AliExpress.com is likely one of the most well-known online marketplaces for getting wholesale goods at direct-to-consumer prices from Chinese manufacturers. It has products for cheap, which can be made even less expensive through the use of general or merchant-specific coupons. Plus, AliExpress has buyer protection guarantees that can help you out if things don't go quite right with your order. Still, orders can be expensive when you factor in that they have to be shipped from China (especially if you choose expedited shipping options), and might also take a while to get to you. Speaking of that, you can't be a seller on AliExpress unless you live in mainland China.
Here are fifteen other websites like AliExpress that you can try for discount shopping online.
Another China-based online retailer, LightInTheBox has over 1 million items for sale, ranging from clothing to small electronics to furniture to sports equipment and more. Its items are mainly spread out across its main website and its companion website, MiniInTheBox (more on it later). Similar to AliExpress, it ships to over 200 countries and regions, accepts most major forms of payment, and uses major international couriers like UPS and FedEx.
DinoDirect is another direct-to-consumer marketplace for people wanting to buy goods at wholesale prices from small and medium-sized retailers in China. Its major claim to fame is its commitment to keeping shipping costs low, which is a common pitfall of ordering items all the way from China. Over 300,000 items on DinoDirect can be shipped almost anywhere in the world with no shipping charges.
Another well-known e-commerce titan, eBay is also a trade-off of higher prices for quicker and more convenient service. What sets it apart is that, in addition to buying items directly, you can also bid for them in auctions or submit price offers to sellers. If you're skillful (and a bit lucky), you can get stuff for cheaper that way.
For more on how to use eBay to buy or participate in auctions, check out our eBay course.
As we noted above, MiniInTheBox is an offshoot of Chinese online wholesale retailer LightInTheBox. As its name implies, MiniInTheBox deals more with small-sized electronic items, such as computer accessories, cell phone accessories, other electronic accessories, jewelry, and lighting. Its services are similar to those of LightInTheBox, with factory-direct prices, fast shipping with local warehouses in Europe and North America, and a 30-day money-back guarantee on most items.
Similar to MiniInTheBox, DealExtreme features direct-to-consumer prices on all kinds of Chinese-manufactured electronics (though it does have clothing, toys, and accessories, too). Like DinoDirect, it ships most of its items anywhere on Earth with no shipping charges. However, it has a considerably smaller inventory, with only about 400 suppliers and 300,000 total items.
Dedicated to giving you "the best bang for your buck" when it comes to ordering stuff online, BangGood offers competitive prices and low shipping fees on Chinese-manufactured goods from all shapes and sizes. Unlike some other direct-from-China retailers, there is never a minimum quantity required for anything that you order on BangGood. Also, it features several secure payment options, including PayPal. Like DealExtreme, though, it's a somewhat small outlet, with only about 150,000 product listings.
DealsMachine is a Chinese direct-to-consumer online marketplace specializing in electronics, similar to MiniInTheBox and DealExtreme. However, it compensates for its small inventory (only about 100,000 items) with a few neat features. Like BangGood, DealsMachine has no minimum purchase requirement; you can by as many or as few of an item as you like. It doesn't charge sales tax, thoroughly inspects its items for quality, and has secure payment options and fast shipping times. Its shipping costs are a bit pricier than other websites like it, though.
Overstock began in Utah, U.S.A. in 1999 as a seller of liquidation-priced goods from e-commerce websites that collapsed in the "dot-com bust" of the late 1990s and early 2000s. It still sells some of those products today, but its offerings have expanded to include new items, as well. One of its signature features is its "Worldstock" line, which gives the majority of the profits made from selling unique handicrafts from around the world back to the local artisans who made them.
Bonanza is a unique online marketplace that contains over 20 million items from over 50,000 entrepreneurial sellers. Though you can sometimes find new items on Bonanza, it's also great for finding handcrafted stuff and rarities that are hard to find elsewhere (hence the slogan "everything but the ordinary"). With a powerful but easy-to-use shopping interface and low service fees, Bonanza is a very popular online marketplace whether you're looking to buy or sell. Some people like it even more than perennial e-commerce powerhouses like Amazon, eBay, or Etsy!
Another Chinese website getting in on the direct-to-consumer market, FocalPrice is rather small, offering only about 70,000 items. It specializes in electronics and associated accessories, but also features jewelry, health products, home furnishings and decor, and sports equipment. It offers free standard shipping for all of its products (though shipping times are a little long), as well as a 3-month guarantee on everything that's sold through the website.
The "top" part of TomTop is certainly well-earned; this wholesale supplier is one of the best-reviewed AliExpress alternatives on this list. Even the Alibaba Group, the parent company of AliExpress, recommends them. They have plenty of promotions to save you money, and they have a reputation for delivering orders exactly how they're supposed to be. The one common complaint is the slow shipping times.
DHGate is named after the city of Dunhuang in China, which was a key stop on the legendary "Silk Road" trade route between China and nearby territories. DHGate continues that spirit by offering wholesale prices on over 30 million products from over 1.2 million sellers worldwide. Do note, however, that some things that you buy from DHGate have to be bought in bulk; you can't buy just one of them.
Jet is as much a way to make shopping online more convenient as it is a way to shop online per se. It allows you to order items from popular big-box stores online (such as Target and Wal-Mart, which we mentioned), with free 2-day shipping on orders over $35 and free return shipping on items that don't work out. The catch is that it costs money to use Jet -- about $50 per year -- but you can use it free for 3 months. If it has to be brand-name and it has to be in your hands in a hurry, try Jet.
Another AliExpress alternative, EverBuying is a Chinese wholesaler portal specializing in fashion and technology. Created in 2006, it serves over 200 countries and regions around the world and features over 250,000 product lines, including those for novelty items like costume accessories. It also has fast and affordable shipping options.
It may not be based in China, and its sellers may not (all) be wholesale retailers, but Amazon is one of the juggernauts of e-commerce, and with good reason. High-quality products (some of which are unique to Amazon), a reputation for great customer service, and a premier club (a.k.a. Amazon Prime) with a whole host of goodies that include free media libraries! It's a bit of a pricier option, though.
So, do you prefer using AliExpress or its wholesale-based cousins, or do you stick to more mainstream e-commerce websites like Amazon or eBay? Share your experiences with any of these websites -- or any others like them -- in the comment section below.
Also, if you'd like to use one of our suggestions exclusively, we'll wrap up this course by showing you how to delete your AliExpress account.
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