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A Guide to Importing Furniture From China

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When it comes to ordering furniture from China there are always countless options. This is a great choice in many different scenarios. If you are selling furniture, are opening a new business, or office space, and so on. There are countless reasons for wanting to get furniture from China. The following article, therefore, is aiming to help you find the right match for you and your business. In the following pages, we are going to break down some important aspects of the Chinese furniture market as well as some important factors to consider when it comes to ordering furniture. These will include finding the best quality furniture, proper paperwork you might need, and ways of shipping, just to mention a few. After reading this article you will have a better understanding of the Chinese furniture market as well as how to find what you need exactly in this market.

A Step-by-step Guide to Import Furniture from China — When you’re importing furniture from China, generally, we introduce reasons, tips to find suppliers, furniture kinds, shipment way, payment, and documents one-stop guide.

Table of Contents

Why You Should Import Furniture from China

There are several reasons why it is beneficial for you to import furniture from China. For instance the price, the quality, as well as the speed of manufacturing. These all could be reasons worthy of consideration. However here are 2 of the best reasons why it’s worthy to consider buying furniture from China

You Will Find a Huge Variety of Furniture On the Chinese Market

First and foremost, the furniture – just like many others- market is vast in China. This of course means also a wide selection of furniture as well. There is a whole area within China that’s main focus area is furniture manufacturing, called Shunde. Therefore there is truly a great selection available. Anything you could think of you can find and purchase from here. Regardless of your choice to have something for your personal use or new office space, surely, you will find the matching pieces.

It is a Guarantee That you Will Find High-quality Furniture

This is the reason most people think about it. Rightfully so. The Chinese furniture market is very competitive. So much so that it ends up working in your favor. Due to this, it became cheaper to order furniture from China as opposed to buying it locally. Besides, traditionally furniture manufacturers pay attention to details and aspire to build excellent quality furniture without nails or glue. This is because they believe that these parts that help the pieces join together, will also become the reason why the furniture will wear out over time. Therefore many furniture manufacturers in China design their pieces in a way that they can be joined together without having to use additional materials.

China Furniture Market Guide

Previously the world’s largest furniture manufacturer was known to be Italy. This has changed recently. China is now known as the world’s leading furniture manufacturer. With over $50 billion in sales annually in 2017 alone, the country is showing some truly impressive numbers. What’s most impressive is that they are responsible for over 40% of all global furniture consumption. Some of the most successful and popular Chinese furniture markets or manufacturers are here. There is nothing furniture related you can’t find when looking them up:

 

  • Foshan Market
  • Louver Mall
  • Tianyi Mall
  • Sunlink Furniture Market

How to Find Real Furniture From China

There are plenty of marketplaces for furniture in China. Both physical as well as online platforms. The online way has been gaining great popularity. The reason being is simple. There is easy access, no extra costs, effective and speedy search engines as well as lower prices. Some of the most popular and reliable online and physical places to pick your desired pieces from are:

  • Canton Fair
  • China International Furniture Fair
  • Alibaba
  • AliExpress
  • Regular Search Engines Like Yahoo or Google
  • Other Global Sources

Importing furniture

4 Tips on How to Find a Quality Chinese Furniture Supplier

When ordering from China it is worth considering a few things. There are always advantages to placing an order as both the prices and the quality are up to high standards. However one needs to know exactly what they are looking for. This is to better your chances of finding exactly what you or your business needs. Here are some of the most important things to consider when you look for quality  furniture suppliers:

 

  • Opinions to Customize

If you are about to order large quantities of furniture it is very important to be able to customize your order. This could depend on a number of things. Based on the office or private space you might want to have a custom size made for you. Or depending on the size of the office you could have a large number of furniture in mind. Find a company that is ready to cater to your specific wishes.

 

  • Trustworthiness

The best way to check for this is by simply checking past customer reviews. They will surely be worthy of your time. Large manufacturers get awarded prizes too for their work. Check these to see if they are up to your standards.

  • Upholding Regulations

This is very important. The manufacturer has to be able to show you certificates as well as documentation about their work. The quality as well as all materials used in the making of the pieces should be easy to access.

 

  • Minimums Order of Quantity (MOQ)

Depending on your desired quantity you should invest time into getting the right manufacturer that can fulfill your wishes regarding quantity. If you are about to get 15 sets of coffee tables and chairs it would be a pity to find out that the MOQ of the manufacturer is 25 pieces. Therefore doing research will always help you match yourself with the furniture company that will provide you with the best pieces.

What Kinds of Furniture Can You Import From China?

When ordering from China you will find almost all types of furniture you could think of. It could be high-end furniture or more cost-effective pieces. Designer or simple furniture. For comfort or decoration pieces, in the Chinese furniture market, you will find a wide range of available options to choose from. Whether it is for someone’s home, office or store there are truly wide selections available. Some of the top ones are listed here:

 

  • Metal Furniture
  • Office Furniture
  • Plastic Furniture
  • Bedroom Furniture
  • Dining Room Furniture
  • Wood Furniture
  • Designer Furniture 
  • Upholstered Furniture
  • Hotel Furniture

How to Ship Your Furniture from China

When you make a decision and find the right manufacturer, the next step then is finding the best way of shipping. There are a few things to consider when it comes to importing your furniture from China. Due to the shipment’s potentially large volume, there is a lot at risk. Therefore it is important to consider the following aspects:

 

  • Ways of Shipping

In most cases, when importing from China, one will choose ocean freight. This is because this way of transporting goods can facilitate even the largest quantities of cargo. Though it could be time-consuming, this method is cost-effective and relatively safe.

 

  • Terms of Shipping

The terms of shipping are normally flexible. There are 4 known terms you can choose from in most cases. These will depend on which Incoterm you prefer. Depending on your choice the furniture can simply be delivered all the way to your preferred address (DDU). Another option is to have it shipped and dropped off at a selected port in your country (CIF). Yet another way is to have it delivered to a port in China, from where you will have to organize its pickup (FOB). The final and cheapest way is to simply have your goods prepared for you at the manufacturer’s warehouse. (EX-works)

 

  • Costs of Shipping

The cost of shopping will depend on many things. Apart from the forwarder, the method of shopping and the quantity will be based on what additional services or security measures you want to take. Besides, the above-mentioned 4 aspects will have an influence on the prices too.

 

  • Time of Shipping

This will be dependent on a few things as well. First, of course, your choice of mode of transport. If you choose ocean freight typically the receiving of goods from your placing an order can take anywhere between 5 to 50 days. This depends on the manufacturer’s time needed to prepare your furniture as well as the transportation to the port selected by you. 

Payment Methods

Nowadays there are more and more ways to pay for your shipment. This makes it easier, quicker, and more flexible to conduct your business. Here is a list of the most popular payment methods when it comes to shipping for China. They are all reliable and useful. With their help, you can get through the steps you need, to order all your furniture in no time. The list includes payment methods not only for furniture import but most other types of import as well:

  • Western Union
  • Cash
  • International Wire Transfer
  • Using a Sourcing Agent
  • PayPal
  • Letter of Credit

Documents to Prepare Before Importing Furniture From China

Regardless of the goods you are about to order, you always need to have your paperwork prepared. This is a crucial part of the business transaction as the lack of proper documentation of your import could result in fines or even total denial of your shipment. Here is the most important documentation to have ready when importing furniture from China. The list includes some of the most important paperwork needed, however, it is not limited to all that is necessary. That will depend on your exact needs as well as your region’s regulations and so on:

  • Bill of Lading (B/L)
  • Certificate of Origin (C/O)
  • Commercial Invoice
  • List of Contents
  • Other Licenses (F.e.: Product License)

Should You Find a Sourcing Agent or Should You Do It Yourself?

This question comes up quite often. When it comes to importing from China, not just furniture, but almost anything at all, many wonder if it’s worth it to hire a sourcing agent. The short answer to this is: in most cases, yes. The reason for that is because simply they are much more familiar with local customs, terms, and regulations as well as what to look out for. They will listen to your needs and do their best to find the right match for you. They speak the language and know how to navigate the local business culture.

Unless you are well-experienced and know your way around the market in China, it could be rather crucial to hire a sourcing agent. Because even if you think you know everything, the market in China is absolutely huge! No wonder, therefore, that sourcing agents exist. They came out of a need for help navigating the enormous market here. They might be an extra cost but they will surely be worth the money. They will not only find you the best deals, but they will watch out for all the documentation to be correct, the quality of the products to match your needs as well as prevent you from being scammed. This way sourcing agents will save you time and money.

china international furniture fair

HKTDC Hong Kong Houseware Fair

HKTDC Hong Kong Houseware Fair is among the most well-recognized and well-received furniture fairs in Hong Kong. In 2017, the fair was attended by more than 29,000 visitors, and around 2,200 brands and businesses displayed their products.

The exhibition will take place in the third week of April in Hong Kong. Admission to the fair is allowed for only 18 years old and above. You also have to pay HK$ 100 which is equivalent to USD 15 to attend the show.

Visiting Hong Kong for short-term business visits does not require a visa so you can attend this event without applying for a visa. Hong Kong allows visa-free entry to 170 countries, which also include North America, Europe, and Australia.

You can explore a wide range of houseware categories in this event that include:

  • Art & craft items
  • Hardware & DIY projects
  • Bathroom products
  • Home appliances
  • Eco-Friendly products
  • Furniture
  • Outdoor & gardening accessories
  • Storage solutions
  • Kitchenware
  • Interior decor & handicrafts

You can also find hundreds of exhibitors from Hong Kong, Mainland China, and other countries in the region. The event is organized by the Hong Kong Trade Development Council, The Chinese General Chamber of Commerce, and other partners.

The event takes place once a year, mostly in April.

Venue: Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre, 1 Expo Drive, Wan Chai, Hong Kong

IDFFHK

International Design and Furniture Fair Hong Kong, also known as IDFFHK, takes place in Hong Kong after every two years.

The fair focuses more on interior design and hosts many top interior designers, in addition to exhibiting their designed products. The event is mostly attended by architects, property developers, interior designers, hoteliers, and other professionals working in the design industry.

In 2017, more than 10,000 professionals visited the fair.

Venue: Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre, 1 Expo Drive, Wanchai, Hong Kong

Global Sources Gifts & Home

The Gifts & Home Exhibition is another major fair in Hong Kong. In 2017, more than 18,000 buyers visited the event from 121 countries. The event also organized more than 1,000 booths for different product categories and exhibitors.

The exhibition also focuses on small order sourcing, as you can find more than 300 exhibitors who accept small orders, making the event a good option for small-scale online retailers and Amazon sellers. The exhibition also has a separate Online and Amazon Sellers center with hundreds of booths. Most of the exhibitors are from Hong Kong and Mainland China, but some are also from other countries.

As there are many different product categories and exhibitors, the event targets both, large and small-scale buyers.

You can also explore different product categories that include:

  • Home Living & Decor
  • Kitchen & Dining
  • Home Improvement
  • Design Corner
  • Creative Design
  • Gifts

The exhibition takes place twice every year, mostly in April and October.

The event also takes place in partnership with the Global Sources Mobile Electronics exhibition at the same place and at the same time. So you have an option to visit both at the same time.

Venue: Asia World-Expo, next to Hong Kong International Airport

Furniture China (Shanghai)

The annual China International Furniture Expo will take place in Shanghai in September. The exhibition takes place once every year, mostly in the month of September.

It is also one of the largest furniture expos in the world. More than 150,000 people attended the event in 2017 from 155 different countries.

The event is organized by the China National Furniture Association and attended by hundreds of brands and furniture exporters from Mainland China, Hong Kong, and other countries. In total, more than 3,500 exhibitors are expected to participate in the event.

As there are thousands of exhibitors and tens of thousands of product booths, you can explore many different product categories that include:

  • Contemporary furniture
  • Furniture from international brands
  • Office furniture
  • Outdoor & garden furniture and accessories
  • Table & chair
  • Children’s furniture
  • Mattresses
  • Chinese classical furniture
  • European classical furniture
  • Upholstery furniture

Unlike Hong Kong (which is a special administrative region in China), you need a visa to visit Mainland China to attend business events in the country. Even though China allows visa-free entry to the citizens of 13 countries, including Singapore and Japan, but for Europe, North America, and Australia, there are visa requirements.

Admission is limited to 18 years old or older only.

The event takes place at the same time and the same location as FMC (Furniture Manufacturing & Supply) China exhibition. You can attend both events at the same time as both events are co-located.

Venue: Shanghai New International Expo Centre (SNIEC), No. 2345 Longyang Road, Pudong New Area, Shanghai

China International Furniture Fair (Guangzhou)

In terms of visitors and exhibitor numbers, China International Furniture Fair is among the largest furniture fairs in the world. More than 170,000 visitors from all around the world visit the event every year, while more than 3,900 exhibitors take part in the exhibition.

The event takes place twice a year, every March and October. The event also takes place in two phases at two different venues within the same city, each phase displays different product categories.

The presence of a large number of furniture manufacturers, exporters, and international brands allows you to explore an unattached range of products at this event. Some of the popular categories at the event include:

  • Modern furniture
  • Classical furniture
  • Home Decor & textile
  • Outdoor & Leisure
  • Office furniture
  • Hotel furniture
  • Upholstery & bedding

The exhibition is organized by the China National Furniture Association and the China Foreign Trade Center.

Most of the exhibitors are from China and Hong Kong, but you can also find furniture brands from other Asian countries along with North American, European, and Australian companies.

Venue:

  • First Phase: China Import & Export Fair Pazhou Complex, Xin Guangdong Road No.980, Haizhu District, Guangzhou
  • Second Phase: Poly World Trade Center Expo, Xin Guangdong Road No.1000, Haizhu District, Guangzhou

Canton Fair Phase 2 (Guangzhou)

Canton Fair is also called China Import and Export Fair. It is a regular event that takes place twice a year in three phases.
Each phase consists of several major industries. The second phase also exhibits many different industries that include furniture.

It is also one of the largest furniture trade exhibitions in the world based on the number of attendees every year. Around 7,000 exhibitors are expected to join the event along with more than 180,000 visitors from all over the world.

The exhibition will take place in China Import and Export Complex, also known as the largest modernized exhibition center in Asia. It is located in Pazhou Island, Guangzhou, China.

You can also explore a wide range of product categories here that include:

  • Kitchenware & tableware
  • Household items
  • General ceramics
  • Home decorations
  • Home, Office, School, Indoor & Outdoor, Hospital and other types of furniture

You can find exhibitors in the fair from all over the world, but most are Mainland China and Hong Kong-based furniture manufacturers.

Venue: China Import & Export Fair Complex, No. 380, Yuejiang Zhong Road, Guangzhou, China

Chinese furniture manufacturers

Listed Companies

  • Foshan Rongbin Furniture Factory
  • Guangdong Hongye Furniture Manufacturing
  • Anji Hefeng Furniture
  • Foshan COOC Furniture
  • Guangzhou Everpretty Furniture
  • Artech Furniture Group
  • Foshan Mingjia Hotel Furniture
  • Hangzhou Tengnuo Home Furniture
  • Foshan Shunde Creation Furniture

Conclusion

No matter the business, having the right products is always very important. Especially in quickly used products like office or school supplies. It is necessary to find and get the right quality. The above top 20 China office supply manufacturers will surely be of help. No matter who your clients might be, this list will contain everything you need. Our picks were in no particular order. What matters more is for you to dig deeper. Make sure to identify what your business needs exactly. And then you will have a much easier time finding which business to start a partnership with. For instance, you might need a trusted and experienced manufacturer. In this case, Jinjiang Overseas Chinese Plastic & Rubber Co might be the right choice. But, if you are looking for a company with a large variety that is also putting the environment first, perhaps take a look at Today (Ningbo) Crafts Co. The decision should always be based upon your business needs and your vision. 

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Conclusion

Importing furniture from China is beneficial for you. However, the market is rather enormous and has a vast variety of pieces you need to choose from. Therefore it is always useful to be clear about what your needs are. This way you will have a strong foundation, to begin with. You could be looking for new furniture for your home or business as well as special office space furniture or unique designer pieces. Here you will find everything. There are great furniture providers and easy ways to get yourself some good deals. However, especially if you are looking to buy in larger quantities, consider hiring a sourcing agent. They will save you lots of time and potentially money by knowing everything there is to know about the Chinese furniture market. Some of the most reliable furniture companies in China in no particular order are Promising Furniture, LIAONING, DIVANY, Shenzhen Coco Furniture, Jade, and Interior Furniture.

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