I also often receive emails or phone calls about selling some information about foreign buyers. It is said that it comes from customs and some from shipping companies. However, I deem that the customs channel does not collect it from foreign importers. Because there is no buyer’s information in our export document, but only the shipper’s. Every year, the Customs also provides some information to count the situation of some import and export companies. But the statistics are all about domestic enterprises.
Shipping companies are more likely to flow out of this information because they generally require detailed information. Perhaps some staff will sort out the information and sell it. In terms of authenticity, if the information is from the previous year, the authenticity of it is relatively large. You can get a lot of information through this channel. But it does not necessarily bring you orders, customers, or profits.
Here is a simple example. I obtain a list of foreign buyers by buying the information and know the name of the goods they purchased. And I find that the products that several companies purchased from China are the same as ours. But I get that the consignee is GM in the United States. As far as we know, GM procures through its institutions in China. Therefore, this may be information about the contact of a logistics department. Even if you send an email, the other party will not reply to you.
If you don’t have another suitable channel and you can afford the price, you can also try to use this information to learn about your competitors.
As far as I know, our customs also provides some statistics. And some are available for free through some websites or journals. Some are available for payment. For example, I need to know the main sources of iron ore imports in China in the last five years, the monthly import volume and the average price per month. It can be obtained through formal channels.
Information that can be obtained through formal channels should not be got from informal channels. Because sometimes the information you get after payment is entirely different from the introduction. But the seller disappears after receiving the money. Therefore, do not hold too high hope for this it. If you are not sure that this it will be useful to you, do not pay too quickly.
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