What to buy on Taobao
Of cause, if you are in China, you can buy everything on Taobao, exactly everything: from consumer products like electronics to virtual ones like game or phone recharge or even other people’s time available on sale too! As their motto says, Taobao can satisfy you with anything you can think of. However, my dear friends, if you are not in China and you want to buy products from China in your own country, you have to consider the facts that it takes some time for your order to deliver; that you have to pay not that few for international shipping; and that there are still risks in shipping and customs. All these facts make it impossible and not necessary to buy everything you see on Taobao.com. To help you shop wisely and get the greatest satisfaction out of your Taobao spree, I recommend some worth-to-buy products according to my experience (Taobao FOCUS already selected featured categories and there are also several hot items in our home page for your reference).
1. Chinese cultural products and Asian featured products
Oriental touch becomes more and more popular in western world. As I can see in Europe, many people take it as a big pride to have a couple of oriental featured products, for example, Chinese silk tablecloth sets, Chinese painting, Indian clothing accessories, etc, but the item prices are often not so budget-friendly. I remember the Chinese teapots sold in the Asian shops here in France are over 150 EURO while you can easily find the same products with a price under 10 EURO on Taobao.com! 15 times price difference! If you also fancy the oriental items, I sincerely recommend you to check on Taobao first before you pay cash in your local Asian shop.
2. Labor-intensive products
As we know, China is the world factory with abundant cheap labors. Compared with the expensive labor in Europe, China’s cheap labor is the key point where you can gain profit if you buy the related products directly from China. Custom-made products (clothing, shoes, jewelry, accessories, decoration, crafts, gifts, etc.) are a good example. If you choose to buy custom-made suits, you can get them within one week with a good quality and at least ten times cheaper price. It is the same case when you buy eyewear (eyeglasses, contacts lenses, athletic goggles, sunglasses), special occasion clothing (wedding dress, evening dress, tuxedo), sportswear (clothes, bags, accessories), and fine electronic products like cell phone, mp3, battery charger, shaver and epilator, etc.
3. Trendy products with a luxury touch
Clothing, bags, accessories, shoes, jewelry, watches are all in this category. China is developing very fast with its large population among which most are catching up closely to the world fashion. But most Chinese people cannot afford those world’s top brands, so Chinese local fashion factories make the similar products but with a much lower price to serve them. Among these products, there are those which are the knock-offs of the big brands, and those which have the same look as the big brands but with a different brand name, and also those which share the similar fashion elements but with a more or less different look. Fake or real, people do not care when they can get a Gucci bag for 15 EURO with a surprisingly good quality. The high imitation makes knock-off shopping one of the biggest tourist attractions in China; that is why even stars, like Celine Dion, cannot resist the cheap shopping when they are in Shanghai for concert or some entertainment program.
On Taobao, you can also buy products globally in “overseas products” section. This will probably take longer time because the vendors are the overseas Chinese. Since you are already “overseas” from China, it is not necessary to buy from there because the international shipping will be doubled (one from the vendor to China, one from China to your country). However, there are exceptions where there will be no shipping fee from the seller to China because the seller is probably located in China and have a chance to go overseas frequently, thus they buy the products for their clients and bring them to China. Products from Hong Kong, Tai Wan, Japan or Korea have particular possibility for free international shipping. What’s more, these Chinese purchase agents can always get a big discount for such products, so if you buy from them on Taobao, it is even cheaper that you buy directly from those countries.
Taobao has brought to many people so much nice surprises, I am sure it will bring you the same. When you fancy something for a long time but still hesitate to buy it because of the high price, check on Taobao before you throw away your fortune, and it is very possible, you will find something amazing and save yourself a bunch of money!