China has long been attractive to westerners because of its low manufacturing costs and the attendant opportunities for mass-market production and distribution. Chinese manufacturers allow western businesses to concentrate on research, development, and expansion. These advantages lead companies to find manufacturing companies in China, although dealing with China is very different from dealing with western businesses.
How To Find Manufacturing Companies In China
To find manufacturing companies in China, many western companies begin by researching online trading platforms such as DHGate and Alibaba. Look for reviews of companies in your industry that have dealt with suppliers of interest to you.
It’s important to differentiate between a manufacturer and a trading company since the companies often describe themselves as manufacturers when they are middlemen selling pre-existent products. If that’s so, you will make less profit. Buying from the production source means you can expect to make 5 – 20% more profit. Components for complex manufacturing are usually bought off the shelf or from other manufacturers.
Chinese trade shows are traditionally good places to find manufacturing companies in China. For 2022, webinars are a viable alternative to trade shows. Additionally, western companies are increasingly using WeChat (China’s equivalent of Facebook Messenger) and Zoom to communicate with Chinese suppliers. While these options are valuable, they can’t hope to replace in-person interaction.
Your industry trade association can also be a valuable source of information on manufacturing companies in China. Your fellow industry associates will often give you insider advice on the best suppliers to work with in China.
For more information, this article has in-depth advice on how to find a supplier.