The Complete Guide to Selling through Alibaba

The Complete Guide for Selling through Alibaba

What is Alibaba?

If you’re fairly acquainted with the E-commerce business, you’ve heard of Alibaba, the Chinese ecommerce company providing manufacturing sourcing options for businesses at affordable prices.

Alibaba is a comprehensive directory of suppliers, connecting them to buyers across the world. Alibaba levels the sourcing playing field for legacy brands and small businesses. The company also operates other related e-commerce sites, including Taobao, Tmall, and AliExpress.

How does Alibaba handle quality control?

Alibaba consistently tracks down and blacklist those who are scammers. For buyers, there are multiple ways to ensure that you avoid falling prey to these activities.

  • Choose Escrow as a Payment Option: The escrow payment option holds your payment in escrow until you’re satisfied upon receiving the product.
  • Contact the Supplier:  If you are wary about who you are purchasing from, ask them for a contact to get a sense of the business and the people you will be working with.
  • Request a Quote: RFQ is a simple process for a buyer to feel out a supplier’s process as well as negotiate.
  • Verify Suppliers: Much like eBay and Amazon, Alibaba has a verification system for suppliers according to their trade track record.

Begin Your Alibaba Selling Journey

 In all, sourcing products and receiving shipments from can be a ground-breaking opportunity for your business to expand its product offering. China’s middle class is expected to grow to 800 million people by 2030, and according to Sydney University is Australia’s second largest market for pharmaceuticals, with exports totaling $381 million in 2013-2014. Host of Australian companies are increasingly selling products to a lucrative Chinese middle class hungry for high-quality health, supplements, food and cosmetics products through global conglomerate Alibaba.

Partnerships with Woolworths, Australia Post

The conglomerate has already formed partnerships with Woolworths and in May 2014 signed a deal with Australia Post to connect Australian consumers with Chinese manufacturers while at the same time boosting Chinese consumption of Australian products.

Overcoming the Language Barrier

Language barriers are among the most difficult challenges of global retail and international trade, but Alibaba has tools to help tackle traditional communications barriers. Multi-language sites: Alibaba’s 15 different language sites help suppliers connect with businesses whose preferred language is not English.

Selling on Alibaba

For vendors it is important to examine the market to make sure there is an audience for said goods. Alibaba is readily used to export items from China. This, however, may change. Alibaba has announced an initiative to invite American small business owners and entrepreneurs to focus on products targeting Chinese consumers. Alibaba is an excellent marketing engine for suppliers, but new vendors should keep in mind that it can take years rise to the top of Alibaba’s search results and account for this expense.