Taobao vs Alibaba vs Aliexpress Platform Comparison

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Alibaba.com, AliExpress have both played a significant role in the success of thousands eCommerce businesses. Alibaba Group, which is a major player in online retail, owns these two sister platforms.

Alibaba.com and AliExpress provide unique selling and buying experiences for all types of buyers and sellers.

This post will compare AliExpress and Alibaba.com to help sellers and buyers decide which platform is best for them. We’ll discuss key features, typical buyers and sellers, as well as associated costs and professional services.

We will conclude by comparing these powerful platforms side-by-side and discussing which platform is best for B2B sellers and buyers.

Alibaba Group: An overview

Alibaba.com and AliExpress both belong to the Alibaba Group. Jack Ma, a Hangzhou, China native, founded Alibaba Group in 1999. His mission was “To make it simple to do business anywhere”.

These subsidiaries have been at forefront of technological innovation and eCommerce growth. Alibaba Group also owns and operates AliExpress and Alibaba.com, as well as Taobao and Tmall.

Alibaba Group’s contribution to environmental conservation is a notable one.

What is Alibaba.com?

Alibaba.com was established in 1999 by Alibaba Group as the first business unit. It has since become a major force in the cross-border eCommerce. It is the largest global business-to-business wholesale eCommerce platform, connecting more than 150,000 suppliers to more than 10 million buyers in over 190 countries.

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Alibaba.com is a marketplace for business buyers who are looking to source components to make final goods or buy finished products to resell. They also want to locate the items they need to run their businesses. Each day, these buyers send over 300,000.

Alibaba.com sellers can have a digital storefront (also known as a “minisite”) visible to buyers to showcase their products and ODM production capabilities. To reach and keep customers, sellers can make use of the CRM and marketing tools built into Alibaba.com. They can communicate with customers on their terms, and they have control over customer contact information and relationships.

It also offers a toolbox that contains resources for buyer-seller communication, as well as logistics solutions and payment protection. This platform will help buyers navigate B2B eCommerce with ease.

Alibaba.com’s key features

Alibaba.com was created with buyers and sellers in the mind. These are some of the features that Alibaba.com has in place to help traders on both sides.

  • Tools to generate leads
  • CRM tools
  • Marketplace for Request for Quotation (RFQ).
  • Easy-to-navigate workbench
  • Analytics tools for the market and industry
  • Auto-translation into 18+ languages
  • Comprehensive order management
  • Advanced customizations can be made using API integration

Alibaba.com has many sellers: wholesalers and exporters, manufacturers, trading companies, agents, traders, and exporters. Alibaba.com suppliers all sell to other businesses.

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Buyers typical

Alibaba.com is a business-to-business platform. This means that most buyers are other businesses. B2C sellers, sourcing agents and wholesale distributors are all examples of buyers.

Services of a professional

Alibaba.com offers a variety of professional services including:

  • Alibaba.com Freight International Logistics Services
  • Support for sellers and on-boarding
  • Trade Assurance – A free service that provides order protection
  • Products inspection and monitoring services

These services are intended to improve the buyers’ and sellers’ experience, and to help them achieve success in the B2B market.

What is AliExpress?

AliExpress is a top cross-border eCommerce marketplace around the globe. This platform was established in 2010 by Alibaba.com as an offshoot to allow businesses to sell directly at consumers.

AliExpress is a different Alibaba.com than we discussed earlier. It is a retail division within Alibaba Group that is available to individuals from all over the globe who can buy products “as-is” without any minimum order quantity.

It works in the same way as other generalist B2C platforms, and is often compared with Amazon, Etsy and eBay. AliExpress is a great place to dropship because of its large selection, competitive prices, buyer protection, and the ability to buy in very small amounts. Independent sellers can register to sell products directly to millions of buyers around the world.

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The key features

AliExpress has many amazing features. These resources include:

  • Automatic translation to 18 languages in order to provide a localized user experience
  • Conversion of currencies starting from 51 countries
  • For secure transaction and payment, there are 38 payment channels available in your area.
  • Sellers can have custom-designed storefronts
  • Buyer protection
  • AliExpress University offers educational resources for new sellers

AliExpress sellers are usually small and medium-sized businesses that sell products to customers. AliExpress sellers are not manufacturers, unlike Alibaba.com. Instead, they act as intermediaries to purchase large quantities of products from factories and then sell them on AliExpress at a lower price to buyers.

AliExpress is a popular marketplace for selling clothing, electronics and beauty products.

Buyers typical

AliExpress is a B2C platform. This means that the majority of buyers are consumers. AliExpress currently serves over 150 million customers in 220 countries and regions around the world.

AliExpress’s prices are very competitive and offer a wide selection of almost everything. This means that many AliExpress buyers are actually dropshippers looking to sell their products. Dropshipping via AliExpress is a great way to get started with an eCommerce business online without large capital investments and don’t have to worry about inventory delivery.

Services of a professional

AliExpress offers professional services to both buyers and sellers.

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AliExpress Shipping

This is the only shipping option that AliExpress and Alibaba Group’s Cainiao Network provide. It is an end-to–end cross-border logistics solution that includes the first-mile pickup, consolidation, customs clearance, and last mile delivery services.

You can also choose from a variety of shipping options, including UPS, FedEx and DHL. The delivery speed and location of your order will affect the shipping cost. For most products, AliExpress Shipping or Cainiao Network offer free shipping. It can take anywhere from 1 week to 2 months.

Buyer Protection

AliExpress has a buyer insurance policy which protects buyers against scammers and ensures secure transactions. If the item you receive is not as described or is not delivered within the Buyer Protection Period, it will refund your money.

Buyers can contact sellers to resolve any dispute. Buyers can file a ticket with AliExpress to raise a claim if an agreement is not reached. AliExpress will serve as a mediator and ensure that you receive a refund within 15 days.

AliExpress and Alibaba.com have key differences

Although they are similar, AliExpress and Alibaba.com serve different purposes. AliExpress and Alibaba.com are very similar, but serve two different purposes. AliExpress is a B2B platform that facilitates transactions between businesses. AliExpress facilitates transactions between consumers and businesses.

Alibaba.com attracts many buyers immediately, regardless of whether they are business owners or not. This is due to the low prices of its products. Alibaba.com does not allow wholesale orders below a certain minimum. This means that buyers will need to buy large quantities to get wholesale rates.

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AliExpress on the other hand has low prices, but no minimum order quantities.

Alibaba.com sellers pay 0% commission on all transactions. AliExpress sellers can earn up to 8%

These platforms can be used in different ways, but neither one is better than the other. The goals of the buyer and seller will determine which platform you choose. AliExpress is better for consumers, while Alibaba.com is better for businesses.

How to Use Alibaba.com

Let’s take a look at what you can expect from Alibaba.com as a buyer or seller.

How to Buy from Alibaba.com

Step 1 – Register a buyer account on Alibaba.com and get started.

Provide as much detail as possible in your account settings. Suppliers are more likely to work with established buyers and businesses that have serious buyers.

Step 2 – Find sellers and products

Alibaba.com allows business buyers to work with sellers to create custom products or to find products that are “Ready To Ship”. This means that the products can be shipped within 15 days from when you place your order. There are many ways buyers can find sellers and products.

1. Start your search by using the search bar. Filter your search results using different criteria such as minimum order quantity, price and supplier country.

2. Visit pavilions. Look at themed pavilions made from top-ranking products and country-specific exports .

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3. Send an Request for Quotation. You can post a request to receive a quote in RFQ Market. Please specify your requirements and sellers will get back to you with offers.

To determine if a seller is right for you, you can view their profile, credentials, and other information on their mini-site. The badges that appear on the seller’s profile let you see what they did to establish themselves as a trustworthy partner.

  • Gold supplier – Sellers who are members for a fee and have been verified to be industrial or commercially-oriented businesses.
  • Verified supplier – Sellers whose company profile and management system, production capacities, product and process controls were evaluated, certified and/or inspected in accordance with third-party institutions.
  • Trade Assurance supplier : Sellers who are able to accept payment through Alibaba.com. This allows Alibaba.com to pay and protect your order.

Step 3 – Order now or contact suppliers to get more information

You can place an order immediately if you find products that suit your needs. Click “Start Order” on the product detail page. Then, proceed to fast and simple checkout.

B2B buying is more involved than B2C and requires more back-and forth. Business buyers will often be more cautious when evaluating suppliers. They may want to get in touch with suppliers to discuss prices, request customizations to their orders, and learn more information about their businesses.

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Alibaba.com allows buyers to contact suppliers directly by clicking on “Contact Supplier” or sending an inquiry.

Step 4 – Place an order to receive your goods

Alibaba.com offers a variety of secure online payment options, including credit cards, online bank payment (eChecking), and telegraphic transfer. It also provides financing options and terms for qualified buyers in certain countries and regions.

You can request a sample to ensure that the product meets your requirements before you place a full order. This will help avoid any potential problems. Alibaba.com offers other protection options for buyers, such as production monitoring and inspection services. This service will send a local team into the seller’s location to inspect the products prior to shipment.

Alibaba.com Freight is a trusted and transparent platform for cross-border logistics and shipping. Alibaba.com Freight offers ocean freight, air freight, express and parcels, mostly from China.

How to Sell on Alibaba.com

Step 1 – Create a seller account at Alibaba.com. Then activate your seller membership.

Register a seller account to start selling. You can register as a seller for free to get an idea of how the platform works.

Alibaba.com offers several Gold Supplier memberships depending upon the location of your business. Subscribe to paid membership to unlock the advanced features and support you need to succeed.

Alibaba.com is different than other online selling platforms. Sellers do not pay a commission rate for every item sold. This allows sellers to bring home a higher percentage of their earnings.

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Sellers must also go through a Business Verification process to activate their paid membership. This verifies your company’s legitimacy and authorizes you to contact the person.

Step 2 – Complete your seller profile, upload products and launch your mini site

It is important for sellers to create their profile and post all the products in their catalogs. Optimize for visibility and design a mini-site to showcase your brand and capabilities.

You will be guided by an account manager who will help you through the entire process. Additionally, you can access the extensive educational resources at the online seller Learning Center.

Step 3 – Reply to inquires and place orders

After listing products, sellers will begin to receive inquiries. It is crucial to respond to buyers’ inquiries quickly and professionally to convert inquiries into sales. All communication can be managed by sellers in the My Alibaba Workbench or via the AliSupplier mobile application.

Alibaba.com also wants to ensure a positive experience for buyers. This is why Trade Assurance – Alibaba.com’s order protection and secure payment service – is available. This service allows buyers to feel more comfortable working with sellers from around the globe, making it easier to close the sale. You can also streamline your entire process by having all your messages, orders, payments and payments in one location.

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How to Use AliExpress

AliExpress is extremely user-friendly. You can start as either a buyer, or seller on the platform in no time.

This is a quick overview for those who are on either side of the transaction.

AliExpress: How do I buy?

AliExpress shopping is the same as any other online shopfront.

To shop, first go to AliExpress. Click on the “Join” button and create an account! You can also sign in via Facebook, Twitter and Instagram, Google, Apple and other social media platforms.

You can search for a specific product or browse by category. You can filter your results by price, rating, shipping country, shipping cost, returnability, and shipping cost. You can also sort the results by price, latest listings, or best match. You can also search for specific items by typing it in the search box. It will then show you the related goods.

To help you evaluate sellers and products, we recommend that you pay attention to these:

  • Ratings are the number and quality of customer reviews and the number and number of orders that were shipped. The real photos uploaded by customers to customer reviews can be viewed as well.
  • The seller’s minisite page shows detailed feedback history and seller ratings . You can find a breakdown of feedback history for the seller and its percentage.
  • No shipping charges and no return Find out if you qualify for free shipping or a free return.
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Add items to your cart, and then browse until you’re ready to place an order. After you’re done shopping, you can view your items and choose which items to purchase. Complete all required information, including payment options, and complete the transaction. AliExpress offers many payment options, including Visa, MasterCard, Maestro and American Express credit cards. ), PayPal, Wire Transfer, West Union, etc.

AliExpress: How to Sell

Step 1: Check your eligibility.

AliExpress allows registered companies to create an online shop to reach millions of buyers around the globe. Alibaba.com allows sellers to register from almost all countries around the globe. AliExpress supports only businesses whose tax locations are: Mainland China (Russia), Spain, Italy, Turkey and France.

Step 2 – Signing up for AliExpress to sell is completely free.

You can open an account, and submit the following information:

  1. Value-Added Tax (VAT), Number
  2. Operating License for Company
  3. Identification number of the company’s legal representative
  4. Contact information for the company and the legal representative

AliExpress will reply within 2 business days once you have submitted this information to let you know whether you are ready to sell.

Although creating an AliExpress seller account is free, the seller must pay the marketplace between 5% to 8% for each item sold depending on the product category. There are no arrangement fees or minimum overheads.

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Step 2 – Upload products and personalize your storefront

Once you have been verified and activated your seller account, it’s time to upload your products and prices.

The platform offers two templates: the “Product Information Template”, and the “Price Inventory Template”. These can be used by sellers to bulk update their products with Excel spreadsheets, manage stock and price management, and also provide a template for “Product Information Template”. The “AliExpress Assistant”, which can be synced with Magento 1, Magento 2 and Prestashop stores, allows sellers to upload commodities in batch.

You can apply to be an authorized seller or official store if you sell branded products on AliExpress. This will give you more visibility and privileges on the platform as well as increase your credibility with buyers. A brand you want to create can be applied for and registered on AliExpress.

It is important to decorate and personalize your store in order to enhance your brand image and offer customers additional services and promotional information.

Step 3 – Ship products and get paid

You can set up your own shipping solution as a seller to ship your customer orders. This includes free shipping and shipping costs by weights. AliExpress’s logistics partners as well as Cainiao Network can provide door-to-door logistic solutions.

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The buyer must confirm delivery within 15 days. If the expiration date is not reached, the sales payment will be paid. Your balance can be checked in My AliExpress. You will need to associate your bank account in order to withdraw money from your AliExpress Balance.

Taobao

Taobao, a Chinese C2C and B2C retailer, is one example. Alibaba runs it, like AliExpress.

Taobao’s biggest advantage over AliExpress is the fact that more than 95% of its products are sold in China to private individuals. It’s designed to be sold to Chinese citizens, not to westerners. This means that prices are lower than they appear because China’s purchasing power is lower.

Taobao doesn’t charge a service fee so prices don’t get inflated by platform fees. You can make a deposit to taobao and get a refund in the event that your seller disappears. Sellers who have a larger deposit are more trustworthy.

There is a lot of stock available, so many Chinese factory owners are selling their surplus stock at a very low price. Taobao allows you to search for anything and offers a reverse image search.

Toy-Links offers a variety of toys from Taobao. You can choose from the main menu or you can click to view each item. Taobao products are listed with their price, item image, links to agents, and stats.

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Some people argue that taobao shipping can be very expensive since they use volumetric mass. But in reality AliExpress does offer free shipping if the item price includes it.

Taobao Agent

Participating in domestic Chinese trade has the downside that you will need to either organize or pay someone to do it. This service is known as a shopping agent.

An agent is a Chinese freight forwarder who buys, stores, and ships your order for you. RepArchive also offers many guides on agents. There are quick tutorials and in-depth RepGuide.

The shipping cost is not the only thing that the agent will charge. They also take pictures of each item and offer customer service, hauls, rewards, and customer service. They can spot minor defects like scratches or discoloration.

We highly recommend Wegobuy. To support our work, you can sign up

AliExpress vs Taobao

Lepin and King know that AliExpress is superior to Taobao. Toy Links initially featured both. However, we eventually came to realize that Taobao only saved us a few dollars, and it wasn’t worth the additional steps and time. If you have sealed brick toys sets that the agent cannot inspect without assembling them, it is not worth using taobao unless it is the only way to obtain it.

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AliExpress also allows you to reach out directly to sellers if any pieces are ever lost. The agent can reach out to the seller and communicate in Chinese. However, extra pieces will need to be sent through the agent if you used Taobao.

Other toys are treated differently. Taobao prices can’t be beat. For action figures, an agent can also be a valuable asset. They can inspect your item for any defects while it is still in China. This is much better than finding out that something is missing when it’s abroad.

It all comes down to whether you receive a fair return on your investment. AliExpress is the best option for sealing items you wish to ship separately. Taobao is a better choice if you need to inspect your order before you place it or if you wish to ship multiple items at once to reduce shipping costs.

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