In the past 20 years, China has played an irreplaceable and essential role in the global supply chain. China is a significant producer of waterproofing membranes and coatings worldwide. With good quality and reasonable prices, waterproof products from China are becoming increasingly popular.
However, many details should be paid attention to when importing waterproofing membranes. If the importer ignores these details, it will significantly affect their distribution business or waterproofing projects. Below I will summarize four tips for purchasing waterproofing materials from Chinese suppliers for your reference.
1. Ensure The Exporter You Contact is A Factory, Not A Trading Company
- Importers can get lower prices from suppliers.
To make profits, the trading companies in China will increase at least 10% of the price given by the factory as their profits, which will damage the interests of importers. Of course, traders will be more attentive than factories in supplying goods, but this is not enough to make up for the damage caused by 10% of the value of the goods.
- Trading company difficult solving technical consultation and customized services.
In China, there is a relatively particular situation; that is, most factories are reluctant to spend a lot of energy solving technical problems and providing customized services for traders’ customers. From the factory’s point of view, these services will significantly increase their communication cost . Most factories are only willing to provide in-depth technical support for their direct customers and meet their customized needs. Above is an embarrassing situation that all traders must face. Therefore, as an importer, keeping in direct contact with the factory as much as possible is super important to ensure a better guarantee of technical support and customized services.
2. Get Waterproof Membrane Samples Before Placing Official Order
Usually, as a buyer, you will ask the waterproof membrane factory or trading company to send you the technical data sheet first. However, TDS must only be used as a reference. You should evaluate the product performance and have the material test yourself.
Test the trial order products before placing official orders
Here I have two practical examples for reference:
In 2019, a client was dissatisfied with a specific parameter of our membrane. Although we specially made a construction video to show him, he still doubted it, thinking that our membrane was difficult to fully bond to the substrate. Next, we persuaded him to purchase two sample rolls to test himself. Eventually, he used it himself and found that the bonding effect was good, so he placed an official order.
In 2020, a client purchased a batch of the self-adhesive waterproof membrane but found the film difficult to tear off during construction. This is because their workers rarely use this film, and they are not trained and lack experience. In this situation, we adjusted the adhesion between the film and the membrane in the second order. The client was delighted with the modified film afterward. He still regrets placing an order without getting a sample for the first time.
3. Before Loading, Make Sure the Forwarder Strengthen the Packaging
Keep in mind that not all factories can pack goods onto pallets. The most common situation is when the goods arrive at the dock and are ready to be loaded, which are found to be crooked, and some of the outer packaging has even been slightly damaged .
The waterproof membrane collapsed in the container
Therefore, importers or buyers should emphasize to the factory or their forwarders in China that the waterproof membrane on the pallets must be reinforced twice before shipment. We recommend wrapping the membranes with film tape and laying part of the membranes horizontally. The above measures can significantly reduce the damage during transit. As shown below:
Properly reinforce the packing
The damaged waterproof membrane will cause inconvenience during construction on-site. Once the goods are squeezed into a large area, it is challenging to use torch-apply for on-site application.
4. Do Not Pay in Full Before Exporters Load the Goods
Many factories in China new to selling their products overseas expect or prefer to be paid in full in advance. While there is zero risk of non-payment if they do business this way, they risk losing business by overlooking competitors willing to offer buyers better payment options. So, they must consider more attractive payment methods.
When doing business with Chinese suppliers, in most cases, they only accept cash in payment. The question is, what percentage of the purchase price paid by the importer is appropriate?
Based on experience in this field, importers should pay a 50% advance in cash to place official order. When exporters in China finish producing the goods, I suggest importers hire a third-party agent to inspect the goods in the exporters’ warehouse or at least ask the exporter to send pictures or videos of the products. After inspection, the importer can pay 30% of the remaining payment if the goods are without any issues. Why not pay the remaining price together at one time? Because the importer still has the risk of goods not being shipped.
The answer is clear now; the importer should make the payment in full against the copy of the bill of lading. Now the importer ensures the quality of goods and avoids the risk of goods not being sent.
Itís difficult to find educated people about this topic, but you seem like you know what youíre talking about! Thanks