We kept taking orders after the first news of coronavirus surfaced. We thought, like most other things, this will come to an end too but it hasn’t thus far. A large part of China is still closed, and e-commerce is pain in the ass right now.
Dropshippers had no option but to shut down operations entirely, including us. But even those with inventory are running short of goods. Some sellers are increasing prices so goods can last a bit longer. Because everyone is affected equally, even with higher prices the sale velocity is hanging there, somewhat.
After we were unable to dropship some of our orders, Saad spoke to one of our friends who generally buys inventories for his FBA (Fulfilment by Amazon) business. He then spoke to the vendors he works with to score some inventory for us. We were obviously willing to buy goods at higher prices, even from outside China, preferably even from within US, just to fulfil the pending orders.
While we were able to eventually find some inventory for our pending orders, what our FBA friend told us was shocking to say the least. He said Chinese want to import right now. They want to import face masks. The same ones that they exported and at higher prices than they exported for.
While those of us who aren’t affected by this outbreak are aware of some of the risks this virus is causing, but the fact that Chinese want to import face-masks right now was really able to make me imagine the gravity of the situation.