• February 27, 2024

Temu vs Shein: Is Temu Better Than Shein?(In-depth Review)

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Temu vs Shein

Temu and Shein are both well-known retail marketplaces that ship worldwide. As an established fashion brand, Shein has been the go-to choice for Gen Z groups. Temu, on the other hand, has gained increasing popularity among consumers due to its product variety and low prices.

So Temu vs Shein? Which should you choose to buy from?

Let’s take a close look at the differences between them so that you can make an informed decision.

Temu vs Shein: Overview

What is Temu?

Temu homepage

Temu is a business-to-customer(B2C) online marketplace that was founded in Boston, US in 2022. It is the sister company of the Chinese retailer Pinduoduo, and both of them belong to PDD Holdings. As of April 2023, Temu has gained over 100 million active users in the United States. Its free app also has been ranked first on the Google Play Store for a long time.

Temu's free app has been ranked first on the Google Play Store
Temu’s free app has been ranked first on the Google Play Store

Temu provides a variety of products that range from clothing to electronics, home goods, pet supplies, and beyond. Most products are available at extremely low prices. Temu offers free shipping for most orders of these products.

What is Shein?

Shein homepage

Shein is a fashion retail company that is headquartered in Singapore. Since it was founded in 2008, it has evolved into one of the largest fashion retailers around the world. In 2022, Shein generated an annual revenue of US$22.7 billion. The next year, its app downloads amounted to about 262 million worldwide.

On Shein, there is a selection of products across various categories, such as clothing, fashion accessories, electronics, and beauty supplies. Products in the catalog of clothes and fashion accessories are primarily sold by Shein itself. In other categories, it is usually the third-party sellers who sell.  

Temu vs Shein: an in-depth comparison of their features

Temu vs Shein? How are they different from each other?

Here is a head-to-head comparison of their features.

Business model

Temu is an online marketplace where third-party sellers and suppliers sell. When you make a purchase, the seller prepares the order and Temu delivers it to your address.

Like Temu, Shein is also a marketplace that connects global buyers with sellers. However, on this marketplace, third-party sellers sell products along with Shein. After you place an order, Shein has it delivered.

Website interface

Temu and Shein have a user-friendly interface, which allows you to find a product easily. They have categorized all products on their platforms. You can click a category to find a product in your niche. Alternatively, you can type a keyword in the search box to search for the item you are interested in. Both platforms use algorithms to personalize your shopping experience based on your behavior.

The difference is that you can get a quick overview of an item when you click “Quick look” on Temu. If you don’t want to add it to your cart, Temu will then recommend some similar items for your choice. Once you add something to the cart, it will be shown on the right sidebar. Click “Checkout” and you will be directed to the checkout page. It is rather a smooth purchase process.

Temu website interface
Temu website interface

However, it seems a bit complicated to buy from Shein. After you find an item, you add it to the shopping cart. The item included in your cart may appear on the right for a second, but it disappears then. You must scroll to the top of the site to check your cart, and then select the item for checkout.

Product range

Both Temu and Shein sell clothing, electronics, beauty and health products, and home goods. However, Temu is a general retail marketplace that offers a wider variety of products. Almost everything can be found on this marketplace. Compared with Temu, Shein is more than a fast fashion brand. It provides products mainly covering women’s clothing, kids’ clothing, shoes, and men’s fashion products.

Product price

These two platforms are well-known to people for their affordability. Most of their products are shipped from China and sold at low prices. To drive sales, both platforms and their sellers offer various discounts on many selected products. This further lowers the product price.

However, it could be cheaper to buy clothing from Shein. When I searched for hoodies and skirts on Shein, I found they generally cost less than $10. However, most of such products are more than $10 on Temu. But if you want to buy stuff in other categories, both Temu and Shein can offer a good price.  

The price for most hoodies on Shein is less than $10
The price for most hoodies on Shein is less than $10

Product quality

Most sellers on these two platforms are committed to providing quality products. So often you can get products that are up to standard or beyond. My American friend Lily bought a hoodie, humidifier, and some other items separately from Temu and Shein. After using them for a period, she said both Temu and Shein sold merchandise of good quality.

The hoodie Lily bought from Shein

But be aware that unreliable sellers on these platforms may lie about product quality in their stores. That is why some shoppers criticized the poor quality of Temu or Shein in their reviews. Before purchasing in bulk, you had better order a sample to check if the item meets your expectations. Read product reviews from previous buyers as a reference.

Some customers criticises Temu and Shein's product quality on Trustpilot
Some customers criticises Temu and Shein’s product quality on Trustpilot

Payment security

Both Temu and Shein take various payment methods. For example, they support major credit or debit cards, PayPal, Afterpay, Affirm, and Klarna in the US. Payment options can vary according to your country or region.

Overall, these payment methods are safe to use. PayPal and credit cards enable you to charge back when something goes wrong with your order. Buy now pay later services like Afterpay and Klarna permits you to check the physical products upon delivery before you make payments. You can choose a safe and widely used payment option at checkout.

Shein payment methods
Shein payment methods

Shipping times and costs

Shipping times depend on the destination and shipping method.

Temu offers two shipping methods, Standard Shipping and Express Shipping. For all Standard Shipping orders, Temu ships them for free within 6 to 20 days. If your order arrives late, you can get a $5 credit as compensation. For Express Shipping, the delivery time is 4 to 9 days, and a shipping fee of $12.90 will be charged. But if your order is over $129.00, the shipping cost will be waived. With this shipping option, you can get a $13 credit for late delivery.

Shipping methodCostsShipping time
Standard shippingFREE on almost all orders6–20 days
Express shipping$12.90 for orders that cost less than $129.00
Free for orders that cost not less than $129.00
4-9 days
Temu shipping time and cost to the US

Like Temu, Shein also has Standard Shipping and Express Shipping. It usually takes between 7 and 10 days for Shein to deliver to the US with Standard Shipping. The shipping cost is $3.99 and it can be waived for orders over $29.00. Express Shipping typically takes less than 7 days. It costs $12.90 and charges no money when your order is over $129.00.

Shipping methodShipping timeCosts
Standard ShippingEstimated to be delivered on 03/08/2024 – 03/10/2024.
 75.56% are ≤ 10 days
$3.99
Free – orders over $29.00
Express ShippingEstimated to be delivered on 03/05/2024 – 03/07/2024.
 80.94% are ≤ 7 days
$12.90
Free – orders over $129.00
Shein shipping times and costs to the US from the day of Feb.27th(Data from us.shein.com)

Return and refund policy

Temu allows you to return your order within 90 days from the purchase day if you are not satisfied with it. You must send back your return package within 14 days after you submit your return request. The first return for every order is free, and the subsequent returned order needs a $7.99 shipping fee. If your item is returnable, the refund will issued to your original payment account within 5 to 14 business days. But when your item doesn’t meet the criteria, you can’t return it. For instance, if you ordered clothing items, they have been worn, washed, or damaged after delivery, or their tags or stickers are removed. You can’t return free gifts and items that are labeled as non-refundable either.

Different from Temu, Shein accepts returns within 35 days after the date of purchase. The returned item can be postmarked in this time-frame. Return Shipping is free on your 1st return package for any order. If you want to return more items in the same order, you will need to pay $7.99.

Dropshipping

Dropshipping is a business model where you sell without carrying inventory. When a sale occurs, the supplier prepares and ships the order to your customer.

Temu and Shein both can be used for dropshipping. They have fast delivery and don’t require a minimum order quantity(MOQ). Though Temu claims that dropshipping is not supported, you may still find sellers who will fulfill dropshipping orders. But you must select discreet shipping at checkout, which will remove Temu’s branding information.

Shein has never said whether it supports dropshipping officially. However, you can dropship from it as this platform doesn’t brand their package like Temu. You can fill in your customer’s address at checkout, and the order will be directly delivered to the customer. Just mind that Shein is more worth a try than Temu if you sell in the clothing category.

Customization

Both websites provide customization options for items in some categories, such as clothing and jewelry. And they allow you to design the items online. Yet, your customization options are usually very limited. First, there are only a handful of items printable as most of them are pre-designed. Second, these platforms put a limit on where you add your design. You cannot customize a product at your will.

You cannot design your product freely on Temu
Temu puts a limit on how to design a product

Luckily, you can work with Sup Dropshipping to customize products freely. At Sup, there are hundreds of printable items that cover general categories. You can select the one in your niche and design it flexibly and quickly with our 3D editor. A lot of free patterns are available if you don’t have design experience. Most importantly, our service is free, and you just need to pay for the product and shipping.

Design and preview your product at Sup Dropshipping
Sup Dropshipping allows you to design a product freely.

Customer service

On Temu, you can contact customer service through live chat or social media. Temu’s online customer support is available 24/7. If you have any query or problem regarding an item, you can also contact the seller. Temu gives you direct access to third-party sellers. It is convenient to address your issues in a timely manner.  

Unlike Temu, it is hard to find the seller’s contact on Shein. Whether you buy from Shein or its third-party sellers, you have to contact Shein’s customer support. You may get in touch via Live Chat, Facebook, or email. Shein responds to your query between 6:00 AM and 9:00 PM according to Pacific Standard Time. If you submit a ticket through chat, Shein will handle the ticket within 24 hours.

Temu vs Shein Summary

TemuShein
Business modelonline marketplace, only third-party sellers sellonline marketplace, third-party sellers sell along with Shein
Website interfacemore user-friendlyuser-friendly
Product rangea wider range of products in general categoriesmainly focus on clothing and fashion accessories
Product pricepretty lowlower in the catalog of clothing
Product qualityup to standard or beyondup to standard or beyond
Payment securitymultiple safe payment methodsmultiple safe payment methods
Shipping times and costsgenerally 6 to 25 daysgenerally 7 to 14 days
Return and refund policyreturn within 90 days since the purchasereturn within 35 days from the purchase day
Dropshippingnot officially supported but still availableavailable
Customizationlimited optionslimited options
Customer servicevarious ways to get in touch, 24/7various ways to get in touch, 6:00 AM and 9:00 PM (PST)
the comparison between Temu and Shein

Conclusion

Temu vs Shein? There might be an answer in your mind.

Both Temu and Shein share something in common. For example, they have a smooth user interface, safe payment methods, and low-priced but quality products. However, Temu is better than Shein when it comes to product variety, shipping costs, return policy, and customer service. Otherwise, you are recommended to choose Shein if you are running a clothing business.  

In fact, Temu and Shein are not the only choices for you. If you are a startup with little experience in eCommerce, it is better to work with Sup Dropshipping.

Sup Dropshipping is a dropshipping company that has connections with a network of suppliers worldwide. We can help you source competitive products from reliable suppliers except for Temu and Shein. With years of experience, we are able to provide you with valuable insights in your industry and  guidance to develop a successful business.

Learn more about how our successful clients think of us!


About the Author

May
May

May is a blogger at Sup Dropshipping with over 5 years of experience in eCommerce. May’s passion for eCommerce drives her to stay updated on the latest trends and share her expertise with you through her blog. In her spare time, she likes to read a novel or chat with friends.



2 responses to “Temu vs Shein: Is Temu Better Than Shein?(In-depth Review)”

  1. Bilkish Abdul Hamid Avatar
    Bilkish Abdul Hamid

    Thank you for thus very detailed information…I have bought twice now from Temu n just placed my 3rd order.i am hoping to get the quick delivery of my order.by the way Temu has a friendly site…shein does not so frustrating so just moved on.Temu should when describing items please indicate fabrication of clothing.thanks Go Temu….

    1. Jack Han Avatar
      Jack Han

      Hello, thank you for sharing your experience.
      It looks Shein should update their website to make it more friendly to customers.

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