Items on TaoBao and 1688 are cheaper than those on AliExpress or Alibaba.
Many dropshippers are now trying to find ways to dropship from TaoBao or 1688.
This is why I don’t think it’s a good idea.
It’s not a good idea to try to dropship 1688 and treat it the same as AliExpress.
AliExpress dropshipping is quite different than dropshipping.
AliExpress allows anyone to dropship, but 1688 brings many complications.
Therefore I don’t think anyone should attempt it without the use of a dropshipping agent.
Dropshipping: The disadvantages starting at 1688 or TaoBao
Both TaoBao and 1688 are entirely in Chinese. Google Translate is the only way to navigate their website.
This is a huge difference from platforms like AliExpress, which offer full English support.
Sellers won’t be able to speak English because they are used to selling services to China and not to international markets like AliExpress or Alibaba.
Dropshipping from 1688/TaoBao will present you with the greatest problem: shipping and lack thereof.
1688/TaoBao vendors are local Chinese market sellers and are therefore only available for shipping within China.
These sellers don’t have any idea how to ship to the EU/US and will likely cause serious problems (such as customs and delays).
AliPay is only accepted by TaoBao and 1688.
To set up AliPay, you will need to have a Chinese bank account.
Dropshipping at 1688 is not worth it
Dropshipping from TaoBao or 1688 is a hassle.
Then you need to ask yourself, “Is it worth it?”
Are I willing to take these risks and go to all the trouble to get my customer cheaper products?
I know that I wouldn’t.
This doesn’t necessarily mean that I will write 1688 dropshipping completely.
Dropshipping from 1688 is possible if you use a dropshipping agent located in China.
The agent will handle everything and take all the stress off your shoulders.
However, if you don’t have 20-30 orders per day, dropshipping agents will not be able to help you.
This is what you really need if you are even thinking about dropshipping starting at 1688.
If you haven’t been successful with dropshipping, don’t try to find complicated solutions.
This will only make the process more complicated and slow down your success.
You won’t get your problems solved by sourcing cheaper products or using a dropshipping agency.
1688 Dropshipping is not something I recommend unless you have extensive dropshipping experience, and access to a dropshipping agency.
Dropshipping 1688 is not for everyone.
You’ll face many problems without an agent, including communication issues and shipping issues, payment issues, product concerns, and other issues.