1. Understand what you need.
You need to know what’s your needs are and what available to serve them. In terms of categorization, here’s what you can do, Chinese suppliers: manufacturers vs 3rd-party supplier; Big corporation vs. small family-owned; 3rd-party supplier that just buys-in and sells-out; vertically integrated. manufacturer vs. assembly-based manufacturer; etc. Depending on what you need, you may want manufacturers over 3rd party suppliers.
2. Do some preliminary Internet research to further develop your category system towards your specific needs.
Start organizing your notes so the job can be job effectively and efficiently. There’s a whole lot of information to cycle through. Include things such as company name, contact information, business scale, scope, category check boxes, and other notes.
3. Use search engines to search information related to your product name.
Your first 100 results are definitely going to be your most relevant websites. You can find your suppliers, manufacturers, and competitors. All the likes for what you need. Be sure to dig deeper into the company and their website.
4. Use trustworthy B2B websites or popular business directory websites to obtain very structured information for Chinese suppliers.
Popular b2b websites provide the most valid information. Get real time reviews and feedback on suppliers and how they’ve dealt with real customers and see if they’re a possibility to work with you. Alibaba.com, bossgoo.com, made-in-china.com are some of the best! As you contact these Chinese suppliers be sure they’re quick to respond as communication is important. Directory websites are also excellent resources for obtaining industrial knowledge.
5. Narrow down the list of suppliers you want to work with to a manageable amount.
By this step, you may already know what your real needs are and what’s available. Initiate contact with your suppliers you want to work with and further develop your relationships with them. Eventually you’ll find someone whom can support your needs. Do bare in mind, that Chinese business culture rely heavily on relationships. So maintain ethical and friendly conduct.
6. Find a Chinese local business to help you.
People from China know just how they’re business practices work. Some special business manner is unknown to foreign ones. With a local guide, the possibilities could be endless. It’s really just playing the game and your cards right.
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