Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Of drop-shipping and Ali-Rule Brittania

I am back early from my trip as a result of a piece of good seamanship by the crew of the boat on which I was going to sail back from the Philippines (see here if you're interested to know more about this).

This has allowed me to spend today catching up on what's been going on in the world since I sat on that very white beach in Boracay. One result of that is that I've learned a new word today, "drop-shipping" from this press release on the eMedia Wire. It defines it as:

Drop shipping is a supply chain technique where the retailer, or eBay trader, transfers their customers' shipment details to the wholesaler, who then ships the goods to their clients' customers.

The piece also introduced to an interesting, Shenzhen-based web site that I wasn't aware of, Chinavasion. The site claims to be "the market leading China supplier for EBay dropship sellers and electronics worldwide". To see the lengths that the smaller China based B2B sites have to stretch to persuade now (justifiably) cautious users that they are legit see this exchange at Fraudwatchers. Note the pretty coherent interventions from Chinavasion's own people.

Meanwhile, for those looking to redress the trade imbalance a bit, the UK's Daily Telegraph reports that Alibaba is proposing to set up a site called Export to China, Export to the World. The piece suggests that Alibaba has 268,000 members in the UK and will be targeting them for its new site. I'm eager to see the first China-based Internet forum complaining about being ripped off by exporters in Slough.

No comments: