It can be difficult to start running your own online business, especially if you don’t know where to source your products. If you’re searching far and wide for a supplier, you may want to check out none other than Alibaba. You may have heard of Alibaba before—it’s a website that can take you on an adventure where are given the opportunity to unearth all kinds of treasures.
You may be hesitant to step into the world of Alibaba. After all, there are some Alibaba reviews online that relay nightmare situations that have happened to them at the hands of Alibaba, such as getting scammed. To settle things once and for all, and to give you some peace of mind, our Alibaba review will tell you everything you need to know about this vast online marketplace.
What Is Alibaba?
If you’re a reseller or you have a dropshipping business, you’re probably considering Alibaba. When Alibaba was founded in 1999, the eCommerce site was definitely innovative for its time; it offered an all-new B2B solution to the industry. The founders wanted to create an environment that allowed Chinese manufacturers to interact and make deals with international consumers. until now, the business continues to prosper.
Thanks to Alibaba, you no longer have to depend on eBay if it’s your first time hunting for suppliers. Small business owners definitely benefit the most from this platform, as they get to find reliable suppliers for their up-and-coming endeavors.
How Does Alibaba Work?
Alibaba functions differently from websites such as Amazon or eBay because it’s a wholesale company that uses a business-to-business approach, prioritizing trade between companies. With Alibaba, companies have the opportunity to make large-scale purchases, especially if they’re meaning to sell items in bulk across the globe.
Of course, just because Alibaba is a well-known company doesn’t mean you shouldn’t remain vigilant. You need to keep your eyes peeled for red flags that could indicate the supplier is just trying to scam you. As such, you need to do a lot of research beforehand.
Creating an account on Alibaba as a seller is free of charge, and the site allows you the option to deliver as many as 50 products. Now, you need to keep in mind that you’re responsible for keeping your business going. If someone orders from you, you need to cement the details with the buyer yourself and process the payments on your own. Fortunately, Alibaba won’t charge you for any transaction fees or commissions.
Alibaba vs AliExpress
During your mission to look for a trustworthy online supplier, you may have also come across the website AliExpress. Both of these websites are similar in that they both deal with trading between companies, but they also have their differences. With Alibaba, you can purchase high-quality products in bulk, but with AliExpress, you can only purchase branded products one by one. Unlike Alibaba, which can be dropshipped, AliExpress ships the items through companies such as USPS and DHL.
Basically, AliExpress is like a retail version of Alibaba. If you’re looking to buy in large quantities, then AliExpress definitely isn’t the platform for you.
Is Alibaba Safe to Use?
Of course, we can never say for sure whether a company—popular or not—is completely safe to use. Especially when it comes to purchasing things from other people, there will always be a few bad eggs. However, most Alibaba users agree that Alibaba is a safe platform to use for the most part, but you still have to be responsible and make sure you do your research beforehand.
As long as you play your part and you take note of the red flags displayed by some sellers, Alibaba is definitely a relatively safe website to buy items in bulk. If you do things correctly, you’ll be able to rely on Alibaba to supply your business needs. Also, make sure that the supplier you make a deal with has a return policy in case things go awry with the shipment and it never arrives.