1688 Shopping

1688.com is just like Alibaba.com, but all in Chinese, and for the domestic market in China. Some believe that they can find better deals, by going directly to suppliers on 1688.com, instead of Alibaba.com. But is that really true? Keep reading, and learn if 1688.com suppliers are really offering lower prices, how to pay them and if they even have export licenses. 1688.com is a B2B supplier directory owned by Alibaba Group. Just like Alibaba.com, 1688.com is portal were you can find factories, wholesalers and trading companies, in virtually any industry.

So why is it called 1688.com, and not Alibaba.cn?

In Chinese, 1688 reads as “Yao Liu Ba Ba”, which (kind of) sounds like Alibaba.

12. Final words

Substituting words for similar sounding numbers is common in China and all over Asia. We help importers get products made in China & Vietnam. Book a free consultation call today with our team to learn how we can help you with:. Step 1: Product Specifications. Step 2: Finding Suppliers. Step 3: Product Samples. Step 4: Manufacturing, Quality Control & Lab testing. The difference between the two is that 1688.com is exclusively for domestic trade. Alibaba.com has been export focused since day 1.

5. choose high-quality suppliers on 1688.com

This is why 1688.com is in Chinese, while Alibaba.com is in English, and has translations in French, Spanish and other major languages.

1688.com is not limited to wholesalers or factories.

Instead, you can find the same types of suppliers here, as you find on Alibaba.com. Many suppliers actually have company pages on both Alibaba.com and 1688.com. One for international buyers, and one for domestic ones.

7. payment and place order

Many importers believe that Chinese suppliers offer lower prices to domestic buyers. This is often true, but not for the reasons you might think. Suppliers tend to quote higher prices to European and American customers, for quality reasons. Chinese suppliers know they can’t sell the same quality overseas, as they can to some local customers.

2. can I buy directly from 1688.com as a foreigner?

If you submit the same product specification to suppliers on Alibaba.com, as you do on 1688.com, you will not necessarily be quoted a higher price on the former. As such, you should not assume that you’ll get lower quotes from 1688.com suppliers. Suppliers go to 1688.com because they want to sell products on the domestic market. Domestic manufacturers and wholesalers rarely have English speaking employees operating their 1688 account.

3. create 1688.com account

If you want to contact 1688 suppliers, you either need an agent, or learn mandarin. Alibaba.com suppliers, on the other hand, almost always have English speaking sales reps operating their accounts.

That’s kind of the whole point with Alibaba.com. One can say that China’s financial system is still in ‘Beta mode’. The standard company bank account in China is only for holding the local currency, Renminbi (RMB).

RMB accounts can receive USD, but this makes it count as a ‘domestic transaction’.

Hence, no export rebate, which can deduct 17% to the factory price. Instead, export focused companies need to open a separate bank account for receiving US dollars. This is the bank account you pay when sending money to your supplier. But what if the supplier never exported products before?

Discover 1688.com Agent Services

If so, they likely don’t even have a USD bank account, and can therefore not receive USD. In China, a company must obtain an export license before they can ship goods overseas.

10.International shipping

The license is not obtained on an order to order basis, but is valid for several years. Many suppliers, especially the larger ones, tend to operate both on the domestic market in China, and export to other countries. These suppliers, naturally, have export licenses. However, these suppliers also tend to be listed on Alibaba.com.

8. domestic shipping

1688.com suppliers that are only focused on the domestic market don’t have the need to apply for, and maintain, export licenses.

There are ways to go around the need for an export license. For example, the 1688 supplier can use an export agent.

But I doubt that many ‘domestic suppliers’ are willing to bother with all the extra paperwork for one customer. If you really want to buy products from 1688, there’s help to get.

There are several ‘1688.com buying agents’ that can help you with the following:.

Coordinate shipments. Manage payments (from USD to RMB).

Manage export procedures. Most charge a commission, ranging from 1 to 3%.

6. communicate with the seller

However, keep in mind that you should follow up with quality inspections, and make sure you don’t pay everything upfront. Many Importers are under the impressions that 1688.com suppliers offer lower prices than everyone else.

And sometimes they do, but not for the same quality. Further, 1688.com suppliers are rarely ‘export ready. Without a USD bank account and an export license, the products will not leave the country.

There are workarounds, but most ‘local suppliers’ don’t want to bother with that.

So, if it’s not cheaper and so much more hassle, why go to 1688.com?

There are very few scenarios I think of when 1688.com makes sense for importers outside of China.

Perhaps if you need to source certain materials and components for your export supplier, but that’s about it.

Luckily, there is Alibaba.com, and other supplier directories, for exporting manufacturers.

Shop in 1688.com. Shop now in 1688.com.com. Choose from the wide variety of items and send us the links.

11. Customs and tax

Then sit back and relax, let 1688.com Agent, do the rest! Our QC team inspects each product to ensure it is in good condition and it conforms with specifications.

9. warehouse

ItemsLinksPrice/Link (USD)
1688.com Service Fees1 +3.5
5 +3
10 +2.5
15 +2
20 +1.5
ItemsMaterialPrice/Carton (USD)
Consolidated BoxNew Box to Consolidate all of your goods together3

We make sure you get the right product. Combine orders into a single package or cargo & save up to 70% in shipping cost! We use box that has never been used and make sure goods are protected! Worldwide Shipping. We ship your goods according to your chosen shipping method. We ship by Air Express, Air Freight & Sea Freight. See Shipping Prices here: Cost Calculator.

Gain competitive advantage and buy from China with your Best 1688.com Agent !

We help merchants like yourself in procuring products from 1688.com. Our focus is centered in making available quality and reliable service at reasonable cost. We offer basic service package which includes purchasing, product check, warehouse storage, order consolidation, repacking, and global shipping.

You can avail all these services for a minimal fee! Factory Sourcing. Most businesses obtain and evaluate different manufacturers of a product as part of their internal quality system in supply-chain management.

1688.com Agent is offering factory sourcing service, where we provide three trusted factories in China producing the subject product.

  1. Being proactive in all ways is the best approach to your business success.
  2. Having apprehensions in paying for bulk orders? You can significantly lower your risk by examining product samples first prior to bulk buying.
  3. 1688.com Agent helps you obtain product samples from different suppliers, deliver them to our warehouse where you can have your samples checked, and combined in one parcel.
  4. Then we ship to your address. We help you save time, travel costs and other expenses by inspecting your chosen factory in your behalf.
  5. Our Team shall visit the site in China, inspect the facility, verify license and certifications, observe production, check quality management system, in order to provide an independent evaluation, as well as assurance that goods produced meet quality standards.
  6. We provide an assessment of the product based on important criteria to provide you an independent evaluation and quality expectation of the product, and thus support your internal quality system in your procurement process.

Our Quality Team shall examine and test the product thoroughly. The result shall be embodied in a report with actual product photo/video.

Comments are closed.