There are many battery-related business owners who want to import AGM batteries directly from China. But they always worry about various problems, such as “whether the quality will be bad?”, “Will there be a fraud?”, “Is the import process very complicated?”. In the end, they never have a try.
According to this post, you can avoid the above problems, and find your long-term supplier. Then you will have a greater competitive advantage and profit.
The actual AGM battery type?
What is AGM Battery?
AGM battery is the lead-acid battery using AGM(absorbed glass mat) as separators. It is maintenance-free, it is safer, it is excellent in deep discharge and high current. (You can also check in Wikipedia for more information, the web link is https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/VRLA_battery.)
AGM batteries are mainly for two purposes, one is as a deep cycle battery for energy storage, such as solar and other renewable industries, UPS backup power, telecom base stations, or backup power for security systems. The other is as a high-current starter battery, such as automotive batteries, because of the high contact of AGM separator. The main function is to start the engine with an instant high current.
Which type of AGM battery do you actually need?
Depending on your market and industry. If you are in the solar business, you will need deep cycle AGM batteries. SYNERTAC deep cycle AGM battery is a good choice, please click here for more information.
The demand for batteries will be different from industry to industry.
Can you import AGM batteries from China?
Small Order Import
For a first import, any quantity is fine. Find the right supplier, they will provide a solution according to your requirements. Although some suppliers do not support small quantities, it only means that they are not the right supplier for you. You can keep looking and find the right supplier. There are quality suppliers that support small businesses, growing quickly with a good reputation and service.
Get a good customs agent (shipping agent) to check if you are able to import AGM batteries into your country. Some countries may have different policies for specific goods. You can also check with your supplier if they have a history of exporting to your country, then there shall be no problem.
Sea shipping is recommended rather than air. AGM batteries are not quite allowed for planes. They are battery type cargo, very heavy, so very expensive. For small batteries such as 12V7Ah/6-FM-7, there are ways to ship them by air. You can try it for samples, but still not recommended for bulk orders because of the huge expenses.
Basic international trade terms
The seller’s liability ends out of the factory. Not really good to buyers, including possible problems with shipping and customs.
FOB term is the most popular in oversea business. The seller is responsible for delivery to the port and China customs to start sea transportation. The sea shipping and all the things after that are in the control of the buyer. It is more reasonable.
Compared to FOB, CIF is less work for buyers. But the cost after arrival at the destination port is not as controllable as FOB, especially for LCL shipping.
DDP and DDU
DDP is tax-paid, DDU is not tax-paid. These terms are used usually after long-term cooperation or when the buyer’s reputation reaches a high stage.
Is it profitable?
For trial orders, profit may not be very important, but in the long run, profit and competitive prices are the goals.
AGM batteries are packed in cartons, then in pallets. One pallet is around 1 ton. As heavy goods, AGM batteries are always calculated in tons, not CBMs, because the number of tons is bigger.
For AGM batteries, a 2-ton shipment(2 pallets) should be profitable. It needs to be calculated according to your local market conditions. Usually, a $1000 extra charge (sea shipping, customs clearance, taxes, etc) will be added to your total cost, excluding the supplier’s quoted price.
Of course, a higher import quantity will cut down the total cost per unit, bring more profit. After a few cooperation, the quantity can be adjusted according to your demand if you are satisfied with the supplier.
Find the right supplier
If you are interested to create your private label or brand, it is important to find a supplier that supports OEM. Or, it is important to find a manufacturer that is reliable in terms of quality. Below are a few tips for you to get to know more suppliers.
Search online for manufacturers
Search online in Google
Now Google is very intelligent to help you find a lot of suppliers online. It’s worth spending time and effort, to know more about AGM batteries, to know more about the suppliers.
Social in LinkedIn
LinkedIn is a famous business person flatform, it is more useful for business than Facebook, Instagram, or other social media. And now, a lot of China manufacturers have also joined in, so you can find the right ones by searching there. You can click here for the LinkedIn website.
Local brands in your market or referrals from friends
You may have seen some good quality but small brands in your local area, they may be Chinese brands. They don’t have much power to boost their own brand internationally, but they may be the producer even for some renowned brands, so the quality is still approved. It is possible that you find the real manufacturer through some little traces.
Canton Fair is still a good choice. Visit Canton Fair website.
Visiting suppliers you are in touch
Face to face is a great way to get to know each other better. If the cost is under budget, it could be very useful for your long-term business.
Evaluation of the suppliers
A longer history of AGM battery production means more experience and less possibility of quality issues. Because most of the problems have already occurred in the past and were solved by technical or process improvements. For example, the raw material of AGM, after continuous improvement, has increased the puncture resistance, which can greatly reduce the possibility of a short-circuit inside the battery.
Battery Quality Level
If the supplier generally exports to Europe or the United States, their batteries should be qualified. If they mainly export to Africa, you should consider whether the quality meets your requirements.
If the supplier has experience in exporting to countries with similar requirements to yours, the supplier will be familiar with the whole process of the oversea order and tell the matters you may need to be aware of, which will save you from unexpected issues later on.
Certificates are based on your local market demand.
In my experience, if personal use, most do not need a certificate. If you are bidding for projects, there are specific certificate requirements.
The relevant certificates are CE (Europe) UL (USA) IEC, etc.
The production time is always about one month. If you are in an urgent condition, the production time of regular AGM battery models can be shortened to around 20 days in the non-peak season.
Quality Inspection System
For any business, quality is the most critical matter. Failure in quality will lead to loss of customers and damage to reputation.
A good supplier should have created a traceable quality control system of the raw materials, production process, and finished product inspection.
Place an order
Re-confirm the price
It is very important to reconfirm the price before production. Prices may vary for many reasons, such as raw material prices (lead prices), packaging design, or additional requirements.
The most popular term is 30% deposit and 70% final payment before delivery. You can ask for photos of the finished batteries as proof before wiring the final payment.
Details of the AGM batteries
Battery size, battery terminal, battery carton print, or even the pallet size, could be very important sometimes.
Last things after the production finished
Under FOB terms, you will need a shipping agent to arrange the sea freight. You will be asked to provide the data including total gross weight, volume, and quantity of the goods for booking the shipment. These data can be acquired from the supplier. If under the CIF term, the sea shipping is arranged by the supplier.
Customs clearance documents include a bill of lading, contract, invoice, and packing list, these are provided by the supplier after the shipment.
Personally, it is recommended to let the shipping agent handle customs-related matters, as they will be more professional.
For inland transportation, you can choose the one agent or find another transport agent more fit.
Congratulations now you get the AGM batteries you want. Doing some inspections will be really necessary.
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