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Is Etsy Legit?

Are you a bit nervous about buying products online?

These days, more and more people are choosing to buy and sell products on various websites. This saves the hassle of having to go to different physical stores to find what you’re looking for. 

Etsy is a popular platform where creative people can sell their wares. While purchasing products is generally safe, there are a few scams you need to be aware of. 

So, let’s find out, Is Etsy legit?

Common Scams 

Most people find that using this Etsy is a fun and safe experience. While the majority of Etsy shop owners and products are legitimate, it is possible to get scammed by fake sellers. Let’s take a look at the most common scams that you need to be aware of.  

Common Scams 

Counterfeit Products

Not all products on the online marketplace are what they appear to be at first glance. Some scammers purchase cheap products and pass them off as handmade items. It’s important to check out product photos carefully and ask questions if you need to. 

Fake Shops and Listings

Dedicated scammers not only list fake items for sale, but they may also even create entirely fake stores. This allows them to steal both money and personal information from customers. They are experienced in capturing the payment and personal information of customers and have no intention of shipping products.

If you place an order with a seller that you later decide may have been fake, follow up with them. Check on the seller’s shipping times to make sure they are following the promised timelines. If the seller fails to stick to the stated timelines, ask for a refund and report them. 

Shipping Products to the Wrong Address www.usups.com

Scammers may deliberately ship a product to the wrong address so that it is registered as delivered. When this happens, it’s not usually possible to claim a refund. The scammer may also use a fake or stolen USPS tracking number to prove delivery and steal the customer’s money.

You can usually identify this scam by checking the details of your shipping confirmation email. Carefully review the shipping address along with the package weight and size. If you notice any inaccuracies, contact the seller immediately and consider reporting the issue.

Hacking Accounts

Both buyers and sellers can potentially fall victim to this scam. The aim is to get access to the credit card or banking details that are linked to the Etsy account. Scammers may use malware, fraudulent support numbers, and phishing emails to get these account details.

If you are a buyer, the scammer may buy a fake Etsy phone number to try and trick you into calling them. They will then try and gather as much of your personal and account information over the phone. If you are a seller, the scammer can change your account information, steal your customers’ data, and redirect payments.

You can make this more difficult for scammers by choosing a strong and unique account password along with two-factor authentication. Using a secure password manager will give you an additional layer of security. Only answer emails that include the official etsy.com email address. 

Only Accepting Non-reversible Payment Methods

Sales that are made through the online marketplace are usually protected against fraud. However, scammers may try to get around this by convincing you to pay them off the platform. They may do this by offering incentives such as gift cards or apps like Venmo that are more difficult to reverse.

Only Accepting Non-reversible Payment Methods

You may be offered a discount for using these alternative payment methods. However, it can be very difficult to trace or reverse payments once you go off the platform. This also means that you will be unable to request a refund or file a dispute if you don’t receive your item.

Fortunately, this scam is easy to avoid when you know about it. If a seller asks you to use an alternative payment method, there’s a good chance they’re a scammer. All you need to do is refuse and search for a legitimate seller. 

Shipping Incorrect Items

One of the biggest concerns for many people is that the product they receive will be different from what they ordered. This classic scam involves advertising an attractive and fairly expensive item and shipping a cheaper version. In this case, the two products may look fairly similar, and the scammer will pocket the difference in price.

When choosing to purchase a product from an unfamiliar seller, carefully read the fine print of the listing. You may find that the description is quite different from what is suggested in the photos. Carefully read reviews and take a screenshot of the listing to help you settle a dispute if necessary.

Several Shops Listing the Same Product

Scammers may open several different sops on the online marketplace as well as on similar platforms. They will then list exactly the same products at different prices to see how much they can make. If you try to purchase the product at one of the lower prices, they will tell you it’s out of stock.

You can identify this scam by copying and pasting the product description into Google. If it comes up multiple times in the search results, you can be sure that the seller is a scammer. It may be the case that they don’t even have the product and simply want to take the money.

How to Identify Scammer Etsy Sellers?

The vast majority of the people who sell products on Etsy are legitimate. However, there are certain people who simply want to take the money from unsuspecting customers. Here are some ways to separate the scammers from the real sellers.

Check Out the Store Profile and History

If the store is fake, it will usually be new and will have minimal or no sales history. Store profiles and listings are usually created quickly and often include spelling and grammar mistakes. It’s best to try and stick to well-established stores that have detailed histories of legitimate sales. 

Check Out the Store Profile and History

Carefully Review Product Images

Scammers often steal product images from manufacturers or other stores and post the images as their own. Running a reverse image search will quickly help you to identify this scam. If you see the same images on multiple websites, you will know the seller could well be a scammer.

Delivery and Shipping Rates 

Legitimate sellers will usually be happy to share their share timelines and shipping fees on their profiles. Carefully reviewing these details can help you identify warning signs that the seller may be a scammer. Warning signs to look out for include:

  • Long shipping timelines – this could be because the product is a cheaper item coming from an overseas factory
  • Inconsistent shipping times – the seller may have no intention of sending out products and randomly quote unrealistic shipping times
  • High shipping costs – scammers often make extra money by charging too much for shipping

Read Reviews and Customer Feedback

It’s always a good idea to take the time to read reviews from previous customers before purchasing a product. Any time a customer leaves a review or feedback, it will appear on the seller’s page. Unless the seller has a good reason for contesting negative reviews, it will remain for the world to see.

Several negative reviews are a good indication that the seller is a scammer who should be avoided. However, a large number of glowing reviews doesn’t necessarily mean that the seller is legitimate. Scammers can create fake profiles and write positive reviews and pay other people to write positive reviews. 

Read Reviews and Customer Feedback

If the seller only has five star reviews and there are no negative comments, there may be something fishy going on. Look carefully at the language of the reviews and see if they are very similar. If all the reviews are posted around the same time period, they may well be fake reviews.

Pay Attention to The Response Time

Even if they are legitimate, it’s best to avoid sellers who take a long time to reply. This can indicate that the seller is not committed to their business and is likely to be unreliable. As a result, it could take a long time to receive your order. Generally speaking, you should always receive a response to your messages within 24 hours.

Are You Wondering if Other well-known Companies and Websites are Legit?

Then just put their name in our search bar with the word ‘Legit,’ and there is a good chance that we have covered them; for example, find out if Poshmark is Legit.

And while on the subject of what’s legit, why not check out our in-depth look at Legit Online Side Jobs that could really boost your income in 2023?

Final Thoughts

If you are relatively new to online shopping, you may be a bit reluctant to use Etsy. You may have heard horror stories about people having their accounts hacked or being sent fake products. While these practices are rare, they can happen if you’re not careful.

Fortunately, avoiding being scammed is fairly simple when you know how. Legitimate sellers on Etsy will usually be happy to provide details of their products and answer any questions you may have. If a seller is rude or reluctant to connect with you, it’s better to give your business to a more transparent seller.

Have fun shopping on Etsy, on the whole, it’s a safe and reliable place to get quality products.

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