How to Find Quality Suppliers on Alibaba?
Finding a suitable factory or supplier is not an easy task. Many of our clients ask for tips on how to find good suppliers and factories.
When you are just starting off, Alibaba is the best place to search for a supplier, as there are so many to choose from. However, it’s tough to pick a good one. Let’s take a look at what makes a great supplier.
First, let’s open the page at: www.alibaba.com.
Step 1: let’s say we’re looking for umbrellas.
First and foremost, we need to ensure that the keywords are used correctly. We must ensure they are used as precisely and as effectively as possible to search for the best results. If the keyword is too vague, we will get many different results. So we’d better narrow down our search in this case by making it more specific.
Searching for a specific umbrella type can sometimes be hard to find exactly what you’re after. A search for “umbrella” might bring up results for everything from parasols and golf umbrellas to folding umbrellas, so it can be difficult to tell which exact products you’re likely to purchase. To ensure that we do not come back with any misleading or wrong results, let’s change our keyword from “umbrella” to “golf umbrella.
Results can be filtered by different criteria, including:
- Supplier types
- Supplier Country/ Region
- Product types
- Order Quantity
These help us narrow down our product search.
What is the difference between Trade Assurance and Verified Supplier?
Trade Assurance: suppliers accept payments directly through Alibaba.com’s payment portal, enabling Alibaba.com order protection.
Trade Assurance is a free service offered by Alibaba that is designed to help create trust between buyers and suppliers. Trade Assurance covers you in the event of shipping or quality-related disputes. Buyers are covered if products are not shipped on time as per the contract with suppliers and if products do not meet the quality standards as per the contract with the supplier.
Verified Supplier: businesses whose company profile, management system, production capabilities, and process controls have been assessed, certified, and inspected by independent third-party institutions to assure reputable and consistent expertise on Alibaba.
Which options should you select?
If you are outside of China, you should check both Trade Assurance and Verified Supplier; this may help you narrow down your search results.
If you can come to China or you have a sourcing agent in China, you do not need to worry, and you may choose from more suppliers on Alibaba.
Now it’s time to sift through and sort suppliers effectively.
Do a quick scroll-down through the page, and take a glance at some key points on their page:
- Time listed on Alibaba.
If they are more than 5 years old, it means they have a little bit more experience. But please note that just because a factory has only been a gold supplier for a short time doesn’t mean they haven’t been operating for longer.
We’ve met a lot of factories that were listed as gold suppliers for 1 year but had been in operation for over 20 years. They chose not to be listed on Alibaba and grew their business solely by word-of-mouth.
next, when we see this title, we may find it may be the golf umbrella that I’m looking for
From here, we get some information:
(1). From the title, we know: that this manufacturer/supplier manufactures umbrellas/golf umbrellas.
(2). price range: between $4.23-4.65/pc depending on what quantities.
MOQ: 1 piece; (Normally, they write 1 piece doesn’t mean MOQ is 1 piece, you need to contact with them and ask).
(3). This supplier has been on Alibaba for 10 years and has a good review.
After clicking the title, we could see more information about this supplier; we could find it is a manufacturer and a trading company, a 10-year member of Alibaba, has less than 3 hours response time, has a 100% on-time delivery rate, transactions record on Trade assurance, how big is the factory.
You may also find more information about this product on the page, like the open way of this umbrella, whether it is manual or auto-opened, what the material it is, the ribs material, the size of the umbrella, etc. if you have different material, size… or a printed logo be needed, you’d better contact with them.
If you just want to check manufacturers only, not trading companies, you could view more suppliers until you found like this:
You may find this supplier is a manufacturer only. It is located in Zhejiang Shaoxing (Shangyu city), which is a production base of umbrellas; they’ve 11 years of membership with Alibaba.
Then you may send a message to them or click: contact supplier, and the supplier will reply to you shortly.
Red Flags To Take Seriously When Finding Quality Suppliers on Alibaba
When choosing a quality supplier on Alibaba, there are some red flags that you must be cautious about, and if you come across them, it is better to avoid that supplier.
- You will come across several such suppliers that will offer you the same thing but for a significantly lower price than the rest. This is not at all possible, and it means that either their quality needs to be better or they are false suppliers, so you need to avoid such suppliers.
- When you are dealing with Alibaba, the Alibaba Trade Assurance is very important; it keeps the transaction protected, and if something goes wrong, you can claim your money. When suppliers are not ready to accept the Alibaba Trade Assurance, it indicates they are a scam.
- If the suppliers ask you to pay via Western Union, be alert; it is a very unsafe and risky payment portal, and it may be a scam from the supplier.
- If a supplier is not ready to provide you with samples to test, there is a red flag, and it is imperative to ensure quality in the form of a sample before you place your bulk order. Hence, make sure to request a sample to confirm whether or not a supplier is a scam.
- If a supplier keeps on changing their contact details now and then and gives you bogus reasons for this, then you should consider it a red flag.
- Check the reviews as well; when you come across a negative review for a supplier, you must stop then and there from dealing so that you can save yourself from the scam that others have been through.
- If they refuse payment from a higher security method, this could also be a red flag because the high-security methods need more and more verification, and someone who is a scam won’t be willing to verify, so watch out for this.