How to Distinguish the Manufacturer from the Distributor on Alibaba?

Author:Site Editor     Publish Time: 2021-07-20      Origin:Site

We often hear customers complain about the following problems: the mass-produced products are not the same as the samples, the production quality is not stable, the delivery is not timely and so on. The root cause of some of these problems is that you have unfortunately chosen an unreliable supplier.

Alibaba is the world's largest online marketplace for manufacturers, and companies and individuals who choose to import products from China must have heard of or used Alibaba. However, the Alibaba list of suppliers does not only include factories, but also trading companies and agents.

With more and more companies seeking ethical sourcing, buyers want to know where the products they buy come from and how they are made, and the goal of ethical sourcing is difficult to achieve if you don't know how to distinguish between the different types of Alibaba suppliers. And with an extra layer of middleman fees for buying from distributors, prices go up and profit margins get squeezed.


So how do we know if the supplier is reliable?


1. Check the store information

(1) verified icon

Once you see this icon, it means this supplier has been inspected onsite by a third-party verification agency. This gives buyers trust and authoritative information about suppliers. Based on this you can identify whether the other party has actual factory production sites, warehouses and other locations. (Special note: Very few distributors will borrow a relative's or friend's factory or office for certification, after changing the brand and factory name)


(2) business license

Business license is a business enterprise and individual operators of the permit to engage in a production and business activities of the certificate. Business license may not be forged, altered, rented, lent, transferred. The registered matters are: name, address, person in charge, amount of capital, economic composition, scope of business, mode of operation, number of employees, duration of operation, etc..

The scope of business must include the products you need. Once you notice anything suspicious on the license, the supplier may be a fake Chinese manufacturer.


2. Use search engine

If you are not good at Chinese, then you can open bing or google and type in the English name of the company. If the company has built an official website in English, you will get all the news of a company from the website, including the date of starting business, office location, brand name, number of employees, product information, etc.

However, many factories focus on production rather than English website building, so if you are good at Chinese, you can open the most commonly used search engine in China, Baidu, and enter the Chinese name of the company so that you can get more information.


3. Confirm the details of the supplier by phone

When a distributor is disguised as a manufacturer, he mainly fakes his phone numbers and emails. The trick to find out if a Chinese supplier is genuine is by calling the phone number he provides. To avoid being traced by law enforcement, most scammers do not provide real registration information online. For example, they will provide fake company addresses, phone and fax numbers. Call them and ask for the company registration number and business license number.


4. Ask the manufacturer for samples

Quality is important, and once consumers receive a product that does not meet expectations, it will affect the store's rating and repurchase rate, so make sure to ask the supplier for samples before mass production. A reliable manufacturer will not have to provide you with faulty samples. If a supplier behaves strangely after you ask for a sample, then he or she is not a reliable supplier.


5. Visit the factory in person

The best way to verify that a manufacturer is trustworthy is to visit their factory. Conduct a factory visit and talk face-to-face with the Chinese manufacturer to learn about product quality, price and warranty, and other matters such as delivery and shipment.

Because of the language barrier and the distance in space, you can ask for help from a local Chinese sourcing agent who can give you an overview of the factory via video chat when the sourcing agent conducts the visit. And after the visit, all the information you need will be organized and sent to you in a combination of video, photos and text.

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