Buyer Aware!

Views 11 Likes Comments Comment
Like if this Guide is helpful


We all like to think that we can buy safely these days, but unfortunately there are some people out there who still like to try and take advantage of the honest buyer.  I've had a few close calls lately, and I hope this guide may prevent some disappointments and loss of funds to any eBayer who maybe unsure of the 'validity' of some items.


       TOP 10 'RED ALERTS!'

  1. Is the Buy It Now Price too cheap? (If it's too good to be true, it usually is, especially in regards to higher priced electrical and jewelley items)
  2. Is the Seller requesting contact *outside* of the eBay system? (If the seller is demanding contact via their own email address, and not through the eBay system, you can leave yourself open to harassment and possible hi-jacking of your account)                
  3. Does the seller have payment options that are unclear? (If the seller is vague in payment description, or wants you to contact them directly through their own email address to organise payment - watch out!)
  4. Wired for Disaster! (Please be careful of wired payment options such as Western Union, you have no protection against loss when using these types of systems)
  5. I've seen that picture somewhere before!(You may come across pictures in a seller's description that look like they came straight from the brochure! Or you may have noticed other sellers using the exact same photos.  Look for pictures that have that 'personal' touch.  e.g: item is photographed with it's packaging, with the user-id of the seller, or is in an environment you can recognise (carpets, flooring, other items that may also been in the picture, not relating to the item itself))       
  6. Does the Sellers feedback rating make sense?(If the seller has feedback from many different buyers that are minutes apart, or all feedback has been submitted on the same day this might be an indication of false feedback rating)     
  7. Does the item advertise the acceptance of PayPal, but the description blatently rejects it usage?(If the seller has the PayPal logo, or has PayPal as their preferred method of payment, then insists in the item description that you *do not* use it, once again - watch out!
  8. Have you unsuccessfully made a bid on an item, and then had the 'seller' contact you through personal email with an offer?(If a seller contacts you days after a bid has ended claiming that the original buyer has pulled out, and eBay has authorised them to approach you to buy outside of the eBay system -  don't do it! eBay allows sellers to re-list items through the second chance option or to simply re-list, they would never authorise an 'outside' deal!
  9. Seller seems to be from a town that's not in the country specified as the origin(If the seller claims they are from a particular country, lets say Australia, and the town they are from is Tokyo, Australia or Bejing, Australia - be aware!)
  10. Item is listed in a currency that eBay notes that we cannot use.(Some items come up in a currency that eBay will specify not to bid on because there is no acceptable payment options in our country.  eBay do this to protect us, please do not contact the seller and organise bank deposits or wire transfers outside of the eBay system, chances are you'll never see your item!

Please note that there are more good sellers out there than bad.  You certainly don't have to treat every seller as a 'suspect.' Most of us are very reliable, you just need to be careful of anything that seems 'not quite right.' It's very tempting when you have found yourself an incredible bargain just to jump right in there and buy, buy buy!  Any reasonable seller will be more than happy to answer any of your questions, and keep an open line of communication throughout the sale process.

If you have a suspicion about a seller or an item, do not be afraid to contact eBay, it's not a good idea to contact the seller, or a bidder (If the item has had bids, they maybe in on it too!).  You can report dubious items here:

If you would like more information and tips on buying please visit:

Well, I certainly hope this guide has been somewhat helpful! For more guides please visit:





Have something to share, create your own Guide... Write a Guide
Explore more Guides