How to Import: A Guide for eBay Sellers

[Last week I published a guest post about importing from China. That article seemed to have got some of the readers dabbling in eBay excited about a new option they have not explored before for cutting through the competition. I had several mails asking me about some of the basics of getting started. Since the guest author, Alice, is an expert on this topic, I asked her if she could help us with a more basic How-To guide. And she was kind enough to oblige. I hope this will come in handy for some of you.]

I recently wrote a post about The 6 Essential tips for importing from China. Not surprisingly, it sparked an interest among some of the enterprising readers about what is possible when you import items from China to sell on eBay and they want to learn more. So, I have put together this little guide to cover some of the finer points of importing goods from China to the US. Read on to equip yourself with the knowledge you need to import cut-price goods to resell for a profit.

Finding a supplier

Obviously this is the first step to importing anything. I covered some crucial tips in my last post, but if you need a refresher, the main things to remember when ordering from an overseas supplier, from China or elsewhere, are:

  • Use safe payment methods such as PayPal or ProPay. These payment methods offer you some level of protection if something goes wrong between the time when you pay the supplier and when you receive and inspect the items at your home or warehouse.
  • Be wary of on large marketplace-style wholesale websites such as DH Gate. While there are plenty of trusted suppliers here who offer great service, these sites are also rife with scammers posing as suppliers who will either take your money and run, or deliver you poor quality items that you won’t be able to give away, let alone sell for a profit.

Ensuring that you can legally import your chosen items

Common sense can often determine whether you can import a particular item, but it’s worth doing a thorough check anyway to avoid the disappointment of spending time and money trying to import something that you cannot legally bring into the country.

Check out the Customs and Border Protection’s list of restricted items and prohibited items to check your items are fine to bring in.

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Importing from China to Sell on eBay: 6 Essential Tips for Successful Importing

If you are interested in making money on eBay, you might be aware of the fact that some sellers find that competition on the eBay marketplace a little intense.

For many items such as electronic gadgets like mobile phones and mp3 players, it’s pretty much impossible for a new seller to make sales. This is because you are going head-to-head with long-term sellers with big budgets (they often make wholesale orders of over $20,000 -$30,000 at a time) which is difficult to compete with.

However, there are still a lot of unsaturated markets on eBay and therefore, there are still plenty of opportunities for you to cash-in. One of the best ways to ensure fast sales on eBay is importing from China, the global manufacturing giant.

When you import from China, you open yourself up to being able to source products that sell like hotcakes on eBay at a fraction of the cost of sourcing them locally. Products at 60% below retail prices? Yes please!

Importing from China isn’t as complicated as you might think. Here are six essential tips to help get you started.

Take precautions when importing from china

This is especially true when you order from suppliers on DHGate, China Vision, iOffer, etc. While these sites can have some exceptional bargains, they are also rife with dodgey suppliers who are offering products that are of such poor quality that you will have trouble selling them. In some cases, products bought from sellers on these sites never even show up. Your best protection is checking the suppliers feedback score (most wholesale marketplaces have feedback systems just like eBay) and contacting the supplier for a chat before you purchase anything.

Above all, remember that if a deal seems too good to be true, it probably is.

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