8 Effective Techniques to Negotiate a Smaller MOQ with China Footwear Factory (Updated for 2020)

With star up and crowd funding culture taken on the rise in eCommerce and  manufacturing industry, some footwear factories are now more accommodating to smaller orders to help brands launch first with minimum budget. Nevertheless, even though the MOQ requirement for small batch production has been drastically downsized from thousands of pieces to hundreds, it’s still a daunting and risky number for a fresh start up.

If you can’t see yourself ordering thousands pairs of wholesale shoes from China for the first time, we’ve got some effective ways to help you negotiate a smaller MOQ with your China footwear manufacturer.

8 techniques to negotiate MOQ with China factories

* Using existing materials and components

Customization is an important factor that drives big MOQ. If your tech packs feature specified materials and components the factory has to source, chances are a bigger MOQ is required as materials and components suppliers also have an MOQ for their products. Besides, your shoes factory would not be happy to assist with sourcing new materials if you come up with a small order. An alternative out is to use existing materials and components that are currently available in the shoes factory, or check what materials and components your factory uses frequently, and choose from their collection.

* Using one last

Using one last in various styles is effective to minimize costs related to increased minimum order quantity. If the shoes fit, why not just stick with one last?

* Using one outsole

It can be costly to open molds for different outsoles. The same with last, using one outsole for various upper styles is another effective approach to negotiate a lower MOQ.

* Simplifying your design

Complicated design requires more expertise and changes to get things on the right track especially in product development process. To cover the cost and time spent in the earlier stage of product development, a bigger MOQ is usually required.  Even though, some factories might not be willing to work on designs that are too challenging to achieve. Simplifying your design can help you sidestep the potential difficulty.

* Minimizing SKUs

Ordering a design of footwear in multiple colors and sizes will definitely add to SKUs and contribute to a big MOQ. Bigger SKUs are equal to more production toolings, larger materials inventory as well as more intensive quality management. Research your market trends, and keep your collection minimal to start with, then expand later if it goes well. For example, if you’re selling footwear in UK, where the most popular shoes size for women is 6, you might not want to stock a lot of size 2 or size 9 in unpopular colors like orange.

* Using simple packaging

Customized packaging shoe box and dust bags usually require an MOQ of several thousand pieces depending on the complexity of your design. If lowering MOQ is the goal, going with a less customized packaging or using basic packaging materials in stock is an effective way to minimize MOQ.

* Putting all the shoes production into one factory

If you have several shoes manufacturers in China producing different lines of shoes, try if it’s possible to move the production of shoes of similar construction into one factory. Make sure the shoes factory has the expertise and experience to produce your other lines of shoes before making the immigration.

* Paying a surcharge

If none of the above works for you, and you want to keep the original ideas untwisted, talk to your China footwear manufacturer and see if they accept a surcharge on each pair, a setting up fee for fees for opening molds.

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