How to find products in 1688 and ship them to the US

purchasing from 1688 directly

How to find products from 1688.com?

1.1 what’s 1688.com?

1688.com, belonging to Alibaba Group, is a leading Chinese local B2B platform. As e-commerce has become increasingly trendy, 1688.com, depending on its strength of lower price, has won a wider range of popularity with customers from domestic and overseas nowadays, than Alibaba.com, which mainly targets abroad customers.

Major industries:

raw materialsindustrial productsclothing, household goods, small commodities, etc.

find product on 1688

So how do you obtain the best from 1688.com and boom your own business? Then read this article thoroughly and let’s mouse out the ways to get the most of 1688 that will bring in bang for the buck for your business.

1.2 why&How to translate 1688 pages into English? 

 1.2.1 Why?

Since 1688 is aiming at the Chinese domestic market, so you can easily find the whole website is in Chinese, which can be a great challenge for you to understand, let alone conducting following affairs. Therefore, translation is the first key to open the door of 1688.

 1.2.2 How?
skill1: add a google chrome extension
1688 translating chrome extension

step1: add a google chrome extension

step 2: type “Google Translate extension”

step 3: add “Google Translate extension” to google chrome extension

skill2: just click the right mouse button

translating 1688 page into English
1.3 How to search for products?


how to use picture to search on 1688

when you start 1688.com, you should notice the small camera icon at the top-right corner in the line of the search bar with your twinkling eyes. Upload the images you’re looking for, and you’ll get the results.


Here is another way as easy as anything you’re searching on Google——keyword search. Let’s take “germicidal lamp” as an example.

1688 English

Just put the name of the product in English and you’ll get the results immediately. But wait! Isn’t the largest wholesaler site in China? Why there are only 14 suppliers? How come? There must be something amiss. 

Calm down and let’s move on to figure it out.

Chinese simplified characters

So what it would be like if I input Chinese simplified characters? Surprisingly, there comes out 133,822 suppliers, more than 9,500 times of English search! 

Here is an explanation, as I’ve mentioned above, 1688 is a Chinese local B2B platform targeting the domestic market. Thus, it makes sense that it’s all in Chinese characters and only a small quantity of suppliers put English names on the title of their company. So do products.

Adopting Chinese simplified characters keyword search is a wise choice on account of its abundant results. 

What’s more, it should be highly suggested to use DeepL, the best translation tool in the world, to get an accurate Chinese translation for your business.

1.4 How to select good suppliers

So in addition to finding products as much as possible, how to find an adequate supplier? No worries, I’m glad to share four steps with you to screen the most suitable ones. 

Let’s search “germicidal lamp” in the search bar of the supplier to figure it out. Are you ready? Here we go!

  • STEP1:HOW——how to search

In the beginning, we just search 杀菌灯 in the search bar of suppliers, and here we have 134201 company information.

Click on the categories according to your requirement among Type, Certification, Brand Main downstream Main sales area, and Category. 

Besides, check the powerful business column saves you a lot of time to find excellent manufacturers.

Check and do as the following steps.

  check the powerful business column

  • STEP2: WHO——who they are

After choosing your idealized product, the next step is to find a suitable supplier. Here are some elements you need to take into account when screening manufacturers. 

  • Name: Generally speaking, The name of a company is a signboard to show its registration location, main product as well as partnership
  • Plant area: the larger the plant area of a factory, the more it can reflect its strong business to some extent, for it’s usually armed with a more mature industrial system.
  • Number of employees: So here comes the question, the more staff, the better, just like plant area? Of course not. 

The rule of thumb is to opt for a headcount between 50 to 500 since they are going to be a lot more flexible working with you.

  • Qualification certificate:
1688 company certificate

  Refer to these icons to make it easier to pick out 

 qualified manufacturers

  • STEP3: WHERE——where they are

Location is such a vital factor that I want to take it out in a specific way to demonstrate its importance.

 To begin with, search the name of the city on Google map, then observe its location. So what can we learn from its geographical position? Take care of these two key points.

  • Industrial cluster: that means lower costs and higher quality.
  • Locate at a coastal area: you can pay less for shipping and convenient to ship abroad 

Guangdong, Shenzhen, locates in a coastal area and is one of the first-tier cities in Zhujiang Industrial Delta.

  • STEP4: WHAT——what they do

As the old saying goes: perception of the opponent and yourself will yield everlasting success. Only by understanding the industry in which the suppliers are mainly engaged, can we better assess the level of its business.

To find out what your supplier goes in for, just click on their company name and access its website page, you will gain more detail.

1.5 How to contact suppliers?

Once you have found a suitable supplier you want to work with, you should save its contact information by way of text, company link, or screenshot in case of missing them. 

However, how do you keep in touch with them due to language and culture barriers? Take it easy, I’ve helped you sort out some useful tips about it:

  • Download AliWangWang

Aliwangwang is a free online business communication tool for merchants on Taobao and Alibaba. Download it then you can talk with the factory. After adding the factory, make a brief self-introduction because you are not sure if they speak English. 

  • Use Wechat

Wechat is the most common tool for communicating in Chinese daily life, Download it and register with your phone number, once you’ve added the factory’s phone number, you can find them on WeChat, and then it’s your negotiation time.

  • Search on Alibaba

As we’ve mentioned above, 1688.com is the sister of Alibaba.com, some factories sell their products both in Alibaba and 1688. So you can just click the name of the factory and enter their website to proceed with your trade by e-mail. It’s much more convenient and safer to finish the transaction.

  • seek for a sourcing agent

I have to say this is the fastest and easiest way to go on with your trade because they will assist you on many aspects of whatever confusion you encounter, which do you a great favor.  

1.6 How to pay for your products?

  • Online Purchase(Alipay)

Just register Alipay and pay the supplier for your products

  • Sourcing Agent

Turn to them for help to protect you from being cheated

  • Direct Wire Transfer(import license)

It can be a little risky if it is the first time to trade with the supplier, but it can be much safer if you’ve dealt with the same company several times. 

2. How to ship products from China to 

the US?

  •  What shipping mode should I choose?

After bringing the purchase order to an end, we need to prepare goods for shipping from China to the US. In consideration of the geographical position of C&U, there are mainly two ways of shipping. What mode of transportation depends on the characteristics of your cargos. Just follow me to have a look! 

  • Air Shipping

 A. Air Express (UPS, DHL, FedEx )

 B. Air Freight: use a forwarder

  • COST
  1. Air Express$15/kg to estimate the cost
  1. Air Freight: charge by weight.

gross weight VS volume weight and the larger weight is taken.

  1. Express: 3-5 business days
  1. Freight: 7-10 business days 
  • Urgent items
  • breakable objects
  • Valuables of small size
  • items of high profit
  • high-end brand




  • fast delivery
  • low breakage rate, good safety performance
  • large space span


  • high costs 
  • limited loads
  • susceptible to weather
  • Ocean shipping
  1. LCL: Less than container load 

(You’d better consolidate with other people’s products)

2. FCL: Full container load

When it comes to loading, here are some rules of thumb to share with you. If your load is less than a full container, to maximize profits, you’d better consolidate with other people. 

However, that can be a little complex since there are other people’s products and sometimes LCL is as high cost as air shipping. Thus, besides LCL, there are other ways I suggest you consider and keep these tips below in mind.

   load < 3CBM, check Air freight cost

 9CBM < load < 11CBM, check FCL 

  14CBM < load < 16CBM, definately FCL

  • COST

Min charge: $600/2CBM

In general, there are other extra fees: port congestion surcharge, transshipment additional, ICE surcharge, and so on


 LCL: 30+10 days

 FCL: 30+5 days

  • goods of large size and weight
  • goods without the time requirement
  • containerized cargos


  • low costs
  • large space 
  • Navigation channels extend in all directions
  • strong carrying capacity to various cargos


  • slow speed 
  • higher risks
  • limited by accessories

Congratulations! Now you have known how to find products in 1688 and how to ship from China to the US. I do hope you enjoy reading this article and at the same time enhance the scope of knowledge.

If you have any further questions, please feel free to give us a comment, we’ll reply to you as soon as possible!

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