China to the Amazon FBA

Whether you are new to the Amazon game or not, the fact remains, getting your stuff from China to the Amazon FBA to fulfill your orders should not be that hard.  But- it can be.  We have all been there.  If you don’t know what you are doing or if you go through the wrong people it can turn your business into a liability and a disaster.  We want to help you avoid this and we can’t think of a better way then to recommend China Freight.  They have many positive reviews and have worked hard to be an industry leader.

We have been at this game for a while, and we have had just about every type of experience under the sun with shipments getting lost, being stolen, and having to deal with huge headaches and misunderstandings during the transportation of our goods.  We’ve been there, done that.  What a difference it can make to have a transportation outfit you can trust that you know will get your goods from point A to point B with minimal hassle and headache.  Shipping from China to Amazon FBA is a fantastic business strategy and people all over the world are finding success with it.  It’s not a difficult process, but you do need to know what you are doing to save time, money, headache and hassle.

Every Amazon business owner has the same goal.  Everyone wants to find the best selling Amazon products and then get them manufactured.  Once they have been manufactured, they need to be shipped to any of the various Amazon FBA centers that dot the globe and hope you can get your goods from China to Amazon FBA with the cheapest rates possible to maximize your profit margins.

There are two main options you can choose when you are deciding how to get your goods from China to Amazon FBA.  You can either ship your goods to yourself or a middleman or then ship them to Amazon FBA, or you can ship them directly to Amazon FBA straight from your manufacturer’s warehouse in China.  If you can get your supplier to ship your goods directly from China to Amazon FBA then you may save yourself time, money, and hassle because you are taking out an additional step.  However, there are guidelines from Amazon FBA and your products need to arrive according to their specifications.  Do you trust your supplier to get your goods to Amazon FBA in the right shape and according to the Amazon FBA specifications?  If you can trust that your supplier will follow the specification instructions, then it makes sense to have your supplier ship directly to the Amazon FBA fulfillment center and save yourself the step.  However, if you aren’t sure and if you can’t trust your supplier to follow the specifications then you are better off having your supplier send your products to you or another middleman so that you can ensure they will reach Amazon FBA in the proper form and all specifications have been met.  It can be an expensive mistake if this part isn’t done right.  You will want to save yourself the trouble and issues if at all possible.  You have to remember that when you are dealing with shipping goods from China to Amazon FBA, language barriers are a very real issue.  The communication gap can be pretty significant.  This is still a very common practice though and many Chinese suppliers are getting better and better at following Amazon FBA specifications.  It’s not a perfect practice though.  You will want to pay particular attention to the specifications and make sure you have very clearly defined and outlined your needs when it comes to FBA specifications.

If you are going to have your products shipped to you instead of straight to Amazon FBA centers, you will have the opportunity to inspect your products and make sure they live up to the specifications and to your own product requirements.

If you are new to the Amazon game, you probably have a bunch of different questions like finding products, how to build good relationships that will work long-term with suppliers, how to get your products imported, how to price your products etc.  There is a lot to learn when you decide to jump into the Amazon world.  It can be overwhelming if you don’t know where to turn or what to do first.  That’s why we are here to help.  We want to make this process as easy as possible for you.

Shipping directly to Amazon FBA from China

If you want to skip the middleman step and ship directly to Amazon FBA from China, it may be a good way to go.  Obviously, you will have faster transit times which is already a plus because shipping goods from China over to the United States or U.K. can already add some serious time to your timeline.  Shipping times from China, though they have improved somewhat, are still long.  The faster you can get your products to the warehouse, the faster you can start selling them on Amazon and the faster you can start making money.  It’s a win-win for all involved.  You can also skip the middle step and middle expense of having to pay someone else to inspect your items.

There are some challenges when trying to get your goods to an Amazon FBA center.  As we have already discussed, your products need to meet all of the shipping requirements set by Amazon.  They also need to meet packaging requirements and other standards.  Again, you aren’t there to inspect your products when they arrive so you’ll have to hope that all standards are met.  You are also responsible to pay all fees, duties, taxes and freight charges before your products arrive at Amazon FBA from China.  Amazon absolutely will not pay a single penny to accept your products if they haven’t been paid for in their entirety before they show up to the warehouse.  You will want to be absolutely certain that your goods are shipped Delivery Duty Paid (DDP).   Make sure any charges that are going to be charged come to you and not Amazon.  They will have no problem rejecting your entire order that you may have paid several hundreds of dollars to ship all because they were going to be charged a small $10 in duties that were going to be charged to them.  We’ve heard all sorts of stories like that, so your best bet is to do everything within your power to avoid any fees being charged to Amazon.  There is a rule however that if you are shipping products that are worth $800 or less to an Amazon FBA site in the United States, then your shipment will fall under the $800 de minimis threshold and you will not be charged any duties and your goods should arrive at Amazon FBA without any charges or duties owing.  Stay up to date on these types of regulations, however, because they can change at any time.

Another thing that can complicate things is that Amazon can also request to have your products shipped to different warehouses and not just one centralized location- so carefully read the small print before you do anything.

Shipping Products to Yourself or a Middleman

There are certainly pros and cons to shipping your products from China to yourself or a middleman instead of straight to Amazon FBA from China.  If you choose to go this route, you will have the peace of mind knowing that your products meet all of Amazon’s specifications.  You can inspect them yourself to ensure you haven’t missed out on something and won’t cause yourself additional work.  There are a lot of different third-party logistics companies that will happily act as your middleman and then forward your goods on to Amazon FBA.  They will make sure your products meet the requirements of FBA and it can also give you a little more autonomy from your Chinese suppliers and it may help you keep some of your sales strategies private instead of advertising them to your suppliers.  Many Chinese suppliers have started to see the inherent benefit of selling their products straight to Amazon FBA instead of waiting for a buyer like you to buy their goods. As soon as you ask a supplier to label your goods with Amazon FBA labels and you tell them which warehouse to ship to etc., you have just shown them your sales strategies for these channels.  If they see that you are selling hundreds or thousands of units of something- they will very likely decide that they too want to get in on this sales channel and they may undercut your business.

Another point to consider is that your goods will most likely also be shipped from China to Amazon FBA in a consolidated form, which can be a plus as well.  However, it will be an added cost either in money if you choose to pay someone else to receive and inspect your goods, or added the cost of your time if you choose to do it yourself.  It may come back to personal preferences.  We know some people who demand to be able to inspect their own products.   It’s an important part of their process and important for their peace of mind.  For others, they don’t care at all.  If their goods get to where they are supposed to go and meet all the specifications needed, that’s a plus if they don’t have to inspect or touch the goods themselves.

Using a middleman can be very helpful if this is your first shipment from China to Amazon FBA.  Also, it can be helpful financially to have consolidated shipments from China if you are just starting out or are under a budget crunch.

Other Considerations

In recent years it has become wildly popular to source products from China and ships them to other countries to sell on sites like Amazon.  Platforms like Aliexpress and Alibaba have made it possible for companies and individuals both large and small to get access to the same products.  There are many things to consider before you jump on the bandwagon and start importing Chinese goods.

Obviously, you will want to check the products and make sure they comply with any laws or rules in your country.  Just because a supplier is offering a product, doesn’t mean they are in compliance with all laws, patents, regulations, and rules.  In fact, suppliers are in the market to sell products and make money.  They are not in the market to always play by the rules or laws of differing countries.  Don’t allow yourself to get caught with an entire warehouse full of goods that end up needing to be destroyed because you didn’t check to make sure they complied with your countries standards.  That will be a huge costly mistake and one that could have been avoided altogether.  Check your local laws and policies, procedures, and best practices.   Legal provisions can differ wildly from location to location.  If you are working with a supplier that can’t produce the corresponding certificates (and every supplier should know what certificates are required), then find a different supplier.

Also, know what your prices are and know that they fluctuate.  Exchange rates change, logistics service fees change and the price for goods and services change.  Build this into your pricing model so that you can adapt to the changes instead of finding yourself stuck with a price that won’t help your model.  Logistics alone can cost upwards of 50% of the price of your product.  That’s huge.  Know what your costs and fees are going in and be sure to adjust accordingly.

We also suggest knowing you who are dealing with.  It’s not safe to assume that a supplier is trustworthy just because they are marketing themselves through Alibaba or Aliexpress.  Those platforms just like any other wildly popular platforms have given scammers a home to try to scam others.  These platforms offer the place to come and do business but they don’t guarantee their suppliers or vet their users.  Be very careful about who you engage and make sure you don’t pay for a shipment in total upfront.  It is common to pay for half now and a half on arrival or some other sort of payment plan like that.  If a supplier is demanding 100% up front, product unseen- move on.  Chances are you are going to get scammed.  Keep in mind; the previously named sources for suppliers aren’t the only sources out there.  In fact, these platforms are the small to medium size companies, which means larger companies, aren’t even on there.  Another source you can look at is made-in-china.com

All Things Logistics

Shipping from China to UK have been positive and encouraging for those who are looking for a better way to send their goods from China to another country.  They value their customer experience and want to ensure these shipments are going to get where they are going, on time, safely, efficiently and effectively.  A big part of the cost is in logistics.  Using a service like China Freight can save a ton of time, expense and hassle because they take the whole process and break it down step by step for their clients to ensure the customer experience is top-notch.  China Freight has done a great job in learning the ins and outs of their customer’s businesses.  They can ensure your goods arrive at their destination with all required paperwork and within the shipping time frame, you were quoted.  Everything from start to finish has been worked out with China Freight.  They have made a name for themselves as a global leader in the logistics industry.  They are fast, reliable, trustworthy and professional.  We can’t say enough good things about them- and we’ve seen it all.  We’ve previously had some terrible experiences trying to get our goods from China to our Amazon FBA.  Using China Freight has been a pretty stress-free experience, which is not what we can say for other outfits we have used.  They also have local and regional warehousing options available for your goods and even help with all of the customs requirements when importing your goods.  Another thing that has been paramount is their ability to consolidate cargo and shipments, which has helped save an enormous cost when trying to get various different shipments from various different suppliers in China.  They will consolidate those shipments into one shipment to save time, money and hassle.  Another important point that they have not skipped over is insurance for your shipments.  You never know when something unexpected happens and if you don’t have good insurance for your goods, you will be out of luck and out a ton of money.  They work with some of the best carriers in the world and offer full insurance for every shipment.  In fact, China Freight has a whole division that is dedicated to Amazon FBA.  They have made it a simple process from start to finish and you can’t go wrong using China Freight for all of your Amazon FBA needs.