The popularity of online shopping is rising exponentially. This solution offers consumers a level of convenience, choice, and safety that just can't be matched by brick-and-mortar stores. E-commerce is a competitive field, though, so business owners planning to set up new online retail stores need to do everything they can to stay ahead of others operating in their markets, including finding the best website for product sourcing. Read on to find out about the top five contenders in this field.
Alibaba specializes in supplying large volumes of goods to resellers across the world. This online marketplace allows business owners to network with suppliers to find just about any type of inventory and have it shipped to just about anywhere. Some manufacturers that use Alibaba offer private label products or customizations, and most will ship anywhere in the world. From there, e-commerce merchants can take advantage of the product fulfillment services available at Fulfillment.com to get their products to consumers without even needing a private warehouse.
Like Alibaba, Global Sources is an international product sourcing website based in China. Unlike Alibaba, Global Sources is known for verifying the exporters that use its platform, which means online merchants have less to worry about. The platform offers credit checks and supplier capability assessments that can help online store owners avoid scams and get exactly the products they want at prices that make it easy to grow their businesses.
Wholesale Central is a B2B directory that connects merchants with suppliers, manufacturers, and wholesalers from all over the world. The platform vets the suppliers that sell on Wholesale Central, which makes it easier for e-commerce website owners to choose reputable suppliers, and focuses exclusively on B2B wholesale. Buyers can't order single products, nor does the site offer dropshipping, but those aren't problems for serious online merchants partnered with established fulfillment centers.
DHgate is a leading online wholesale platform that specializes in goods made in China. They offer wholesale pricing up to 70% lower than market prices, and online store owners that use the site applaud the platform's customer service and prompt deliveries. The platform also offers buyer protection plans, express delivery, and a straightforward checkout experience for online retailers. However, some merchants have complained that name-brand products sold on the platform don't always hold up to scrutiny.
All Time Trading
This online wholesale marketplace specializes in offering products needed for daily life and seasonal goods at bulk prices. Merchandise sold on the site also includes hard-to-find products that can't be sourced from other platforms, which means e-commerce store owners will have an easy time diversifying their product ranges and marketing unusual goods with high-value mark-ups.
All Time Trading places order minimums at one case of merchandise per order and it's not uncommon for merchants to buy up advertised products quickly, so buyers should know that they won't be charged unless the platform confirms that additional stock is available. They should also note that it's wise to visit frequently to jump on good deals as soon as they come up.
The Bottom Line
Finding reputable, reliable product suppliers is one of the most difficult aspects of running an e-commerce storefront. Put in the extra work to find suppliers that offer not just consistent product delivery, but also excellent customer service and the flexibility to scale orders as the company grows.