At the end of Part 2 in our Taobao series, which was published on Wednesday, we had finished comparing the pricing on Taobao vs our tried and trusted AliExpress, and honestly, the results were not good…
With the commission and added shipping costs, Taobao just couldn’t keep up with the low prices offered for single/small quantities. But other than samples, the vast majority of you reading this aren’t interested in single orders anyway – when I talk about importing from China I talk about bulk orders, as that’s the only way you’re going to be able to compete with other sellers ordering container loads at a time.
And that brings us to our final question about Taobao – is it worthwhile for larger orders? To get our answer we’re going to go back to the MacBook cases that we looked at it Part 2, but instead of an order of 10 pieces, we’re going to find out the price for an order of 500!
- £1300 – Cost of Products (500 x £2.60)
- £130 – Commission
- £300 – Shipping
= £1730 TOTAL = £3.46 Per Piece
So again another big drop in the cost per piece compared to ordering 10 units at a time, but that really is to be expected at such quantities and any other result would have been a huge disappointment…
Does this change my overall thoughts on Taobao in any meaningful way? Well no, not really, as I’m practically certain that I could easily beat that price for a quantity of 500 using Alibaba.
In fact, I found this after literally 30 seconds of searching:
Ignoring the shipping costs as that’s a courier vs freight for the Taobao example, the price per piece of $3.29 is equal to roughly £2.19, which is already 15% cheaper than Taobao! That’s for 100 pieces, I would obviously expect it to be even cheaper for 500 and once again this is without all the hassle of using a buying agent, paying commission, waiting longer for multiple shipping times etc. etc.! [Read more…]