It‘s important, when shopping suppliers, to do your homework regardless of how reputable they are or how good of an experience your peer had when they dealt with them. The bottom line is that there are some suppliers that aren’t legit. In some cases, stolen identities and fraudulent websites, phone numbers, etc. lead to some exporters being cheated. Our friends over at chinasourcingifo.org are here to help. Here are 2 ‘Must Do’s’ when verifying a supplier.
Operational Due Diligence Before signing a contract it’s important to do your research. There are a series of questions you need to ask and that they need to answer before signing on the dotted line. Are they the company they say they are, the same company that will be signing the contract? How many employees do they have? What do they export to the US (ImportGenius.com is a great tool to use in this instance)? How much? Do they own their factory 100%? Look into any customer reviews that may be available online. If there are, do your best to contact or reach out to verify the legitimacy of the response. To gain expert insight into potential suppliers, and make your own due diligence easier, visit cbiconsulting.com.
Quality Audit/Factory Audit Audits are important to ensure that the potential supplier has the equipment and experience to make the product you are potentially going to be purchasing. You can do the audit yourself, but 3rd party experts provide a specialized skill that you probably can’t provide. You can find quality assurance pros at AsiaQualityFocus.com. These are essential steps when attempting to find your own supplier. Assume the worst until you’re absolutely certain that everything has been verified and checked out.