When you want to buy electrical items & accessories from sellers on online marketplaces, cost should not be the only driving factor. You need to evaluate sellers on many other metrics beyond pricing, some of which will be key to figuring out the character and dependability of an electrical equipment seller. In a treacherous online space where fraudsters mascaraed as vendors, knowing how to choose genuine electrical equipment suppliers could save you a lot of money, trouble, and heartache. With these tips, you’ll never fall victim to counterfeit products or fraudsters. Instead, you’ll get the best deals each time.
Start by using a reputable online marketplace
Various marketplaces differ in terms of the level of security or measures they put in place. Some well-known platforms have become a hotbed for con artists, and one such example is eBay.
In 2020, there were more than 42.3 million phishing scams associated with eBay. On this marketplace, anyone can create a fake listing, and then use high-pressure sales tactics to rush you into a sale. Scammers are getting around the payment-hold security policy that eBay uses by encouraging payments offsite.
So the first step to choosing a genuine marketplace for industrial electrical equipment that enforces advanced security. Before you sign up for any platform, research their track record, view the marketplace’s Google Business reviews, and examine independent reviewers.
Consider the electrical item price against the market value
If the price of an electrical item is far below market value, it more likely means that you’re getting a sub-par product than a good deal. For instance, an LC1D Contactor goes for about $11 in most stores. If you get a vendor that promises the item for just $2, that’s a huge red flag and chances are high that you’re not getting the real deal.
Of course, prices cannot be exactly uniform across the board. But variations in the region of 10 to 20% percent should be perfectly normal and acceptable. Save for special occasions from known brands, a 50% off deal sounds too good to be true, and most of the time that is usually the case.
Buy in-person or directly from the brand
Of all cases of counterfeit electrical products, about 64% originate online. That means that the majority of these rip-offs occur in the digital space. You may choose to avoid it altogether by shopping in person at an electrical store that has been in existence for a considerable amount of time.
Alternatively, you have one other option if you’d like to buy electrical equipment online and that’s to purchase the item directly from a manufacturer or brand. An online marketplace for industrial equipment such as Industbay typically lists the product source in the description.
From this description, you can know whether a brand or an individual seller is offering the sale. But that doesn’t mean to shun individual vendors or retailers. As long as they have stellar feedback to their name, you’re good to go. And that forms the basis of our next point.
Uncover seller feedback
To gauge the performance of an electrical items & accessories seller, you want to pay attention to seller feedback. It can tell you all that you need to know about a potential vendor, revealing important details about:
- Seller experience and expertise
- Level of reliability of the vendor
- Quality of the electrical products sold
- Overall buying experience
Seller feedback appears in multiple ways across different online marketplaces. Generally, most platforms provide a means for past customers to rate the product/experience through a star-review system. In such cases, you want to prioritize a highly-rated electrical equipment seller who may be more reliable and trustworthy.
On other platforms such as Industbay, you can gauge the authenticity of a seller by taking a look at personal contact details such as a phone number. Using caller ID software, you can then obtain more information about a potential seller and cross-check what you find with the results they offer.
Don’t look past image quality
Pictures are worth a thousand words, and that’s especially true when you want to separate the wheat from the chaff. High-quality images are usually an indication of authenticity. More so, those with resolutions high enough so that you can zoom in and assess intricate details of individual components or parts.
If the image is low quality, chances are high that the seller may not be what he or she seems. The same goes for the overall feel and quality of the marketplace that they’re on as well. Some sellers can have high-quality product pictures, but these may only be internet-sourced. You should also be careful in such cases as well. To get around this, you can ask a seller to share with you pictures of the electrical items & accessories, as they hold them up and from different angles.
Pay attention to sourcing locations & shipping time
While we’re not fond of stereotyping, certain countries are more notorious than others when it comes to counterfeit electrical items. One of those is China, which is responsible for more than 80% of the planet’s electrical items counterfeits.
If a retailer is sourcing from China, that’s enough reason to raise an eyebrow. That’s not to say that all China-sourced electrical items are not authentic, but that you should go the extra mile with your research to double-check that these products are sourced from these countries.
Other sourcing concerns that could be red flags as well include:
- Overly long shipping durations (e.g. 4 weeks or more)
- Poor quality control in that country
- Packaging with slight trademark logo/deviations from the originals
- Suspicious pricing such as free shipping for far-away destinations
Safest way to get genuine electrical items from sellers
If an online marketplace is legitimate, the sellers will most likely be too as well. Relying on a marketplace notorious for scams and fraud ranks high on the list of what not to do if you want to buy from a genuine electrical equipment seller. Instead, use a website with a well-known operator/controller who has an actual physical location that you can substantiate. If you’re open to suggestions, we recommend purchasing from a legitimate marketplace for industrial electrical equipment such as Industbay. Here, sellers are rigorously vetted to ensure you only get genuine electrical products. Try Industbay today.