How to use Chinese online store Taobao 淘宝.

Taobao is like a treasure box for fans of online shopping (from Chinese 淘 宝 - taobao, «get treasures"). Discovering the world's largest online store, you can forget about common offline stores. Taobao has an impressive range of goods: food, apparel, furniture, electrical appliances, computers and smartphones, art items, household goods, sports equipment, cosmetics, car accessories, jewelry and others.

Taobao is not just an online store, that is a virtual city full of «shopping centers», «stores» and «small shops».

To register and to buy goods in online store Taobao needs some knowledge of Chinese language, but even if you do not speak Chinese, you still may purchase goods in the biggest online store.

The developers of Taobao website are focused on friendly interface and reliable service that may be used by any user - a well-educated student, or elder people who hardly know computer science, everyone can order goods on Taobao. 

So even if you do not study Chinese language, just use our manual how to buy goods on Taobao. 


How to register on Taobao, Chinese online store.

The official website Taobao is available in Chinese language only, and there are no translations to English or other languages. If you occasionally find an English page of Taobao, be sure that are scammers or Taobao trading agents.

But for expanding the number of users Taobao helped new users with English translation of registration pages.



When register you should enter to fill the number of Chinese mobile phone , but if you do not have it, just skip this page «需 通过 邮箱 注册 / Register with your email address»

On the next page enter the mailbox address, put a tick next to «同步 创建 支付 宝 账户» (Create your Alipay account by your Taoboa account), enter the verification code and go to the next page.


Next, choose your country of residence and the actual phone number, to receive the registration code.

After that, the registration confirmation will be sent to your email box (Complete registration).

When you click on a link in the email, you will see the the final registration page, just finish entering enter a new password, and an account name.

  • 登录 密码 - password to login
  • 再次 确认 - repeat password
  • 设置 会员 名 - account name

Using Taobao you will also need to be logged in Alipay (支付 宝 / zhifubao), where you should link your bank card. If you checked the box at the beginning of registration, this account will be created automatically.

Also, this account can be used to log in a messenger AliWangWang (阿里 旺旺), where managers of Taobao and clients chat and discuss the details of the purchase.

After completing the registration process, start to search the products on Taobao.


How to search goods on Taobao.

Taobao search may be performed using a keyword (for translation use an online dictionary), a brand name, or choose the goods category in the menu (menu in the left side of the main page).

Some Taobao sellers use English description of goods for attraction the foreign clients.

Taobao dictionary (top menu)

  • 淘宝网 首页 Taobao store Home page
  • 我 的 淘 宝 my Taobao profile
  • 购物 车 basket
  • 收藏 夹 bookmarks
  • 商品 分类 category of goods
  • 卖家 中心 seller’s center
  • 联系 客服 contacts
  • 网站 导航 sitemap

Search results on Taobao for 鞋子 / Shoes

Search results can be filtered according to different criteria  (each category will have different criteria, this is an example for shoes purchase):


  • Tmall Goods 天 猫 - official stores of brands and manufacturers
  • Taobao Marketplace - consumers trade
  • Second hand goods 二手

Product Features:

  • 品牌 - brand goods
  • 选购 热点 - style of an item
  • 鞋跟 高 - heigh-heels 
  • 男鞋: - men's shoes
  • 筛选 条件 - sorting (size, material, etc.)

Below you may sort the items by reviews, number of sold items, store’s rating, price (综合 排序: 人气, 销量, 信用, 价格)

Also you can select the offers from a definite city / province. This is useful if you want to receive goods faster and pay less for the delivery from the nearest location.

Range the prices and choose the goods suitable for your budget.

Additionally, you can specify the following parameters:

  • 包邮 shipping cost included
  • 赠送 退货 运费 险 goods return insurance
  • 货到付款 cash on delivery
  • 新品 new goods
  • 海外 商品 imported goods
  • 二手 second hand items
  • 天 猫 Tmall
  • 正品 保障 guarantee of the original brand

The block of a searched item - performed by an item photo, it’s brief description, price, store name, city of shipping. Icons indicate the Seller’s Rating (the more crowns, diamonds and hearts, the better seller’s rating), online status and other information.

For example, an icon "7+" guarantees the goods return within 8 days. A red cat icon says that the store is a Tmall store and the goods will be delivered directly from the manufacturer.

The products page has more information like the available size, color, more detailed description. Each Taobao seller tries to make a very detailed description with photos and video so that a buyer has no doubts what is the product he purchase.

If you are not sure about the purchase, just add an item to your bookmarks (a button under the main photo of a product - 收藏 商品), you may pay later.

At the bottom of an item’s description you may check the comments from another buyer’s who already purchased the good. If you did not buy in that store before, be careful and read comments and check the service rating.

When you chose the items to buy, add them in a basket or process the payment immediately.

Buying several products in one store, make one transaction, otherwise shipping should be paid for each of an item.

  • 立即 购买 proceed to payment
  • 加入 购物 车 add to cart

Before paying, you can contact the seller and clarify any questions about the products, for example, ask if the goods in stock, or when the sellers may arrange the shipping.

To communicate with the seller, click on the icon of Aliwangwang messenger (a blue label).


How to pay for the goods on Taobao.

All the orders you can check in your shopping cart. When you are clear about payment, just press the orange button 结账 (bill payment).

On the next page you enter the data about delivery address. Usually shipping within China takes 2-3 days. If you need fast delivery, discuss this term with Taobao seller. Shunfen express mail 顺丰 delivers parcels within 1 day, and nowadays that is the fastest service.

The following page provides the payment options:

  • 储蓄 卡 debit card
  • 信用卡 credit card
  • 扫 码 支付 code scanning (use mobile phone to scan, pay through the app)
  • 现金 / 其他 (消费 卡) cash, store cards (cash terminals, post offices, gift cards, etc.).

If paying by cash / through the terminal you get an extra order number and verification code that will be required to complete the transaction.

To check the order status check the menu in your profile (我 的 淘 宝), section 已 买到 的 宝贝.

Also it is possible now to buy goods directly on Taobao, without any help of trading agents.

In this case, when placing an order you should press 转运 订单 (to forward an order) and specify the desired address.

Thus the seller delivers the order to the consolidation warehouse (where you can consolidate your Taobao parcels), and select an international express to deliver to the final overseas address.


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