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What is Minimum Order Quantity (MOQ)?

In international trade, when purchasing from 1688 or Alibaba, we often hear a word: Minimum Order Quantity (MOQ). What does it mean? Minimum Order Quantity (MOQ) represents the minimum order quantity and is a key indicator. It refers to the minimum quantity of products or goods that a supplier is willing to sell to a buyer in a single order, that is, the minimum quantity of products that a customer can order. . Understanding minimum order quantities is critical for businesses engaged in procurement as it directly impacts purchasing decisions, inventory management and overall supply chain operations.

Learn about Minimum Order Quantity (MOQ)

Minimum order quantity (MOQ) represents the minimum quantity of products or goods that a supplier is willing to produce or sell to a buyer in a single order. This requirement is established by the supplier based on a variety of factors, including production capacity, cost considerations, inventory management and profitability.
It is a threshold that a buyer must meet to initiate a transaction with a supplier. Generally speaking, Minimum Order Quantity means that the higher the product quantity, the lower the production cost.

Truck hold letter block in word MOQ (Abbreviation of Minimum Order Quantity) on wood background

Why Minimum Order Quantity is so important

Minimum Order Quantity plays a huge role in many aspects for sellers and buyers. It is mainly determined by the following reasons:

  1. Economies of Scale: Minimum order quantities enable suppliers to take advantage of economies of scale by optimizing production runs and minimizing unit setup costs. Producing larger quantities allows suppliers to spread fixed costs (such as labor, equipment, and tools) over more goods. This reduces unit costs, making larger orders more cost-effective for both parties.
  2. Profitability: Setting a minimum order quantity ensures that suppliers can maintain profitability by selling quantities of goods sufficient to justify their production and operating expenses. By setting a minimum order quantity, suppliers can avoid inefficiencies caused by small batches or one-off orders that may not make them profitable.

Factors affecting minimum order quantity

  • Order quantity: The order quantity is the most important factor that affects the Minimum Order Quantity. Each supplier sets the Minimum Order Quantity based on the order quantity. The more complex and expensive the product a supplier offers, the higher the minimum order quantity. They ensure that order quantities are suitable for profitability. ​
  • Materials: The cost of raw materials is also one of the factors that affects the minimum order quantity. Suppliers generally use the cost of raw materials produced by child labor to negotiate the minimum order quantity value.
  • Product type: We often find that different products have very different minimum order quantities. For example, some daily products have a large demand. For these products, the minimum order quantity of 10,000 pieces is a low level, while For some complex and expensive production products, their minimum order quantities are lower.
  • Customization: Another factor that affects the MOQ rate is customization. The production costs of customized products are relatively high, and they require a lot of time to design and develop in the early stage, so generally the minimum order quantity for customized products is relatively high.


Minimum order quantity (MOQ) plays a key role in procurement, inventory management, and supply chain operations. By understanding the concept of minimum order quantity and its implications, businesses can make informed decisions regarding order quantities, supplier relationships, and cost optimization strategies.

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