How to Identify and Verify Reliable Suppliers on Taobao

In this post, we will guide you through practical steps to find and verify reliable suppliers on Taobao.

How to Identify and Verify Reliable Suppliers on Taobao

Identifying and working with reliable suppliers is crucial for the success of your Taobao dropshipping business. Given the vast number of sellers on Taobao, it can be challenging to distinguish between trustworthy suppliers and those that might lead to problems down the line. In this post, we will guide you through practical steps to find and verify reliable suppliers on Taobao.

1. Understanding Taobao's Rating System

● Seller Ratings:

Look for sellers with high ratings across 3 different metrics:

1. Description:

How well the actual product matches with the description and images on the store page

2. Logistics:

How quickly the seller ships the order compared to expected delivery times.

3. Service:

The quality of interaction between the seller and buyers, including responsiveness and helpfulness.

Each of these categories is rated on a scale of 1-5. It is recommended to select sellers with scores of at least 4.5 across all 3 metrics.

● Badges and Medals:

Taobao awards badges and medals to sellers based on their sales performance and customer feedback. These visual indicators offer a quick way to gauge a seller's reputation.

Hearts, Diamonds, Crowns: Sellers earn these symbols based on their accumulated positive feedback points.

○ Hearts: New or smaller sellers with fewer positive reviews.

○ Diamonds: Mid-level sellers with a moderate number of positive reviews.

○ Crowns: Top-tier sellers with extensive positive reviews. Gold crowns represent the highest level of trust and reliability.

When browsing products, you'll see these badges next to the seller’s name, making it easy to identify their level of trustworthiness at a glance.

2. Reading Reviews

Language can be a barrier for overseas users, but using translation tools can help you understand Chinese reviews. Most modern web browsers have built-in translation features (e.g., Google Chrome’s Translate function). Right-click on the page and select "Translate to [Your Language]".

Leveraging Visual Reviews:

Photos and videos in reviews can provide a clearer understanding of the product’s quality and appearance.

● Comparing Images:

Compare user-uploaded images with the product listing photos to check for consistency.

● Inspecting Details:

Look closely at details such as stitching, color accuracy, and material texture in photos.

● Video Demonstrations:

Videos showing the product in use can be particularly valuable for assessing functionality and performance.

Spotting Fake or Biased Reviews:

Fake reviews are a common issue on many e-commerce platforms. Knowing how to spot them can save you from making poor decisions.

● Overly Positive Reviews:

Be cautious of reviews that seem excessively positive without providing specific details. Genuine reviews usually mention both pros and cons.

● Repetitive Content:

Watch out for multiple reviews with similar wording or phrases; this could indicate automated or paid reviews.

● Reviewer Profiles:

Check the profiles of reviewers if possible. Genuine profiles often have a history of varied purchases and reviews

3. Transaction History:

A supplier’s transaction history can reveal their stability and reliability over time. This section will guide you through the key aspects of analyzing transaction history to make informed decisions.

● Consistency in Sales:

Look for suppliers who consistently maintain high sales volumes over time rather than those who have sudden spikes followed by inactivity. Consistent sales suggest a stable and dependable operation.

● Supplier Preparedness:

Check if the supplier maintains adequate stock levels during peak seasons, ensuring they can meet increased demand without delays.

4. Check when the Store was Opened:

Stores that have been operating for several years are generally more reliable. They have had time to build a solid reputation and demonstrate consistent performance. It is generally recommended to look for stores with at least 2 years of establishment.

Examples of long-established stores: An 11 year-old gold badge certified store(left) with 5 crowns rating, and a 5 year-old store(right) with 3 crowns rating

Red Flags for Newer Stores(generally less than 1 year of establishment)

While newer stores are not necessarily bad, be cautious and look out for these red flags:

● Lack of Reviews:

New stores may lack sufficient customer reviews to make a confident assessment of their reliability.

● Too-Good-To-Be-True Offers:

Be wary of new stores offering extremely low prices or deals that seem too good to be true, as these could be indicative of scams or low-quality products.


Choosing reliable suppliers on Taobao is crucial for the success of your dropshipping business. By understanding and utilizing various metrics such as seller ratings, transaction history, product return rates, and customer feedback, you can make informed decisions. Focus on suppliers who have been in business for at least two years to ensure reliability and stability, but also consider mid-level stores with growing reputations. Use tools like store establishment dates and detailed reviews to verify trustworthiness. Combine these insights for a comprehensive evaluation, minimizing risks and enhancing your business's credibility and customer satisfaction.

Why not Dropship via Buckydrop?

BuckyDrop, a dropshipping expert for all Chinese marketplaces, is committed to helping cross-border ecommerce merchants handle their dropshipping business stress-free.

BuckyDrop supports sourcing products from various Chinese platforms, e.g., 1688, Taobao, TMall, Xianyu,, Youzan, Poizon, and Weidian. One-click import all products available in the Chinese market to your store as the source of goods while enjoying quantity/price advantages of Chinese products with zero mark-up. Any order coming to your store will be auto-fulfilled by BuckyDrop from procurement, quality checks, warehousing to packaging, global delivery, and after-sales. You just focus on product selection and marketing to earn profits, with no manual maintenance and operation needed

How to dropship via BuckyDrop?

You can follow the steps below:

1. Product selection/listing

Browse and select your desired products in BuckyDrop’s product center. Also, you can find various BuckyDrop top-rated partnered suppliers to select/push quality products to your store.

2. Promotion to get orders

Promote products on your website and attract customers to place orders.

3. Purchase

Once an order comes in, BuckyDrop will auto-sync the order info, with the professional sourcing team immediately purchasing on the Chinese platform and arranging for shipment to BuckyDrop’s warehouse.

4. Order fulfillment

Upon arrival at the warehouse, the products will undergo quality checks and storage by BuckyDrop before being shipped out and delivered to your customers in one piece.

In short, running an efficient dropshipping business via BuckyDrop requires product selection/one-click listing, promotion to get orders, purchase/order fulfillment by BuckyDrop, and order/logistics tracking.

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