Views: 0 Author: Site Editor Publish Time: 2022-07-01 Origin: Site
You’ve probably read quite a number of guides promising to teach you how to import furniture from China, only to leave you with more questions than answers. Well, if this is you, join in as we range over a stepwise and practical guide and you’ll soon discover how easy it is to import a piece.
The after-effect of covid 19 has greatly reshaped the outlook of most industries. And of course, the Chinese furniture manufacturing sphere isn't left out of this influence. Considering the uncertainty that clouded the general economy, furniture imports also witnessed a momentary halt.
However, as the lockdown intensifies, so does the need for more interaction with the physical environment, leading to a more considerable demand for physical products. You’ve probably guessed, furniture inclusive. Since the demands kept reaching and breaking all-time highs, coupled with restrictions, manufacturers not only had to deal with overwhelming workloads but also exorbitant freight costs, especially when importing from china.
Raw material prices also increased by 2021. This is largely due to most central banks increasing monetary supplies globally. From January to June 2021, the price of furniture imports also witnessed a considerable rise from 10% to 20%, while inflation remained a raging concern.
Even with all that has happened, one light at the end of the tunnel is the fact that the demand for furniture keeps surging. Considering the considerable rise in raw material prices, importers now compensate for that by raising prices to customers – which consumers are also willing to pay. Still, the good news is there are projections that these prices may drop by the end of 2022. Maybe not to the pre-covid price range, but a considerable drop.
These concerns are global and uniform for almost every nation. While it had led the furniture import ecosystem of several American and European countries into oblivion, China seemed to be waxing stronger as a heavyweight manufacturer. This is due to a few reasons we’ll cover in the next section.
China, as we know it, is a global manufacturing hotspot. While the nation's evolution has made it lose its indisputable spot in low-end products manufacturing, it is still waxing stronger when it comes to furniture.
One of the most considerable upsides of importing from China is the reliable and robust supply chain. The Chinese supply chain embodies almost everything you want from a supply chain, including timeliness, cost-effectiveness, consistency, and production process optimization. It has factories to manufacture the screws, fittings, finishing materials, and almost everything needed to bring the furniture idea to fruition. In essence, it is a one-stop for everything, thus streamlining a number of processes and factors.
Undoubtedly, furniture is a relatively pricey investment. But in China, you can opt-in for mass production which greatly reduces your expenditure as you will be buying at wholesale prices. Not to mention that China blasts well over 50, 000 furniture manufacturers with a sizable percentage of them known for high-end designs. Hence, if you’re importing from China, you will not only be getting a relatively lesser price but also spoilt for choice.
Dabbling into furniture importation without laying the proper foundation will only ultimately lead your efforts down the drain. Hence, to help you prevent that, let’s cover a step-by-step overview of some considerations you don't want to miss.
An effective business model, in this case, is one that is tailored to the realities of the Chinese market. As we know it, Chinese is well known for mass production, hence your model should accentuate and incorporate this.
Imagine approaching Chinese furniture import with a business model that features one major sales outlet. Here, you’ll typically buy in small quantities, which obviously, doesn't align with the realities of the China furniture import market. Not only is the market and volume negligible, but you’ll also incur more costs than normal. Hence, approaching furniture import with this model is inadvisable.
Conversely, imagine a business model featuring offline and online warehouses that can take a considerable number of stocks. Besides, the warehouses, there are several sales media, allowing quick turnover rates. This is definitely a model tailored to the reality of furniture imports from China.
If you’ve checked this box, you may now start considering whether you any to import directly or through an agent. Direct importation typically means you’ll be getting the best prices. Conversely, an agent can as well help you source better factories. So, make a choice and add it to your model.
When choosing an agent, be sure to verify their track records, experiences, language compatibility, records of quality assurance, and other factors to make the dealings as transparent as possible.
Well, a myth that has been making rounds for quite a minute is that you must have a license before you’re able to import furniture from china. This is largely false!
Imports to the UK require no license. All you need is a VAT or EORI number. For USA imports, you may need custom bonds. If Australia, only a fumigation certificate is needed.
In essence, here is an overview of how your importation should typically go, suppose you’re importing via sea.
v Your shipment arrives
v Custom clearance
v Delivery by your already chosen logistics company.
v While doing this, you want to ensure accuracy in every document, invoices, and other. The liability for any documentation inconsistency lies primarily on you since you’re the importer.
v Also, don't forget the taxes, pre-agreed shipment fees, etc.
You can import almost anything, ranging from almost every indoor furniture/ upholstered to outdoor furniture. This spans tables, office chairs, beds, chests and cabinets, sofa, rattan furniture, gazebo, and parasol.
The type of furniture you can import also depends on the region. The region also says a lot about the quality and ease of importation. So, pay attention to what each region is known for before dabbling in.
Identify the right supplier
Before starting to import, you want to have a clear definition of your supplier. The right supplier typically means the best price, delivery optimization, cooperation, and good business overall. So, how do you go about this?
Alibaba.com has positioned itself as a Chinese supplier king-spot. You'll find thousands of suppliers here. While it answers the question of finding a supplier, it has quite a little role to play in the negotiation.
Again, remember never to put all your eggs in a basket. Choose several suppliers, audit them, know their truth and realities and see if they align with your goals.
Once you’ve chosen a few fits for you, you may then send a Quotation request. If you don't send this, no one will take you seriously.
Make an import cost estimate
When importing, you should know the overall cost to land the furniture in your warehouse. With this, you can account for every cost and optimize your budget. We typically call this the Free on Board(FOB), which means a cost quote that considers every charge. With this, you’ll have a clearer definition of local and freight charges as well as everything in between.
Never shy away from negotiations
This is where you get to save more costs or incur them unreasonably. Also, remember to never negotiate with a supplier that is not up to your quality requirements, as there's no point.
A buying office makes this process a bit easier since they can meet face to face with the supplier and get lower prices without the hassle.
But even without a buying office, as long as you’re buying a sizable volume, never be shy to ask for considerable discounts. Every supplier loves continuity, and if you can promise them that in return, you might even be able to further decrease the associated costs.
Attention to quality
Quality assurance is another key consideration, especially since you’re mass-producing. Check a sample, the assembly, materials, etc., before trusting any supplier with your bulk order. You don't want to be left with inconsistent sizes, difficult and overly complex designs, and other factors that define low quality.
You want to ensure that the imported furniture complies with the safety, chemical, and sustainability standards of your country before investing your funds. If otherwise, you may be looking at a potentially confiscated product, which of course, will lead your efforts down the drain.
v The right purchasing contract
v When drafting a contract for purchase, it should typically include
v Agreed tolerance
v Contract amount
v Clearly defined terms of payment
v Potential fines
v Quality standards agreed on
v And other considerations you deem important.
Optimizing your payments
Depending on your financial capability and level of trust, you can approach payment differently. For instance, you can decide to lay the total amount even prior to production. Or deposit 30% and 70% subsequently. You may as well pay the entire fee against the bill of lading or after 90 days. All you need is the right understanding with your supplier.
Factor in the quality
For every of your china furniture imports, quality control is one aspect you don't want to miss. Regardless of the size, most Chinese products are subject to a range of quality-related concerns. However, the degree of these concerns may vary depending on your chosen factory. Quality issues will only lead your efforts down the drain, so always factor in them. Also, remember that once you import the furniture, returning them can be quite difficult, so mid-production inspection, pre-shipment Inspections, container load checks, and online inspections are some necessary processes.
For the best quality control, every finding must be clearly indicated with notes about relevant specs, instructions, identified defects, and their assembly. Consequently, mark them as pass or fail if they meet your standards. A sustainable quality management system can also help in this regard.
Lastly, optimize your shipment
You should have a clear understanding of various container sizes, their cubic meter volumes, and relevant dimensions. Generally, these containers are grouped into less than a container load, LCL, or full container load, FCL. LCL is largely tailored for small shipments. However, it is also riddled with too much unnecessary human handling which can be detrimental to your import integrity.
FCL, on the other hand, is a full container, coming directly from the manufacturer, sealed until it reaches you. Hence, only you get to open it. This is yet another reason why importing high volumes is advisable.
Remember, this process is not always so easy. So. You don't have to rush it. Take your time to source the best supplier, approach them independently, you can start importing furniture from china without the hassle.
Here is the Top 10 Furniture Manufacturers in China list for your reference.
Established in Hong Kong since 1992，producing and exporting recliner sofa.
Based in Lecong, this company also deals with interior design.
Since 1986, they have created modern furniture for homes.
Since 1993, Qumul manufactures home furniture and home design too.
RedApple are a veteran company in the China furniture manufacturing space and offer everything from sofas right through to mattresses.
Starting in 1984, Landbond deal in high-end furniture, and use primarily hardwoods.
Founded in 1989, M&Z specialise in making furniture not just for the international market, but for the local market too.
Kuka has become a household name since its inception in 1982.
Starting off as a living room culture furniture maker, they now occupy 1 million square metres of space!
Using a lot of hardwoods, Shuangye has been making furniture since 1995.
With a wide range of furniture to our disposal, the ethos, quality and service is second to none. Starting in 2007, we now have 16 shops in Chinas domestic market and have certainly become and deserve to be known as the good furniture manufacturer in China. We offer good price and custom service. Talk to us today at firstname.lastname@example.org!