After living in China for a few years I thought this may help some people understand what they are dealing with when dealing with the Chinese. If you have delt with them a bit you probably already know a lot of this.
First, Chinese customs. When importing or exporting authentic goods their tax is extermely high. right abour 40-60% depending on the items in question. An example would be an iPod Nano 2 GB retail cost in China is 250 USD, a BMW 7 series cost 249,000 USD. You can see the extereme difference in product cost compared to what you or I would expect to pay. Since they have no sales tax to speak of the 'sales' taxes are applied into addition to the regular import taxes and duties. This makes it almost impossible to find reasonable pricing when buying authentic good.
Secondly, original versus OEM. When buying things like cell phones, 9 out of 10 are re-manned in Chinese factories. When you ask for an OEM Nokia 8800, you expect to buy a phone made by Nokia. In China OEM means that the phone is made in their factory. That they are the OEM. Nokia doesn't make phones in China, some of the parts are sourced from there but not manufactured. As far as I know Apple has a factory in Beijing and Motorola has one In Guangzhou and Beijing. If your buying a V3 from Guangzhou, Shenzhen or else where in China chances are that they are re-manned. Price always tells.
Third, most time it is a simple communication problem. Most of the Chinese still have poor English, you have to be very specific about the questions you ask. Very specific, I can't emphasize this enough, ask every question you can about the items you are wanting to purchase. Get pictures of everything, tags, packaging, price tags, labels, ect. If you have any doubt this will help.
Fourth, Currency Laws, one of the most important. Most mainland Chinese companies can not accept certain payment methods, like PayPal, Credit Cards, or any other type of electronic payment. This is due to the tight control of the Foreign Currency Commission in China. Like if you want to buy USD on the mainland you have to submit an application to the FCC to ask for your dollars. Don't let this fact make you think that your going to get scammed, it is all about knowing who your dealing with. Companies that are able to accept our normal payment methods are companies that are registered in Hong Kong. Since they are a SAR, they don't have the same red tape as mainlanders. But the T/T, L/C, or WU types of methods are common in China, they just started using COD a few years ago.
Lastly, shipping pricing. The shipping costs are exteremely expensive as undoubtfully your aware. The price isn't meant to rip you off on shipping but the fact is the postal companies are ripping you off. The charge by the kilogram. The first KG will cost 22 USD, regardless if it is less than a pound. For every 500 grams or 1 Jin they call it is 5 USD, very very expensive. All companies are like this, EMS is the cheapest unless you use the China Post which is sent by sea. The problem using the China Post they don't offer tracking of packages unless you go to a China Post in the country. UPS and DHL are always about twice what EMS is.
Most people who buy from China are looking for the bootlegs. Unless you decide to manufacture your own OEM branded producted China really isn't for the reseller unless you want to sell booted goods. You can fiind really good deals on many things, jsut remember its probably going to be fake. From phones to clothes, if you go into a deal knowing this upfront it makes it a lot easier.