My tips to getting faster results from Chinese suppliers
When choosing a supplier in China, you will eventually have to get in contact and start negotiations. This article will help you be at your best when communicating with suppliers and will give you some more insight on how to improve your communication with Chinese suppliers.
If you haven’t chosen a supplier yet, be sure to check my article on things I pay attention to when choosing a supplier.
Otherwise, you are ready to make a first step and start negotiating with your suppliers list.
Try to better understand their vision!
Obviously, Chinese people have a very different culture, habits and norms, if compared to a western type of men. Thus getting familiar with their culture and things of importance to Chinese people will ease your communication and show you in a good light during negotiations.
Be sure to read through my articles to get more familiar with our eastern friends:
To get even more familiar with the way things are and business is conducted in China, try to read at least one post a day from this great resource.
Make sure you have tools to make communication easy!
To give an impression of an insider man make use of these things:
- Use WeChat – in China people do not use facebook or linkedIn for communication. WeChat provides instant messaging service, that allows you to get results faster than email.
- Use Google Translator to dilute your conversation with chinese words for ‘’Hello’’, ‘’Thanks’’, etc. Your efforts won’t go unnoticed.
- Use some sort of software to quickly share your printscreens. Considering that there is a language barrier between you and suppliers, showing something once is better than a thousand words. I use LightShot to make quick print-screens to better explain my ideas and thoughts.
Don’t be a ‘’Big Boss’’!
You need to be on the same page with the supplier, and sometimes even play ‘’good and bad cop’’.
Set a professional tone, but do not overdo it… this is where many importers mess up. Most of the people assume a role of ‘’CEO’’ when contacting suppliers. This is simply not right. You will not be able to overpower them at their home with a cocky email. Your words need to resonate with them. It is much better to assume a role of a middle man, pretend to be purchasing agent, you could blame things on your ‘’boss’’ and preserve a relationship. You can always say: ‘’My boss says that price is too high’’.
Trust me, a relationship is what is even more important in China than money. Try playing around and say that their quote will be sent on the top of the list among with other suppliers you are communicating to.
Be creative and try to build relationship. Relationship will yield you discounts in the long run.