Tag Archives: Sourcing

7 Ways Brands and Manufacturers are Failing Online Retailers

This post is by Trevor Ginn, the founder of VendLab, a retail consultancy which helps retailers and suppliers create, optimize and manage their product data. Trevor is also the founder of online retailer Hello Baby, which has been selling baby, toddler and nursery products worldwide since 2007.

Ecommerce has been around for over twenty years, but in many ways the manufacturers of products which are sold online are yet to adapt.

Online retailers have different requirements from bricks-and-mortar shops, yet the products and service they receive from their inventory suppliers (brands, manufacturers, distributors and so on) are generally still tailored to retail stores.

Here are seven ways suppliers fail online retailers, which I have seen time and time again. Be on the lookout for them!

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Product Sourcing Roundup: Importing, Reselling, Liquidation, Arbitrage and Used

Product Sourcing Roundup

We have covered the topic of sourcing products many times over the past few years. Posts have ranged from sourcing methods and strategies, to the nitty gritty of finding suppliers and working with them effectively.

Many aspects of selling come down to processes and policies – understanding the marketplaces and running a really streamlined operation. That efficiency is crucial, and can be hard to achieve, but really it’s just a requirement so that you can stay in business. The ability to find appealing products at a profitable price is what actually determines your success.

In this roundup, I’ve pulled together our best sourcing posts. They’re grouped into six sections: general, importing, reselling, liquidation, arbitrage and used.

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7 Challenges Selling Health, Beauty and Nutritional Products on Amazon

Selling Health & Beauty on Amazon

This post is by Michael Butcher, a Senior Account Manager at SellerEngine. His career in ecommerce dates back to 2001, taking in both online retailers and digital marketing agencies. Michael has been with SellerEngine since 2011, and has helped dozens of health and beauty sellers grow their revenues on Amazon, while avoiding the many pitfalls of selling in this challenging category.

The health and beauty market is a huge force in retail, both online and off. It incorporates a wide range of products including health and personal care, nutritional supplements, medicines and creams, as well as beauty and cosmetics. Sales are high. In the US, health and beauty accounts for $300bn a year in sales, beaten only by groceries.

Amazon is the dominant online retailer for health and beauty products, as it is for many categories. I’ve seen a huge influx of sellers going into health and beauty on the Amazon marketplace, particularly in the last three years.

Its popularity among sellers is somewhat surprising, because health and beauty is one of the most challenging categories to sell in. These are products that go on or in the body, so safety and quality are of paramount importance. Brand names drive a lot of buying decisions, so counterfeiting is a big issue. And many items are liquids or creams, and contain organic ingredients, so they are fragile and can go bad if left in storage too long.

In this post, I’ll look in detail at the health and beauty market on Amazon, particularly the challenges that are unique to this category. I’ll cover what those challenges are, why they matter, and how you can overcome them to become a successful health and beauty seller on the Amazon marketplace.

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How To Attend a Chinese Trade Show Like a Pro

Man Jumping

This post is by Gary Huang, an American based in Shanghai, China. Gary has been working in sourcing since 2008, and is the creator of 80/20 Sourcing which teaches online sellers and small business importers how to save time and make more money when sourcing from suppliers in China.

This post was originally published in two parts on 80/20 Sourcing: Hacking a Chinese trade fair as a buyer and How to attend a trade show like a pro.

Every year the seasons change and we enter spring and fall. Do you know what that means? Besides the changing weather, it’s trade show season!

Just as there’s “more than one way to skin a cat” there’s more than one way to find a Chinese supplier. Besides using sites such as Alibaba, did you know that trade shows can be a great way to:

  • Quickly identify qualified suppliers (and weed out the bad ones).
  • Meet them face-to-face to build trust.
  • Get your hands on samples immediately.
  • Find new products and trends.

Imagine all the time you save speaking with someone in person rather than emailing back forth every night to get a sample delivered to you.

So in this article I’ll explain how to find the right suppliers, ask the right questions, and get the right product at the right price when attending trade shows in China.

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Complying with EU Product and Labeling Regulations: A Complete Guide

EU Product Regulations

This post is by Fredrik Gronkvist, an experienced product developer based in Shanghai. Since 2011, he has helped hundreds of companies in the EU, US and Asia manage manufacturing in China. Fredrik is also the co-founder of Chinaimportal.com, a leading online knowledge base for all topics related to importing products from Asia.

Product regulations are harmonized in the European Union, so you don’t need to keep track of different regulations in each member state. That being said, navigating the regulatory landscape in the EU can still be incredibly complex and time-consuming.

In this article, I will give you a broad introduction to product regulations in the European Union. Keep reading, and learn about electronic safety standards, chemical regulations, documentation requirements and the rules for laboratory testing.

You will also find out what might happen if you fail to ensure compliance.

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