When you’re in the market for a sportswear supplier, you’ll first need to ask yourself whether you want to work with domestic manufacturers in the country you reside in (like the UK, the USA, or Canada). The alternative is sourcing your products from overseas sportswear manufacturers, like in China or India. We’ve talked about the pros and cons of sourcing from domestic/overseas manufacturers in the last post and today in this post we will let you know how to find a reliable sportswear manufacturer in China, if you decide to choose overseas suppliers.
Tips for Finding the RIGHT Custom Sportswear/Fitness Apparel Manufacturer in China
The rise of e-commerce paved the way for manufacturers and suppliers to consider small up to mid-sized business and not look past them. In fact, there are sportswear manufacturers these days which cater exclusively to provide service and mentorship to small businesses. When it comes to custom sportswear and fitness clothing manufacturing, the case is not different and there is surely a perfect manufacturer out there for your business needs.
The availability of sportswear and fitness clothing manufacturers is out of the question but finding the right one is the tougher predicament. We have already established there are sportswear manufacturers out there who cater to small businesses but the problem is not all of them can be perfect for your sportswear/fitness clothing line. There are a few who charge unreasonably expensive yet provide substandard work while there are others who are simply incompetent enough.
So when looking for custom sportswear/fitness clothing manufacturers, there are factors you need to consider before hiring a manufacturer to produce your products. Obviously, the first factor is their products quality. Ask for a list of their past clients and manufactured products to be able to check the quality of their work. If possible, get feedback and listen to testimonials of their past clients to further prove their work ethics. It is your job to do a background research regarding their company and not simply rely on how they advertise themselves. Make sure that they have the expertise by asking about options for sports clothing fabric, their product development process and their recommendations to see how knowledgeable they are in this particular niche.
Another factor you must consider are their service fees and quality. While still starting out, you do not have the privilege of having a big budget for your sportswear/fitness clothing line. Finances are critical and every single dollar counts. Service fees must be transparent and make sure there are no surprise charges later on somewhere along the production process. You must also ask of their minimum quantity order (MOQ) to make sure your business model fits right under their manufacturing services. Many sports clothing factories don’t cater to small startups and young brands that need more support and usually have lower quantities. These factors are what you should consider on how to find the right custom sportswear manufacturer with small quantity support.
The factors mentioned above such as work quality, company reputation, service fees and the MOQ are standard qualifications in hiring a custom sportswear/fitness clothing manufacturer. All of these factors part of the protocol not just with sportswear or fitness clothing but in the entire clothing manufacturing industry. Aside from the following mentioned above, there are overlooked factors on how to find a custom sportswear/fitness clothing manufacturer and here are a few of them:
One of the most overlooked aspect when choosing a custom sportswear/fitness clothing manufacturer is customer support service. Any professional sportswear manufacturer is not only limited to provide production but must also come handy when it comes to inputs, advice and tips regarding the client’s project. The custom sportswear/fitness clothing manufacturer you are going to hire must be a veteran in the industry wherein they can be regarded as experts to this type of clothing manufacturing. Their suggestions and inputs will provide great development to the success of this venture. Make sure they can also help you with your design files, such as creating a sportswear tech pack, and also with the fabric selection and sample making process.
Pros and Cons of China Sportswear manufacturing
The availability of sportswear and fitness clothing manufacturers is out of the question but finding the right one is the tougher predicament. We have already established there are sportswear manufacturers out there who cater to small businesses but the problem is not all of them can be perfect for your sportswear/fitness clothing line. There are a few who charge unreasonably expensive yet provide substandard work while there are others who are simply incompetent enough. That’s why we recommend to find a reliable sportswear supplier in China, it’s relatively a better solution for all startups.
Advantages of China Sportswear Manufacturing
China is one of the cheapest countries to manufacture sportswear, textiles, and apparel without sacrificing quality.
Very high production quality
When it comes to the quality of finished goods for sportswear, China is among the top 90% in the world.
In the fast fashion industry, there is a term called Speed to Market, also called Make to Market, which is the rate that an item goes from the start of production and into a retail store ready to be sold. China has one of the fastest rates in the world when it comes to Fashions and Clothing. For this reason, China is the largest supplier of stores such as Uniqlo and marks and SPencer
Disadvantages of China Sportswear Manufacturing
Lack of flexibility with Order Quantity
Chinaese manufacturers are less willing to do small orders, often less than 2000, and small sample runs. The low M.O.Q.s can cause some headaches for those who wish to start small and scale-up.
Logistics of Shipping Sportswear From China
China has an extensive network of ports that allows for quick shipping to the U.S. west coast in 3 weeks, U.S. East coast in 4-6 weeks, Europe in 4 weeks. One thing to keep in mind is that logistics in-country are less developed than they are in the USA. For instance, as a result, there may be delays in getting a container from the factory to a port. Ports are often overcrowded, and it’s not uncommon for a week-long delay before the container can enter the port.
It’s imperative if you are trying to get your company off the ground that you don’t go over your budget or stretch yourself to a point where you can’t return on your first order. At Berunwear Sportswear, we understand that small or new businesses don’t have the same financial muscle as the big brands and that they may need to make a few small orders to get themselves set up.
Helping small businesses get on their feet is one of our core passions and all of our staff members are dedicated to helping you get where you want to be. With us you know that you are dealing with the best small run sportswear supplier in the USA and that we will do everything in our power to get your foot in the door. Get in touch with us for all your activewear needs. We can’t wait to start working with you.