This is the quick and dirty guide – it presents the fastest, easiest way to buy stuff on Taobao. If you need more detail on any of these steps, links are provided to guides that go in depth into these points.
First things First
If you don’t live in China, you will need to check out our guide to buying on Taobao from overseas
. If you do live in China, be sure to sign up for Taobao
and add money to your account. When that is done, you are ready to start shopping with the guide below.
Step 1. Support the Field Guide
Have you found this guide helpful so far? Then we encourage you to make a habit of using the search box on our homepage (also available as a convenient bookmarklet) to search for stuff on Taobao. We get a small percentage Taobao when you do! Learn more.
Step 2. Search in English
Yes, just type in English! You will find the stuff you want 95% of the time.
More search tips:
3. Check the Seller Feedback – and Talk to the Seller
Scroll down into your results and click on the products that look good. On the product page, look here and make sure that the Seller is highly rated. A good rule of thumb is at least 99% feedback on more than 500 transactions. (In the image below, the seller has 99.44% feedback on 716 transactions.) More on Evaluating a Seller
It is also vital that you either – chat with a Seller on Wangwang chat first before you buy, or at least verify that they have made sales in the recent past to make sure that they have these items in stock. See our guides to chatting with Sellers
and filtering to find in-stock items
4. Click the Orange Buy It Now! Button
5. Add a Shipping Address
Click the button circled in green below to enter your shipping
address. Use Chinese for the street address if you can, but English (pinyin) is okay here too.
6. Choose Shipping method
Kuaidi 快递 is usually the preferred option — a delivery person will come to your door with the package. For details on the alternatives, check out our detailed guide to buying
7. Submit your order
As seen above.
8. Enter your password to confirm payment
If you have a question about this step, check our guide to paying for your Taobao order
Sit back and wait for your package to arrive. When it does, you should check out our Guide to Receiving Stuff
. … if you’re not too busy playing with your new treasure.