If you think that importing goods from China is something that requires tedious work, then think again. Although customs requirements concerning goods from China are strict, there are still some ways for small business owners to do business with Chinese companies directly.
If you want to import goods from China, it is best for you to find the best distributor first before deciding on going to China to inspect their factory. You or your representative or agent can start calling the different distributors in order to determine which among them can give you the best and most reasonable price.
You can also try online sites that will provide you with a list of small and large businesses in China. Most businessmen use alibaba.com to search for possible suppliers in China. Most of the businesses that are listed on alibaba.com are resellers. These resellers directly contact manufacturers and distributors in China. Although they are not the original resource persons for China goods, it will be easier to deal with them.
Once you have found the best manufacturer, reseller or supplier, check the regulations for importation. There are a few goods that the United States government prohibit to be imported in the country. One example are textiles. This is because textiles are sold cheap in China and they are overproduced. The American government protects the textile industry and would not want the industry to be invaded by any foreign country.
If it is your first time in the import business, it is advisable for you to initially import goods in small quantities and register them as goods for your personal use. This way you will be asked to pay a minimal amount on customs duty. It is not recommended for a small scale businessman to import large shipments regularly and have them registered as gifts or goods for personal use just to avoid paying customs duties. While it is good to start a business, make sure that you are not bending rules because you want to save money and pay only a small amount for your ordinary business expenses.
Starting an import business is a fascinating idea. It is one of the most lucrative industries today and anyone who would venture on this type of business will be successful as long as he or she knows how to import from China and how to deal properly with Chinese suppliers and he or she sees to it that his business has no irregularities from its inception.