Import from China via a broker. Why is this a safer option?

15 May 2019
4/5 - (2 votes)
Import from China via a broker. Why is this a safer option?

Many Chinese importers did not start by looking for a broker, at all. They would often say, “I can do it myself and I will not pay a broker, I need to cut costs.” However, after some time they came across problems of various types. And then they would contact me.

import z chin z pośrednikiem czy bez

An importer from China without a broker. The most common problems and traps

Checking the company and supplier, customs duty from China, importing from China via the Internet or transport from China to Poland are not the only things that can go wrong and bring problems to a person who is just starting his/her adventure with Chinese business and has the ambition to do it alone without brokers. Here are the types of problems most frequently reported to me by Customers:

  • “Everything was great until we paid the money. Contact is no longer the same as before – or the supplier in China stopped returning our calls,
  • “Both CE and certificates were supposed to be applied. We received them by email, and the Customs Office verified them and stated that they are worthless pieces of paper” – that is, invalid certificates of quality of goods from China,
  • “We received samples and approved them. Everything was correct, but after the container was opened, the goods turned out to be other than the sample” – that is, the product from China does not correspond to the description,
  • “When placing an order, everything was agreed and the factory accepted the order. Now, after the payment, it turns out that the factory in China is not able to execute the order as we agreed at the beginning – meaning the Chinese supplier takes an advance payment and does not want to execute the order
  • “Before the advance payment, everything was dealt with. After the payment, it turned out that it would not be possible to proceed as agreed, and we had to pay extra or give up certain options”,- that is, the Chinese factory changed the terms of the order after the advance payment,
  • “The product was to be produced within 30 days. We have already been waiting for 60 days and it is still not send – or delay in the production or transport of goods from China.

These are just selected situations and problems that customers, who wanted to import from China without a broker, reported to me. Unfortunately, I could mention many other such situations, because there were definitely more of them. All those who had these situations -had one thing in common, they initially stated that they did not want to pay for the broker service (1 to 5% of the value of the invoice) and thus increase their profits. Did this cost-saving pay off for them? Not necessarily.

The advantages of importing goods from China via a broker

I will tell you which advantages result from using the broker services. You will judge yourself, whether saving on a broker in import from China (the cost of commission for Fullbax is only 1-5% of the value of the invoice) is a reasonable option.

china import agency

Importing from China via a broker – the most important advantages

1 – Signing a contract with a Polish broker is a problem solved impo

A – Signing a contract with a Polish broker

When you decide to cooperate with us -acting as a broker – in import from China, you sign a contract and you do not have to worry about anything else Because we are a Polish company (Fullbax Sp. z o.o.), therefore in the event of any problems, you have the option of holding accountable a Polish entity.

B – Signing the contract directly with a Chinese company

What can you do if you sign a contract with a Chinese company and it does not perform it? Unfortunately NOTHING!!! The only thing you can do is shouting at them on the phone or sending an unpleasant email. Especially if relatively small money is involved – up to 100,000 dollars. If the order was for more money, you can try to get help from the Polish embassy. However, I know from experience that Polish companies importing on a large scale and for millions have their own staff involved in importing or use brokers. In the case of small orders, no one will be speaking with you at the embassy.

2 – A broker on the spot in China, will take care of every detail

Our Chinese company Guangzhou Fullbax International Co. LTD. signs a contract with a Chinese factory and then we send the goods from China to Poland. Then, through our Polish company Fullbax Sp. z o.o we sell you the imported goods in Europe. We are on site; we speak Chinese and we contact factories on a regular basis. Anyone who works with us will go through a “dirty trick” thought, because being on the spot we have a very wide possibility of entering into a dispute with such a company.

3 – The Chinese treat brokers better because it is a chance for them to have more customers

This Section will undermine your idea of saving 1-5% of the invoice value. A Chinese company, seeing that we are brokers, treats us completely differently than an ordinary importer, they know very well that in the future there is a very big chance for another customer whom we will introduce directly to them.  At the beginning, they give to us a lower price than to someone who imports from them directly. Mostly the price we are able to obtain is so advantageous that you save more than you pay for our service.

4 – An experienced broker can get better prices

We often have orders in which we use prices already worked out in previous orders. Thanks to this, we are able to reduce the price even more. For example, the factory X sews school backpacks for us and has already produced several containers for us. A customer from Poland wants to buy pencil cases and talks with the same factory, but has never cooperated with it before. What do you think, who will get a better price? Fullbax, who bought several containers from them in the past or a new customer who contacted them for the first time?

5 – The broker living in China knows the local market nuances

As a company operating in China, we import regularly. If you are just starting, it is more than certain that you will make some mistakes that a beginner importer from China cannot avoid. For example, you spend money on something that is unnecessary and you will not be aware of things the negligence of which may have unpleasant consequences in the future. We have experience, so we will not commit them.

6 – A broker in China has access to better factories and cheaper producers

When looking for a supplier in China, you’re probably limiting yourself to the “Alibaba” portal. It’s worth knowing that there are great Chinese factories that do not operate on this site. They have a decent offer, because they mainly produce for the local market. We know from experience that if a company does not have an English version of the offer and English-speaking staff, their price is definitely lower than for export-oriented companies. We as Fullbax know where to look for such companies. Living in China, we know niche Chinese B2B portals and we know how to find a factory that will be able to produce high quality goods for you at the lowest possible price. 

7 – A broker on the spot from China gets better prices for the goods

When you cooperate with Fullbax, you do not sign the contract directly with a Chinese company. We do it as a Chinese company operating on site. Thus, the Chinese factory does not know whether the product stays in China or goes to export to the USA or Europe. What does this mean for your savings? Chinese producers almost always adjust the price to the customer. As it easy to guess, an importer from the USA, where the prices of goods are definitely higher than, for example, in Russia, will get a higher price. The Chinese factory does not care, because it knows that a customer from America will earn money anyway. A simple example is plastic windows manufactured for the USA market. The price is by 20-30% higher than the one offered for the broker in China, because in the States the windows cost so much that the import will be very profitable for such a customer anyway. If you cooperate with an on-site broker like Fullbax, you can be sure that the factory will  play such a trick with prices with you.

8 – Using a broker means big savings on transport to Poland

Every factory that will arrange transport for you wants to make money. Usually, it is from 5 to 20% of the transport value from China. This occurs in 90% of standalone orders. And with a broker? Fullbax doing the import from A to Z does not earn on the transport, i.e. we do not charge any additional commission for it. We can show you a specific offer for transport from China to Poland and all prices and confirmation of the transfer – for us is not a problem, because we have nothing to hide.

9 – Assistance of a broker company ensures better security of the entire project

This point is the most important. It’s just “peace of mind”. By cooperating with us in the field of importing goods from China, you do not have to worry about anything else. You do not run the risk in any way. Fullbax – as a broker gives you a guarantee that the goods will arrive/fly to Poland or Germany and we will pay for it on the spot. If we neglect something or there is something wrong, the issue is simple, we have to pay you money.- We are the guarantor, this is our job and you pay for it. If something goes wrong, we are to lose, not you.

Broker services for import of goods from China, price list

As an importer you pay us only a commission, which is 1-5% of the value of the order. The commission varies depending on the value of the invoice (the larger the order, the smaller the percentage). Everything that “we’ll get” stays in your pocket. We do not earn anything else. If you pay a commission, e.g. 3% of the invoice value, and we reduce the producer price by 5% you already earn. And this is just one point out of the nine above. Let us now return to the initial question: is saving on a broker in import from China a reasonable option? Read all the above arguments once more and answer the question honestly.

See you soon


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