How to Import from China to the US

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As the world’s largest manufacturing power, China exports to most countries in the world. As the number one developed country in the world, the United States imports a large number of products and types of products from China.

Purchasing from China

When you, as a U.S. importer, consider importing wholesale products from China, there are several questions you might consider.

1. Will my products imported from China sell well in the United States?

2. Will my products imported from China be profitable?

3. Are my suppliers and forwarders easy to communicate with?

In the process of purchasing from China, you need to remember four words namely Market, Cost, profit and Sell. Market means the market value of the product. Cost means the cost of the product. Profit means the profit that the product can bring. Sell means product market positioning and crowd positioning.

In order to better communicate and cooperate with Chinese suppliers, many importers choose to travel to China and meet with Chinese suppliers. In many areas of China are engaged in the manufacture and wholesale of specific products, such as toys in Shantou. China also has unique seasons, such as Chinese New Year. When the Chinese New Year is approaching, there will be obvious changes in China’s manufacturing and import, and export, such as transportation costs, production costs, etc.

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China Sourcing Agents

If you are unable to travel to China to negotiate and communicate with suppliers, you can cooperate with a China sourcing agent. There are many large foreign trade companies in China who will act as your unique purchasing agents to find high-quality suppliers in China instead of you.

To a certain extent, a professional purchasing agent can save you a lot of time and effort, but you also need to pay additional agency fees. In addition, website platforms such as Alibaba and AliExpress also help you directly connect with Chinese factories, making the connection with Chinese suppliers smooth.

Also, you may need to pay more attention when it comes to price and quality. If you are looking for a purchasing agent, you also need to pay attention to many details, including whether the purchasing agent has export qualifications, whether the product quality of the purchasing agent is guaranteed, and whether the purchasing agent’s price is reasonable.

Incoterms from China

At the same time, in the export process, it is necessary to have a certain understanding of the Incoterms from China. Incoterms are generally accepted business rules established by the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC). Incoterms deals with international commercial law. Incoterms are used in many commercial transactions and procurement processes. Both the Council of Trade and the International Court of Justice encourage the use of Incoterms to make the import process smoother and simpler.

Import costs

In addition, you also need to have a basic understanding of the costs that may be involved in importing products from China, which will be part of your import costs.

  • The factory cost of the product itself.
  • Transportation costs.

Shipping costs from China to the US are up to you or the seller (depending on the Incoterm used). When importing from China, the transportation methods are also very diverse, which can be single air, sea, rail, or truck transportation, or a combination of the above transportation methods.

  • Warehouse, inspection, and entry fees.

Products imported from China may be subject to inspection as they cross the U.S. border. In some cases, these checks may incur additional costs for you. Depending on the product imported, these fees may also vary. Also, you may incur additional port charges at the time of inspection.

  • Customs declaration fees.

Working with a licensed customs broker can help simplify the import process. They can help ensure that all fees are paid, obtain licenses and help clear your goods for import, but there are additional costs.

  • Agency fees.

When importing from China, customs agents can inspect your goods. This sometimes results in fees. You can pay these charges at the port of arrival to help you get the goods to your warehouse or location.

  • Import duties. The import of some products may be subject to high tariffs.

Some precautions

  • Make sure your product can be imported legally

In a few limited cases, you may choose a product that is not compliant. But usually, the product will be acceptable. To make sure you’ve made the right choice, review the US import guidelines and China’s export laws.

  • Organize the required documents

Take the time to determine what permits or licenses you to need, and make sure you have those documents available when it matters.

  • Maintain communication with freight forwarders, etc.

While choosing to be an independent importer is a very entrepreneurial act, you must be able to identify areas of your business that require outside help.

A customs broker can make the import process smoother.

  • Submit other required documents

If your goods have arrived at the port of destination, the documents you need include Bill of Lading (BOL), Packing List, Commercial Invoice, Certificate of Origin, Customs Guarantee and Delivery Note, etc.

  • Schedule pickup

The imported goods you need come from China. Now, in order to pick up your shipment, you have to work with a commercial shipping company to deliver your shipment to a warehouse or directly to your dealer.

As a US importer, China is also a very important importer. Although China is a big manufacturer, the quality of Chinese products also needs attention. In the process of initial purchase, it is best to send samples and see the real thing to ensure the quality of the product. In addition, it is also necessary to find a professional team for quality inspection to ensure that the quality of the product is the quality you need. Hope everything goes well with your import from China.

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