The existence of traders and sourcing agents is due to the fact that there are numerous manufacturers who vary in the capability of export, understanding of the worldwide market, domestic business performances and foreign language skills, etc. The international market needs a role to bridge the space between international buyers and manufacturers. However, while there are many buyers (consciously or unconsciously) dealing with trading companies, some buyers particularly those with specific technical requirement prefer to hire China Sourcing Agent. Why do they shift from traders to a sourcing agent or sometimes not even directly cope with a manufacturer?
With a good sourcing agent, the buyer’s interests are fully enacted in a very controlled manner. Firstly, with someone getting deep in to the factories, the buyer has a better control of the development, delivery and after-sale service, and he will make sure each of the followup information he receives holds true and proved. Secondly and even more importantly, the sourcing agent can jointly or independently learn suppliers information and negotiate with the suppliers without any motivation to win your order or sell one specific product. Therefore, the buyer is a lot more likely so that you can find a more suitable product as he does not get confused through the exaggerated or perhaps untrue descriptions through the trader or manufacturer.
Lacking professionalism in sourcing agents is a huge concern for those global buyers, this has been a so controversial issue that folks have heated debate over the pros and cons of hiring a sourcing agent. Numerous buying offices and sourcing agents themselves have a tendency to accuse the conduct of taking kickbacks, and after doing so they shift the buyers’ focus on their particular services and advertise that they may never turn to this unethical behavior. However, it needs to be admitted that all of them are in essence agents, and they are generally all likely to fall into this lapse, but few of them shed much light on answers to this issue. The difficulty is simply because of human nature. For instance, a number of them might have mixed feelings when they provide the quotations for their clients, they could ask themselves, “I came across so amazing a supplier for my client, and they get so excellent price, shouldn’t I deserve some thing?” “The packaging and shipping cost me a great deal, and it took me a a large amount of effort in speaking to this supplier, do I work for my clients simply to make ends meet?”
A common practice is that some suppliers willingly give sourcing consultants or translators an amount of hidden commission to be able to win an order or the latter asks for kickbacks from your suppliers, however, this practice is not only unethical and unprofessional, but additionally practically unsustainable, because although unlikely in the future the suppliers could tell the reality for the buyer, the sourcing agent would find himself a mere tool for the suppliers and, a whole lot worse, end up being no long trusted from the client.
A sourcing agent provides the buyer with full information on registration details, official documents, latest photos and written reports about the factory including offices, production lines, warehouses, quality control station, lab equipment, etc to access the factory’s qualifications, credibility, production capacity and technical expertise. But traders nmnwti send any data for the buyer as well as claim they are manufacturers of any product, while the truth is they will not be technically sound or have sufficient production capacity.
An excellent sourcing agent is a person with sound English fluency and understanding, general technical knowledge, business assessment, logistics, product design and global perspective. He could work perfectly for the buyer to access suppliers, negotiate the cost and terms, do trouble-shooting, order follow-up, coordinate in urgent times, and lastly, boost the business relationship with all the supplier.
In the first place, sourcing agents or representatives usually work in a smaller team or just work alone, while trading companies work in bigger offices with multiple departments. The effect is definitely the expenditures burdened by the latter tend to be heavier. However, a greater reason will be the conflict of interests involving the trader and the buyer, the trader will never share the manufacturer’s information (contact, original price) with the buyers for fear the buyer could skip the trader and deal directly with the original supplier, in every case, the trader strikes a deal using the buyers at a hidden and highest margin, whilst the China Purchasing Agent works well with the purchaser in a clear-set service fees. Along with the expense factor, the cost the customer might get coming from a trader is much higher than the fees he has to pay a sourcing agent.