New to the China Business

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First off, thanks to all that are here helping with new people like myself.

I am military(Army) and have served for 19 1/2yrs thus far.

I want to be my own boss when I retire...hopefully sooner then later. I have a family for 5 and so I cannot afford these deals of 1,000 orders like in Alibaba.
I do keep reading on here about knocking every one down and getting to the source(manifacturer). This is tough for me as I am new to know who's who. This even harder for someone like me to buy a book from a PRO to find out the right websites to go to.

I am hard charching and I am after my goal but then again my wallet cant afford to spend that kind of money.

I have read that dropshipping is great but then I heard NO. all this adds confusion but I guess it all depends on what each individuals goals are

My main goal right now is to sell Name Brand clothes like, Levis, Miss Me, True Religion, ect. Now, where do I get true brands like this without them asking me if I own a retail store?

I truely want to become an entreprenuer but I may be searching in the worng places.

So many questions and concern that I have.


Please help
#brand name #business #china
  • Profile picture of the author Giosell
    Any advice would be appreciated
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    • Profile picture of the author Importexport
      Hi Giosell,

      First let me say that you have a lot to learn as you obviously know. You are unlikely to learn all you need to know by reading forum posts.

      You will find some help, but sorting the good from the bad (and even the ugly) is not easy.

      For example, I see countless times people recommending using various sourcing sites to search for products. Some of those sites can be a wealth hazard.

      Yes I would like you to buy my book, but I also want people like yourself to succeed. This why I do these things:
      • I post genuinely helpful advice on the forum
      • I correct what I know to be misinformation that is often published on the forum. I think it is usually meant to be helpful, but with my many years of experience as an importer I know that it can lead people astray.
      One thing that I do not do is:
      • Publish online the details of the safe sourcing sites that I recommend.
      There are some very good reasons for that. The main one is because I have seen too many people go off half-cocked and get themselves into trouble, but you might like to look at the thread: If your secret B2B portals are so safe why don't you share? There you will find a lot of helpful information to consider before you get started. You will also get some idea of what is involved if you have look at the Q&As on my website.

      In answer to a specific point you made about orders for 1,000 items like you see required by suppliers on Alibaba:
      • You are looking in the wrong place. Most suppliers listed on Alibaba and most other popular sourcing sites as manufacturers are NOT. They are traders, wholesalers and agents.
      • I have taught hundreds of people how to get real manufacturers to agree to small orders.
      • Traders and wholesalers are mostly very inflexible when it comes to Minimum Order Quantities. (MOQs) I can explain why if you want to know. Manufacturers can be more flexible but will only agree to small quantities if you approach them the right way.
      • Traders and wholesalers buy from the manufacturers and add a substantial margin before they sell to you. You can pocket that extra margin yourself.
      • Big MOQs are there primarily to deter newbies and wannabees. Most newbies blow it in their first contact with suppliers, and complain that they don't get a response.
      If you particularly want to sell brand name clothing, you will not have much option but to buy from local distributors, and the margins in that case will be rather poor. A possible exception might be if you can find brands overseas that are not prohibited as parallel imports.

      That subject is a big one and probably not something a newbie should try, but if interested, I have published an article on the subject on my blog.

      Best wishes,
      Walter
      Signature
      Use emotions and perceptions to build a great brand. Ask me about my book LabelsThatExploit. For safe sourcing and easy importing from 41 countries globally, see https://provenglobalsourcing.com
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      • Profile picture of the author Giosell
        Import,
        Thanks for the info.

        -What are the right things to say and speak of to these hidden unknown manifacturer personnel.
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        • Profile picture of the author Importexport
          Originally Posted by Giosell View Post

          Import,
          Thanks for the info.

          -What are the right things to say and speak of to these hidden unknown manifacturer personnel.
          Hi Giosell,

          It is good to see how much helpful advice is being offered by a few people who know what they are talking about.

          Regarding your question, it is not so much a matter of what to say, as what not to say.
          • Don't mention that you are new to the business.
          • Don't tell them you are a sole trader.
          • Don't offer your business plan like you would to a supplier in the USA.
          • Don't ask what is their MOQ. They will tell you soon enough. That is when you might start working on them to supply a lot less.
          • Don't offer your tax or business registration details.
          • Don't ask for samples early in your communications with them, and don't expect them to be free.
          • Don't haggle. Most "experts" will tell you to do so, but there are good reasons why you should not and I teach why you don't need to. This issue is even more critical in the early stages. If you try to talk the price down early on you will suddenly find no more emails arrive.
          There are a few things you should say:
          • Tell them you are an established importer.
          • Tell them quality is important to you.
          • Ask them for a copy of their catalog, preferably a printed version.
          • Give them your business name. Don't have one? Invent one.
          • Give yourself a title such as Purchasing Manager.
          This is a start. If you had a look at the thread link I quoted originally you will have seen more helpful stuff.

          I agree with DWolfe's comments also. Particularly about the Alibaba rep's comments and also about selling big brand clothing.
          Signature
          Use emotions and perceptions to build a great brand. Ask me about my book LabelsThatExploit. For safe sourcing and easy importing from 41 countries globally, see https://provenglobalsourcing.com
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  • Profile picture of the author Giosell
    I'm trying to prospoect and develop a rapport with some of these people but I can see that it takes time.
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  • Profile picture of the author redlegrich
    Giosell, forget selling brand name clothes. Ain't gonna happen! Reputable distributors won't sell to you, and otherwise you are getting grey market or counterfeit products. And, more importantly you will struggle to make any money with this tactic.

    ImportExport and AuctionDebt Eliminator offer the most solid advice in this particular forum thread. If you can't afford to purchase what they have then you are going to spend the money some other way, and it will be more. Way more! Failure has a way of extracting a much higher price than adequate preparation.

    You're a soldier, get your drive on rag on and suck it up.
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    • Profile picture of the author Giosell
      Red,
      LOL I like that last line.
      ImportExport is awesome. I have red one thread he was replying on. He specifies great stuff. As for the Jean companies, I do well selling used jeans so I am guessing that NEW would do even better. I am just basing this on my experience with used jeans.

      Right now I am trying to track down toys and this particular agent in Alibaba told me to get up with Habros.com in the US. I said, I would like to be in contact with the person/people in which you get your products from(I know he wouldnt tell me)(manufacturer) but I tried. It would do me no good to try anything from US side....correct?
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  • Profile picture of the author redlegrich
    Not likely. Seriously, you simply will not be able to buy brand name products from major corporations. It just does not work that way. Buying from China can be profitable, although as a former trade development guy for Australia I'll say there are a LOT of other countries with tons of quality products you can import and resell.

    In your shoes, I'd be looking at eBay and Amazon as your outlets. Doing your own site straight away will be VERY challenging.

    Selling used brand name stuff is fine, it's hard to scale as product availability is unpredictable. But, it gives you good practice at knowing how to place listings and fulfill orders.

    Anyway, learn from the experts. They are in this forum and you'll figure out who is smart and who is full of walnuts.
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  • Profile picture of the author malia
    Giosell, forget selling brand name clothes. Ain't gonna happen! Reputable distributors won't sell to you, and otherwise you are getting grey market or counterfeit products. And, more importantly you will struggle to make any money with this tactic.
    This is true. I just want to clarify that when it comes to branded/designer clothing, accessories, etc., there are no distributors. There are manufacturers and sales reps. Some manufacturers/brands have their own showrooms and "house reps" but with very rare exception (those being brands trying to enter foreign markets) there are no "distributors".

    My main goal right now is to sell Name Brand clothes like, Levis, Miss Me, True Religion, ect. Now, where do I get true brands like this without them asking me if I own a retail store?
    I sell an ebook on this topic (buying and selling designer apparel and accessories), that has been around for a very long time. I don't promote it in this forum, but if you PM me, I will send it to you as a thank you for your service to this country.
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    • Profile picture of the author bemyboss
      Hi Malia,

      Can you send me a copy too? I really like to learn how to setup my online business. I have been scammed many times joining online programs, buying ebooks and softwares to start and run my business. Recently I was looking at buying Mobile Money Code or Free Cash Formula. Now, I am checking here whether they are scams.

      Thanks and regards
      LSN
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  • Profile picture of the author Giosell
    RED
    Also, as IMPORT stated in his other thread, I cannot afford to place large orders, and I don't have to. He teaches how to negotiate small orders at ex-factory prices.

    This is my goal
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  • Profile picture of the author Giosell
    Malia,
    Thank you for the support towards us Soldiers.

    I'm not trying to get those name brand clothes from china or any other Alibaba type website, but yet from its sources here on state side.

    As for the Ebook, what do you need from me
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    • Profile picture of the author malia
      Originally Posted by Giosell View Post


      As for the Ebook, what do you need from me

      Just PM me your email address.
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  • Profile picture of the author Giosell
    Also, an Alibaba agent once told me "you can get i legal trouble if you get it from manufacturer"....so i'm sitting here thinking well whats the difference between you and him?
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    • Profile picture of the author DWolfe
      Originally Posted by Giosell View Post

      Also, an Alibaba agent once told me "you can get i legal trouble if you get it from manufacturer"....so i'm sitting here thinking well whats the difference between you and him?
      Sounds like the Alibaba agent might of been trying to sell you some bull,with that comment. Or he did not clarify his statement. If you are buying from Hasbro Toys as a Lic. distributor you are not doing any thing illegal.. Think about it ?

      On the other hand if Hasbro has a supplier off shore. And you approach the off shore supplier to sell those products to you at cost. So you can make a better profit your going to have issues with Hasbro. That might be what the Alibaba agent might be trying to say.

      Trying to sell name brand products you will be competing against large companies that buy much larger volumes at a fraction of the cost. Plus they have an advantage of faster turn around on the products. Selling name brand jeans and toys you will be competing against the likes of Walmart's. ToysR Us and other retail giants. Plus the top rated sellers on E-bay and Amazon.

      It takes time to learn this stuff and only a few on this section of this forum seem to know what they are talking about. Be careful or you will end up with products in a spare room or garage taking up space or you will need to sell at a loss to get rid of the stuff. I would suggest seeing who seems to be walking the talk. You can go to a book store like Barnes and Nobel and looking in the business section and find books on Importing and Exporting. Try looking at the Small Business Admin. Website for help.
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  • Profile picture of the author Giosell
    Import,
    NICE Advice. You truly have been around the block more than one day. You are awesome.

    I am just aggravated because I am making ONLY about $300 a month selling used jeans and polo shirts with the small inventory I pick up at thrift shops. My goal is $2,000 a month for right now.

    With me being military, I do not have all the time in the world to be running around thrift shops, except on Saturdays but weekend, I try to commit to my family. So its tough on me. This is why I want to just order off the web and have it come to me. I feel like I am trying too hard with these folks overseas and getting no where.

    I spend too much time in front of a screen and accomplish nothing.
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  • Profile picture of the author Giosell
    Malia
    I sent you a PM with my email

    Everyone,
    Seems as if I cant get on this website on my military computer no longer. Might be the fact that "the China conversation" is involved. I will be answering from the house from now on. Please keep bringing the advises.

    IMPORT,
    While I am waiting for Malia to send me her Ebook, I wanted to ask what you do or have you dealt with true big companies from the United States. If so, have you gave away a Tax ID Number, Business name, ect? I am saying to myself that there is no way around this but I would like to hear your answer, if I may.
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    • Profile picture of the author Importexport
      Hi Giosell,

      I don't know any way to get around that. If they ask for them they won't deal with you until you provide the details.

      Regards,
      Walter
      Signature
      Use emotions and perceptions to build a great brand. Ask me about my book LabelsThatExploit. For safe sourcing and easy importing from 41 countries globally, see https://provenglobalsourcing.com
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  • Profile picture of the author Giosell
    Malia
    File wouldnt open
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    • Profile picture of the author malia
      Originally Posted by Giosell View Post

      Malia
      File wouldnt open
      I don't check the WF often, but I included the password for the PDF file in the email I sent you when I attached it. I wish you the best of luck with this.
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  • Profile picture of the author Giosell
    Import
    What local major store do you recommend to get inventory from at 75% off items?
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    • Profile picture of the author Importexport
      Originally Posted by Giosell View Post

      Import
      What local major store do you recommend to get inventory from at 75% off items?
      You have me puzzled. I think you have someone else in mind. Sorry.
      Walter
      Signature
      Use emotions and perceptions to build a great brand. Ask me about my book LabelsThatExploit. For safe sourcing and easy importing from 41 countries globally, see https://provenglobalsourcing.com
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  • Profile picture of the author flivai
    Giosell,

    Just a few words I wanted to share. You mentioned named brand clothing. I've bought 10's of thousand's of dollars worth of merchandise from China. You have to be careful because these items are MOST of the time "bootleg". You can lose a lot because if customs seizes your shipment you're credit card is not protected since you are buying "outside of the country" Trust me, it's happened to me twice. Not to say I didn't make a ton but you want to research the items you are looking for. There are a lot of things other than clothes that you can make a huge profit on. Just food for thought.
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    • Profile picture of the author Importexport
      Originally Posted by flivai View Post

      Giosell,

      Just a few words I wanted to share. You mentioned named brand clothing. I've bought 10's of thousand's of dollars worth of merchandise from China. You have to be careful because these items are MOST of the time "bootleg". You can lose a lot because if customs seizes your shipment you're credit card is not protected since you are buying "outside of the country" Trust me, it's happened to me twice. Not to say I didn't make a ton but you want to research the items you are looking for. There are a lot of things other than clothes that you can make a huge profit on. Just food for thought.
      Buying bootleg, knockoffs, or imitations, whether branded with big brands or not is very risky.

      It is not just a matter of having the goods confiscated. In some cases prosecutions follow, with hefty fines and in extreme case jail time. In some cases that I know of the brand owner has sued and the importer has been bankrupted.

      But in certain cases it is legal to import branded goods.

      You might like to have a look at a brief comment on this subject in my thread: Legally Importing Big Brands but to get a more complete picture I suggest you have a look at my blog on the subject.

      I would never try it without expert advice, but wow! ...... the rewards can be staggering if you do it legally.
      Signature
      Use emotions and perceptions to build a great brand. Ask me about my book LabelsThatExploit. For safe sourcing and easy importing from 41 countries globally, see https://provenglobalsourcing.com
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  • Profile picture of the author mattie77
    Hi Giosell, You dont need to buy big items or huge quantities to make a living out of Importing. I currently make $700+ profit per week from importing and Ebay. I wont give away my niche but for what a pay $4 I sell on Ebay for $27.50.

    All up about an hour a day packaging and posting.

    Yes there is a middle man I use AliExpress. I have made great relationships with suppliers by doing this and now deal directly with them. These are wholesalers not manufacturers.

    My products take up no more than 2sq feet and actually sit under my desk. I am currently doing some ground work to step up to growing my business and bringing in larger quantities of other products.

    There are many traps in importing from China, I would suggest checking out someone like EasyImex to import larger quantities as you don't have to bring in a full container.

    It may all seem overwhelming but keep at it and don't over commit.

    P.S. My niche has nothing to do with cell phones
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    • Profile picture of the author Importexport
      Originally Posted by mattie77 View Post

      Hi Giosell, You dont need to buy big items or huge quantities to make a living out of Importing. I currently make $700+ profit per week from importing and Ebay. I wont give away my niche but for what a pay $4 I sell on Ebay for $27.50.

      All up about an hour a day packaging and posting.

      Yes there is a middle man I use AliExpress. I have made great relationships with suppliers by doing this and now deal directly with them. These are wholesalers not manufacturers.

      My products take up no more than 2sq feet and actually sit under my desk. I am currently doing some ground work to step up to growing my business and bringing in larger quantities of other products.

      There are many traps in importing from China, I would suggest checking out someone like EasyImex to import larger quantities as you don't have to bring in a full container.

      It may all seem overwhelming but keep at it and don't over commit.

      P.S. My niche has nothing to do with cell phones
      Aliexpress is not the middleman they just provide place where buyers and sellers can find one another. The wholesaler you buy from is the middleman.

      If you can buy from a wholesaler for $4 how much is he paying to the manufacturer? You can buy direct from genuine manufacturers but you won't find many of those on Aliexpress. Check them out on Ripoffreport,com and see how lucky you have been.

      I have seen many people think they are getting fantastic prices by buying from wholesalers, but they really don't know what they are missing.

      Here is what one of my book buyers wrote: " I have contacted some manufacturers already (from links he supplies) and I am just shocked at the low prices they offer for products I am researching. Forget Alibaba, Global Resource, whatever."

      You can see the full comments in the thread: ebook about import from China
      Signature
      Use emotions and perceptions to build a great brand. Ask me about my book LabelsThatExploit. For safe sourcing and easy importing from 41 countries globally, see https://provenglobalsourcing.com
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  • Profile picture of the author sashimi999
    Wow, very informative!
    As a newbie in e commerce, I really need help from real expert as well.
    I think I am going to buy this book from Walter.
    Thank you.
    Signature

    Michael C

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  • Profile picture of the author Bowdown
    two things - one, you are trying to get into something very competitive and two, you aren't going to be able to get those name brand items in china - they will be counterfeit, and you can run into legal issues if that is the case.

    Why not pick something more generic (maybe something that isn't a brand name) and find a niche where you won't have to compete with the big retailers? Niche out. find it, pursue it, never stop learning.
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    • Profile picture of the author Importexport
      Originally Posted by Bowdown View Post

      two things - one, you are trying to get into something very competitive and two, you aren't going to be able to get those name brand items in china - they will be counterfeit, and you can run into legal issues if that is the case.

      Why not pick something more generic (maybe something that isn't a brand name) and find a niche where you won't have to compete with the big retailers? Niche out. find it, pursue it, never stop learning.
      You are quite right Bowdown.

      It is quite easy to develop your own brand and it does not have to be cosmetics, supplements, or food products, all of which I would never import from China.

      You can put your own brand to almost any product, preferably a generic one, but custom made is possible if you have a bit more capital.
      Signature
      Use emotions and perceptions to build a great brand. Ask me about my book LabelsThatExploit. For safe sourcing and easy importing from 41 countries globally, see https://provenglobalsourcing.com
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