How do Alibaba, Tradekey, GlobalSources, Dhgate Compare?

By Sarah
November 29, 2022

We know Alibaba is famous for being the world’s supplier of all kinds of things you can buy from China. It has been an easy source for many buyers of different products for years. Why? Because products are cheap.

Alibaba is the best place to buy wholesale goods from China. The more you buy, the bigger the discount. Suppliers will help you ship them to your country fast and quickly.

Some buyers are having problems with Alibaba. For example, the shipping fee is high. Or the order requirement is too high. Because of this, many buyers try to find an alternative site to buy products.

Is there another B2B marketplace like Alibaba? There are so many alternatives for Alibaba! We will cover them and explain each one to you. So that you will have more options when buying goods from China for a low price.

1. Chinese B2B Platforms

The best advantage of B2B platforms is the easy way of sourcing Chinese products. Buyers do not have to go to China to buy and ship things. Online selling has become famous for many years. It is more convenient for many.

Because the prices are low, the buyers are interested. They can even get the lowest price for bulk orders. Today, more online sites are available, and buyers can have many options. 

You can find good and low-priced products from these websites too. We will give you information about these helpful B2B websites. We will also compare how they differ from one another.


Here are a few reasons why Chinese marketplaces are good places to buy your goods:

Save On Discounts

When you think of buying in bulk, a site like Global Sources China can give you high discounts. So, the topmost importance of buying in wholesale sites is to save money. The more you buy, the more you save.

Cost-effective for companies

Companies can save if they can outsource their products. They do not need to build their manufacturing team. Buying from China, like Alibaba source, can save them time and costs. It is beneficial for small companies that are starting up.

Finding reliable partners in the industry

Suppliers play a big role in the success of your business. When your suppliers are reliable, they can make you succeed in no time. They help increase your profit and make your brand known. 

Increase Your Knowledge

When you buy from sites like Alibaba Global Sources and others, you learn and expand your knowledge in sourcing. You know how to find the right suppliers, buy the right products, find the best shipping option, etc. You will learn how to manage your business and schedule your orders. Finally, You become an expert!

why Chinese marketplaces are good places to buy

2)Understanding B2B Sites

What is Alibaba?

It is a big marketplace for wholesale products where customers can get the best deals on huge volumes of goods. Alibaba enables customers to develop custom items, bargain directly with producers, and save a lot of money.

It ships to different countries. It is safe to buy from this site; that’s why buyers from countries like the US choose this to get their products to sell. They also offer some promos and discounts. You can see read reviews and check the seller’s profile to have confidence when buying.


What is Tradekey?

Like Alibaba, Tradekey offers several premium services to buyers and sellers. There are so many products you can buy from here. There are different categories of items. It is an excellent place to spot reliable suppliers with competitive prices.

There are about 10 million members already from different countries who use this platform. You can easily find a supplier here, and sellers can offer good deals for your big purchases. Moreover, you can rest assured that your shipments are safe and trackable.

This website is not just for Chinese sellers. You can sign up here if you are a seller from other countries. It connects buyers and sellers globally.

What is GlobalSources?

This Hongkong-based B2B allows the buyers to contact and make inquiries to the sellers directly. You can find traders, manufacturers, factories, and wholesalers of different China-made products here. 

You can discover a variety of products and purchase them with ease through the seller’s help.

It is considered to be one of the safest online buying sites. You can avoid scams and illegal practices by only communicating with verified sellers. Verified sellers allow refunds. You can check Global Sources reviews and see how the transaction went from their respective buyers.

What is DHGate?

DHGate is another online buyer choice when looking for affordable Chinese products. They can find direct suppliers of all kinds of products, as seen from the websites above. 

The good thing about DHGate is the seller will only get paid once the buyer confirms the product delivery. This way, you can have peace of mind while ordering and waiting for it to reach you.

Based in Beijing, this online platform also has an office in the US, UK, and other countries. It is not hard to navigate the site because there is an English translation, and user-friendly. Other languages are also available.

2. Alibaba Compared to other B2B Platforms

As Alibaba is the biggest online platform that anyone can reach, there are pros and cons to using it. Over the years, many buyers can attest to its usefulness and how it made their business grow big.

1)Alibaba Highlights

•The biggest advantage of Alibaba is the ease with which you can do a fast search to find thousands of suppliers and items.

•The Alibaba website is user-friendly and accessible.  You can get full audits or reports from every seller listed on the website.

•Alibaba gives you peace of mind. It guarantees that all transactions you complete on the website are safe and secure. This service is called Trade Assurance. You don/t have to worry about fraudulent transactions.

•There are different kinds of sellers on Alibaba. So, if you think that all of them are direct suppliers, you have to know how to recognize them very well. If you want to buy good quality products for a competitive price, you need to find direct suppliers.

• Here’s an important thing to note. Traders can borrow their supplier’s or factory’s certificate. It means that they use the factory pictures of the direct suppliers in their profile so they can show up as legitimate factories when you review their profile.  

• Some sellers in Alibaba pay a certain amount so they can show up as a “Gold Supplier.” It is not a bad idea to buy from traders or wholesalers. However, there are risks when buying from them. Since they re-sell the products coming from true suppliers, there are markups on the prices.

• The sources Alibaba show to buyers are registered Chinese sellers. They can be new or old suppliers who have earned good reputations from their excellent services. 

• When a seller is already established, you may find that they do not reply quickly to some inquiries. But when you inquire from new sellers, they will always respond to you.

• Also, if you want a faster and smoother transaction, you can arrange a Duty Delivery Paid or DDP Alibaba service. This way, the seller will take care of all the customs tax and duties, and you will not process anything. You will only need to wait for the goods to be delivered to your business address.

• For Alibaba resources there are almost 150 million registered users! Given this number, it is for sure the biggest and most sought-after B2B online site for many international buyers.

Now that we have given you all the highlights of Alibaba, let’s look at and compare the other sites. You may find these comparisons helpful when deciding where to buy.

Alibaba Highlights

2)DHGate vs Alibaba

•DHGATE is based in Beijing, founded in 2004

•It sells wholesale products globally, especially to retailers

•There are 1.2 million sellers and more than 30 million product listings

•Website is available in multiple languages

•DhGate is an independent network for wholesalers and drop shippers. It means that they only facilitate the transaction, but the sellers will handle the selling and shipping. When a customer pays, DHGate will only contact them if they report a complaint. 

•Most sellers do not require an MOQ. You can buy even one piece of each item. You can order in bulk too for lower prices and more discounts. 

•You can join as a seller or buyer for free. 

•You will find competitive prices from different sellers. You get lots of discounts and coupons on large orders.

•Most eBay and Amazon sellers buy from DHGate and re-sell them 

•You can find trendy things in DHGate 

•Shipping time depends on the courier you choose 

•You can buy and pay using a credit card

3)Tradekey vs Alibaba

•The company started in 2006 with 9.6 million members in 240 countries

•It has a large list of Chinese sellers

•Payment can be done through Union Pay, PayPal, Visa/Master Card, Western Union Bank Wire Transfer

•The website is available in six languages

•One of the biggest online shops for electronics

•It connects wholesale sellers, buyers, importers, exporters, manufacturers, and distributors based on its special services, strong search engine, trade matching, and tool for product promotion

Tradekey vs Alibaba

•Tradekey is an online B2B marketplace where small and medium-sized enterprises from all over the world can buy and sell products. 

•Customers have access to a platform where they may get the widest variety of high-quality products from numerous reputable suppliers and manufacturers at reasonable prices. 

•Although Tradekey’s registration is free, consumers must select one of four premium memberships to use all the additional features that Tradekey provides. 

•Users can obtain limitless product posting, consultation services, SEO, social media marketing, and more with one of them. 

•For all premium services, potential customers must complete a form before an experienced team contacts them with more information. 

•There is also an Amazon service package that includes services like virtual support, professional management, and more

•With professional online marketing services

•Good customer service, product shipping, and delivery process

•The product exchange and refund are workable for most suppliers

•The key account managers are all very helpful based on customer reviews

4)Global Sources vs Alibaba

•Global Sources is another reliable and trusted Chinese B2B marketplace. Its sells goods like the following: 

#1 sports goods

#2 electronics

#3 car spare parts

#4 clothing and accessories

#5 home goods

#6 tech gadgets

#7 smart home technology, etc.

Globalsources vs Alibaba

•There are only a few sellers that sell in ten-piece packages depending on the category of the product. You can find this when you are buying spare parts for motorcycles or cars. But most goods like clothing, shoes, or other cheap items should be bought in lots of high MOQ.

•Global Sources might not be the ideal option if you’re seeking small quantity orders. You can choose Global Sources wholesale in scaling up swiftly if you are a seasoned dropshipper with consistent product demand.

•Global Sources has more than 1.5 million registered suppliers. You can choose from different types of suppliers like wholesalers, traders, manufacturers, and direct factories. But there is no guarantee that all these suppliers produce and sell the same quality of products. You have to be diligent when choosing suppliers.

•Global Sources is the second largest supplier after Alibaba. You can easily find suppliers when you look through the website. You can directly ask for quotes and inquire about the products they sell.

•Most buyers say that when you want to find electronic products, they are better than Alibaba. The suppliers are open to negotiating and responding to your inquiries so you can discuss your product requirement with them.

•If you want to attend their suppliers’ fair, they host their exhibit in Hongkong. They also hold a conference so they can attract global buyers while establishing trust and partnerships with them.

•You can buy almost anything in Global Sources and they can cater payment methods like credit card and wire transfers to suppliers. They can also arrange a shipping method for you that is fair and can let you save. 

•If you need product customization, some suppliers can do OEM. For safety, always check the verified supplier or manufacturer tag and assess how they answer back to your inquiries and quotes.

3. Alibaba or Alternatives- What Platform is the Best Choice?

Maybe you are wondering if buying in Alibaba is a lot better because it is already the pioneer of all B2B sites in China. You may have questions like:

Are the suppliers in Alibaba more reliable than other sites?

Is the process easier and more convenient for buyers?

Can I save if I buy from Global Sources?

Is Alibaba Paypal payment safe?

We will give you some guidelines below to make choosing easier for you if you also want to explore other B2B sites. 

1)How to Choose the Right Platform

When choosing the right platform, always look at the factors that can affect your business. Here are the things you need to consider:

How to Choose the Right Platform


Ask yourself, “Which platform can give me a profit?” For example, we know that Alibaba gives a great deal for wholesale purchases but the MOQ requirement is high. If you get more stocks but cannot sell them quickly, will it hurt your profit goal? Always go for the one that can practically increase your profit and do not put your capital to sleep. 

Shipping Options

Shipping cost is always a problem when importing or buying from other countries. There are so many charges associated with it. If you will choose a seller, look for one that can give you a practical shipping option so you can save on the high costs of shipping. 

Your decision can be based on how urgent you need the goods. A shorter period may cost you a high price. But if a seller has a partnership with couriers and can give you a practical shipping price within an acceptable shipping time, that’s a better choice!

Product Quality

It is not enough that you only read and base your decisions on the reviews. A smart way to decide is to have a sample from a supplier and test it yourself. If you are considering buying from one or two platforms, get a sample from each and compare.

Communication and Negotiation

Some sellers are not cooperative. Other sellers cannot talk in English. This will be a struggle when you want to negotiate and explain your product requirements. If you cannot be on good terms with a seller on your chosen platform, pick another seller from another platform. 

If you really want to push your order with a seller but cannot communicate well, you need to get your China agent. The agent can help you negotiate and let your seller know what you wish to have. You can get an agent from sourcing agencies like JUSTCHINAIT.

2)When to Choose Alibaba and other online wholesale vendors?

If you are looking for the biggest B2B marketplace of all products, Alibaba is the choice. You can easily navigate the website and find qualified suppliers for whatever item you want to import. 

Alibaba is the choice when you are not looking for a very high MOQ demand. Thus, you can choose Alibaba for Global Sources for medium to high MOQ requirement.

DHGate and Tradekey can give you lower MOQ for wholesale purchase. You can track your shipments easily, and they have an excellent customer service assistance. 

Many sellers here really sell cheap products so do not expect a very good quality. You can choose Alibaba if you are looking for a high-quality output through their verified and long-time sellers in the portal.


1)Which B2B portal is better, Alibaba or Global Sources?

Global Sources and Alibaba provide competitive prices to entice customers to import goods. The more units you purchase, the higher the discounts. You can compare the cost of the high-quality goods on both websites.

On both platforms, you can haggle over prices for wholesale goods. It allows you to bargain with many vendors. You just need to be careful of selecting the right supplier who will not overcharge you when it comes to shipping and other relative charges when they ship to your business address.

When you are looking for wholesale items, these two platforms are very good choices. You can buy with confidence and peace because they provide consumer protection. Sellers take care of their reputations and ensure that every transaction is smooth and acceptable for each client.

2)What is the best wholesale website in China?

Since there are numerous online wholesale websites in China currently, we will give you the TOP 10 websites trusted by importers and buyers globally. They are the following:

#1 Alibaba

#2 Global Sources

#3 Tradekey

#4 DHGate

#5 Made in China

#6 AliExpress

#7 Chinagoods

#8 Shein

#9 1688


3)How do I find the best Chinese suppliers?

There are several ways how you can find the best Chinese suppliers:

#1 Get a sourcing agent to help you verify and look for the qualified or suitable supplier of your product.

#2 Make a thorough check on the company’s profile. Check how many years they’ve been in the business and read the customers’ reviews.

#3 Choose suppliers that offer a product warranty. A true and direct supplier will not hesitate to give you a product warranty. Some traders will not give you this option.

#4 Always ask and compare quotations from different suppliers. When you have a comparison, you can weigh out all options that each supplier offers. You can choose what works best for you. 

How do I find the best Chinese suppliers

4)What are other wholesale websites in China?

You can also consider the following websites for wholesale purchases:

#1 Global Sources

#2 Tradekey

#3 DHGate

#4 Made in China

#5 AliExpress


#7 Yiwugo

#8 TradeChina

#9 China Brands

#10 LightintheBox

#11 1688

#12 Shein

#13 ChinaGoods

#14 Chinavison

#15 Gearbest


Whether you are looking to buy at Alibaba, Dhgate, Tradekey, or Global Sources, finding a good and reliable supplier should be your goal. Your choice of supplier will have a big effect on your business and purchasing decisions.

Most of the wholesale sites in China offer great deals for all buyers. Alibaba, being the top and second to none for many, also has pros and cons. Tradekey, DHGate, and Global Sources are good alternatives when you are looking for other options that can suit your importing needs.

These three B2B online sites are also top competitors of Alibaba. A lot of sellers have established a good reputation from these platforms because they can deliver quality service to their clients. You can rest assured that buying from any of these sites will bring success to your businesses.

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