How to Import Shoes From China—A Comprehensive Guide 2021

How to Import Shoes From China—A Comprehensive Guide 2021

 China shoe manufacturer

Indeed, a shoe business, be it men’s dress shoes or women fashionwear, is a profitable business considering the hype in rates and estimated profit margins.

During the past year, China had exponential rate imports and exports equalling 32.16 trillion yuan due to thousands of online businesses. Compared the 2019, there was 1.9% growth in imports and exports in 2020.

China witnessed the fastest growth in the inbound shipments since 2011 recently in March 2021 with a market consensus of about 42.5%.

China shoe wholesale

Despite the price raise, China is still commendable in bulk production, custom product production, and reasonable bulk products rates.

The trick is to pick a product wisely, buy it cheap from a China factory, and do the marketing perfectly to let the dollars roll in.

But, importing from China, or any other Asian state isn’t easy due to lack of on-ground options and checks.

Here’s a complete guide to walk you through the challenges you may face and how you can import shoes from China.

Why Import Shoes From China?

China is renowned to back up renowned footwear brands such as Nike, Hush Puppies, Steve Madden, Justin Boots, and many more. Most China shoe manufacturer factories are set up Guangzhou, Fujian, Zhejiang, and Jiangsu.

Here’s why China is the best option to buy cheap and sell expensive:

  • Affordable Price:Even after inclusion of quality control, import duties, and shipping costs, you can save between 30%-150% compared to US manufacturers or local distributors.
  • Flexible MOQ:Chinese shoe manufacturers support small scale businesses and offer low minimum order quantity as well as margin to negotiate rates for bulk orders. Moreover, they have access to premium quality shoe materials such as exotic leather for men’s footwear and more without a need to import anything. Chinese footwear industries can professionally handle bulk production of shoes.
  • Low Labour Costs:Although there has been a substantial increase in labour costs, still China wholesale shoe manufacturers have an upper hand in shoe industry. Having low labour costs, well-developed infrastructure, access to raw materials, and extremely skilled + hardworking workforce adds to the reliability of Chinese shoe manufacturers.

Read More: 4 Reasons Why Chinese Shoe Manufacturers Are Affordable for StartUps?

Factors To Consider Before You Import Shoes From China

 Shoes Factory

Most businesses or startups make the mistake of looking up on one online platform such as or attend one trade show to decide on importing shoes. There are multiple factors to consider before you import the shoes for your business, here’s a quick look into them:

  1. Select the Right Wholesale Shoe Manufacturer or Supplier

A wholesale China shoe supplier can be found on any wholesale platforms like Aliexpress or Alibaba. A supplier doesn’t manufacture the product, thus doesn’t have the expertise to custom-make your products or ensure quality control. While a wholesale China shoe manufacturer is an expert of its niche who can create custom-shoes based on your designs, vary the quality of raw materials as per your budget, etc.

So, we highly recommend to find your wholesale Chinese shoe manufacturer on trade shows, facebook, LinkedIn, or maybe a direct website link like and However, unfortunately many China factories do not have online presence so they are mostly found on trade shows etc.

  • Factors to Consider When Sourcing From Chinese Manufacturer:

Once you have shortlisted a number of reliable shoe manufacturers, here’s what you should ask them for:

  • Lab test reports (ASTM etc.)
  • ISO 9001 Certificates
  • ISO 14001 Certificates
  • Sedex Audit Reports
  • Be Clear About Footwear Specifications

Comfort, quality and style are the hallmarks of a high-end shoe that sells no matter if it’s in a small local shoe shop. Whether you want custom wholesale men’s shoes or women’s shoes or bulk buy factory-made private labeled wholesale shoes, here’s what you must specify to the manufacturer:

  • Upper material, lining material, insole material, outsole material
  • Insole thickness
  • Pantone colors
  • Size as per EU regulations
  • Anti-slip base
  • Don’t Overlook Packaging Specifications

A premium package adds to the quality and high-end feel of a shoe. Specify to the manufacturer the following things:

  • Brand name embossed or printed
  • Outlook of shoe box
  • Dimensions (size)
  • Carton material
  • Surface finish (laminated, matte, glossy, etc.)
  • Inner paper (wrapping sheets and shoe covers like polybag or cloth bag)

The premium the packaging, the higher the costs too.

  1. Consider the MOQ Requirements

Most high-end Chinese footwear manufacturers have 1000-2000 pairs MOQ requirement. However, there are shoe industries that support small scale businesses by offering 20-50 pairs/shoe modal MOQ. Chinashoemanufacturer specializes in men’s exotic dress shoes offering quite minimal initial MOQ for small scale businesses.

Read More: Startup Guide: Factors to Consider When Buying Wholesale Shoes From China

Tips to Easily Import Shoes From China Without Being Scammed:

Before you import the shoes after a final deal done with your trusted shoe manufacturer, consider these options:

  • Use a professional sourcing company: You can get in touch with a team of professionals in China who will communicate, negotiate, and perform quality checks on your behalf oversees. They will help with import of shoes.
  • Contact a buying agent: Find a trusted buying agent to assist you with negotiating with the shoe factory and help you import goods.

Shipping Dos and Don’ts

 Shoes export

Footwear along with packaging take up a lot of space while air freight charges for weight as well as volume. So, better to import the shoes by sea. Rather than having a full container load, you can use LCL (less than container load) shipping when you only have few 100s to import initially.

Import Rules & Regulations

Apart from that when importing from China, carefully read the EU footwear regulations before you order anything. The imported footwear must comply with the GPSD (General Product Safety Directive) and REACH (Registration, Evaluation, Authorization, and Restriction of Chemicals) regulations.

Similarly, you must be familiar with ASTM and CSPIA standards before ordering and importing shoes to USA.

On top of it, its mandatory to label a few product or materials such as:

  • Textile labeling
  • Leather labeling
  • Country or origin labeling (made in china)

Get to Know Us:

Marcusius is one of the emerging shoe manufacturing companies in China specializing in men’s dress shoes, luxury men’s exotic skin shoes, men’s sneakers, and casual footwear. We are wholesale shoe suppliers offering custom made shoes as well as private label shoes while keeping a close check on quality. Contact us to learn more.

Online Service
Live Chat