Today, China has developed as the maximum seller of various manufactured goods as compared to any other country worldwide. No wonder why often China is called the “Factory of the world.”

China has now become the most important manufacturer of many different industrial products because of the incredibly low price that Chinese companies can offer. If any business is interested to make its business more cost-effective, then sourcing directly from China is the best option.

However, because of the language barriers as well as mixed business practices prevalent in China, it can be a daunting task for many foreign companies, and hence they will need support from a certain reliable sourcing agent.

These days, more and more businesses are trying to set their eyes, particularly on China because of the many advantages that any sourcing support services can offer from China. However, while looking for sourcing support services, many companies often end up tying up with any trading company.

One needs to understand that any sourcing company and a trading company are not the same. Therefore when you are sourcing directly from China, ensure that you have actually signed up with any sourcing company rather than a trading company.

What a trading company is?

As far as any trading company is concerned, such companies generally tie up with a few Chinese factories, and as a result, a trading company develops very close business relationships with them.

As a result, these trading companies only try to promote the products of only those companies, with whom they have tie-ups. Eventually, these trading companies become the sales department of only those companies.

So, whenever any foreign companies are looking for any sourcing support from China often they may end up partnering with a certain trading company. Trading companies can facilitate the discussion with only those Chinese companies that they are tied up with and it will become very easy for them to offer a favourable price to any foreign buyers.

However, the drawback with any trading company is they will be limited to only those companies with whom they have the business relationships. They will not be much interested to go beyond that if the foreign companies need more Chinese products from different companies.

What a sourcing company really is?

Any sourcing companies will also provide sourcing services to support any foreign business company. This could be for any products that you are interested in sourcing directly from China.

A sourcing company can help you in the following matters:

  • Identification and selection of any Chinese suppliers
  • Analysing the potential of Chinese suppliers
  • Carrying out audits on Chinese suppliers
  • Helping during negotiations and contracts with the Chinese supplier
  • Management of supplier relationship
  • Helping in quality control inspection/checks
  • Handling all logistics and transportation in China
  • Supply chain management

Things that you should consider while selecting any China sourcing agent

If you want to select a certain good sourcing agent for sourcing directly from China, then there will be a few things, you must bear in your mind.

  • Location of your sourcing agent

While looking for any sourcing agent, check from Google about the location of your agent. In China, if you want to source a certain product then it will be available in a single city. For example, if you want any Electronics product then Shenzhen is the only place to look for.

  • How much experience does your China sourcing agent has

It will be wise to select a certain sourcing agent who has several years of experience, particularly in your product in China. An experienced sourcing agent working in China is likely to have a very large network of many different companies, which can be very important for your business activities.

  • Check for references

Always ask your sourcing agent to provide authentic references from some other businesses. You must take your time to call these references as well as check their websites. Inquire about how long they are working with this sourcing agent. Ask whether they recommend this agent.

  • Obtain the necessary documentation

Ensure that your sourcing agent provides you with the relevant documentation for the sourcing and shipping. By looking at the documentation language you can get a fair amount of idea how much the agent is well-versed with the whole process. The following documents must be provided:

  • Certificate of Origin
  • Fumigation Certificate
  • Detailed packing list
  • Bill of Lading
  • Check how they can deal with various quality issues

While sourcing products from another country, product quality is very critical. Check with your prospective sourcing agent to see what quality control methods they have. Make it very clear from the start that you are not going to accept products that are of poor quality.

  • Confirm the necessary license

To trade in China, all enterprises must have a license. The law in China is extremely rigorous, and you may only operate a specific type of business with a specific license. Don’t forget to consider the licensing before you start dealing with them.

  • Check the proficiency in languages

Your sourcing agent must be able to communicate in both English and Mandarin. Make sure your potential sourcing agent is fluent in both written and also spoken English. It is best if the Chinese office personnel are also fluent in English, because you may often need to speak with them directly.

  • Check the product knowledge that you are now interested

Different sourcing agents specialize in different areas. Check to see if your sourcing agency has prior expertise in sourcing products similar to the ones you are searching for.

  • Choose a certain sourcing agent having good ethics

Several sourcing agents have been accused of accepting kickbacks from suppliers. While such agencies may help you in finding a source more quickly, the product quality may be questionable. Make certain that any supplier you accept meets your desired quality and certification requirements.


The market competition is becoming very fierce day by day. Once a decision has been taken by you to further grow your business, no time should be wasted in doing research to find a good Chinese supplier and create a strong business connection. A good sourcing agent will play a very effective role in helping your business in sourcing directly from China.