It is a great fucking company. I use it for sourcing all kinds of things. The biggest problem is that their clients quite often have a poor grasp of English. Example, I'm currently looking for a small fan. I need it to ATTACH to a T8 LED and maintain roughly the same profile.
All I get are either quotes for 80mm computer fans, or T8 LED tubes. I even include a picture of the device I have in operation, with a rigged 80mm fan and plastic ducting strapped to the end of the T8 LED tube. It's like they ignore the picture, ignore everything, and only focus on key words. This leads to some of the shittiest customer service I've ever received. I want a fan, not a light. I already have the light, can't you see in the picture?
There are some foreign companies on there with excellent English skills. Those almost always get my business because the transaction and sourcing experience is so much easier.
If Alibaba could fix that one glaring issue, they'll be eating everyone's lunch.