March is the golden trading time when China market attracts worldwide attention. The 37th China International Furniture Fair (Guangzhou) (“CIFF”) will open in March 2016, providing a dynamic platform for the global furniture industry in the Pearl River Delta! There are a lot of people to visit in furniture fair.

What kind of Chinese factories should you work with?

First, a couple of rules to keep in mind:

  • If you work with a supplier that is too large relative to your orders (e.g. you would occupy 1% of their annual capacity), you will be quoted high prices and given poor service.
  • If you work with a small supplier that cannot produce the quantities you order, they will be forced to subcontract production and you will probably be in for a disaster.

My general advice would be as follows:

  • If your orders are very small, you might need to work with a trading company that will place your orders in a level 1 factory and follow production.
  • If your orders are large enough to work directly with a manufacturer, but not big enough to be interesting to big factories, go for level 2.
  • If your order are considered large and even big companies actively fight for your business, go for level 3.
  • If you are in a very quality-sensitive industry and you cannot afford even 1% of defects, spend  time and search for level 4 (but you might not find any in your vertical).

What do you think?

Level 1: the small factory whose staff don’t speak English;

Level 2: the semi-organized factory that got out of level 1 but that is still struggling to keep quality & timing under control;

Level 3: the factory that made big efforts to get organized, with the objective of pleasing large customers;

Level 4: that rare bird that applies lean manufacturing, and that avoids level 3’s rigidity.


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About the Author:

Jason Liao is the founder of He is on fire for global trading and small business sourcing in China. With 4 years of global trading experience, he always devotes himself to satisfy needs of customers. Please leave your comment if you have any question, we all love to answer for you.

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