Have you ever wondered why is AliExpress so cheap and how it manages to offer such incredibly low prices on its products? Is it too good to be true? Well, the truth may surprise you.
AliExpress has gained immense popularity as an online marketplace where you can find almost anything at unbelievably cheap prices.
But how exactly do they manage to offer such low prices? Is it because the quality is compromised? Or are there other factors at play?
In this article, I will dive deep into the world of AliExpress and uncover the truth behind its cheap prices. So, if you’ve ever been curious about the secrets behind AliExpress’s affordability, keep reading to discover the truth.
Why Is Everything on AliExpress So Cheap?
AliExpress is widely known for offering incredibly low prices on a wide variety of products. From electronics to clothing to home goods, you can find almost anything you need at unbeatable prices. But have you ever wondered why is AliExpress is so cheap?
In this article, I will explore the key factors that contribute to the affordability of products on this popular online marketplace. From direct sourcing from manufacturers to low shipping costs, we’ll uncover the reasons behind the attractive price tags on AliExpress.
👉 Also, read about Alibaba Dropshipping: A Step-by-Step Guide For Beginners.
1. Buying Directly From Manufacturers
Buying directly from manufacturers is one of the key reasons why is AliExpress so cheap.
By cutting out middlemen and multiple intermediaries, costs are significantly reduced, allowing manufacturers to offer their products at lower prices. This direct sourcing model eliminates the need for wholesalers or distributors. They often add their own markups to the product’s price.
Additionally, by purchasing directly from manufacturers, you can be assured of the product’s authenticity and quality. This direct connection between buyers and manufacturers not only contributes to the affordability of products on AliExpress but also allows for greater transparency and efficiency in the supply chain.
Luckily, there are lots of trustworthy Chinese dropshipping suppliers for AliExpress. Thus, one that I recommend you check on is Sunsky. They have everything from smartphones to toys, decorations, clothing, and tons more. It’s among the best general Chinese dropshipping suppliers you can find.
2. Low or Free Shipping Costs
AliExpress really does take the crown for low shipping costs. Hence, AliExpress’s ability to offer low or free shipping costs is primarily attributed to the subsidies provided by the Chinese government and their direct sourcing from manufacturers.
The government provides subsidies to shipping companies such as China Post and Hong Kong Post, which allows them to offer lower rates for international shipping. And, this is another answer to why is AliExpress so cheap.
For example, when I buy from AliExpress, I always use the “Free Shipping” filter, since I want to skip the shipping costs. And, of course, AliExpress narrows down my search. But, guess what? I can still find my desired product, and I also get dozens of other choices.
What’s more, in comparison to other e-commerce giants like Amazon, AliExpress has a distinct advantage in terms of shipping costs and time. While Amazon mainly operates as a retail platform, sourcing products from various suppliers worldwide, AliExpress predominantly focuses on the Chinese market.
So, this concentration allows AliExpress to take advantage of the previously mentioned subsidies and streamlined supply chain, resulting in generally lower shipping costs and faster delivery times.
However, keep in mind that AliExpress shipping times can really long. So, I suggest you learn how to reduce AliExpress Shipping times before starting out.
3. Products Can Be Low Quality and Counterfeit
Unfortunately, it’s important to remember that not all that glitter is gold. While AliExpress offers unbeatable prices, it also attracts its fair share of scammers selling low-quality and counterfeit products.
That’s why it’s crucial to exercise caution when shopping on the platform. One way to ensure that you’re not falling victim to these scammers is by carefully reading product descriptions and reviews. This will give you a better understanding of the quality of the product and help you make an informed decision.
To begin, simply click on the seller’s name. From there, you will be directed to their store. To ensure a smooth experience, I highly recommend that you click on the Feedback option.
By doing so, you can easily assess the seller’s reputation by reviewing comments and ratings provided by previous customers.👇
Feedback and reviews are invaluable indicators of a seller’s reliability. In the event that a seller has a history of fraudulent activity, you are likely to find evidence of such misconduct within the feedback section.
This tool provides a more precise and comprehensive rating, offering you greater confidence when making purchasing decisions.
Lastly, it’s wise to avoid expensive or branded items on AliExpress, as these are often the main targets for counterfeiters.
Most countries have measures in place to protect well-known brands. However, although you may not be concerned about the authenticity of a product if you happen to receive counterfeit items and your package is inspected, those items will be confiscated.
4. A Platform With Lower Operational Costs
AliExpress operates primarily as an online platform, which means that it does not have the same overhead expenses as traditional brick-and-mortar stores. Still wondering why is AliExpress so cheap? Let’s see!
So, this lack of physical storefronts allows AliExpress to save on costs such as rent, utilities, and store maintenance. Additionally, AliExpress does not need to maintain extensive inventories, as it facilitates direct communication between buyers and sellers. So, there’s no need for large warehouses to store products.
Furthermore, because AliExpress is an online marketplace, it does not require as many staff members as physical stores. While traditional retailers need employees to staff cash registers, organize and restock shelves, and provide customer service in person, AliExpress relies on a smaller team to maintain and develop the platform.
5. Most Of The Suppliers Offer Bulk Discounts
One of the reasons why is AliExpress so cheap is that most of the suppliers on the platform offer bulk discounts. So, if you as a dropshipper, want to purchase products in large quantities, you can take advantage of even lower prices. Also, these bulk discounts are often clearly displayed on the product page, making it easy for you to see the potential savings.
For example, check this out. This price is for 60 pieces, and you have discounts listed right below the price. 👇
Furthermore, if the discount is not already listed, you can often negotiate directly with the supplier to get an even better price.
Also, if you are certain about dropshipping with AliExpress, consider that forming long-term business relationships with AliExpress suppliers can lead to more favorable terms and discounts.
6. Manipulation Of The Currencies
One significant factor that contributes to why is AliExpress so cheap is the manipulation of currencies, particularly by China. Currency manipulation refers to the deliberate intervention by a country’s central bank to influence the value of its currency.
China has been known to manipulate its currency, the yuan, to gain a competitive advantage in the export market. By keeping its currency artificially low, China can make its products cheaper when sold in foreign markets. This strategy allows Chinese manufacturers and sellers on AliExpress to offer products at incredibly low prices compared to their competitors.
So, with a weakened currency, Chinese suppliers can source raw materials and production inputs at lower costs. They can then pass on these savings to international buyers, resulting in cheaper products on AliExpress.
7. Hidden Product Defects Or Fake Promises
One of the risks of purchasing products on AliExpress is the potential for hidden defects or fake promises. Hence, these defects can range from breakable buttons on clothing to poor stitching on bags or accessories.
However, such things can even happen if you buy the product from a physical store. On the other hand, AliExpress has a buyer protection program and a return and refund policy.
For instance, the COVID-19 pandemic has led AliExpress to prolong the duration of the “Buyer Protection Time” to a maximum of 90 days. In simpler words, this implies that you may have to wait for a substantial 90 days before becoming eligible for a refund in case your order is not delivered.
Furthermore, if there are any complications such as non-receipt or receipt of a defective item, you have the ability to initiate a dispute within a designated time period. AliExpress facilitates the resolution of these disputes, striving to achieve an equitable outcome for both the purchaser and the vendor.
However, I also recommend you carefully read product descriptions and reviews before making a purchase to avoid falling victim to counterfeit or low-quality products.
Also, to minimize the risk of encountering hidden defects or fake promises, it is essential to thoroughly research the seller’s reputation and carefully inspect product photos and descriptions.
8. Businesses Utilize Economies of Scale
One of the reasons why is AliExpress so cheap and is able to offer such affordable prices is because it benefits from economies of scale. So, let’s explain this briefly. 👇
➡ By operating on a large scale and selling millions of products, AliExpress is able to spread its fixed costs over a greater number of units. This allows them to reduce their per-unit costs and offer competitive prices to their customers.
➡ Furthermore, AliExpress has bulk purchasing power, which gives them an advantage when negotiating deals with manufacturers and suppliers. Since AliExpress buys products in large quantities, they are able to secure better prices and discounts. Thus, these savings are then passed on to the customers in the form of lower product prices.
So, these factors allow them to negotiate better deals and reduce costs, ultimately resulting in affordable prices for customers.
9. Aliexpress Is For The General Customers
AliExpress is a platform that caters to a wide customer base, including common and ordinary customers.
Hence, unlike other online marketplaces, AliExpress does not focus on selling branded or customized products. Instead, it offers a vast range of affordable products that are accessible to general customers. Plus, they have millions of products from various niches. So, they have products for everyone.
This allows you from all walks of life to find products that fit your budget and needs. So, whether you are a student on a tight budget or a working professional looking for a good deal, AliExpress provides an opportunity to shop directly from manufacturers, resulting in more affordable prices.
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Is It Safe to Buy on AliExpress?
Indeed, YES! When it comes to ensuring the safety of online buyers, AliExpress recognizes its significance. Therefore, AliExpress takes various measures to safeguard your interests.👇
- First and foremost, AliExpress implements a buyer protection program, which serves as a safety net for your purchases. This system ensures that your payment is securely held by AliExpress until you confirm the receipt of the product and are completely satisfied with your purchase.
- Also, when it comes to having any issues, such as non-delivery or receiving a damaged item, you have the option to open a dispute within a specified timeframe.
- Additionally, AliExpress strongly encourages buyers to provide honest and detailed feedback regarding their shopping experience. This feedback system plays a vital role in fostering trust and transparency within the AliExpress community.
What’s more, currently, AliExpress boasts an impressive user base of over 150 million active buyers, with over 200 million visits and approximately 20 million daily visitors!
Furthermore, according to data from August 2023, AliExpress holds the remarkable position of being ranked #5 in the eCommerce & Shopping > Marketplace category and #63 globally.
Now, let’s continue with our journey on why is AliExpress so cheap.
Does AliExpress Sell Fake Stuff?
I can’t say that AliExpress has fake products. So, my answer to this is, NO. It does not have fake products.
Of course, if you ask me are the product high-quality? I would answer, again, no. But, you get what you pay for – incredibly low prices. So, what’s more to expect? Hence, as a customer, you should check on the product’s level of quality instead.
Also, the platform never claims that it sells branded products. And of course, you can’t sell Nike, or Prada at low prices, and original, right?
What’s more, while showcasing its electronics, it emphasizes its sleek and innovative design without making any false claims about its association with Apple, or Samsung. Instead, they may mention compatibility by stating “For Apple” or “Works with Apple,” but it refrains from asserting that its products are Apple-branded.
What Items Can I Buy on AliExpress?
Short answer- almost everything you need and want! It’s a vast online marketplace where you can find a wide range of products to suit your needs. From fashion to electronics, toys to beauty products, AliExpress has it all.
In the realm of fashion, both men and women can find trendy clothing, shoes, and accessories to update their wardrobes. Whether you’re looking for casual wear, formal attire, or workout gear, AliExpress offers a plethora of options to choose from.
Not only that, AliExpress is also a paradise for toy lovers. You can find a variety of toys for children of all ages, from educational toys and puzzles to interactive gadgets and remote-controlled vehicles.
For tech-savvy individuals, AliExpress provides a wide selection of electronics. Whether you’re in need of a new smartphone, tablet, or laptop, or if you’re looking for accessories such as headphones, chargers, or smart home devices, AliExpress has it all.
It’s also worth noting that AliExpress is not just limited to fashion and electronics. You can find hair and beauty products such as makeup, skincare, and haircare items. Additionally, there is a selection of jewelry, furniture, and even automobiles and motorcycles for sale.
However, as I said “almost” everything, I thought about that there are certain items that are not available on AliExpress. Products such as weaponry, software, ebooks, and digital media are not permitted on the platform.
Who Can Use AliExpress?
The answer is anyone, anywhere. AliExpress is a global platform that provides accessibility to users from all major regions. So, no matter where you are in the world, you can take advantage of the wide variety of products and services offered on AliExpress. 👇
One of the key features that makes AliExpress such a popular choice is its support for multiple languages. The platform is available in a range of languages, including English, Spanish, French, German, Russian, Italian, Portuguese, and many more. 👇
This means that users from different countries and backgrounds can easily navigate the website and have a seamless shopping experience.
Does This Mean That The Product Is of Poor Quality?
Does this mean that the product is of poor quality? Not necessarily. While it is true that AliExpress offers products at incredibly low prices, it does not automatically mean that the quality is compromised.
Hence, it is important to remember that AliExpress is an online marketplace with thousands of sellers, including both reputable and dishonest ones. While some sellers may offer counterfeit and low-quality products, many others offer high-quality items at affordable prices.
So, my advice on this is to check on customer reviews and consider product ratings. By doing so, you can make informed purchasing decisions and avoid falling victim to counterfeit products.
For example, I use AliExpress Chrome Extensions like Alihunter. This tool allows me to quickly and easily find the best products on AliExpress by providing valuable insights and data that would otherwise take hours of research to compile.
So, once installed, simply browse AliExpress as you normally would, and the extension will automatically display useful data on each product page. You can easily see how many orders a product has received, its current price, and even its seller rating and feedback score.
Also, as a dropshipper, you can always order product samples and check on the product’s quality. Or, if the seller does not send any product samples, you can always act as a customer and order the product by yourself.
How Long Does AliExpress Take to Deliver?
The typical delivery timeframe for regular AliExpress packages ranges from 15 to 30 days, with certain instances where it may extend up to 60 days.
Furthermore, the shipping times of an AliExpress package are influenced by various elements, like the shipping methods, location, etc.
For instance, AliExpress offers a variety of shipping options, like:
- AliExpress Standard Shipping – You can expect your packages to be delivered within a delivery window of 15 to 45 working days.
- AliExpress Premium Shipping – You can receive your items in just 7 to 15 working days. Hence, this is ideal for customers who are looking for a more expedited delivery option.
- ePacket – It takes up to 2 weeks for products to be delivered to the US, which is significantly faster than the standard shipping option.
- SunYou Economic Air Mail – On average, it takes around 7-15 business days for packages to reach their destination. This means that you can expect your AliExpress products to be in your hands in record time.
- DHL & UPS – With DHL, shipping times are around 3-7 business days. On the other hand, UPS offers expedited shipping within 2-5 business days.
- FedEx – It offers one of the shortest delivery times among AliExpress shipping methods, with packages typically arriving within 7-15 days.
- EMS – With EMS, you can expect your package to arrive at its destination in just 7-15 days. Plus, there are cases when packages arrive within 3 to 7 business days.
Also, one dropshipping supplier offers multiple shipping options, so you can choose what suits you the most.
For example, this supplier offers 5 shipping methods, and all of them come with different shipping costs and times. But, as long as I can see, the lower the shipping time, the higher the cost is. 👇
Are AliExpress reviews real?
Of course, when you wonder why is Aliexpress so cheap, you also question whether their positive reviews are real.
The reviews found on AliExpress consist of a combination of real and fake reviews. Hence, some reviews are contributed by honest customers who have purchased and used the product, while others may be fabricated reviews written by sellers or individuals who have been compensated to write positive reviews.
However, AliExpress takes various measures to combat counterfeit reviews, including utilizing algorithms to identify suspicious review activity and conducting manual reviews to verify their authenticity. Plus, it always encourages real customers to leave a review. Thus, customers have a call-to-action button right after they confirm that the order is received.
However, despite these efforts, it is possible for some counterfeit reviews to go undetected.
To determine the authenticity of a review, it is crucial to look for detailed and specific feedback regarding the product, as well as the inclusion of photos or videos showcasing the product in use. Thus, reviews that appear excessively positive or lacking in specific details may indicate that they are counterfeit.
Therefore, pay attention to the details provided in the feedback. Thus, genuine reviews often include specific details about the product, such as its features, performance, or overall quality. Also, look for reviews that also include photos or videos.
This visual evidence can give you a better idea of the actual product and increase the credibility of the review.
Advantages of Shopping with AliExpress
✅ Diverse Product Selection
One of the standout features of AliExpress is its diverse product selection, offering a wide range of options to cater to various tastes and preferences. And, this is also a reason why is AliExpress so cheap.
So, whether you are looking for fashion items, electronics, home goods, or beauty products, AliExpress has it all. With millions of products available, the platform ensures that there is something for everyone.
From trendy and mainstream items to niche and unique products, AliExpress provides an extensive range of choices. So, whether you’re looking for the latest fashion trends or searching for that special item, AliExpress’s diverse product selection has you covered.
✅ Global Shipping
When it comes to shopping internationally or why is Aliexpress so cheap, I must say that the platform stands out with its global shipping capabilities and the answer to its prices lies here. With a vast network of sellers and strategically located warehouses worldwide, AliExpress offers customers a range of advantages.
For instance, as I mentioned the shipping methods above, I recommend you consider this one – if you prefer fast shipping, I advise you to try AliExpress Premium Shipping and EMS. These methods generally offer faster shipping times and better tracking options.
✅ Buyer Protection Guarantee
Another key advantage of AliExpress is its comprehensive Buyer Protection Guarantee. This guarantee ensures that customers are protected throughout their shopping experience, from the moment they place an order to the time they receive their products.
Thus, if a customer encounters any issues with their purchase, such as receiving a damaged or defective item, they can open a dispute through AliExpress. This initiates a process where the buyer and seller can communicate and attempt to resolve the problem.
If the dispute is found in the customer’s favor, they are eligible for a refund or replacement. AliExpress prioritizes customer satisfaction and works diligently to ensure that buyers receive the products they paid for and deserve.
✅ User Reviews and Ratings
User reviews and ratings on AliExpress play a crucial role in creating transparency and accountability among sellers. When making a purchase, I always make sure to check the feedback and rating of a seller to ensure a positive buying experience.
In fact, the feedback and rating system provides valuable insights into the quality of products and the reliability of the seller.
For example, when I was considering purchasing hair accessories, I browsed various product pages featuring items from different suppliers. And, guess what? If I hadn’t taken the time to do that and simply chosen the first one I came across, I would have made a major mistake.
Fortunately, thanks to customer reviews of the products, I was able to assess the quality of the item and verify the delivery times. As a result, I was able to make a more informed decision.
How To Dropship From AliExpress?
So, since I answered the question of why is Aliexpress so cheap, next, I will show you how to dropship from AliExpess.
💡 Tip: Also learn about Dropshipping from AliExpress to eBay: Step-by-Step Guide for Beginners.
Step 1- Create An Account On AliExpress
To get started, the first step is to create an account on AliExpress. It’s quick and easy – simply provide your basic information and you’re good to go.
Step 2- Find Reliable Dropshipping Suppliers
Once you have your account set up, the next requirement is to find reliable suppliers on the platform.
AliExpress boasts thousands of sellers offering a wide range of products at competitive prices. So, take your time to research and read reviews to ensure you’re working with trustworthy suppliers. Hence, this might be the bridge to why is AliExpress so cheap.
For example, thanks to AliExpress Chrome Extensions, your job here can be simplified.
UpAssistant takes a comprehensive approach to evaluating seller ratings. Plus, it considers not only customer feedback but also takes into account other important factors like the seller’s term on AliExpress and their communication skills with buyers.
As a result, this tool provides a more precise and comprehensive rating that you can rely on when making purchasing decisions.
For instance, let’s conduct some research on dropshipping fitness products, like yoga mats.
Once you have installed the Up Assistant, you will notice a numerical rating displayed on each product thumbnail, indicating the seller’s rating. 👇
Furthermore, if you wish to delve deeper, simply click on the product to access a detailed report on the product page. 👇
Step 3- Set Up Your Dropshipping Store
After selecting the products you want to sell, it’s time to set up your online store.
Hence, there are various platforms available that make this process simple and user-friendly. However, in my opinion, Shopify stands out as the optimal option for dropshippers.
As previously mentioned, the platform boasts a user-friendly interface and provides a diverse selection of visually captivating themes, both paid and free, for your dropshipping store. Additionally, it offers an impressive range of customizable functionalities.
Also, their drag-and-drop editor enables effortless creation and modification of your store.
Furthermore, Shopify seamlessly integrates with various dropshipping applications. Consequently, you can ensure that your business will achieve complete automation in its supply chain procedures.
Step 4- Market Your Dropshipping Store
Now comes the exciting part – marketing and promoting your store. So, you can use social media platforms, email marketing, and other digital marketing strategies to reach your target audience.
To increase traffic to your online store, there are various digital marketing techniques you can utilize.
Additionally, you can enhance sales by implementing marketing strategies such as cross-selling and up-selling, providing promotional codes, referral programs, and more.
For instance, AliExpress employs its own method of using coupons as a dropshipping promotional tactic. As a result, when customers input a coupon code during the checkout process, they are able to benefit from reduced prices on a diverse selection of items, encompassing clothing, electronics, household goods, and additional categories.
These accumulated savings can be substantial, particularly for frequent AliExpress shoppers. Moreover, AliExpress coupons can be strategically utilized to optimize cost savings. To illustrate, customers have the option to combine multiple coupons to secure even more substantial discounts on their purchases.
Furthermore, I recommend you include video marketing in your dropshipping marketing strategy. By utilizing videos, you can visually showcase your dropshipping products and demonstrate their usage, features, benefits, and more to customers.
Step 5 – Place The Order On AliExpress
Lastly, when you receive an order from a customer, you can easily place the order on AliExpress and input their shipping address. The supplier will take care of packaging and shipping the product directly to your customer.
So, if you add the items you want to purchase to your shopping cart when you’re ready to proceed with your order, simply select the “Checkout” button. 👇
Alternatively, if you find the product you want, you can simply click on “Buy Now” and bypass the shopping cart checkout process. 👇
In either case, you will need to provide your billing and shipping information, and you will be directed to this page. 👇
Also, there are three main payment methods available on AliExpress:
- Credit card
For example, personally, I prefer and use a credit card. It offers rewards points and also allows me to dispute payment if there are any delays with AliExpress buyer protection.
Regardless of whether you choose PayPal or a credit card as your payment method, you can be confident that you are adequately protected.
Next, once you have reviewed all the necessary information about the product you want, you can click on the red “Buy Now” button on the product’s page. 👇
Finally, click on “Pay Now” and your shopping is complete! 👇
So, once you buy the product, the difference between your customer purchase and your AliExpress purchase is your profit.
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So, why is AliExpress so cheap anyway? Well, this ecommerce giant offers an unbeatable range of products at affordable prices, making it a top choice for online shoppers worldwide. With its diverse selection of products, global shipping options, and buyer protection guarantee, it provides a convenient and reliable platform for purchasing a wide variety of items.
Also, buyer protection is a top priority on AliExpress. The platform offers a buyer protection guarantee, ensuring that your purchase is protected in the event of any issues or disputes. Additionally, user reviews provide valuable insight into the quality and reliability of products and sellers, helping you make informed purchasing decisions.
What’s more, the option to buy directly from manufacturers and get bulk discounts really helps in getting lower prices. Not only that, but China uses Economies of scale, which is a smart way to sell cheaply.
However, before making a purchase on AliExpress, it’s important to do diligent research on products, sellers, and shipping options. Reading reviews and comparing prices can help you make a well-informed decision.