We've all been there; you see an item on ebay going for the kind of price you're willing to spend, it's in great condition, the seller has good feedback and it's looking like being a good buy. Before you go for it though, you should stop to think: is it too good to be true?
Most of the items which are listed at really cheap prices generally have some sort of catch - only one obscure payment method is accepted, postage is at killer cost, the seller had bad feedback or any other little thing you’ll regret if you choose to buy the item. To stop this happening, make sure you check the following before buying an item;
1. Feedback: As long as the feedback is over ten and is 100%, you should be fairly comfortable buying from this buyer. It’s not a good idea to buy from anyone with a positive feedback of less than 70%.
2. Postage: Some items are cheap because they’re straight out of a factory in Hong Kong. This means that the item’s going to cost a fair bit more to ship – sometimes, it’s cheaper to buy it locally at a higher item price, but a lower postage cost.
3. Item Quality / Bundled items: Make sure the item’s in good condition and works well. Some items will also cost more if they come with bundled items like packaging, chargers etc. Don’t assume an item comes with these – if they aren’t mentioned, chances are it doesn’t ship with them.
4. Payment problems: Some sellers will only accept Paypal payments within one or two days of the auction finishing; if you’re transferring the money into your Paypal account from a bank account, this is likely to cause troubles for you. You’ll be reported as a non paying seller, and will probably receive negative feedback or a ban.
In closing, make sure to read listings carefully; Ebay includes all the information you need to know on that one page. What you see is what you get – and if it looks too good to be true, it probably is!
Too good to be true?
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11 June 2006
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