Dropshipping 101: The best way to track packages arriving from China


We’ve all heard stories  about packages getting lost in the mail  or long waits for parcels coming from China.  Can you really trust your Chinese suppliers?  You probably heard of the so-called  “free shipping” options offered  by various Chinese marketplaces, suppliers and shopify stores.  This is the slowest and the cheapest method available,  which often takes, at least, one month to arrive to your customer,  that is if it arrives at all.

But what if you choose to ship using a different method?  A faster method for which you actually paid additional money?  You have been in the business for a while  so you know that suppliers do not always send parcels  with the agreed shipping method.  This is exactly why it is so important to check tracking numbers,  they give you all the information you need to understand where your package is  and the shipping method used by your supplier.

Normal shipping

Each and every shipping method has got its own set of letters and numbers.  Usually tracking numbers for parcels coming from China are formed of: alphabetical character + numbers.  Special Line, for example, has got “YT” at the beginning of its tracking code  followed by 16 numbers.


All of the successful shopify stores are using ePacket. ePacket numbers, on the other hand, are composed by 2 letters + 9 numbers + CN.  The information provided by these tracking numbers is useful to find the location of  your packages and also to get some additional status info.  Once you have your tracking number, you’ll want to visit a website to track your shipment.  There are quite a few you could use,  but we suggest 17track.net,  which is a pretty handy portal  to track packages from China  and it is translated in 33 languages!  You could also use Parcel App,  which is a private and free app  that allows you to track parcels shipped out  by more than 100 different couriers.  This website can also recognize a tracking number  and give you the name of the courier used for your delivery.

Shipping problems are typically caused by Chinese suppliers who, quite often,  state that they use fast shipping methods, like e-Packet,  when in fact they use a much cheaper and slower service.  To verify the shipping method used, just match the tracking code with the service requested.  Without a doubt, you do need a reliable and professional partner  who can get your products delivered from China fast,  because rude awakenings in International shippings are always behind the corner.  This is exactly where SaleSource can help:  with our software, you can automate all your dropshipping business daily tasks,  from sourcing to delivery.  And we always ship exactly with the method we declare,  the method YOU paid for!  But there’s more!  Tracking numbers will be sent automatically to your final clients!