Helpful Tips in Finding Consumer Items for Importation and Customs Clearance

Posted: 17th April 2017 08:31

One of the seemingly simple ways of making money these days is to import items from abroad and then sell them to a huge US consumer market. It’s incredible how suppliers abroad can sell items so cheaply, especially when you buy in bulk. Customs clearanceisn’t even a problem nowadays, since you can get help online from brokers.

The real problem is picking the items you want to sell. This may seem like a no-brainer, but it’s more complicated than it may seem at first. To help you avoid any potential pitfalls in your selection, here are some tips that should help if you’re a newbie to the import business:

1. Stick to specialized niche items. You can’t get into regular everyday consumer items, because these items are sold mostly by big name brands, which you can’t beat. For example, you can’t really sell items like toothbrushes since no one will buy such a thing online from unknown sources.

2. Sell only affordable items. Some so-called experts recommend getting into high-ticket items right away, since you make a ton of money on each sale and therefore you only need to make a few sales to make a huge profit for yourself. But unless you’re dealing with digital items, you have to sell more affordable items. You can sell $10 products, with $200 as your most expensive items.

It’s not really about the price your customers can afford.  The real issue is what you can afford. Expensive stuff means you need greater capital, and you may run out of money. In addition, expensive items are much more difficult to ship. Customers who can afford higher ticket items are also more finicky when it comes to quality, and most of the time the cheap stuff you import comes from places where quality control isn’t exactly a high priority.

3. Your items should be cheap to ship. That means they need to be lightweight and small. If they’re heavier and bigger, it’ll cost more to ship them. In addition, bigger items are more likely to get damaged along the way, and that’s especially true of electronics and appliances.

4. Keep it simple. The item should be something that’s easy to manufacture. Complicated items often result in complaints from customers about how there’s something wrong with what they bought. Perhaps the damage happened during the shipping because the item was fragile, or maybe it was during the manufacturing process. So think about selling stuffed toys instead of mechanical watches—stuffed toys have no moving parts that are easily broken.

5. Don’t go seasonal. Sure, there’s money to be made from items that are popular during Christmas, Valentine’s, and Halloween. But you should stick to items you can sell at any time of the year, especially if you’re new to the importing business.

While customs clearance may be easier these days, finding a product that sells along with a reliable supplier for it isn’t always easy. Follow these 5 tips, to make this process easier.