As small business owners, we all have a common enemy: time.
Every minute counts when you’re short on staff, low on resources and faced with intense competition.
Running your own business can be even more difficult when you’re sourcing products from abroad. Flying across the world to visit several countries and factories can take weeks. And attending trade shows can cost thousands of dollars without any guarantee that the right trade partners will be there.
The same challenges exist for finding suppliers online. Filtering through hundreds of factories and webpages is both time consuming and inefficient. But it doesn’t have to be this way.
Small business owner - Manuel Rey - took a smarter approach. Manuel operates a mosquito repellent company called Mosquito Guard, and sources his products online.
When it came to designing and sourcing new mosquito repellent sticks, he knew that searching for suppliers and sending out dozens of messages wouldn’t work with his deadlines. So instead, Manuel used Alibaba.com’s Request for Quotation (RFQ) service.
With RFQ, buyers simply fill out a customized order form, and list all of their desired product features. Within 24 hours, they receive multiple quotes from targeted suppliers around the world.
For Manuel, finding this service was a game changer.
He filled out a detailed RFQ form, and included information such as product material, ingredients, size, color and desired order quantity. Manuel also opted to pay a small fee for expedited service, adding urgency to his request. Within no time, he had several responses.
"I received over seven detailed proposals and found a factory with a great reputation on Alibaba.com. They met all of my requirements and even my target price.”
After discussing product details and designs, Manuel received custom samples based on his requirements. This was an important step, as product quality is often a top concern when sourcing online.
But Manuel was extremely pleased with the samples he received, and even more excited that the sourcing process was moving faster than ever.
As Manuel later told us, "I used the RFQ service to source some of the best quality materials for my mosquito repellent products.”
After confirming the product quality, he placed his first order.
It will take a fixed amount of time to manufacture your products and to ship them across the world, but as Manuel found, you can greatly reduce the amount of time and effort spent searching for the right supplier.
There are many ways to find manufacturing partners on Alibaba.com, but millions of small business are leveraging RFQ to maximize efficiency.
So stay agile, efficient. Be like Manuel.
Try RFQ and source smarter today.