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Processing Times When Dropshipping From China
Processing Times When Dropshipping From China

All the reasons for potential delays dropshipping from China.

Brad Loeffler avatar
Written by Brad Loeffler
Updated over a week ago

Processing times can vary greatly when Dropshipping from China. In this article, we'll explore why that is, and what you can do to mitigate the effects of it when it does happen.

Typically, all of your orders from Zendrop Fulfillment (everyone at Zendrop plus our sourcing/fulfillment team in China) will be processed in 3 days or less. Let's explore what the fulfillment process looks like and then we'll look at why sometimes orders can take longer than the expected 3 days to process.

All dropshipping fulfillment services, including Zendrop, only purchase the products in your order after you click on the Fulfill Order button to actually pay for and fulfill your order. You might be asking yourself why. Dropshipping fulfillment services have millions of products in their catalog, but they don't actually have stock sitting in their warehouse for any of those products.

This is the point that usually confuses people. To put it simply: It is impossible to know which products will sell and which won't, so this is the only way for dropshipping fulfillment businesses to stay in business in order to serve your business. We have built an incredible system to be able to turn around almost all orders in less than 3 days. Here's what the process looks like:

  1. You fulfill an order on Zendrop.

  2. Our Purchasing Team buys your product(s) directly from the factory.

  3. The factory ships the product to one of our two warehouses in China.

  4. Our Receiving Team receives pallets of products from different factories and sorts them.

  5. Our Quality Team opens the package to quality check it.

  6. Our Packaging Team prints out your custom branded thank you card.

  7. Our Packaging Team makes sure all of the products are in one bin.

    • Even if they came from separate factories, which they often do.

  8. Our Packaging Team carefully packages your items including your custom branded thank you card.

    • This will be a box or a polybag depending on the product(s)).

  9. Our Shipping Team prints out your shipping label and ships out the order.

    • They always make sure each order gets shipped out on the next possible outbound shipment.

All of this happens behind the scenes and almost always in less than 3 days. There are some rare circumstances in which this process takes longer than 3 days and both of those scenarios are caused by factors not in our control. The two scenarios that cause delays are:

Reason for Delay #1: The Factory Is Out of Stock

When we buy the product from the factory, the item is currently out of stock, and they are producing more. They are actually taking the raw materials needed to produce the items and creating more of them. There is no way of knowing that this is the case in order for out team to properly update inventory counts on Zendrop in real-time because these factories do not have sophisticated inventory management systems to be able to talk to our platform in real-time.

Reason for Delay #2: There Is a Delay in Receiving the Goods From the Factory

The factories we buy from don't actually ship anything outside of China, so when we place an order with a factory, the goods are shipped to our warehouse. At that point -- we quality check the items, re-package them, and ship them out to your customers. Sometimes during this process, there is a delay in the item being shipped to our warehouse, causing a delay to get your order processed and shipped.

We strive to get all of your orders processed in a timely manner, but sometimes due to the dynamics of the market and other factors outside of our control, it's simply not possible.

Are You a High Volume Seller?

If you are a store doing more than a 25 orders per day, you might qualify for our Select program. This program has many benefits, but one of the main benefits is that you can order Safety Stock to our warehouse for your best selling products to avoid the scenarios mentioned above.

Click here to book a call and learn more.

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