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Find Any Online Store’s Suppliers!

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Find Any Online Store’s Suppliers!

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Imagine being able to look into your competitors’ supply chains and find where they source their best-selling products.

ImportYeti offers this feature and more, all under a user-friendly platform.

After using ImportYeti for several weeks, I’ve decided to write this review to explain what ImportYeti is, how it works, and how you can use it to your advantage!

ImportYeti Overview
What is it? A tool used to analyze shipments of US companies and overseas suppliers.
What to use it for? – Find any company’s suppliers
– Find any company’s best-selling products
– Find how much a company is selling
– Track trends
– and more!
Trustpilot Rating 4.8 out of 5.0 (50+ reviews)
Pros – Easily find suppliers
– H.S. Code Explorer
– It’s a free tool
– Grants access to lots of valuable data
– Easy to use
Cons – Only includes data for the US
– There are some brands you can’t find on ImportYeti
– Supplier contact details are not always available
– Data older than 2015 and land/air shipment data is missing
Pricing Free
Founded by David Applegate
Founded in United States
ImportYeti Review: Find Any Online Store’s Suppliers!

Let’s begin!

What is ImportYeti?

ImportYeti is a free online tool that allows you to analyze imported sea shipments of US businesses from foreign suppliers.

ImportYeti homepage

ImportYeti is used to find any company’s suppliers, allowing you to analyze competitors’ best-selling products, find how much they’re importing, do market research, and much more.

The tool finds this information by analyzing US import documents.

ImportYeti was founded in 2021 by David Applegate due to his desire to give back to the ecommerce community, which has given him so much.

The launch was a massive success, as ImportYeti reached over one million users within the first year, as well as over 100 million views on TikTok and 200,000 upvotes on Reddit:

ImportYeti statistics

How does ImportYeti work?

ImportYeti works by collecting and organizing over 70 million sea shipment records from US customs into a searchable online database.

Whenever a company imports products into the US via sea freight, it must fill out a document called a Bill of Lading (BOL).

A Bill of Lading document shows the consignee (buyer), shipper (seller), and notify party (receiver) of a sea shipment, as well as other cargo details like the products shipped:

ImportYeti Bill of Lading example

All BOL documents are kept on file by US customs. However, they are public and can be obtained via a Freedom of Information Act request.

So, ImportYeti gets its data by requesting all 70+ million BOLs from US customs.

Although BOL documents are public, requesting access is pricey.

How does ImportYeti work?

Large companies have been using BOL documents as a competitive advantage for years, but they were always too expensive and complex to obtain for small businesses.

Well, that is until ImportYeti was launched!

How to use ImportYeti?

Here is how to use ImportYeti in four steps:

  1. Find a brand’s legal name
  2. Search the brand’s legal name on ImportYeti
  3. Analyze the brand’s supply chain
  4. Find the brand’s supplier

Step 1: Find a brand’s legal name

Let’s take Simple Modern, a popular ecommerce brand, as an example of how to use ImportYeti.

They sell this Trek Tumbler, which is also a best seller on Amazon:

Simple Modern Trek Tumbler

The first step is to search for the brand on ImportYeti.

Simply type the brand’s name in the search bar and hit enter:

ImportYeti companies and suppliers

The first result shows a company containing “Simple Modern,” so let’s try clicking on it:

ImportYeti company page example

This page only shows four shipments of products in the category “Boilers/machinery,” so it seems it won’t cover the tumblers we’re looking for.

Sometimes, brands are registered under a different legal entity name, and you won’t find them using their public brand name on ImportYeti.

If you can’t find a brand’s products using their regular brand name, you can look them up in a trademark search database such as Justia:

Justia trademarks search

As you can see, Simple Modern has lots of trademarks for various product categories, and they’re all owned by “Real Value LLC.”

This is the brand’s legal name, and you should use it for searches on ImportYeti.

Step 2: Search the brand’s legal name on ImportYeti

Let’s try typing Simple Modern’s legal name, Real Value, into ImportYeti:

ImportYeti real value company results page

Now, it shows a company named “Real Value” that has over a thousand shipments.

Seems interesting!

Step 3: Analyze the brand’s supply chain

Once you click on a company’s page on ImportYeti, you will find lots of information.

We will cover the most important things.

On the top of the page, you will find an overview of the company with details like their address, most recent shipment, average twenty-foot equivalent units (TEU) per month, and estimated total shipping spend:

ImportYeti Real Value company page

Scroll down to find details on the company’s shipments over time.

As you can see, the company had a few shipments between 2015-2020, paused during the pandemic, and then came back strong in the middle of 2021:

ImportYeti Real Value total sea shipments over time

Next, you can find a breakdown of the products the company is importing through the H.S. codes of the shipments:

ImportYeti Real Value product breakdown by H.S. code

H.S. codes are 6-digit codes that classify the category of products being shipped.

As you can see above, Real Value sells more than just tumblers, as their most frequent H.S. codes show vacuum pumps, lavatory seats, and tableware.

The following overview is of the company’s top 10 relationships:

ImportYeti Real Value top 10 relationships

Here, you can see which suppliers the company is buying its products from, as well as which other brands use those suppliers.

For instance, the top supplier, “Zhejiang Kingvac Housewares Technology,” sells to Real Value but also to Costco and Takeya USA, two popular brands.

On this company page on ImportYeti, you will find many more details like:

  • The annual importing frequency
  • A breakdown of imports per country
  • A breakdown of shipping spend
  • The most recent sea shipments
  • Other addresses, names, and contact information of the company

However, there’s one thing you’re probably here for, and that is to find the brand’s supplier.

So, let’s cover that next!

Step 4: Find the brand’s supplier

To find a brand’s supplier using ImportYeti, head to the suppliers section:

ImportYeti Real Value suppliers

We’re looking to find the supplier of Simple Modern’s Trek Tumbler, and the first supplier, “Zhejiang Kingvac Housewares Technology,” seems to match the product categories quite well, so let’s check it out.

The supplier page starts with an overview, with details like the supplier’s address, most recent shipment, average monthly shipments, and total shipping spend:

ImportYeti supplier page

You will also find other information that’s similar to the information you can find on a company page but then from the supplier’s point of view.

For example, you can find the supplier’s shipments over time or their top customers:

ImportYeti Real Value supplier customers list

As you can see, Real Value is the top customer for this Chinese supplier.

However, we’re trying to find out if this is the supplier of Simple Modern’s Trek Tumbler.

To do that, ImportYeti gives us several “Quick search” options:

ImportYeti quick search feature

These are designed to help you find more details about this supplier by looking them up on platforms like Google, Alibaba, AliExpress, 1688, and more.

Sometimes, finding more details about the supplier requires lots of research work (more about that in the cons section), while other times, it’s super easy.

In this case, we found the Alibaba page of this supplier on the 7th result after Googling their name:

Google supplier search results

And guess what?

The Alibaba landing page of this supplier showcases a tumbler that looks exactly like the one sold by Simple Modern:

Alibaba supplier landing page

After this, finding the product page of the tumbler was easy:

Alibaba product page tumbler with straw

There are a few interesting things we found on this product page:

  • The minimum order quantity (MOQ) for this tumbler is 20 pieces.
  • For a 20-piece order, this tumbler would cost you $3.99 per piece (Simple Modern sells them for $29.99).
  • A customized logo has an MOQ of 20 pieces.
  • Customized packaging has an MOQ of 500 pieces.
  • Graphic customization has an MOQ of 20 pieces.
  • This is a top-rated supplier on Alibaba with over $490k in revenue, and this tumbler is one of their best-selling products:
Alibaba supplier rating card

You’ve now used ImportYeti to find Simple Modern’s supplier, and you can replicate this process to find any online store’s suppliers!

Amazing, right?

The pros and cons of ImportYeti

Let’s cover the pros and cons of ImportYeti now!

Pros

We will start with the pros:

1. Easily find suppliers

You’ve now seen how to use ImportYeti to find a company’s suppliers, but did you know that this is not the only way you can find suppliers using this tool?

ImportYeti also has a “Supplier Search” feature that allows you to find suppliers for any products you’re interested in:

ImportYeti supplier search

You can enter any product here, and you’ll find lots of suppliers.

These have all been cherry-picked by ImportYeti’s algorithms, and ImportYeti claims they have a 94% accuracy on showing only the good suppliers!

Tip: Try to use generic product terms in your search. For example, “Clippers” instead of “Men’s clippers for beard.” This will give you a better search result since the exact type of product is not indicated on the BOL documents, only the broad category of product.

Sometimes, the product you’re looking for could be impacted by limitations, in which case you won’t find any suppliers for it.

For example, sensitive electronics are typically shipped via air or land.

2. H.S. Code Explorer

Another way to find suppliers using ImportYeti is to use the H.S. Code Explorer.

What is a H.S. code? (ImportYeti)

This feature allows you to check the suppliers and shipments of all H.S. codes!

As an example, let’s take “6601.10,” which is the H.S. code of “Garden or similar umbrellas.”

ImportYeti H.S. code page example

Just below the overview, you can find the top importers and suppliers of garden or similar umbrellas:

ImportYeti H.s. code suppliers and companies

Researching this will surely reveal some interesting information!

3. It’s a free tool

We’ve covered a lot of ImportYeti’s features already, and as you saw, most of them can be incredibly valuable.

So, what can you expect to pay for this tool?

You guessed it already: nothing!

ImportYeti’s core features are all free.

They’re still thinking about potentially implementing some paid features, but ImportYeti promises that their core features will always be free.

4. Grants access to lots of valuable data

One of the most significant advantages of ImportYeti is the sheer volume of valuable data it has.

With over 70 million sea shipment records from US customs, you can spend weeks making interesting discoveries about various brands and suppliers.

And even then, you will have barely touched the tip of the iceberg.

You can find anything from shipment dates, factory trends, quantities, other related imports, and so much more!

Mail order retailing

5. Easy to use

Despite the complexity and volume of the data, ImportYeti offers a remarkably user-friendly interface.

You can easily search for companies, suppliers, or products with minimal effort.

The platform is designed to be intuitive, and even those with little to no experience in Bill of Lading documents can easily use it.

Cons

Nothing is perfect, and the same goes for ImportYeti.

Let’s review its cons:

1. Only includes data for the US

ImportYeti focuses exclusively on US sea shipment records, which is a significant limitation if you’re interested in data from other countries.

In this case, you may be better off with one of ImportYeti’s alternatives, which we will discuss towards the end of this article!

Packages falling on the US

2. There are some brands you can’t find on ImportYeti

Sometimes, you won’t be able to find a brand on ImportYeti, even after searching for their trademarks.

This can happen due to three reasons:

  1. The company imports products under a different name.
  2. The company imports products using air or land freight (these are not publically available, and thus not on ImportYeti).
  3. The company requested that their import documents be made private.

In any of these cases, you may still be able to find the company by:

  • Searching their address on ImportYeti.
  • Search for other names they might be using (other than in a trademark registry; these can be found in their privacy policy, about us page, business filings, using a Google search, etc.).

3. Supplier contact details are not always available

Sometimes, even if you find an interesting supplier on ImportYeti, you can’t find any of their contact details.

This can be due to two reasons:

  1. The supplier exports products under a different name
  2. Sometimes, large established suppliers don’t have public contact details. They typically prefer to reach customers through networking and trade shows.

To contact a supplier you found on ImportYeti, you can:

  • Try searching for the supplier using different names. Try checking the bottom of a supplier page, as it may include other variations of their names and addresses. Also, try searching on different search engines (for example, Baidu for Chinese suppliers).
  • Hire a local sourcing agent to check the address or find the supplier.
  • Sent a postal letter to the supplier’s address.

4. Data older than 2015 and land/air shipment data is missing

Although ImportYeti has over 70 million shipment records in its database, you will find that data is sometimes missing.

For instance, ImportYeti doesn’t have any data from 2015 or earlier.

Also, there is no data on shipments made through land or air as ImportYeti only supports sea freight import data.

ImportYeti lacking data illustration

ImportYeti pricing

ImportYeti is a completely free tool; you don’t even need to sign up to use its core features!

However, ImportYeti could introduce additional paid features in the future.

You can also request API access to ImportYeti’s data in case you would like to build your own application using it, but you will have to fill out a questionnaire first.

In this case, ImportYeti might ask you to pay for API access.

Can you use ImportYeti for dropshipping?

Packages falling on the US

If you’re running a dropshipping store, you may be wondering if you should add ImportYeti to your list of dropshipping tools.

The simple answer is yes.

However, here’s an important note: you can use ImportYeti to spy on established ecommerce companies, but you can’t use it to spy on other dropshipping stores.

Here’s the thing; ImportYeti can find the shipment records of any US company, but this only holds true for sea shipments.

And dropshipping stores mostly use shipping by air instead of shipping by sea!

That’s because a cost-effective sea shipment requires you to fill an entire shipping container, and it’s much slower than air shipment.

Therefore, using sea shipments is simply not practical for dropshipping because it wouldn’t fit the business model (purchasing many products at once) and the shipping times are too slow.

However, you can still use ImportYeti for dropshipping by finding the suppliers of established ecommerce stores, just like in the example we have shown you before.

For example, if you are interested in dropshipping the stainless steel insulated tumbler, you can still use ImportYeti to find great Alibaba suppliers without MOQs or AliExpress suppliers!

What do other users say about ImportYeti?

Based on reviews on Trustpilot, ImportYeti has an impressive overall rating of 4.8 out of 5 stars, which speaks to the quality of this tool.

ImportYeti Trustpilot page

Most users like it because ImportYeti makes it easy to find almost any brand’s suppliers:

An absolutely unreal platform with a huge amount of ressources and data. You will find all the factories used by most of the brands you are looking for. Even small and niche markets like the one I was looking at (martial arts) were there with every possible details.

Amanda Pamela Nicole (Trustpilot)

It’s also praised for being free and so easy to use:

Amazing platform with tons of useful information for free. Dave has worked incredibly hard to make all the complicated information from various complex sources available at fingertips. The website is interactive with easy to use UI and clearly distinguished segments. It is my go to platform now for any industry, product or company research.

Aayush Patel (Trustpilot)

Lastly, some people even use it to find out when new products will come onto the market:

I use this tool to do research for finding when new products come to market for product categories I am interested in. It helps me to know when to follow up with retailers after analyzing shipping patterns vs when products typically end up on shelfs.

Krin (Trustpilot)

ImportYeti alternatives

Although ImportYeti is an amazing tool, there are several alternatives worth considering:

1. Import Genius

Import Genius homepage

Import Genius is another tool that’s designed to analyze trade data.

Unlike the US-focused ImportYeti, Import Genius has a more international database that includes trade data for 18 countries, including the US, India, Russia, and most of Latin America.

Note: If you’re searching for an ImportYeti alternative for Australia, the UK, or Europe, you won’t find it. None of these regions make their bill of lading data public, which is why such a tool does not exist.

Because of the international focus, Import Genius’ database is also larger than ImportYeti’s, with over 250 million shipments.

The main downside of Import Genius is that it starts at $149 per month.

2. Jungle Scout

Jungle Scout homepage

Jungle Scout is one of the best tools for Amazon sellers.

It was founded in 2015 by Greg Mercer, an engineer who switched his career to ecommerce.

Since then, Jungle Scout has become the leading all-in-one platform for selling on Amazon.

And as one of the best tools for Amazon sellers, it also includes an Amazon Supplier Database:

Jungle Scout supplier database

It allows you to find suppliers that have previously worked with leading Amazon brands!

Jungle Scout’s pricing plans range from $49 to $129 per month:

Jungle Scout pricing

3. Panjiva

Panjiva homepage

Panjiva is a more traditional alternative to ImportYeti.

They manage over one billion shipment records and are best suited for larger corporations.

Their pricing page shows no details on how much the software costs. You’ll need to contact them first, which usually means that the pricing is hefty.

Plus, you’ll have to commit to a yearly subscription, as there is no monthly subscription available.

Related reviews

Not sure yet about using ImportYeti for your online business? Or are you interested in seeing what other companies are out there?

We’ve got you covered! Check out the reviews below to find great companies that will help you:

And for more reviews, visit the review hub!

Summary

Before we go to the conclusion, we’ve created a quick summary of this article for you so you can easily remember it:

  • ImportYeti is a free online tool that allows you to analyze imported sea shipments of US businesses from foreign suppliers.
  • ImportYeti works by aggregating and organizing over 70+ million sea shipment records from US customs into a searchable online database.
  • Here is how to use ImportYeti in four steps:
    • 1. Find a brand’s legal name
    • 2. Search the brand’s legal name on ImportYeti
    • 3. Analyze the brand’s supply chain
    • 4. Find the brand’s supplier
  • Don’t forget about ImportYeti’s other features like H.S. Codes Explorer or Supplier Search!

Conclusion

That’s it, our review of ImportYeti.

ImportYeti is an amazing tool for any ecommerce seller.

It makes it much easier to find great suppliers for your current products or any new products you would like to launch.

Plus, it’s a perfect tool to help you do market research!

If you have any questions about ImportYeti, please leave them below or contact their customer service directly.

Good luck with everything!

Want to learn more about suppliers?

Ready to move your online store to the next level? Check out the articles below:

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