***** Buying from Overseas Sellers (China, etc.) *****
(Written By: eBay User ID Peacefullady777 on September 4, 2012
I have had amazing buying experiences from Chinese sellers, and I have also had a few bad ones. The great ones will definitely outweigh the bad ones if you know how to weed through them. Here's what I've learned along the way...
1. Only choose established sellers- meaning thousands of positive feedback. (98% and above). New sellers from Asia typically have a higher scam rate. They scam and close their accounts, scam and close, and so on...so their feedback most likely won't reach into the thousands before their caught.
2. Check YOUR ITEM's Feedback- check to see if other buyers liked the item you want to purchase. Many Chinese sellers sell multiples of the same item, so this shouldn't be hard to do.
Shipping and Receiving Your Item(s)
1. Always allow 21-30 days (though it may arrive sooner). Remember it has to go through customs of different ports and different bordering nations before it reaches you.
2. Many overseas sellers use drop shippers. If you're not familiar with what drop shipping is, it is a form of selling that allows another agent (on the seller's behalf) to actually package and ship the item to you. (Almost like Amazon and other large internet retailers.) This may cause a slight delay in shipping.
3. Lastly, I have learned that while the seller may have shipped the item right away, international tracking may take several days to update. Tracking info may vary as the package is being passed through different countries, the customs, and borders. Some Asian sellers use Swiss Post or Hong Kong Post. Try checking the tracking number (same as the "consignment number") on:
Swiss Post (swisspost dot com)
Hong Kong Post (hongkongpost dot com)
International tracking can be confusing and/or misleading.The tracking number may show the item as being shipped much later than it was originally shipped, causing the buyer to lose patience or worry. Also, tracking information may be unavailable until it reaches the US border. If you haven't already, try tracking from the USPS (usps dot com) to see if you can get additional info there. Always try to remember that delivery confirmation is not technically "tracking". Though most carriers provide tracking information- it may not be provided, may not be accurate, and is not required.
...and FINALLY THE MOST IMPORTANT TIP:
Don't wait longer than 31 days if you did not receive your item to file 'item not received'. I have never received my item past 30 days, so on day 31 or 32 I would recommend that the buyer files for 'item not received' from the Resolution Center. Most established sellers will ask you to wait a few more days to see if it arrives late, and then if not they should go ahead and refund you voluntarily. Opening an 'item not received case' after waiting at least 30 days will ensure that you don't lose the money spent on your purchase. This way you will get your money either voluntarily (through the seller) or involuntarily if it never arrives (through eBay's Buyer Protection.)
And always...at the end of the day, trust your instincts....only you will know what works best for you!
Hope this helps...