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Things to Remember while Buying from Alibaba Express

It is not always easy to stay safe while purchasing goods online. To stay safe, you need to research the site you’re shopping from. Take Alibaba Express, for instance, how does it protect shoppers? Is it easy to avoid getting scammed?

How does the site handle disputes and refunds between sellers and buyers?

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What is Alibaba Express

Alibaba Express is part of the Alibaba Group, which is a Chinese eCommerce company that offers various retail services to businesses and consumers around the world. It overtook Walmart to become the largest retailer in the world in April 2016.

In 2010, Alibaba launched its Alibaba Express subdivision, as an online-only company that sells mainly Chinese products. It works more like eBay than Amazon – it is a host platform that makes it possible for third-party companies to sell their products – it doesn’t sell products itself.

Alibaba Express offers buyer protection, which is very crucial when purchasing from another country and particularly the Chinese goods which hardly have any warranty.

But it is still a pretty risky place and you as a buyer must keep the following things in mind while shopping from Alibaba Express.

Alibaba Express has become the largest online store in the world.

The latest data reveal that the Chinese store is making three times more profit than Amazon and eBay together and is consolidating itself as the preferred shopping platform worldwide. Millions and millions of people buy products from AliExpress.

However, it is important to note that Alibaba Express is not a store; it is a platform that connects millions of sellers and buyers.

Thus, Alibaba Express takes on significant functions, like ensuring that sellers are abiding by the stipulated rules, protecting consumers if they come across any issue within the platform, keeping your money safe until you confirm you received the product, and mediate any possible problems between the seller and the buyer.

Alibaba Express is extremely intolerable with vendors that do not follow rules and will punish them by closing their store and banishing them from the platform.

If you are purchasing products from Alibaba Express, the tips mentioned below would ensure a happy shopping experience for you.

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1. Purchase from Established Sellers

Always try to purchase from sellers that have been selling for a long time and have good feedback and reviews. These sellers mostly care about their ratings and are happy to help you in case there is an issue with your order. Also, read past feedback that other buyers have left regarding the seller. If it is also favorable, you’ve found a good person to buy from. Your purchase should mostly be very pleasant with such sellers. On the product page take note of the following things:

  • Open years: is the number of years the shop has existed on Alibaba Express. The older, the better.
  • Top-Rated seller: is a badge that sellers who have offered excellent services over a certain time get. Alibaba Express reviews the sellers monthly and only the best are promoted to this level.
  • Feedback score: indicates the number of 4 or 5-star ratings the seller gets. Sellers with high feedback scores are well established and are expected to always provide good support.
  • Positive feedback: shows the percentage of positive feedback the seller has received during the past 6 months. The higher the positive feedback, the better.
  • The number of product orders and feedback: selecting a seller that has sold a good quantity of the product you intend to buy is a great idea. You should also look at buyer feedback related to the product to make it easier for you to judge the quality.

2. Check Seller Guarantees

Sellers can also offer buyers particular safeguards. Generally, the more guarantees offered, the more confident you can be. It also helps to make Alibaba Express a more reliable store.

Sellers provide guarantees on a per-item basis. Just because they give lots of assurances on one product does not mean the same assurances are the same across their whole catalog. Ensure you thoroughly research them before you commit to making a purchase.

Usually, there are four guarantees sellers can provide:

  • Quick delivery: The seller promises to provide a full refund if your purchase does not arrive by an agreed period
  • Returns and refund: The seller promises to give a full refund if the product is not as described
  • Domestic returns: The seller has a warehouse in your country of residence. You can send returns to it without having to worry about the costs of shipping or customs fees.
  • Guaranteed genuine: If you’re purchasing a large electronic item, this is one point to take note of. It means that the item has been verified as genuine by AliExpress itself.

3. Go through the Item Details/Description

In some instances, very vital information is included in the item details/description section. Do not order by just viewing the product title and images, rather, you should also check the description because there might be certain explanations that the seller has left for the buyers.

For instance, the seller might include the features, compatibility, specifications, quality of the product, and whether it is an original or a replica product. Shipping, refunds, and support related questions are also generally answered in this session.

4. Be a Smart Shopper

No matter how much security the site has, you always need to take some responsibility for your own decisions. Alibaba Express gives a lot of important hints to ensure you avoid fraudulent sales. Most of them are common sense, but it is still wise to recap some of them:

  • If the price is too good to be true, it probably is. You can’t get the latest iPhone for $10. You’re likely buying an iPhone keyring instead. Check the small print to be sure of what you’re paying for.
  • Don’t send money to the bank account of a seller. If a seller asks you to send money directly to them rather than through Alibaba Express, do not proceed. Sending money outside of Alibaba Express means the site will not cover you under any of its buyer protection policies.
  • Do not confirm delivery before you receive the product. Never say you’ve received a delivery before it’s in your possession and you’ve closely checked it for problems.

5. Avoid Free Shipping for Expensive Products

Free shipping is mostly sent through the National Post Service and takes a longer period to arrive. There is also a greater risk of products being delivered as broken or even never getting to the destination. Therefore, while free shipping is okay for low priced goods, do make use of some good shipping services such as DHL and EMS when purchasing expensive products.

So, what is Alibaba Express?

It is a popular Chinese e-commerce platform that is owned by Alibaba, a multinational conglomerate run by Jack Ma, China’s richest man.

Think of it as the Chinese version of Amazon, except it has mostly Chinese made products, especially electronics but at a much lower price. Also, just because it is Chinese does not mean that the company operates in china only as it has a global reach.

Some of the facts about the company are very interesting and we would like to cover them in this review.  

The company

Alibaba Express is a giant ecommerce marketplace where traders sell and market their wares to a multitude of consumers. The company was founded in 2010 and had revenues of $55 billion in 2019.

As of 2020, the company is 58.2% owned by the Alibaba group and Jack Ma, and the company has over 60 million active buyers, and over 150 million users have made a purchase on the site.
Most of the users are Russian at 24%, followed by the US at 5.4% and Brazil at 5%, but it also has buyers from over 230 countries.

The site had an astounding $38.4 billion in sales on Singles’ Day in 2019, with $10 billion in the first 30 minutes of the holiday sales. (Singles day is a holiday in China, which is supposed to be the opposite of Valentine’s Day.

Alibaba Express also has 600 million monthly users at an average of 20 million visitors a day.

Also, there are more than 732 million visits to the site a month. As of the third quarter of 2019, it had 785 million active users

The products

The adage that everything is now manufactured in China is undoubtedly true because the company sells mostly OEM Chinese made products of many brand names that you find at your local stores only without the markups.

This makes Alibaba Express products much cheaper than their European counterparts, which is why you hear the term cheap Chinese Knockoffs, but the truth of the matter is that these are just the same products without brand names and the corresponding markups.

You can undoubtedly buy just about anything on Alibaba Express from a 1-dollar toothbrush to a $50,000 tractor.

There are more than 100 million products on the site, which might be a lot, but it is a fraction of the 560 million products found on amazon.

However, that is more than enough variety of any products that someone is looking for.

Similarly, Alibaba Express has a Buyers Guarantee that should give any buyer the peace of mind needed when shopping.

The Most Popular Product

With over 89,000 in sales to date, the iPhone tempered glass is the most sold item on the site. Besides, phones and fashion accessories are the most sought-after subjects on the site, followed by jewelry.

This may be because 75% of all the items on Alibaba Express are offered with free shipping options, which could be such a nice discount, especially for the customers who are also international.

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