Okay, now that you're all up to speed on shipping times, let's get back to finding suppliers on AliExpress. Don't organise your research, download the supplier research spreadsheet, which you can find below this lesson, open up that spreadsheet and then head to AliExpress for each of your top five product ideas, copy and paste the product idea into the supplier research spreadsheet. Then use this spreadsheet to research and compare potential suppliers of that product. I'll use the bike seat as an example, to explain this research process, in AliExpress I'll search bike seat cushion, and then I'll filter by orders.
Right away, I see two top suppliers selling the product that I want to sell in my store. In the supplier research spreadsheet, I'll write down the names of these suppliers, just so you know, these supplier names can be a little bit funny sometimes, that's totally normal and it doesn't mean the supplier is any less trustworthy. Just go with it and write it in your spreadsheet. I'll also copy and paste the product link into my spreadsheet so I can look it up later.
And finally I'll note the number of orders that each supplier has had for this product and the price that the supplier is offering the product for. Now, I want to click on the product to see shipping methods. If there are a lot of shipping method options, then I'll click on reviews because I want to see what the customers are using when they choose to buy this product from the supplier. Personally, I like to choose a shipping method that includes tracking because that helps me answer potential customer questions later on.
So in the supplier research spreadsheet, I'll go ahead and choose the shipping method that makes the most sense and enter the shipping method and its price in the spreadsheet. I'll also capture the product ratings in the number of reviews and just so you know, any product rating over 4.5 is a good indicator of good product quality through the magic of video editing, I'll fill out the details for the second bike seat, cushion product listing that I saw. And as you can see, these options are pretty similar.
There's one last factor that you should consider when you're evaluating which supplier to work with. And that is supplier ratings, just like the products themselves, suppliers on AliExpress get rated too. And these ratings are a good indication of how easy it is to place your trust in those suppliers. You want a supplier that you can trust your supplier is going to be the backbone of your business. So these ratings are really important.
You can find the supplier rating at the top of the product page. Make sure, make sure, make sure. You work with suppliers that only have a product rating of 95% or higher, nothing below 95%. Both of these suppliers have a positive feedback score of over 96%. So I'm good there as a tie breaker, I'll look at how long each supplier has been on AliExpress.
Suppliers with more experience on AliExpress are typically better able to handle all kinds of customer questions that might come up. And that's why I prefer them. I can see that information here and I'll note it in my supplier research spreadsheet. Now looking at all the data that collected this supplier clearly seems like the better option to go with when I'm selling the bike seat cushion in my store. Now there's one more step you can take that will really set yourself up for success. And a lot of dropshippers skip this step.
You can buy a sample product. AliExpress is a functioning eCommerce website, and you can shop on it just like any other eCommerce website. It just can feel a little funky with all those weird supplier names, sometimes. There are two reasons why I recommend you buy test products. First, when you have test products, you'll be able to take great product photos and create great ads. And that's going to give you a leg up over any competitors who are selling the same product. Second of all, when you buy a product from the supplier, you can test in real time, just how reliable that supplier is.
You can see for yourself how long it takes for a product to come from the supplier to your doorstep. And that's valuable firsthand data. Before you move on the next lesson, you must know which suppliers you'll work with to import those products to your store. And there's no excuses for not finishing this homework either. I don't care if your dog ate your supplier research spreadsheet. I will see you in the next lesson with your suppliers in hand.