Alibaba belongs to the Alibaba Group, one of the largest web-based groups in the world responsible for such web-shopping giants such as Aliexpress and Taobao. itself is the behemoth Alibaba Group's largest individual company, as well as the largest online business-to-business trading platform in the world. 

What this means is that does not target individual clients but rather small and medium-sized companies with its products. This can be seen in the form of the very common (and often quite high) minimum order quantities set for many of the items on offer at Alibaba. This makes the site less interesting for casual shopper who just want one Chinese-branded Android tablet or only a couple new shirts, but very useful for small businesses that need to order 500 Print T-Shirts or 200 Digital Cameras. 

Alibaba Index

The Largest B2B Platform in the World: Alibaba, it's also worth noting, is more similar to eBay than Amazon in the way the site is set up: the majority of the items for sale are not offered by itself, but rather by individual vendors. Just like eBay and Aliexpress, Alibaba's business-to-consumer sister site, Alibaba is mainly just a platform for other vendors to sell their goods, in this case to other small vendors.

Experience with

As Alibaba is the largest site of its kind in the world, reports from happy and not-so-happy Alibaba shoppers alike are everywhere online. Most of our experience on Alibaba has been positive, but it can vary heavily depending on the vendor from whom you purchase. Because Alibaba does have relatively strict rules regulating vendors, so we've found most of their vendors to be very professional and quick to answer questions.

We always recommend that you check out the vendor's profile before you buy. Read their previous customer reviews, pay attention to the customer ratings, and decide if you trust this person. Alibaba itself pays visits to all of its largest vendors and ranks them according to trust, previous customer experiences, and the efficiency of their businesses, so you can also look out for special seals from Alibaba on vendor pages as confirmation of a trustworthy seller.

The shipping times can vary depending on the vendors--some have longer processing times or don't offer express shipping. All of our experience with Alibaba vendors have been fine. We waited 3 weeks for our test order, which was comfortably within the 3-6 weeks estimated by the vendor.

Counterfeit Goods on

China is famous for being one of the largest suppliers of Knock-Off goods in the world. As is a Chinese website offering goods from vendors all over Asia, buyers should remain aware and keep on the look out for counterfeit goods. The purchase and ownership of counterfeit goods is not punishable by law but shipping them into your country may be, especially if you order them in large amounts. Buyers based in the EU, the US and Canada should be particularly vigilant, as counterfeiting goods in these countries is a crime and importing knock-offs could result in a heavy fine should your order be stopped at customs. 

Due to the legal headaches that they can cause, we recommend avoiding counterfeit goods to the best of your ability. Price is the best gauge of a product's origins. Regardless of how good they may look in the pictures, that $85 Gucci bag being shipped from Guangzhou is probably not a genuine Gucci bag from Italy. Pay attention to customer reviews and ratings of the item and the seller as well; these are a good gauge of how honest a vendor is (or not).

Ordering on

The shopping and ordering process on Alibaba is different from other online shopping sites. Not all items listed on Alibaba include prices, and most that do only show price estimates for bulk orders. When you decide you would like to place an order, you can either contact a particular supplier directly or you can request quotes on specific items from multiple vendors carrying similar items on Alibaba's "Trends" page.

Ordering on

Alibaba's "Trends" site, mentioned above, is the most-used method to place orders on Alibaba by customers. Here, the most popular items on offer at Alibaba are highlighted and organized into easily-browseable categories. When you find the product(s) that you would like to order, you will be able to specify exact specifications for your ideal item and effectively send a quote request to all vendors carrying similar items.

Alibaba Quotation Request

You can specify exactly what you want, in what color and measurements, in what currency you want to be quoted, and to what country you want the product(s) to be shipped. This form of price comparison is most interesting for private vendors and small-business owners, because you can specify exactly how many individual items you need. There's even the option to "Post a Buying Request" option on your Alibaba account, which allows you to describe an exact item you want, and in what quantity you want it, to be sent to specific vendors or posted publicly for any vendor to contact you with a quote.

Alibaba Buying Request

Most vendors on Alibaba only accept bulk orders, so if you're only ordering for yourself or you want to order less than 5 individual articles you would be better served shopping on Aliexpress, Alibaba's consumer-to-consumer platform.


Alibaba Trade Manager

In order to facilitate millions of payments between thousands of vendors every day, Alibaba has created its own program called TradeManager, which is free to download. 

TradeManager is effectively and email-based chat manager similar in interface design to IM applications such as AIM and Microsoft Messenger. TradeManager facilitates all contact between Buyers and Seller and, as a Buyer, you will use it to ask any questions regarding your order, clarifying the payment process, confirming the shipping method, etc.

The payment methods vary from vendor to vendor. Accepted payment methods will always be demarcated on product pages. Common payment methods accepted by Alibaba vendors include Western Union, MoneyGram, T/T (Wire Transfer),  Credit Card, and PayPal.

Common Payment Methods on Alibaba

  • L/C: Letter of Credit. Only for large bulk orders.
  • D/A:Documents against Acceptance. Only for large bulk orders.
  • D/P:Documents against Payment. Only for large bulk orders.
  • T/T:Telegraphic Transfer, otherwise known as a Wire Transfer. Depending on your bank, you may be charged a fee for international transfers.
  • Western Union: Pay cash at a Western Union office and cover an extra fee to have Western Union send the money for you.
  • MoneyGram: A more modern version of Western Union. Most popular in North America.
  • Skrill/Moneybookers: PayPal competitors that function very similar to the popular payment app.
  • PayPal: not very popular on Alibaba. It's worth it to look around for it because it has the most reliable protection system for private buyers.
  • Secure Payment: You pay directly into a Citibank Account held by Alibaba in Singapore. Alibaba then withholds your payment from the vendor until you confirm you have received your order. Payments are accepted via AliPay only.
Alibabas Bezahlmethoden

Payment Methods on Alibaba vary between Vendors Secure Payment

Alibaba offers its own secure payment service in an effort to improve the buying process for both customers and vendors: Secure Payment. You, as the buyer, pay the price of your order directly to Alipay via any one of the multiple payment options accepted, including Mastercard, Visa, Maestro, Western Union, Bank Transfer, WebMoney, and QiwiWallet. Just as on Aliexpress, Alibaba will hold the payment in its own account until you (the buyer) confirm that you have received your order. Only after receiving the buyer's confirmation will Alibaba transfer the money to the vendor.

The extra protection offered by Alibaba with the Secure Payment system is quite good. In case there's any problem with your order when it arrives, Alibaba will happily refund your money in its entirety (including any shipping costs). The only real downside we've found to the secure payment system is its availability. As of this writing, it is only available when ordering on the Wholesale Platform, which is the platform designed specially for businesses to order products in bulk.

Whenever the secure payment option is available, you will see a green "Buyer Protection" box on the product page.

Alibaba's Buyer Protection

Alibaba's Buyer Protection: Extra Security for Alibaba Shoppers

 Shipping Costs and Delivery Times

Shipping and handling, like just about everything else on Alibaba, depends on the individual vendor from whom you are buying. Most offer a few Free or discounted shipping options, along with a few express shipping options via private carriers such as UPS, DHL, and FedEx. A lot of vendors give very long delivery estimates (usually 20-60 business days) to shield themselves from Buyer complaints about slow shipping. In our experience, you will almost never need to wait the entire 60 workdays for your order.

Just as with the items themselves, you should always pay extra attention to the different shipping options offered by each vendor. Some offer Free Shipping, some only offer paid shipping. Some offer very expensive standard shipping, others offer very cheap shipping. It's very common to find vendors offering items for particularly low prices, and offsetting the price savings on expensive shipping.

Alibaba and Customs

Your experience here is also heavily dependent upon the vendor: most Vendors that do a lot of business on Alibaba know how to pack and declare packages directly for customs.

Alibaba Index

This symbol shows you how long this vendor has been active on Alibaba. The more experienced the vendor, the more probable it is that they know how to declare a package for international shipping.

Because it's always possible that you are unlucky and, in spite of all your efforts, order from a vendor who does not correctly package or label your shipment for customs. That's why we always recommend being familiar with your country's rules and regulations on international shipping and import fees, so that you know what to expect in case your package makes an unplanned stopover at your local customs office.

For shipments entering the US, extra taxes and fees on your product are possible. Not every item is taxed when entering the country, and the majority are only subject to a nominal processing fee of between $2 and $9 in the case of a random customs stop. The amount to be paid, however, can vary widely depending on the product and how it’s sent. If you are concerned about your item, or are planning to order goods in excess of $500, it is worth it to check with the Customs Office at the port of entry to confirm any extra fees.

Any extra taxes or duties on your shipment will either be paid at your door when the mailman drops it off, or the package may be held at your local post office. In which case, you will need to go pick it up and pay any applicable fees in person.

Special Features

You should check out the multiple reviews available on each vendors page before ordering from them. Alibaba has an internal department that focuses on inspecting and reviewing Alibaba's largest vendors, it even allows third party companies to review vendors. You should pay attention to these reviews before ordering to make sure that you can trust the vendor.


Alibaba is most appropriate for small and medium-sized businesses that need to buy products in bulk. In this respect, it's hard to beat Alibaba's selection, bulk order discounts, individual attention (when ordering from an attentive vendor), and the peace of mind offered by the Alipay Secure Payment system. Private shoppers that aren't interested in buying in bulk may still look around and may even find some good deals, but such shoppers would be much better served looking on an equivalent consumer-to-consumer platform such as Alibaba's C2C equivalent Aliexpress.


Alternative 1: AliExpress
kann Versand kosten huge selection, Alibaba for individuals that don't want to order in bulk. Pay attention to Vendor ratings before you order.
Alternative 2: DHGate
kann Versand kosten huge selection, be sure to pay attention to vendor ratings
Alternative 3: eBay
kann Versand kosten huge selection, most similar to AliExpress, keep an eye on vendor ratings and shipping costs

0 Alibaba Coupons

Because Alibaba is a platform specifically for companies to offer their wares directly to other companies, there aren't very many coupons available for Alibaba normally. If you find any cool discount offers or coupon codes for Alibaba, be sure to let us know!


Sorry, no coupons are currently available.


34 Reviews

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Translate 08/30/2019


la ditta Uline,mi ha truffato.
HO comprato 63 avvitatore a batteria e nella pagina web di Alibaba in cui,era scritto che erano a norma Cee. Falso...Sono arrivati alla dogana in Italia e sono stati sequestrati. La ditta Uline non mi ha mai fatto avere la certificazione Cee, perché non ne era in possesso e Alibaba non mi ha risarcito,perché dice che io dovevo chiedere la certificazione cee prima dell'acquisto. Se tu compri leggi le caratteristiche e se ha le certificazioni, quando scrivono che le hanno per me è regolare ,invece per l'assicurazione di Alibaba no......morale ho perso la merce e 3900 euro. La ditta Uline non risponde più alle mie mail. Se qualcuno ha qualche consiglio da darmi per recuperare il denaro, mi contatti sulla mia mail
Translate 06/07/2019


Achtung mit Vorsicht zu geniesen!!!
Wir wollten Mc Books kaufen im Wert von 800 Euro. Mein Freund hat das Geld überwiesen und der Verkäufer sagte das er dies sofort verschicken würde. Am nächsten Tag sollte mein Freund noch einmal 200 Euro für den Zoll überweisen. Dies hat er auch gemacht. Nun ist er geblockt und es hat sich heraus gestellt, dass es die Firma gar nicht gibt. Nun sind 800 Euro futsch und das Geld sehen wir nie wieder.
Translate 05/28/2019


Bisher lief mit AliExpress alles gut. Ich habe schon viele Dinge (meist Elektronik) unter 100 € bestellt, die alle wie beschrieben bei mir ankamen. Allerdings braucht man viel Geduld, da es i.d.R. 4-6 Wochen dauert. Der Versand lässt sich immer verfolgen, so dass ich wusste, wie lange der Transport und die Zollabfertigung dauert. In der App läuft eine Uhr, die anzeigt, wie lange der Verkäufer noch Zeit hat, um die Ware zu versenden. Einmal blieben dem Verkäufer nur noch 2 Stunden und ich fragte nach, was denn los sei. Er entschuldigte sich sofort, dass er die Ware gerade nicht mehr im Lager hätte und von einem anderen Store besorgen müsse, was er auch tat. Also Kommunikation klappte. Fazit: ich kann AliExpress weiter empfehlen, vorausgesetzt man bringt genügend Geduld mit
Translate 03/13/2019


Esta pagina esta llena de fabricantes y proveedores que tratan de estafarte, y ademas Alibaba no protege al cliente y favorece la conducta delictiva de los fabricantes y proveedores chinos. No utilicen esta pagina por que le van a estafar.
Translate 02/14/2019

Stephanie Rupp

Also ich kann nicht klagen. Die Kommunikation war super. Ich hatte am 21.01. dort bestellt und am 29.01. waren bereits meine Sachen da. Musste auch keine Zollgebühren etc. bezahlen. Das war schon in den 18€ Porto drin. Die Ware war top. Man muss einfach drauf achten, was man bestellt. Bei mir waren es Sublimationsartikel.
Translate 02/10/2019


hi I want to mark a scam of live lobsters on alibaba not bought on this site there are many fake companies that cheat.
Translate 01/08/2019

id lasapparaten service dehaene

heb materiaal ter waarde van 2 € via ebay besteld .... zal ik dus nooit meer doen
betaald met pay pal
akkefietje is dan ook per envelop aangekomen (4 weken )
14 dagen later komt nog een faktuur van DHL.... 69.4€!!!!!!!!!!
Duty kost 4.82
vat 47.03
other levy 17.55

und das für eine dichtungs ring ich bin echt Blödde das ich da was habbe eingekauft ... nie wieder
Translate 11/21/2018

Werner K

Ich kaufe sehr viel in China bei verschiedenen Händlern. Modeschmuck, Uhren, Angelzubehör, kleine Elektronik.
Von ca. 200 Einkäufen ist 1 Artikel nicht geliefert, 2 Artikel defekt, 5 Artikel wurden geliefert haben meine Erwartungen aber nicht erfüllt. Die Händler sind alle sehr freundlich. Die Frachtkosten sind sehr gering, meist Frachtfrei. Die Frachtkosten in Deutschland sind unverhältnismäßig hoch . Ich werde weiter in China einkaufen und kann es nur weiterempfehlen.
Translate 09/25/2018


Diese Fernost heinis zocken die Europäer ab und trotzdem wird fleissig weiterbestellt, jeder der bestellt muss sich darüber bewusst sein das seine Kohle zu 80 % eventuell verloren ist. Ich habe nur für 10 Euro bestellt aber die Ware kam nie bei mir an.
Translate 08/08/2018


Bonjour , j'ai fait 4 commande pour 200 euro a 4 vendeur différent , après 45 jours colis non reçu , j'ai mis un litige au 4 vendeur , réponse de Aliexpress (interdit de plus de 2 litige en même temps , il ont fermer mon compte ,aucun remboursement perte de 200 euro
Site de voleur , leurs systèmes de remboursement s'appelle escrow , sa veux tout dire
Translate 08/06/2018


Nie Wieder !! schlimmer gibt es nicht !
7000 euro verloren !
und Alibaba Antwort warh: Die Firma gibt es nicht mehr und konnen nichts machen !!
Translate 07/07/2018

Wolf Thieme

Ali Baba macht seine 8.3 Milliarden Umsatz jährlich offensichtlich mit Schrottprodukten wie dem Hosengürtel, den ich auf einem Flughafen gekauft habe und dessen billiges Spaltleder sich nach kurzem Gebrauch aufgeschält hat (gern zur Besichtigung frei). Mit dem Geld, das deutschen Käufern aus der Tasche gezogen wird, lässt sich gut in "Wachstumsmärkte in Südostasien und Indien" investieren, so Ali-Babas Deutschland-Chef. Er trägt sicher keinen Ali-Baba-Gürtel.
Translate 06/20/2018


Geld weg, keine Ware
Ware (ip-cameras für 200 euros) wurde falsch deklariert.
Zoll hat mich zwar informiert, hätte für nochmal 200 Euro Zoll und MwSt die waren haben können.
AliExpress hat DISPUTE (hahahaha) einfach geschlossen
Translate 06/13/2018


Hi .Versand kostet 5 mal mehr als die Ware ???????????????????????????????? kaufen manchmal lohnt sich nicht.
Translate 05/09/2018


M.Beck hat geschrieben: Ich habe bereits zum 2. Mal keine Ware bekommen, obwohl der entsprechende Betrag über PayPal von meinem Konto abgebucht wurde. Bei beiden..... Zwar habe ich in einer langen Korrespondenz versucht die Ware doch noch zu bekommen, aber die Antworten aus Fernost waren regelmäßig nicht zielführend. Ich kann also eigentlich nur null Sterne vergeben und davon abraten dort etwas zu bestellen.

Der Post ist zwar schon eine weile her ist aber immer noch aktueller den je.

Ich war so blöd und habe Batterien und 2 Inverter im Wert von 1633USD bei Guangzhou Demuda Optoelectronics Technology Co., LTD Address:NO.18,19th Xiamao Industrial Zone,Baiyun District,Guangzhou,Guangdong,China Zip Code: 510425 Website: bestellt.

Bezahlt habe ich die im Dezember 2017. Bekommen habe ich 2 falsche Inverter und die Batterien habe ich bis Heute nicht bekommen und das so tolle "Complaint Management" von Alibaba verweist mich jetzt an Interpol um das Problem zu lösen!!! "Trade Asurance" sieht bei mir anders aus!!! Das ich mein Geld wieder haben will wird vom Lieferanten einfach ignoriert!! Hat man Probleme mit den Lieferanten entpuppt sich die Alibaba Platform als Rechtsfreier Raum und Mitspieler für Abzocker. Man ist als Kunde völlig machtlos. Ich kann auch nur davon abraten etwas dort zu kaufen. /Ingo
Translate 04/29/2018


Ich habe 4 Artikel über Alibaba bzw. durch Alibaba Bestellt, 3 x Kleid und 2 Paar schuhe. Die schuhen sind nach ca. 30 Tage gekommen und sie waren nicht schlecht aber kleider habe ich nicht erhalten. Habe ein Fall eröffnet und immer mit dem komische Roboter unterhaltet. Am ende weder Ware noch Geld zurück bekommen. Sie werden so lange schreiben und alles weiter schleifen bis Sie nie mehr bei Paypal oder Visa Ihre Geld zurück bekommen können. Ich finde nicht mal die Bestellungen in mein Account Ich werde nie mehr bei Alibaba was Bestellen weil immer noch wie Früher sind nur Haufen Abzocker unterwegs.
Bitte Pass auf und nicht bei Alibaba Kaufen!!!
Translate 04/21/2018

Олег Евгеньевич Кокин

Держитесь подальше ОТ этого магазина кинут все равно способов много ,алиба кидалово
Translate 03/13/2018


Vorsicht Betrug!!! Kauft nicht dort ein! Ich habe über ein halbes Jahr vergeblich auf meine Produkte gewartet.
Keine Hilfe von Alibaba/Aliexpress....
Translate 02/27/2018


Kann nix negatives sagen, aliexpress top.. Bezahlt.. Ware wurde mit DHL Express verschickt... Nach 3 Tagen war wird jetzt mal gecheckt :)
Wenn man fragt ob es als Geschenk verschickt werden kann lassen sich auch viele darauf ein
Translate 02/26/2018

pierre marie

j’ai acheté un onduleur 1000€ ils m’ont envoyés un autre appareil qui n’a rien à voir avec ce que j’avais commandé. Plus grave encore dans la rubrique mon compte ils ont effacés cet achat donc plus aucune preuve ! Aucun remboursement possible. c’est réellement des arnaqueurs je me suis fait volé 1000€ en un clic

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