A little while ago I took a look at one of Alibaba’s new tools – the AliSource Tool. You can check out my full review of that here: Alibaba’s AliSource Tool – Does it Work?, but basically it’s a tool that allows you to automatically post a buying request for any item you find on Alibaba, AliExpress, Amazon, or eBay.
And in my review I spoke a little bit about how I personally don’t use buying requests and instead prefer to search for suppliers for a product manually.
There are a number of reasons for this, such as:
- It allows me to apply my filters when looking at potential suppliers;
- I can do some preliminary supplier verification;
- I can ask specific questions;
- Quality over quantity – this is really the main reason! I prefer to select and talk to a view different companies so I can get a proper feel for them, makes notes etc. rather than just being contacted by countless companies that I know nothing about.
BUT, this is all personal preference, it’s how I prefer to source products and find suppliers but for some people the ease of posting a buying request may be more beneficial.
So today I want to do a little test – I’m going to put buying requests up against manual searching and see which comes out on top!
How this works is very simple:
- I’ll select a product.
- I’ll post a buying request for that product using the AliSource Tool.
- I’ll manually search on Alibaba.com for suppliers myself (but in order to simplify the process, the only filter I’m going to apply is that they have to be a Gold supplier).
- I’ll compare the results (pricing and MOQ), in order to see if there is any real difference between the two sourcing techniques or if it really is just a matter of personal preference.
Alright, it’s time to get to it then!
Just as a reminder, I select products on a fairly random basis for these tests, it’s not based on profitability or anything like that!
Okay, for our first product I’ve chosen a 2L waterproof bag which I came across on AliExpress:
While on the product page, I simply click the AliSource Tool bookmark button and this buying request opens and the information is automatically pre-filled for me: [Read more…]