AliExpress is a big platform for beginners to start dropshipping, especially known for testing products, easy to use, massive products and vendors, as well as quick processing. But when you are scaling up your business, AliExpress then seems not so ideal, this will be explained later in this article.
As a competitor of AliExpress, what does CJdropshipping provide? In this article, a comparison between AliExpress and CJdropshipping is done in the aspects of products, services, shipping, and the like. So you can have a comprehensive understanding of these two dropshipping suppliers, which helps you decide whether to choose one of them according to your needs.
I. Fundamental Difference
There are many differences between AliExpress and CJdropshipping, but the most fundamental one is definitely about the supply chain management
Vendors build their stores on AliExpress, and sell to customers worldwide. Most of the vendors and products are from China, so they have a comparative advantage in the product price. However, the orders are processed by different vendors, and AliExpress is not involved in the fulfillment.
CJdropshipping is a platform integrated with product sourcing, order processing, and shipping fulfillment. It’s like a combination of AliExpress and Oberlo, dropshippers list or connects products on CJ to their stores, then CJ draws orders from their stores and takes care of them. Warehouse service, photo/video taking, POD, COD, affiliate and API support, and the like are all available. It is a one-stop service platform covering all kinds of services related to dropshipping business.
II. Product Listing
There are more than 2.5 billion product listings on AliExpress while the number on CJ is only about 390,000.
Why do the numbers differ so greatly? There are more than 8.7 million sellers on AliExpress, all the products are posted and maintained by the sellers. By contrast, the products on CJ are all posted by the CJ team after carefully selecting, it has limited staff so they have to pick the most trending products to post meanwhile sourcing products by the requests of the user.
To cover the lack of product listing, CJ sets up a sourcing service for users to post sourcing requests once they have winning products. CJ is also launching a supplier plan, which means suppliers are about to post products on CJ. As more and more suppliers join in, the product listings of CJ could be competitive with AliExpress.
Hence AliExpress is no longer the best choice if you want to find the winning product easily. Many e-Commerce runners began with AliExpress and turned to CJdropshipping to scale up. There are several reasons behind this, and they will also be explained later in this article.
III. Convenience of the System Use
The system of AliExpress is quite simple because it’s a platform only for customers to find and buy products. It‘s like you create an account and buy stuff on Amazon or eBay. So it is quite easy to start with on AliExpress.
While the system of CJ is much more complicated, because it combines the functions of AliExpress and Oberlo, and even went further than they can do. Once you have set the features you need in place, you are able to save time and energy. To make things easier for new users, they’ve made a tutorial video for every feature, and CJ is going to rebuild its system for easier and simpler usage in the future.
IV. Product Price
Both AliExpress and CJdropshipping require no set-up fee or monthly fee.
But the product price on CJ is usually lower than the same item on AliExpress.
Why is CJ able to provide a more competitive price? Because most stores on AliExpress are owned by individuals, who can not afford to provide the primary source of products. Only manufacturers who are able to provide the most competitive price usually rarely use AliExpress as their wholesale platform.
As a result, vendors on AliExpress have to buy inventory from manufacturers or dealers and make a profit through arbitrage. Additionally, they have to pay the annual fee, showcase fee, and advertisement on AliExpress if they want their products or store exposed more. All the factors above make products inevitably more expensive on AliExpress.
CJdropshipping is run by its own team, from platform maintenance to product delivery, they cut down the operational cost by making overall arrangements for every section. Therefore CJ is able to provide a more competitive price for customers.
V. Shipping time & costs
Shipping is one of the most important parts of dropshipping, a key factor that can make or break your business.
You will find that the shipping fees shown on AliExpress are usually much cheaper than on CJdropshipping, some even provide free delivery. But be alert that a free delivery actually means the included shipping fee lies behind the product price, which is another reason why products on AliExpress always price higher than CJdropshipping.
Comparing the price and shipping fees of the same sofa cover from these two platforms. It’s obvious that the product price on CJ is lower, although on AliExpress it says Free Shipping, when you pay attention to the estimated delivery time, you will see that the time length could be more than a month while CJ packet takes 8-18 days. When it comes to a faster delivery, the actual cost on AliExpress is much more expensive than the fee on CJ.
VI. Efficiency of Delivery
Most dropshippers are marketing on a niche, usually tens to hundreds of products. If a customer shops in your store, and places an order that contains 3 items, what would happen if these items are from 3 different vendors on AliExpress? Your customers will receive 3 packages at different times. Your buyer might not be happy if they place one order but the products come from different packages and dates. This situation might trigger a dispute once they receive the first order because they might think the order is shortened.
By contrast, CJ combines orders and puts different products into one parcel for you. It will save your time and shipping cost as well as improve the user experience. If you have a problem with orders, you won’t need to contact different vendors as CJ is the only after-sale party you’ll need to deal with.
Moreover, CJ can do customized packages for you by having your orders packed with a unique package printed with your logo, image or text. Alternatively, you can only leave a sentence or wish for your customer on the mailbag, which will also differentiate you from other sellers. This is a good way to leave a strong impression to your customers. This service requires no MOQ (Minimum Order Quantity), CJ can do it for you for every order.
VII. Payment Methods
When checking out on CJ, you will see 8 common payment ways covering more than 200 countries. CJ also provides COD (Cash on Delivery) for authorized clients.
For AliExpress, the payment methods differ from store to store, because you are paying directly to vendors, and many of them don’t support PayPal, the very essential payment way these days.
Sometimes AliExpress will reject your payments when you place a lot of orders due to security reasons or system error. There is no need to explain how much this could be troublesome, bring your business to a screeching halt, causing refund requests from angry customers.
VIII. Product Description
No doubt that AliExpress does a better job in enriching the product details. From this perspective, CJ has limited staff to enrich the product details. But CJ will enrich the details for the specified items if clients require. Also to cover the shortage, CJ provides another service: video & picture shooting service. You can send a request to make unique videos or pictures for your product, which could enhance your competitive force.
Most vendors on AliExpress have no warehouses or just store products in their homes, this will lead to a low inventory. Some big vendors may have their warehouses, but they are small in proportion.
As for CJdropshipping, currently, they have two warehouses in China, two in the US, one in Thailand, one in Germany, and one in Indonesia. Warehouses in the UK and France are about to launch.
Take the US warehouse as an example, if you buy a product from a US warehouse, it could be delivered to your customer within 2-5 days via USPS+. And if you have winning products in hand, you can buy private inventory at CJ warehouses, which means a faster processing time and guaranteed inventory, and no storage fee will be charged.
AliExpress and CJdropshipping have their own advantages and shortages. It is important to make decisions carefully when doing business, especially choosing platforms when you want to scale up in the long term. The good thing is that both of them work well with Shopify and allow merchants to create a winning dropshipping store with ease!