Asking Questions in Product Development & Sourcing

In product development and China sourcing, asking questions is not only the suppliers' responsibility
Asking your supplier appropriate questions sets the stage for the project. A lack of formulating purposeful questions leads to irritating and perhaps costly surprises. Prior to approaching a supplier to start a new project, roll up your sleeves, hash out a game plan and determine key questions....

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Quoting a Product: When Specs are For Reference or Confirmed

Quoting a product concept is a process, not a 1-time clean hit without any messiness.
You've sent the supplier a concept for your product and now they're quoting a concept. The range of effort goes from half-hearted quoting to quoting to the best of their ability, but either way, the supplier's quoting a CONCEPT....

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Another Batch of Possible Changes During the China Sourcing Process

Life is full of ups and downs. Things change...especially during the China sourcing process.
The China sourcing process, whether quoting an existing stock item or developing something from scratch, is more than pulling a lever on a machine. Because the human element is involved, from RFQ to delivery, something is very likely to get off course....

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Efficient Overseas Sourcing: Antidote For Poor Mind Reading

An efficient overseas sourcing approach doesn't rely on assumption but fact-checking your vendor and testing their capabilities.
In your overseas sourcing, you may discover that a large portion of your suppliers suffer from poor mind reading capabilities....

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Reasons Your Quoted Price Changes

Quoted price changes happen for various reasons.
Many times in China sourcing, during the sampling and pre-order steps, the quoted price goes up. Is it supplier blunder, something diabolical or reasonable ebb-and-flow of pricing that client should expect in early stages?...

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Buyer Sourcing Approach: Read My Mind and Do it Right!

The buyer may think, "read my mind and get it right". But not a strong sourcing approach. Roll up sleeves and establish practical game plan.
A large portion of sourcing and product development is tackled from the position of "Read my mind and do it right." Ok, this is not literally said or even thought, but the practical actions of the would-be-buyer reflect this attitude....

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Importer or Team Leader

Importer or team leader is the question you ask yourself when you find your factory not following what you think you requested.
When you source, manufacture and buy from an offshore supplier, are you simply an importer doing a task or will it be more advantageous to view yourself as a team leader? ...

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Offshore Manufacturing Orders: Small Missteps, Bad Results

It's more than clicking the "complete order" button, but it's thorough deliberate control...that what brings success in offshore orders.
The world is smaller and developing countries are opening up more and more. Whether you're a small business or a corporation, everyone can swiftly move import orders via Amazon or whatever solidified channels and outlets. As long as you have a competent supplier, then everything else just sort of falls into place, right? Wrong. ...

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Tips for Sending & Receiving Photos

In offshore manufacturing, sending and receiving photos is not rocket science but it also shouldn't be under estimated.
It may seem like too-broad or even elementary of a topic for importing and sourcing. But missteps and poor interpretation of photos (from both supplier or buyer) have ruined many an order. Here are more considerations on sending and receiving photos in your sourcing endeavors....

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In China Sourcing & Order Control, A Follow-Up Can Be…

The power of the follow up in your China project and order control.
During your China project and order control, systematic contact with your supplier, brings a world of results. Right importing from China (or any developing nation) is proactive and calculates possible scenarios. ...

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Getting Production Photos From Your Supplier

Production photos from your vendor can be elusive beasts.
In China sourcing and manufacturing, has anyone ever had problems getting good production photos from their supplier?  Yeah, me too.... ...

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China Sourcing & Importing Excuses Buyers Make

China sourcing and importing excuses are tempting, but the energy is better spent towards improvements and solutions.
In the spirit of the crying towel, here's a batch of excuses for those in China sourcing and importing. If you find yourself mumbling these curses (and we all do and still do at one time or another), button your lip and think about..."how am I going to fix it next time?" This one's not for the faint of heart......

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China Sourcing Projects: Do You Know the Key Points?

China sourcing projects have key points and the more those key points are spotlighted, the more the supplier understands client expectations.
Are your China sourcing projects successful because the supplier did everything right? What if you have a supplier that misses a key point? You can get to where, in your China sourcing projects, you are able to proactively avoid problems and success not being based on "the supplier doing everything right". ...

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Supplier Response and Needed Guidance

In China sourcing, a supplier response gives assurance, shows efforts and is a quality checkpoint.
A supplier response to a buyer that's waiting for an update, is like a cup of water to a man in a desert....

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