Tips for finding a good suppliers or manufacturers in China

chinese manufacturers

Tips for finding a good suppliers or manufacturers in China

If you purchase customized or made-to-order products, you need to look for the right source. Switching suppliers down the road can be difficult—getting the development and the production right can take more than six months for a new factory—so it’s important to find a good supplier to begin with.

Basic Criteria for a New Supplier

Do not look for:

  • The biggest factory
  • The lowest price
  • ISO9001 certification (necessarily, as this accreditation is easy to apply for and not necessarily meaningful)

Instead, when looking for your first supplier, ask: “is my business attractive to this supplier, and is he capable of delivering as needed?”
The most important aspect of your first supplier is their size. Do not choose a huge manufacturer who won’t be flexible and will never give you priority. Conversely, avoid small workshops (less than 80 workers) that are highly unreliable. Ideally, you should represent 10% to 50% of their volume.

What Does a Good Factory Look Like?

Before committing to an order, you should have a good look at the factory—either in person, by sending your staff, or using an independent auditor. The best things to look out for are:

  • Is it large enough for your orders during the peak season?
  • Do they regularly make products very similar to yours?
  • Is their quality system reliable enough?
  • Can they give you references of other customers that you can call?

Beware of Uncontrolled Subcontracting

Subcontracting to a cheaper workshop is common in China, and it is detrimental to quality in 95% of cases.
To prevent it, there are two things you can do:

  • Ask your supplier to certify in writing that production will take place in the factory they presented
  • Conduct an inspection when production in under way and/or is finished (before shipment)

About EC4U Ltd

EC4U Ltd is the professional and reliable sourcing agent in China. We are sourcing and producing non-food consumer goods for Brand owners. Our roots are in Europe, our operations in China mainland and Hong Kong.

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