The Top Tip To Grow Quality Products From Chinese Manufacturers!
In this post, we are going to be discussing The Top Tip To Grow Quality Products From Chinese Manufacturers!
China can be the wild west when it comes to quality, and through our years of quality assurance in China, we have had our fair share of gunfights too.
So, we have put together some of our tips and insights into the wild wilderness to ensure you come out more John Wayne than Prospector Pete.
China can be all things from absolutely fantastic, to depressingly tiresome. And everything in between. I am not selling you any fantasy when stating it’s all within your control, it truly is, but initially, you need to ask yourself:
Why am I looking at sourcing in China?
Please make no mistake, China can be cheap, and when I ask this question to the majority of clients, the cost is the main driver. Low cost, low shipping rates, and a relatively robust supply chain.
But, the next question you should be asking yourself is:
What is the cost of poor quality to me?
COPQ (Cost of poor quality) far outweighs any gains you may make when sourcing cheap stock in China, especially if you are an e-commerce seller on Amazon. COPQ is the cost to you, when the quality of the product does not meet you, your customers, retailers or stockists expectations.
The hidden costs, the returns, the damage to your brand, your reputation and ultimately to you. It’s almost impossible to gauge the cost of the damage when your product falls short of expectations. The only way to avoid it is to ensure you have a quality product.
It can become a costly adventure. So instead of chasing purely cost when sourcing; a better route to follow is chasing quality and work on the cost to get the best product for your cash.
When initially sourcing from China or Asia; source for quality, not the lowest cost
COPQ can never be understated, seldomly do good quality products go hand in hand with low prices.
Don’t get me wrong; I am not stating that it’s impossible to get good value for money in China and Asia, you absolutely can. But when we discuss quality products and building quality products, it’s important to understand the difference between a low price and a good product.
If this is your first venture into China, then you need to be chasing quality then chase cost, don’t work with a cheap cost and try to build quality, especially if you don’t intend on spending a large amount of time sat inside a factory building their product capability.
We would all love to get the lowest price possible. Indeed that is the aim of the game, but we need to get the best value for money, to gain the total lowest cost (remember COPQ)
There are fundamentally two ways that you save money:
- The price that you pay directly when purchasing stock
- How efficiently the supplier produces stock to your contract (including your standards and quality expectations)
There are some different approaches on how to get the best bang for your buck. When working with any Asian supplier. Companies tend to head straight to the cheapest option, when, in fact, that is not always the best tactic.
By choosing the correct supplier from the beginning, you can remove a lot of the issues and subsequent costs that you may have down the road.
Many companies, when first searching for manufacturing partners; come to Asia with very heavy-handed negotiating techniques. Instead, you need to develop and build good relationships, this, in turn, pays dividends; good relationships can not be understated in business, and it’s the same case here.
A good purchasing buyer builds these relationships from the first initial contact with suppliers. Selecting the correct partner in Asia starts with robust requirements.
Trying to select the best supplier is a little like selecting the best new TV to watch your favourite shows on. It’s hard to choose; with so many brands and combinations of specifications. You want to ensure that you get the best value for money. This is important for obvious reasons.
Buyers have the same issues.
However, there are some steps that purchasers can use to ensure that they get the best value for money possible.
6 Step Process To Selecting A Supplier
- Recognise the need- You require the product, but, do you fully understand all the needs of the product? If you are searching for products when you don’t fully understand what the function, fit, market is then chances are you may be searching for the wrong thing in the wrong place. Get to grips with the product and the request for the product.
- Understand the needs of the end customer- What are the needs of the end customer, meaning the end-user; the person who will be using the product. What is needed in terms of cost and when does it need to be delivered by?
- Determine the strategy for buying the item- Will you source this item from just one supplier? Will you be looking to purchase this from a manufacturer, trading company or a wholesaler/ distributor? All have benefits and pitfalls. If you have a plan that considers the best fit, then you will be in a better place to get the best value for money.
- Identify potential suppliers for this product- This is where you can start to look for suppliers that may make similar items of your proposed product based upon the needs that you have understood in the previous steps.
- Send out your RFQ- We have dedicated an entire post to RFQ compositions and construction. The better the RFQ, the more robust and accurate the quote will be. You can read more on RFQ’s here.
- Award the contract- There are sub-steps between the receiving of quotes from your potential suppliers, ensuring they are the correct supplier for the product and you, and awarding the contract. These can include ensuring that the suppliers understand payment, delivery terms, quality requirements and communication expectations.
We will be following up on a regular basis with tips and tricks on sourcing from China, and guiding you on your importing journey.
And follow along on our Podcast here: Behind The Imports