The footwear market in China is among the most profitable and developed. As of 2021, the market pulled in revenue that equated to $54 billion. Moreover, it is only expected to grow, making it one of the most rewarding decisions when you import shoes from China.
Out of all of the markets in China, the most developed and profitable is the footwear industry. This spreads from Jinjiang City to Jiaozhou depending on the shoe of choice. Companies such as UGG and other sports companies have been producing their footwear for years from within China.
For those who are interested in entering this unique market and taking part in the option to import shoes from China, this will be your guide. With this guide, you will understand where specific sectors of the footwear industry have their production centers, how to meet these companies and get partnerships, and what opportunities you have at your disposal.
After reading this guide, you will have all the tools to start supplying your business from China to take advantage of the fantastic footwear industry that the nation has created over the last few decades. So let's get started and discuss the origins of the footwear market, the geographical regions where these shoes are produced, and then sent around the world.
The Facts Behind China’s Footwear Industry.
China is known as the primary production center for several industries, but few knew of the power they encompassed when creating and selling their footwear to clients worldwide. The footwear industry in China is comparable with that of the United States, yet their prices are different. As a result, many clients see a significant revenue compared with other countries of choice for production.
Currently, China produces shoes at a rate of 1.3 pairs per person, which is fantastic. This is even despite the global pandemic that has disrupted much of the economic activities around the world. In addition, China is the home to several different production facilities that help make leather, athletic, and other footwear for use. Generally, fewer safety and work shoes are produced in the country, but the footwear industry is still strong.
Why China — Specifically Fujian— Should Be Your Goal
The footwear industry in China is vast, and you have to know how to make the right decision. The most extensive production base in China is within the Jinjiang City, the Fujian Province. Therefore, if you are unsure what product to start with, it would be wise to seek connections in Fujian before embarking on your next business venture.
With every production base in China, the products are completed and are made with the highest quality production equipment to ensure few errors and quick production speeds. As a result, China has wholly created an enterprise chain. Many famous brands recognize their potential as a production center. This is why so many items—including footwear—are now made in China.
The Chendaitown of Jinjiang is the largest footwear production center in the entire country of China. A surprising 8.5% of all global footwear production occurs in this trading and production base. The market is mature, so you would be wise to invest in this region and take advantage of how much they have mastered it.
Currently, several different kinds of shoes are made in China, especially within the Fujian province. Therefore, if you seek athletic, dress shoes, leather shoes, or even work shoes, you will be able to find them in this region and in other specific areas of China that have mastered their footwear production and trade.
For Those Who Seek Athletic Footwear
If you desire to import shoes from China, you have several different options. However, one of the most popular sectors of the industry is still in athletic footwear. This is produced from the Quanzhou, within the region of Fujian. This area of China is well-known for its athletic footwear production, which is then imported to places worldwide for retail and wholesale.
On Made in China's website, you can see for yourself that there are numerous options for you to purchase from. For example, on the Fujian section of the company page, you can choose from several wholesalers who produce men's, women's, and children's shoes.
When you import shoes from China, you also get a significant price drop compared to what you would be paying for other regions and their production costs. Most shoes on the website are only $5-10 per pair, which can easily be marked up to $20 or more to sell to customers.
Winter Shoes and Warmer Footwear from China
As mentioned, several companies like UGG have changed their production to China due to low production costs and ease of manufacturing. For example, Unitex is one of the leading manufacturers of UGG boots, and they produce these items out of the signature and well-known Sheepskin or sherpa wool fabric.
Many of the winter boots produced in China, even UGG, can be found on the Henan section of the website. This is the most popular region of China for winter boots manufacturing, and it also happens to be towards the middle or western part of China. Companies like Unitex that sell their products via their main website and other retailers have mastered production over the last decade and even longer.
If you’re looking to import shoes from China and you’d like to dive into the winter boots sector of the market, you will need to find partnerships with companies like Unitex who originate in Henan. Again, these are among some of the most professional suppliers you can choose from, and again, the pricing is quite reasonable and profitable for any client to take advantage of!
Leather Shoes and Work Shoes from China
If you want to import shoes from China for customers who need work shoes, you will have to pay attention to the Quanzhou region of China. This is known as one of the more popular regions for specialized work and leather shoes. You can choose from genuine leather casual shoes, hiking boots, work shoes, and more.
This region of China is located in the Fujian province, very close to Taiwan and along the coast. More than 11,000 suppliers of leather shoes, work shoes, and more from this region are at your disposal. Naturally, the pricing is higher due to the inclusion of leather as the primary material. However, you will find them still reasonable at $12-20 per pair, depending on the style and functionality of the shoe.
You can also turn to Dongguan, Wenzhou, and Guangzhou for other popular regions in the leather shoe sector. Still, Quanzhou and Dongguan are the highest in production and available suppliers. Moreover, with so many designs to choose from, you will not have trouble finding exactly what kind of shoe that you need to sell to your customers across the world.
Sandals, Flip Flops, and More from China
China also has a vast collection of sandals and flip-flops for those who want to appeal to the warmer climates and clients in need of vacation style. This sector of the shoe industry in China is not as populous as other sectors but still worthy due to the quality and pricing of their items. Most of these shoes start at $1 and only have a max price of $5, making most clients satisfied with their end revenue margins.
Quanzhou and Fuzhou are the top producers of sandals, flip-flops, and more. The designs and the quality of these items differ from supplier to supplier. However, you will likely find what you are looking for after some quick searching! There are even options for children's shoes if you look to sell these to any customers you have. Those who want to import shoes from China for the summer will be happy to know they can account for nearly every customer they encounter.
Women’s Dress Shoes and Heels
If you need women's dress shoes and heels, China also has a vast collection of items to choose from in their footwear industry! The most popular city for the production of high heels is Guangzhou, which is located near Hong Kong and Macau. It is well known for its international appeal and is a significant center of production and trade.
There are several high heels and dress shoes to choose from, including leather, cotton, seasonal shoes and more. Most pairs sell for about $15-25 per pair on average, making them an excellent choice for anyone who wants a superior profit margin for their business. There are even high-heeled boots and other winter choices for those who wish to appeal to a winter customer base.
There are thousands of options for you to choose from, helping you make the right decision about how to import shoes from China and which pairs will be able to gain you the most return on your investment into these suppliers abroad. You’ll be able to find any dress shoe you are looking for, and then more options for you to test on your customer base.
The Choice to Import Shoes from China for Kids
If you exclusively want to appeal to children's footwear and parents, then you can also find functional designs in China for you to choose from. On the Made in China website, there are more than 10,000 suppliers who produce children's shoes. These range from athletic to dress to sandals that you can slip onto children's feet.
Many of them are unique, and some even have light-up LED lights, which are a significant attraction for many individuals who appeal to the children's footwear industry. The prices range from $2 per pair to even as much as $20 per pair. Yet, this all depends on what you require and what designs you want to sell. For the most basic shoe styles, you won't pay more than $5 per pair to sell to your customers.
If you are looking into developing regional partnerships with manufacturers in this sector, your best efforts would be spent in Quanzhou and Yangzhou. These are among the most popular kids' shoes, and there are several varieties of what kinds of shoes you can find to import from China.
Slippers and Slides for Home Use
Finally, another general category for shoes in China is slippers and slides. These are similar to flip flops and sandals, but many of them are worn inside instead. China has a vast production capacity for these items, and they are the most inexpensive to make! Hailing from Quanzhou, Yangzhou, and Fuzhou, these shoes are plentiful and affordable to purchase for your customer base back home.
Slippers and slides are perfect for those who want to purchase items to sell. These range from summer shoes to winter shoes, with additions such as fleece on the interior to keep warm during the coldest months. When you import shoes from China such as these, you will be getting a significant return on investment, and you have several options to choose from.
Currently, their production cost per paid can be as low as $0.70, or even as high as $4.50 per pair if you choose to have a fancier or more decorative option. In this category, you can choose from men’s, women’s, children’s, and more to help satisfy your customer base and their needs.
Conclusion: Where Do You Start?
If you are looking to import shoes from China, the best place to start would be to connect with the right people. There are numerous partners and production companies that have been in China for many years, ensuring that you will have plenty of suppliers to choose from. No matter what kind of footwear you want to sell, China has what you need, and they have a mature and booming market to help make your business goals happen.
To get started, you can visit Made in China for more information. With regional websites and thousands of suppliers, you have choices, and you can do your research to prepare for the footwear market. With proper preparation, you can find the perfect supplier and take advantage of the high-quality footwear produced from China.