of Asiaimportal (HK) Limited and based in Hong Kong. He has been quoted in and contributed to Bloomberg, SCMP, Alibaba Insights, Globalsources.com, China Chief Executive, Quartz Magazine and more.
Hey there, I’m Fredrik!
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