7 Inquiry Letter Templates to Contact Alibaba Suppliers

If you’ve never worked with Alibaba suppliers before, it can be a little daunting. You’re potentially ordering products in bulk from people in China on a website you’ve never used.

All you want is a trustworthy supplier who won’t scam you and provide you with high quality products at a fair price and it all starts with the initial inquiry.

The goal of your first contact is to perceive you as a legitimate eCommerce company (even if you’re not) in the eyes of the supplier. This not only helps to vet the best suppliers for your business, but it also makes it far more likely they will not try to take advantage of you when it comes to product pricing and quality.

The templates below will help you avoid many of these pitfalls. I also have an article on my best tips to avoid being scammed on Alibaba.

How to Contact Suppliers on Alibaba?

You can contact Alibaba suppliers by clicking on the “contact supplier” button on the product page or on the company overview section. Alternatively, you can use the RFQ to request quotations from multiple suppliers with faster response times.

Contact supplier and send inquiry on Alibaba.
How to contact Alibaba suppliers

When communicating with Alibaba suppliers you can choose to use Alibaba’s messaging service or many suppliers may prefer to communicate through WeChat.

WeChat is essentially China’s version of WhatsApp and is a more efficient method of communication and you’ll likely receive much faster responses.

Alibaba’s messaging service on the other hand is similar to email. It’s completely fine to use but it’s a slower and clunkier way of communicating. The advantage however, is that everything is recorded so if there are disputes you have evidence to help resolve the issue.

The alternative option of contacting suppliers is to use the RFQ (Request for Quote). This is a faster and more efficient method of receiving quotes from suppliers without needing to contact them individually.

You provide Alibaba with your product requirements and they will send your information to applicable suppliers who give you their quotations. It works similarly to a bidding system which can help you source the lowest cost items without negotiation.

What Do You Ask Alibaba Suppliers?

It’s important to have a list of questions you need answering before contacting suppliers. Otherwise, you may waste a lot of time communicating only to realize they are not the right fit for your business down the track.

The questions to ask will differ depending on your needs. It’s best to ask the most important questions that require answers first so you can quickly eliminate any suppliers not suitable for you.

For example:

  • Are they a manufacturer or a trade company?
  • Do they customize products and packaging?
  • Do they accept PayPal?
  • What is their MOQ (Minimum order quality)?

These are essential questions that will help narrow your supplier list down fast. For a full list of specific questions, I suggest you read my article 23 Questions you have to ask Alibaba suppliers.

For whatever reason, suppliers tend to be more likely to answer several questions and queries you have if you number each of them. If you just list them instead of numbering them, they often answer the first few questions and leave the rest.

The templates below are simply samples and should be altered to your specific requirements. They can be used as inquiries, letters or emails when contacting suppliers.

1. Alibaba Contact Supplier Inquiry Template

Hello

My name is (Your name), I am an online retailer and owner of several e-commerce stores.

I have finished testing several products and have had success with (Product name). I will be purchasing a similar version of the product in bulk, building a brand and scaling my business.

I am interested in your product (Product name, link, image) to add to our line of products. Can you please provide the following details:

  1. What are the specifications for the product?
  2. What shipping options are available?
  3. Can you customize products and packaging?
  4. How much will it cost to have a sample sent to (Your address)?

Can you provide your best prices for:

  1. Price for 200 units:
  2. Price for 500 units:
  3. Price for 2,000 units:

If we can agree on terms, I have a sourcing agent based in China who will assist with the process. My agent understands how my business operates and will make the order process a smoother experience for both of us.

I look forward to hearing back from you. Is it ok if we communicate through WeChat? If so, what is your WeChat number?

(Your name)

(Your business)

2. Alibaba Contact Supplier Letter Template

Hello (Supplier name)

I am the procurement manager for (Your business) and we are interested in working with your company to help build a profitable partnership. We are an American based company with (X) years experience in the online retail industry.

We have conducted several rounds of product testing and believe one of your products would be the perfect fit for our business. We are interested in (Product name, link and attached image).

I first need to ask a few questions:

  1. What is your MOQ?
  2. Can you customize the product and add a logo?
  3. Which shipping lines do you use?
  4. Can you add marketing materials to the packages?
  5. Which payment options do you offer?

Can you provide your lowest prices for:

  1. Price for 500 units:
  2. Price for 1,000 units:
  3. Price for 5,000 units:

We are currently in negotiations with other suppliers and will be making our final decision in 2 weeks. Please answer the above questions as thoroughly as possible as it will assist us in deciding who we will work with.

Feel free to contact me and discuss this further via WeChat or Email (Add your details).

I look forward to hearing back from you.

Kind regards

(Your name)

(Your contact number)

(Your business)

3. Alibaba Contact Template for Amazon FBA

Dear (Supplier name)

My name is (Your name), I am the owner of an Amazon FBA business where I have several successful brands.

I am interested in the following one of your products (Product name and link). The goal of my business is to buy in bulk and white label the products to build a brand. If this is something your company can provide, can you please answer the questions below.

I order based on the amount of demand I receive for my products. Can you provide pricing for the following quantities?

  1. Price for 200 units:
  2. Price for 500 units:
  3. Price for 2,000 units:
  4. Price for 5,000 units:

Can you also provide manufacturing time, shipping time and prices for each of the above quantities.

Are you able to put my UPC sticker on each unit packaged?

I will also require a sample to test for quality before making my initial order. What is the cost for a sample to be sent express to (Your country and zip code)?

Please provide your WeChat ID for further communication.

Thank you for your help.

(Your name)

(Your address)

(Your phone number)

4. Alibaba Sample Request Template 1

Hello

I am an online retailer and interested in (Product name).

How much will it cost to have a sample sent express to (Your address)?

I am already selling a similar version of the same product with a lot of success and plan on scaling my business when I find the right product. I will need to examine the product and make sure it’s the right fit for my customer base.

Please let me know the sample price and expected shipping times. Thank you.

Kind regards

(Your name)

(Your business)

5. Alibaba Sample Request Template 2

Hello

My name is (Your name), I am the purchasing manager for (Business name).

We are very interested in one of the products you stock for our store. The product is (Product name and link to the product). We are already selling a similar version on our store and are looking for the right supplier to scale our business.

I would like to order a sample to test the quality of the product before making a bulk order.

What is your best price to send a sample to (Your address) with express shipping?

Can the cost of the sample be taken off the price of our future order?

I look forward to hearing back from you.

(Your name)

(Your business)

6. Alibaba RFQ Template 1

Hello

My name is (Your name) I am an online retailer and looking to purchase (Type of product) to add to my line of products.

I require a manufacturer who can make customizations to the product, to the packaging, as well as add my logo to the product. I can have my sourcing agent organize much of the customizations and order requirements with your company.

Please provide quotes and expected shipping times for the various shipping lines you use to the USA.

Please provide quotes for the following quantity of units:

  1. Price for 500 units:
  2. Price for 1,000 units:
  3. Price for 3,000 units:

Feel free to contact me to discuss this further. Thank you.

(Your name)

(Your contact number)

(Your business)

7. Alibaba RFQ Template 2

Hello (Supplier name)

My name is (Your name), I am the purchasing manager for (Your business name). We are an e-commerce company and are interested in your product (Product name).

Can you please provide the following information:

  1. Which port will your product be sent from?
  2. Which payment methods does your company use?
  3. Can you provide custom packaging?
  4. Can you add promotional and marketing materials with the package?
  5. Can you customize and add a logo to the product? If so, what are the costs for this?
  6. How much will it cost for a sample to be sent to the US with express shipping?

Please provide pricing for the following quantity of units:

  1. Price for 500 units:
  2. Price for 1,000 units:
  3. Price for 2,000 units:
  4. Price for 5,000 units:

Can you include manufacturing and shipping time as well as shipping cost for each of the units? The order will be sent to (Add your country and zip or postcode).

Please be as detailed as possible in answering the above questions as this will be a large factor in deciding who we will work with.

After our initial order, we will make larger orders which will depend on the sales volume. Hopefully, we can build a long-term and mutually beneficial partnership.

Please feel free to contact me and discuss this further via Whatsapp, WeChat or Email (Add your details).

Kind regards

(Your name)

(Your contact number)

(Your business)

Final Tips

  • Customize your inquiry to be applicable to your business and how you feel comfortable communicating.
  • Don’t write anything unnecessary. Be clear, concise and to the point. Remember English is not their first language and they may be using a translator app.
  • Asking questions is a great way of vetting suppliers but too many questions can deter some suitable suppliers.
  • Don’t be pushy when it comes to negotiating terms. Deciding on a mutually beneficial deal can assist in a long-term partnership.
  • Sound professional and experienced but also come across like a human.
  • WeChat is the preferred method of communicating for most Alibaba suppliers.
  • I would not recommend asking for a free sample. If they perceive your inquiry as you are serious about doing business with them, they may offer the sample at a low price. I have an article on ordering a sample from Alibaba if you’re interested.
  • Don’t expect fast replies during Q4 around Christmas time.
  • Be as specific as possible when describing the product you’re interested in. Provide links and attach images.
  • If you want to dropship individual products from Alibaba, I suggest you read my article here.

Thomas Sleeth

I'm the owner of Dropshipping Hustle. I have over 5 years of experience and have created multiple successful dropshipping stores. This website is a free resource guide on everything I have learned over the years.

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