“How To Source Your Private Label Product In China, Without Getting Screwed By Alibaba Suppliers.”
LIKE THE SHOW?
HELPFUL LINKS FROM TODAY’S EPISODE:
The Secret To Shipping From China For AMAZON FBA in 2019 [GUIDE]
Successfully shipping from China for Amazon FBA is a challenge all Amazon Sellers face.
Without the right advice, the road to successful shipping from China is paved with obstacles.
Getting shipping right is an incredibly important step for any Private Label Business. Shipping from China is one of the last hurdles you will face on the road to establishing a successful Amazon FBA Business.
After all the effort you’ve put into finding the perfect product and Chinese manufacturer, it’s important that you get it right.
So how do you get your finished product from China to the Amazon Fulfillment Center?
Since moving to China 2013, I’ve sourced, shipped and listed over 1,000 products on Amazon. I know just how hard it is to get your goods safely from China to your market destination, whether it’s the United States, Australia or Europe.
That’s why today I’ve put together this comprehensive guide on how to successfully ship from China to Amazon FBA. The advice is tried and tested for 2019.
1. Know What You’re Shipping From China
First, it’s vital that you know what you are shipping.
If you don’t, you won’t be able to make the necessary arrangements with a shipping company.
Before you can get an accurate shipping quote, you need to know specific information about your product, such as how it’s boxed and packaged.
If your product’s ready to ship, make sure that your supplier provides you with all of the following information. You’ll need it before you can start making any calls.
- Product Size
- How the product will be shipped. On pallets or in boxes.
- The dimensions of each pallet or box
- How many pallets or boxes will be delivered
- Box volume
- The weight of each box
This information will empower you to speak to shipping companies professionally.
Without it, you won’t be able to get accurate quotes and there’s a danger that you’ll come across as an amateur, or even get scammed.
Incorrect information leads to inaccurate quotes.
If you have an inaccurate quote, there’s a chance that it will be revised upwards after your goods have been collected.
This will leave you out of pocket, and in the worst case scenario, could leave your products stranded in China.
2. Understand When You Need Your Product Shipping From China
There’s more than one way to ship goods from China. You can send them by air, sea and in some cases, rail.
Your choice of shipping method should be based on when you need your product.
- Air freighting is the fastest and most expensive type of shipping. This method can deliver your product in three to eight days.
- Transporting by rail is almost as fast as air freighting, but normally cheaper. You can only transport your products from China by rail if your destination is Europe. This method takes between ten to fourteen days.
- Sea shipping is the cheapest but longest shipping method. Transporting goods by sea often takes six weeks to two months.
If you need your goods in Europe fast, make sure to compare Air Freighting and Rail quotes to get the best deal.
3. Get Shipping Quotes from a Range of Suppliers
Whatever your shipping method, to get the best prices, you need shipping quotes from a range of suppliers.
When looking for transporters, start by asking your Trading Agency or a Manufacturer who they normally use. A good relationship with your supplier’s sales representative will help you discover how much it typically costs them when shipping from China. This will help you get cheaper prices.
When seeking quotes, make sure that you communicate your shipping requirements clearly.
Also, always ask for a full breakdown of costs. This should include everything from export duty and other associated landed costs that the shipping company will charge.
If you’re shipping by air, do yourself a favour and take a look at my previous post about how you can Save Money Air Freighting Products from China. This air freighting guide will give you a complete rundown of how to freight your goods by air, cheaply and securely.
Top Tip: If you are working with a Sourcing Agent, ask them to recommend reliable shipping companies. Remember, Sourcing Agents can also reduce the cost of shipping goods by getting appraching shipping companies on your behalf.
4. Before Shipping From China, Confirm that Your UPC or EAN Labels Are Visible
Amazon loves labels.
When your products are shipped from China to your destination, it’s important that each pallet or box carries your product’s Universal Product Code (UPC) or European Article Number (EAN). These are the unique codes that Amazon use to identify your products.
Often your suppliers will provide you with either a UPC or EAN, however, if they don’t you may need to order one yourself.
The only way that you can get legitimate UPC or EAN labels for your products is to order them from GS1.
Be warned, while you can buy second hand codes, there is the risk that the codes you have bought have been used before. This could mean that you end up with labels that carry company prefixes unrelated to your product category. This could lead to Amazon rejecting your products.
When you have valid UPC or EAN labels, it’s important that your supplier places them clearly to the pallets or boxes carrying your products. It’s also recommended that these barcodes are applied to each individual item, are included in carton labels, and are stuck to all four sides of each pallet.
You do not need a separate UPC or EAN for duplicate products, however you do need separate ones for every unique product. For instance, if you are selling red vases and yellow toys, you would need two unique UPCs or EANs.
5. Understand And Comply With Amazon Shipping And Label Requirements
I can’t repeat it enough. Labeling matters.
It’s also more complicated than you think.
To ensure that Amazon can successfully locate and sell your products after successful shipping from China, it’s recommended that every one needs to have at least two Fulfillment Network Stock Keeping Unit (FNSKU) labels on it.
FNSKU Labels are how Amazon identifies your products.
While you can rely on your UPC or EAN Code, I urge you to use a FNSKU Label as well.
That’s because if you don’t, Amazon might not send your product when customers order it.
If you rely on a UPC or EAN label that’s not your own, there’s a chance that one of your competitors could be using it too. This is because suppliers sometimes sell the same products to multiple Amazon FBA Businesses.
Without a distinguishing FNSKU Code, warehouse pickers may confuse your products with your competitor’s. Which means that they could send the wrong product out to customers.
How To Get An FNSKU Code
To get an FNSKU Label, you need to have an Amazon Seller Account.
Follow these steps to get your code:
- Create a listing for your product
- Once you have created a listing, go to your inventory
- For the products that you’re shipping to Amazon, select Print Item Labels
- Enter and submit your product information
- Print your barcodes
You will need to confirm the number of units you are shipping so you have enough labels.
6. Get Your Products Labeled
Once you have your FNSKU Labels, you have three options:
- If you are receiving your items ahead of sending them to the Amazon Warehouse, you can print and apply the labels yourself
- If your items are being sent straight to the Amazon warehouse, send the PDF labels to your supplier and ask them to apply each one to each individual package
- Alternately, you can pay Amazon a fee and they will attach the labels for you
Remember, if you want your product to ship to your customers, it’s vital that you have an FNSKU Label.
7. Perform Quality Control Before Shipping From China
You want to know exactly what you’re shipping from China to the Amazon warehouse, don’t you?
If you don’t check the quality of your products, how will you know that your product meets your quality standards?
I always recommend that Amazon FBA Sellers perform a quality control check BEFORE their products start shipping from China.
Even if you are getting your products delivered to your house instead of the Amazon Fulfillment Center, remember, if something goes wrong with your order, you’ll have to send them back to China.
In my experience, one out of ten orders are not up to the standard I have agreed with the supplier.
That might not sound like a lot, but the consequences of poorly manufactured products being shipped to you are enormous.
Think about it. If poor quality products are sent to you, are you prepared to do this?
- Agree with your supplier that they will rectify the mistake. Trust me, after you’ve made the final payment this is very hard to do.
- Should your supplier agree to rectify the mistake, pay to have your products shipped BACK to China
- Wait months for the products to be remade.
- Ship the products back to your chosen destination.
If you have to follow these steps, your product will lose its competitive edge. Your products will go out of stock on Amazon, and you will waste time and money.
Avoid all of these issues by having a reputable firm quality control check your products before shipping from China.
It’s cheap, and safe. You can use a reliable supplier like QIMA.
8. Get Tracking Information And Wait
When you’re satisfied that your products are ready to ship and you’ve found the right shipping company to deliver them, it’s time to get them to your destination.
So go on, confirm your shipment with your shipping company. When you confirm your shipment, always make sure you request a tracking number. This will allow you to review your product’s journey.
Be patient. Depending on your chosen method of shipment, it could take anything from three days to two months for your products to arrive.
If you haven’t done it already, use this time to create a professional and well-researched listing for your product.
Successful Shipping From China
If you follow this comprehensive shipping guide you’re guaranteed to get your products shipped safely from China to the Amazon warehouse. That means it’s only a matter of time before you will start making money from your product.
While it may seem like a complicated process, with enough effort you’ll get the hang of it.
Have you already shipped products from China? What’s been the most annoying experience you’ve had?
Help us all deliver our products more professionally by sharing your knowledge in the comments below.