Buying from China Wholesale Suppliers: Know Each Region's Specialty
This article was written by the team at Guided Imports, the leading China Sourcing, Quality Inspection and Shipping company for high-growth brands.
Browsing Alibaba and Global Sources is one way of finding China Wholesale Suppliers. But buyers who put in the legwork of actually going to China, attending trade shows and personally interviewing suppliers usually have an advantage.
However, before you go jetting off to China, it’s a good idea to have a general lay of the land. You need to understand that each region has its own manufacturing specialty. Here’s a quick overview of the trends in the four major manufacturing areas in China. Keep in mind that none of these are hard and fast rules; there will be exceptions to every generalization. China is also a rapidly developing country. Any borders we draw today may look different a few months from now. By knowing these trends, buyers can make better informed manufacturing decisions when buying from China wholesale suppliers.
China’s main heavy industrial base is in the iron-, coal- and oil-rich Northeast. Buyers in search of China wholesale suppliers for aircraft and automotive parts, shipyard equipment and steel-intensive products will find themselves in good company here. However, manufacturers of consumer products are few and far between in this region. Due to the region’s generally low production costs, if you can find a supplier qualified to manufacture consumer goods, you may get a lower price than you would elsewhere. But things like intellectual property protection, quality control, and supplier relationship management require closer attention here than in the more active consumer goods manufacturing areas. In short: production needs to be watched closely at all times.
The Pearl River Delta, which lies between Hong Kong, Guangzhou and the surrounding areas, is the major hub of consumer goods manufacturing in China. The region has been a testing ground for the central government’s economic reforms, and as a result the PRD has been transformed into an environment that is exceedingly friendly to foreign investment and export. This is apparent everywhere from Guangdong province’s legal system, to the nightlife, to the massive urban industrial infrastructure. Buyers can find qualified and experienced China wholesale suppliers for virtually any consumer product in the Pearl River Delta.
Production costs here may be relatively high compared to the other regions, but you’ll be paying for a level of quality and customer service that is unavailable in most other parts of the country. And as we’ve written before, price can be negotiated more easily than quality in this part of China. However, always remember that you get what you pay for here. If you pressure a factory to lower their prices beyond what they usually do, they will find a way to recoup the lost profits. Always.
Shenzhen, in the heart of the Pearl River Delta, is home to the China wholesale suppliers that manufacture iPhones and produce parts for Dell, Toshiba, Hewlett-Packard, IBM brand computers. It is the number one consumer goods manufacturing city in the number one manufacturing country in the world. It’s no wonder that’s where we decided to headquarter Guided Imports!
Centered around the east coast city of Shanghai, the Yangtze River Delta is China’s domestic manufacturing hub. This region’s productive capacity puts it in the same ballpark as the Pearl River Delta. However, suppliers here in the Yangtze River Delta are more likely to produce at relatively high output and low quality, at least relative to Western standards. China wholesale suppliers here may be less experienced in Western product safety compliance, and intellectual property theft tends to be especially widespread here. But the Yangtze River Delta is capable of offering lower prices than most other industrial areas.
If quality is not your top priority and IP theft isn’t a concern — for example, if you’re looking to manufacture promotional materials — you may find the Yangtze River Delta perfectly suited for your needs.
Industrial development along China’s landlocked western border has taken place at a much slower pace compared to the coastal areas to the east. In order to change this, the Chinese central government has begun to enact policies aimed at bringing the West “up to speed.” This has involved the allocation of trillions of dollars in subsidies and resources in order to allow the Western areas to offer cheap, efficient labor and low overhead costs. On the one hand, this can create an attractive opportunity for foreign investors and importers.
But on the other hand, China wholesale suppliers and their employees in the West simply are not as experienced in production as their East coast counterparts. And this goes double for producing goods to meet Western product standards. As time goes on, it’s very likely that the Western provinces will catch up to the East in this respect as well. But until then, buyers should proceed with caution when looking westward for factories.
Since 2008, Guided Imports has helped thousands of businesses successfully source, manufacture, and import from China. With clients ranging from Amazon FBA entrepreneurs to multinational retail giants and the US Government, we can help you optimize, streamline, and automate your China business affairs so you can focus on growing your market share, increasing revenue, and building your brand. For more information, discounts, guides, ebooks, tips, and advice, sign up below to receive periodic emails customized to your interests.