Buying wholesale from China can be very easy with Aliexpress. Unlike its sister site Alibaba, Aliexpress has lower minimum quantities (even 1 item) and an interface that lets you interact with the sellers easily. Rather than go back and forth negotiating a price and quantity, Aliexpress sellers can also set quantities and prices that go down per item for a larger quantity. Buying takes only a few clicks, sellers tend to have more descriptive listings, shipping methods are stated clearly and all purchases are held in escrow by Aliexpress until goods are received and you are satisfied with them.
This guide shows you how to buy wholesale from China with Aliexpress, how to find quality wholesale products, how to get the best deal for your wholesale products and how to communicate with sellers to clarify doubts.
Buying wholesale from China in very large quantities?
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Large selection of items for buying wholesale from China
Aliexpress carries millions of products products in one hundred categories. From electronics to clothes to pet products, you can find a huge range of items to buy wholesale from China.
Although Aliexpress is mainly at wholesale prices, there are items that are sold in small quantities or even just a single one so you can try out a product before ordering larger quantities.
Browsing and searching for wholesale items
Browsing products on Aliexpress is easy enough with most items categorized properly. You may still find a few products that are listed in the wrong category though because the sellers are mostly if not all Chinese and their levels of English proficiency vary widely.
The easiest way to find a product you want on Aliexpress is by searching for it. Use simple terms and try a variety of keywords as the same items may be titled differenly. For example, if you were looking for a yogurt maker, be sure to try yogurt machine or even ice cream machine. This will get you more results and allow you to get items that may be listed at a much lower price under another term.
Useful trick to finding items for buying wholesale from China
A trick to find items on Aliexpress is to go on to other shopping sites such as eBay and look at what the Chinese sellers on these sites are offering. Many times, they are either the same sellers or have access to the same goods that are being sold on Aliexpress. Why buy from Aliexpress then? To get a better price of course! The same seller on eBay may lower his prices on Aliexpress because of lower fees, or because there are more Chinese sellers on Aliexpress offering the same item. Please note that this is a general guideline and there may be exceptions to the rule. To make sure you get a good deal, check prices on both sites before you commit to a purchase.
Dealextreme is another great site you can use to find items that you want on Aliexpress. Dealextreme is a China-based web site so its items are usually available on Aliexpress but the prices on Aliexpress are lower. It is easier to use Dealextreme to look for the products you want first because Dealextreme has better descriptions and photos and it usually carries the higher-quality products. We want to use Dealextreme to narrow down the good products that are worth buying wholesale from China, and then search for the exact item on Aliexpress to get a better price. If you are confused, the example below may help you understand this better:
Let's say I want to find a yogurt maker to buy wholesale from China. Instead of searching on Aliexpress for "yogurt maker" and getting a ton of different brands of products that I'm not sure are good or not, I go on Dealextreme and search for yogurt maker instead.
I find the following product on Dealextreme and I'm pretty happy with it. Notice how the title is proper and contains useful information. Although it's not in the screenshot, the description on Dealextreme is clearer too.
To find the exact item on Aliexpress, I use the product code SKG TNA-01A that's in the title of the yogurt maker on Dealextreme.
Searching for the product code SKG TNA-01A on Aliexpress gives me the following results:
Notice the screenshot above shows the same yogurt maker at nearly half the price on Dealextreme. You can repeat the same steps for other products to find the deals on Aliexpress. This is not the final step though, make sure you read the description on the Aliexpress item carefully or ask the seller if it is the same item.
Communicating with sellers on Aliexpress
Aliexpress has a great chat function that lets you chat with sellers live. If a listing is unclear or if you would like to propose other terms, you can always use the chat function. Most sellers are online during 0800 to 1800 China time so that's the best time to get hold of a seller. If a seller is not online, you can also send him a message.
Most sellers are able to communicate in simple English.
Is Aliexpress safe for buying wholesale from China?
Generally, Aliexpress is safe as it holds your payment from the seller until your item arrives and you are satisfied with it. However, it is still prudent to buy items with better ratings, buy lower quantities before you commit to a large wholesale order, and make payment only through the Aliexpress web site. This article discusses in more detail whether Aliexpress is safe for buying from China.
Is Aliexpress the cheapest place to buy wholesale from China?
For smaller quantities and the convenience of transacting in an English interface, I would say yes. If you are open to reading Chinese web sites or using a lot of Google translate, TaoBao.com may sometimes have better deals than Aliexpress.
Not all items on Aliexpress are priced reasonably. There are sellers who take advantage of certain keywords to price items higher. So like I said before, always use different keywords to search for an item. Better yet, compare prices across different sites to make sure you get the best deal.