Sourcing and quality control tips for importers
Doing business outside of Europe has both lucrative benefits and imminent risks. For Western importers, taking appropriate measures plays an important part in minimizing supply chain risks. In this article you will find some of our best sourcing and quality control tips for importers who want to successfully import products from abroad.
1. Verify your business partners
Consistent cooperation between importers and their suppliers creates a solid foundation for long-term business relationships outside the EU. Therefore, verifying business partners abroad has become a required task for Western importers.
In addition, the right partner can help importers perform better in sourcing and quality control. Do you have contact with suppliers, but communication is not going as you expected? Then enlist the help of an external party.
In many cases, an external partner can elaborate on your pre-selection, so that you are assured of reliable contacts abroad. This allows you to do long-term business with your suppliers, without endangering the quality of your products.
2. Approach multiple manufacturers
Nowadays there are about a dozen manufacturers who offer themselves for each product. Nevertheless, finding the right manufacturer for your products takes a lot of valuable time and energy.
If you only approach one manufacturer and start working directly with it, you can never judge whether you are entering into the right partnership. Therefore, it is better to approach multiple suppliers so that you can better assess the quality of their service.
Working together with a reliable sourcing agent offers Western entrepreneurs sufficient support to find the most suitable manufacturer for their products in the foreseeable future.
3. Create a quality control list
A quality control list is an indispensable tool for Western entrepreneurs who want to successfully import products from countries such as China, Vietnam and India. Such a checklist contains all important product specifications and packaging requirements.
The list also contains all important criteria about your product. Think of product specifications such as; size, weight, dimensions et cetera. The colors and dimensions of the packaging are also included in the list. It is important that this information reaches your suppliers completely and correctly.
To avoid misunderstandings, please ensure that all product specifications are formulated in detail when submitting the checklist. This does not only apply to the production of private label products, but is also an essential part, for example, when importing private label products.
4. Check documentation and customs
requirements Please check all necessary documentation and customs requirements beforehand. If in doubt, you can ask the manufacturer for confirmation. In this the manufacturer declares whether the documents have been properly received.
It is important that all information in the documents is correctly drawn up so that you do not experience any problems at a later stage in the purchasing process. In addition, you also create a contract in which you have described every detail of your order down to the last detail.
A small error in the documentation can already cause customs to hold your order. These checks can take a long time, which guarantees a delay.
5. Monitor changes in legislation and government policy
It sometimes happens that the government of a certain country changes the legislation. For example, consider the structure of taxes and levies. Such a policy change can have a significant impact on your company’s import activity.
Suppose the government introduces a higher tax on certain raw materials, this can have major consequences for the financial situation of your company. It is therefore important that you are well aware of changes in legislation and government policy.
Hopefully, with the advice above you can start building long-term business relationships outside of Europe. Would you like to know more about sourcing and quality control? Please feel free contact us! Coolen China has many years of experience with all kinds of sourcing projects in the world’s leading production countries.