Today, China has emerged as a major source to procure all kinds of manufactured items, whether it is any mass consumable products or professional-grade items. However, importing anything in large quantities from China may not be as easy. Therefore, it has given the rise of many sourcing agents in China.
Now just imagine that you want to import from China and want to buy goods and products for which you don’t have sufficient information and hence need to know a lot more details. It is here, you will feel the need for a China import agent.
As you must be aware that China has a huge market for all kinds of products, therefore, it is not very difficult to find any product that you want to buy.
The problem comes when you want a reliable manufacturer/supplier who will sell you a high-quality product. If you can manage to find the right manufacturers then there can be lots of saving in your money and you can be a well-reputed businessman of that product.
You also can buy any product yourself, but for your business survival, you must have good quality and reliable product that conforms to international standards and specifications. It is here a sourcing agent can play an important role.
Usually, sourcing agents will be offering their services as a third party while importing goods from China. One can therefore find a trusted agent who can help in finding suitable suppliers or manufacturers that sell high-quality products.
Generally, these agents are going to buy the products after negotiating the prices, test their quality, and also solve all issues related to customs and transport.
The following are a few reasons why you will need a certain sourcing agent in China.
- For finding reliable suppliers with good quality products
Now the Chinese market has become so large and complex that for an outsider it is extremely difficult to locate any reliable supplier that can be exactly meeting your need and who can offer you a consistently good quality.
- Fill in the various cultural gaps and help communication
This is one of the biggest problems where your sourcing agent can be of immense help. Any outsider may always get lost and find it extremely difficult to put their message across while communicating with any Chinese supplier.
- Reduce the different risks involved to import from china
Working with any sourcing agent would mean that your importing process from China will be safe and without any risk threat to your business. Since these agents are located locally you don’t have the need not to make a frequent trip for testing the products.
- Control the product quality
For you as an importer, you need to buy products of good quality because quality will guarantee the survival of any business. Testing the quality would mean spending lots of your money by making a trip to China or request the supplier or manufacturers for sending their samples again and again.
- Reduce payment risks
Your sourcing agent can always make payment on your behalf and thereby reduce the associated risks. Since the delivery address here will be your sourcing agent that is in China, and hence he can reject the goods easily if they do not meet your need.
- Solve any problems and offer support at any stage
Since sourcing agent is based in China, he can check the product during the production stage. If there is any issue regarding quality or specification then it can be resolved much in advance to save time and money.
- Familiar with the Chinese market
Sourcing agents are well familiar with the local market condition, and hence it will be a big asset to an importer to locate the right type of manufacturer for the item that you are looking forward to importing from China.
- Sign the legal contracts
Since most foreign importers are not familiar with the Chinese language and hence a local agent can set and negotiate all the terms and conditions and can reduce all the confusion down the line.
- Know how factories in China work and the prevailing business environment
Local agents will have all information about the quality, cost, and delivery time of all products in China, and also they are aware of the working methods prevailing in China. A few questions that only your sourcing agent can answer like how the supplier is handling your order..
- Solving all hassles of shipping the product from China
Sourcing agents can also take care of all the formalities required in China port to export the product to your country.
However, it is not everything hunky-dory about having a sourcing agent and you need to be careful enough while hiring an agent.
- Proper matchmaking
You must select your sourcing agent through any trusted network or by following a certain scientific approval process like background checks, supplier pre-qualification, and factory audits.
- Developing new product source
Most foreign buyers cannot communicate clearly with any Chinese manufacturers. Often exchanging messages through a certain translator is frustrating and also time-consuming. Often a few sourcing agents may take you for a ride if you are not careful enough.
- Completing product specs
Often many importers never define all their expectations clearly. Relying solely on the factory or agent can be risky, and hence you must clearly define your specification and your expectations must be clearly communicated.
- Quality control:
Unless you are specific about various statistical tools to be used the sourcing agent will use their own methods that can have the risk of batch rejection too.
- Reducing payment risks
Importers must use tools e.g. letters of credit, especially when your relationship is in the starting phase and enough trust is yet to develop.
- Getting out of trouble
Often most of the issues cannot be fully resolved through emails and phone calls.
The whole process of working with a certain sourcing agent cannot be developed overnight and you need a certain amount of time and patience. However, once the proper trust and relationships are established then it can make importing from China a very smooth operation.