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Are you wondering where else you could get affordable and exceptionally beautiful textiles, leathers, etc.? They’re in India!

Most handmade sellers are not experienced in buying from other countries. If they do, they just go for Chinese sellers, and they don’t consider other countries like India.

This is a big mistake!

There’s nothing wrong with products from China but the India export market is huge, and they are one of the biggest and the most affordable exporters in the world. You can import items very cheaply, which is why I very strongly recommend considering Indian exports and not getting “stuck” on just importing from China.

To get started, here are some tips when buying products from India.

1. Research

Do your research about what products India can offer to your business. There are several industries where India are world leaders in manufacturing and exporting. If you’re selling items in these industries and looking to import, consider doing trade in India.

Here are the industries related to handmade that India are world leaders in:

  1. Cotton textiles,
  2. Local spices
  3. Paper products,
  4. Leather shoes & clothes

2. Find Your Suppliers

Don’t forget to do due diligence on your importers. Find their contact number and give them a call. Look up their address in Google Maps and ensure a factory is located there.

There are marketplaces where you can easily find legit suppliers from India.

  1. SaleHoo – If you’re using SaleHoo to find Indian suppliers, then they will have done due diligence for you.
  2. Alibaba India – If you’re Alibaba India, look for gold suppliers who have an 80%+ response rate.
  3. Trade India – If you’re using suppliers from Trade India, look for suppliers that have Trust Badges, Premium

Seller emblems and that have been on the site for at least one year.

The same goes for importing products from China:

3. Start Slowly

Don’t just jump in and give your money to “trustworthy-like” suppliers you found online. It is safe to get a sample product first and start with the minimum order quantity. It doesn’t matter whether you’re importing from China or

India, you should be getting a sample product shipped to you first to test the quality.

If you like the sample product, then start out with a supplier’s minimum order quantity. If that goes well, then increase the order size. This process should be followed to protect yourself against bad manufacturers.

4. Check Prices And Shipping Options

The great thing about suppliers in India, is they are very open for negotiations. You can try haggling a reasonable price if you’re ordering in bulk. Shopping around and getting quotes from other suppliers will help you when negotiating. Do the same thing for shipping: Get your own quotes so that you can be in a strong position in negotiating when doing trade in India.

5. Don’t Expect Fast Negotiation

In India, family takes precedent over business. If a family issue came up, it would not be unusual to net get a prompt email response. When doing trade in India, business can be surprisingly lax and carefree

So be patient!

This may put some people off Indian exports, but there are many upsides to working with Indian suppliers. Their exports are cheap, great quality and they are very loyal business partners. Think about what works for you!

If you want to learn more and get a bonus tip, check this video from Wholesale Ted:

Isn’t it exciting to get a new business partner across the globe? If you have questions or experiences about importing from India, please let us know in the comments.

Gary Capps

I live in the one of the most beautiful places in the world on the Sunshine Coast in Australia with my wife and our 2 dogs, Poppy and Mia. Since 2009 I have helped over 15,000 handmade business owners to grow their business with our software and free tools designed for todays entrepreneurial artisan.

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