We are living in a digital age and our shopping habits reflect that. Online shopping has become a rage in the past few years, with more and more people turning to it. As the number of e-commerce sites increase, shoppers have got more options to choose from, at competitive prices. Now, Indian shopoholics have another reason to rejoice as the Chinese e-commerce giant Alibaba has entered the Indian markets. Though the attractive product listings and wallet-friendly pricing on its retail site, Aliexpress, might tempt you beyond control, you should always take certain steps to avoid fraud and disappointments.
After using the site extensively, here we bring you a site-review cum step-by-step guide on how to order things from Aliexpress to India:
1. Download Aliexpress app from app store and enter your details to create an account:
This is the obvious first step and mandatory to buy something from this site. If you wish to buy without downloading the app, you can access the site aliexpress.com on your browser. Click on this link here to access to the Aliexpress mobile apps.
2. Browse the site for products and offers:
There are various product listings under different categories and loads of ongoing offers. Check these out to save a few bucks.
3. Open the details of the product you wish to buy:
Simply click on the product you want and the details page will open. Here you can see its price, seller information, pictures of the product and customer reviews.
4. Check the credibility of its seller:
Just as you wouldn’t buy stuff from a not-so-trustworthy vendor while shopping at your local market, you should not buy goods online without doing a little background check about the seller. Check the seller ratings and feedback reviews. You can see this at the bottom of the product page along with seller name. Higher ratings mean more satisfied customers, which indicate that seller provides good services. Avoid ordering from someone who has a rating lesser than 90%. Also, check how long the seller has been active on the site. The longer the seller’s age on Aliexpress, the more trustworthy it is. You can also chat with sellers before ordering any article from them.
5. Listen to other customers:
The sellers usually exaggerate while mentioning the features of their products. The pictures can also tell a very unreal story. But user reviews never mislead. Whether it’s about the size/fit of the product not being as per what is mentioned on the site or the color being different from what is shown, user reviews will always give you a better idea of what the delivered product will look like. Moreover, a review indicating a happy and satisfied customer will give you confidence about your decision to buy that particular product.
6. Check for the estimated time of delivery:
Since Aliexpress ships items from China, unlike its domestic competitors such as Flipkart, Snapdeal etc., your order may take quite some time to reach you or may even get damaged or lost during the delivery. Hence, it is advised to avoid ordering expensive and urgently needed things from this website. Before placing any order you must check the expected delivery window to save yourself from any disappointment later. Also, all the products come with a purchase protection timeline. If your purchase protection timeline is about to end and you still haven’t received the product, be sure to raise a dispute and demand a refund from the seller against it. But don’t freak out too early because you only get one chance with raising a dispute, per order.
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7. Selecting the delivery type:
Aliexpress lets its customers choose between two types of deliveries. One is faster but paid and another is slower but free. Since, we have already told you that this site is not suitable for ordering costlier and urgently required items, you may opt for the standard free delivery. Paid deliveries defeat the whole purpose of ordering from the Chinese site as the cost becomes similar to the Indian markets. Also, there is no point in spending a great deal on the delivery of a low-priced article. Both the delivery types are covered under purchase-protection scheme anyways.
8. Go Carting:
Check the final price of the products that you added in your cart, before proceeding with the payment. Search and apply coupons, if applicable. Mind that all orders on Aliexpress are prepaid as this site doesn’t offer the Cash-on-Delivery service. This means, you would have to pay for your shopping using your credit/debit card or net-banking. Ensure that your card has international payment feature activated. Also, at this stage, always tell the seller in the comments section that your order includes gift. This would ease the process with the custom department as gifts don’t have prices mentioned on them (doesn’t apply to branded stuff) and helps your order reach you faster.
9. Spread the word:
After receiving the product, don’t forget about letting other customers know about your shopping experience, be it positive or negative. Leave a product review and give sellers, their due ratings. This helps other customers and makes the platform, a better marketplace.