AliExpress Scams: How To Avoid Getting Scammed

Falling into the hands of AliExpress scams costs your ENTIRE BUSINESS. Leaving you with broken goals or even HUGE debt. 

But The e-commerce market also offers opportunities for a profitable business

As an Alibaba shipping expert, I want to PROTECT YOU from scammers. This article lists the most common AliExpress scams and how to avoid them. Never risk your business’ assets again. 

Continue reading to keep your store safe.

AliExpress Scams

What Is AliExpress?

The first thing to know: what is AliExpress?

AliExpress is a subsidiary owned by the Alibaba Group, which is the largest e-commerce companies in the world. AliExpress was established in 2010 to sell Chinese products directly to the customers.

Some of the intriguing elements about AliExpress are given below:

  • Mainland Chinese citizens cannot purchase directly from AliExpress. Moreover, they must use different market places to get products from AliExpress.
  • AliExpress can be called as Chinese eBay. Just like eBay, AliExpress provides an extensive range of products. You can almost find anything here.
  • The cost of labor in China is low. That is why products at AliExpress are relatively cheaper than the rest of the e-commerce platforms.

Is AliExpress Safe To Buy From?

If the product turns out bad, you’ll review the platform as bad, irrespective of its identity. AliExpress is, in fact, safer from various e-commerce sites, including eBay. This platform gave me full refunds anytime my order expectations weren’t met.

There are several perks that AliExpress offers to its buyers. Here are some ways that you can take advantage of the buyer protection that AliExpress offers:

  • The support team is effective in keeping the buyers safe. As long as you deal directly with AliExpress, you will stay protected.
  • You need to contact the support team in case of late delivery or ineffective product. The seller will be contacted and will be notified regarding the situation.
  • If the seller isn’t willing to solve the situation, you can open a dispute with AliExpress.
  • The seller will also be contacted in case a buyer opens a dispute. Failing to respond to the dispute will result in a full refund for your purchase.
  • You will get your money back in 2 weeks at most.

The dispute process can take time as it has to be regulated with the seller back and forth. However, once it settles in your favor, you’ll get your product or a refund. In other words, the platform is safe to shop from.

Suggested reading:Is AliExpress Safe? How to Safely Buy From AliExpress

Why Do AliExpress Products Have A Bad Reputation?

The product quality is the major concern when it comes to having a bad reputation for AliExpress. E-commerce sites such as Amazon, eBay, etc. integrate extensive quality control measures.

It’s not like that AliExpress doesn’t implement quality control processes. However, these vary from supplier to supplier. Each supplier has its quality control procedures. That is why products from AliExpress sometimes turn out to be junk.

You cannot identify standards, as they can be completely different from what you’ve ordered. That is why most businesses use Alibaba for their long term business needs.

The ineffective quality assurance processes are the main reason why buyers are reluctant to buy goods from it. However, if you’re able to find reliable suppliers, you may get your hands on some fantastic products too.

Why Do AliExpress Products Have A Bad Reputation

Things You Need To Know Before Buying On AliExpress

Yes, AliExpress is an overall safe platform. But you should still keep some things in mind when using it. I still see fake suppliers and products on AliExpress. So here are some things that you should ensure before buying on this platform.

What About AliExpress’s Quality of Goods?

You need to find reliable suppliers to ensure that the quality of the goods isn’t compromised. Here are some pointers that you can keep in your mind:

  • Ratings and feedbacks of the seller are a great way to know their repute. It can take some time in diving and finding the right one, but finding the suppliers with a rating 4.5 or above is essential. You can also view user reviews regarding the supplier’s services.
  • The number of orders shipped is another way of finding a good supplier. A supplier with over 100 orders can be considered for buying from.

Assessing supplier profiles based on these parameters will mitigate the chances of finding ineffective ones. Moreover, you can also be strict in your requirements so that the supplier doesn’t claim later that the requirements were inappropriate.

How Long Does AliExpress Take to Deliver?

You rarely find distributors that can ship products you need from AliExpress. Most Chinese products are shipped from China from their distributors.

From experience, the average shipping time of AliExpress is as short as 2 weeks. Or it takes longer than 2 months. However, if there’s an option for express delivery, you can opt for that to get yours within weeks.

Shipping Time

AliExpress Payment Methods

AliExpress uses three payment methods, including PayPal, credit card, and iDeal. Most users prefer paying via credit card because AliExpress offers points that can be redeemed later.

Whatever the method you choose, AliExpress ensures that every payment is secured and that the buyer isn’t ripped off.

AliExpress Payment Methods
Suggested reading: Dhgate Paypal

Check Your Order Carefully When You Receive It

The buyer protection offered by AliExpress lasts for a day only. That is why you must check the quality of the product to open a dispute in case the products are faulty.

In case the dispute isn’t genuine, you will have to resolve it. In addition, if you don’t file the dispute within 24 hours, you will have to resort to contacting PayPal or your credit card company for refunds.

The Hidden Cost of AliExpress: Import Taxes

Another thing to consider is the import tax that will be regulated with your shipping fee. If you’re a buyer, your transaction will include a series of trade regulations imposed by your country.

Custom duties and taxes must be paid for products coming from foreign soil. That is why make sure to know the complete price of the products before having them shipped.

Suggested reading: Import Tax From China To US
Import Taxes

How To Avoid Suffering Fraudulent Sellers?

There are several ways to avoid scammers on AliExpress. Let me tell you the most effective tips I personally use. This helped me avoid fraudulent sellers on this platform. 

The Price Sounds Too Good To Be True Of The Product

One of the clear indicators is to check the price. It’s true that you’ll find inexpensive products on AliExpress.

However, sometimes the price sounds too good to be true. This is one of the most common signs you can pick up while shopping locally.

That is why, while doing AliExpress shopping, inspect the product’s price. You can even check other platforms to see which is offering the lowest.

If the price posted by the seller is quite low, then it might be a scam. It’s better to avoid such sellers that are selling products at unrealistically low prices.

Buy Branded Goods On AliExpress Should Be Careful

Another way to avoid fraudulent sellers is to be careful when shopping for branded products. Several brands, including:


They have already established their sites and platforms to provide their products to the customers. In case you want a sweeter deal, then going to AliExpress isn’t an issue.

However, scammers will often sell faulty products whenever a buyer is looking for branded ones. Therefore, if you’re encountering a seller that is selling branded products at a low cost, walk away immediately.

Please Use Alipay’s Escrow Service

Using the Escrow service can give you an advantage while buying from AliExpress. The Escrow service acts as an intermediary between sellers and buyers for payments. On buying, the Escrow stores the payment from the buyer. The seller then receives the confirmation for the order.

The seller prepares the product and ships it to the buyer. The buyer can check the product and then accept the delivery. Upon accepting the delivery, the Escrow releases the payment to the seller. In this way, you can prevent yourself from being scammed by the seller.

Check The Seller’s Product Reviews Before Buying

This is perhaps the most common of a thing you can do. While shopping online, you can easily go for online reviews and recommendations. Customers that have bought from the seller before must have left reviews.

You can view these and check out whether the seller is trustworthy or not. Remember, choosing a seller that has near or over 100 reviews is a good option. Such sellers have been actively selling goods and you can count on them for your buying purposes too.

Product Reviews

How To Buy From AliExpress Safely Without Being Scammed?

Here are some methods I used to buy safely from AliExpress. These tips helped me and my clients buy wholesale goods without being scammed. 

When Was The Store Opened?

A good way to see it is to check when the store was opened. This will give an idea of how long the seller has been in the market. It’s not necessary that a fresh seller can’t sell quality goods. However, choosing those that are well-known in the market can help you get quality products.

The Store’s “Buyer Protection” Policy

As highlighted earlier, sellers provide a buyer protection policy that helps protect buyers from scams. These policies can cover various aspects of the buying process. From refunds to the resending of the product, several elements can be included in this policy.

While choosing a seller, ensure to go through their buyer protection policy. If the seller is offering refunds, then it’s a good option to go for.

In case the seller is offering anything in return for late delivery or poor quality product, you can go for buying. However, if no such returns or benefits are offered, then it’s better to look for someone who is offering.

Suggested reading: Alibaba Refund Experience

Star Rating And Review – Feedback

Again checking for a star rating and reviews is a good option for avoiding scams. Customers that have availed the seller’s services before you leave stars and ratings. That is why looking for someone that has been working on AliExpress for quite some time is necessary too.

Their performance will be illustrated with the number of reviews and stars left by the customers.

You can go through the reviews to learn whether the product they’ve offered is of good quality or not. This will help you choose effective sellers without getting scammed.

Last Purchased And Frequency Of Purchase

Even if the seller is working on AliExpress for quite some time, their last purchase and frequency of purchase are also important.

This shows that the seller is actively supplying goods. It’s highly possible that the seller’s manufacturing has stopped but still has a profile.

In which case the seller will act as a wholesaler. Buying products from other sellers and selling them with their names is what such sellers will do. While checking for reviews, you can look for the last purchase and frequency of purchase in the profile section.

Contact The Seller Before You Make A Purchase

Just as Alan Rickman said in Harry Potter, always! Contact the seller before you make a purchase. It gives the seller a surety that a buyer is waiting for their order. In most cases, deliveries get late because they haven’t been fed onto the seller’s systems.

It’s not that AliExpress contacted sellers are sitting waiting for orders. However, communicating with the seller can later help recover your money during a dispute.

This will also give you an idea of how the seller is working. This is important particularly if you’re going for new sellers. Communicating with the seller can help ensure product requirements.

Items With A Very Low Price May Be Counterfeits

Avoid buying items with extremely low prices that sound too good to be true. Especially if you want to buy branded products, choose their home sites instead of AliExpress.

This is because scammers sell counterfeit products. Moreover, they do this by asking you to pay upfront so that they can run away with your money.

Don’t Get “Free Shipping” For Expensive Items

If you’re getting expensive or fragile items such as TV, cellphone, etc. don’t get free shipping. Most sellers that provide free shipping don’t care for the products during loading.

This damages the product and you receive damaged products. Even in dispute, the seller can simply blame the shipment for the damage. That is why avoid free shipping for expensive items.

Suggested reading: Dhgate Shipping Time

Customs And Import Duties May Be Charged

Your country will be charging customs and duties on the products imported.

However, these costs should be included in the total cost of the product. If the seller claims that, no such duties will apply and asks for the payment, then walk away.

Try Not To Open A Dispute Before Receiving Your Product

Opening a dispute in case there’s an issue with your product is a good way to recover your money. However, opening one before even receiving your product is foolish.

You should wait until the delivery date expires. The seller should send a tracking ID for your product so that you can track your product. Once you’re sure that the product isn’t arriving any time soon, you may go ahead with the opening of the dispute.

Use Your Product Before Confirming The Receipt

Another thing to do is to use your product before confirming the receipt. Remember, you only have 24 hours from receiving your product to opening a dispute. That is why; check your product after receiving it.

Read the user manual to make sure you’re operating the product right. Ensure that everything is alright then determine whether or not you should open a dispute. If the product isn’t what you ordered then go ahead for the dispute.

Suggested reading:AliExpress Dropshipping Guide

Suggested reading: 1688 vs Taobao
Suggested reading: How to apply for a refund on Dhgate?
Best Dropshipping Products

FAQs About AliExpress Scams

Here are some common FAQs about AliExpress scams that can help you out:

Why Is AliExpress So Cheap?

It’s true that AliExpress is cheap, and the reason behind it is the cheap labor cost in China. China is the biggest manufacturer in the world.

Their inexpensive labor cost makes it possible to get products at relatively low rates from other platforms. However, the product quality can be poor sometimes, which is why you should buy carefully.

What Is Buyer Protection AliExpress?

Buyer protection is a policy that is offered by AliExpress. Its implemented on sellers so that the buyers can stay secure while buying. Sellers provide different buyer protection services such as refunds, reshipping, etc.

In order to get your products safely, you need to find someone that offers buyer protection. Most sellers often impose some conditions that make it difficult to get buyer protection.

However, the most common is the dispute, which can be initiated within 24 hours after the product has been received.

Does AliExpress Sell Fake Products?

Replicas are available on AliExpress alongside with original products. However, replicas are available at competitively lower prices. So people mostly shop from AliExpress to get such kind of products.

How Do I Get English On AliExpress?

It’s pretty simple. All you need to do is to go to the site. While opening a website that is not translated in your native language, the browser shows a popup, indicating conversion for the website’s language.

This is indicated on the top right (for chrome). You can select the link to get the site translated. In addition, you can also choose the “go to global site” link on the website to get it in English. This will get you to AliExpress English site.

When Can I Open A Dispute On AliExpress?

There are some terms before you can open a dispute on AliExpress. First, you need to check whether the order delivery date has been expired or not. Orders should be shipped around in 60 days maximum.

If the seller has confirmed that the product has been shipped and it’s over 60 days, you can open a dispute. Second, you need to ensure that the product quality isn’t what you’ve ordered for opening a dispute. If the product has any kind of damage or isn’t what you’ve ordered, you can go for opening the AliExpress dispute.

Does AliExpress Ship Internationally?

Yes! As highlighted earlier, AliExpress doesn’t allow the Chinese to buy directly from it. Rather it was created to provide Chinese products to foreign buyers directly. Currently, AliExpress ships to 254 countries across the globe.

Suggested reading:International Package Shipping:The Ultimate Guide 2020

International Package Shipping

How Do I Find Best Selling Items On AliExpress?

It’s simple. All you need to do is to go on the website and select your preferred category or niche. While searching for the product you need, you can choose the filters.

These filters comprise of stars and rankings that you can select from. Simply choose the highest star and you’ll be directed to the page of best selling items. In addition, you can also select best sellers alongside the categories to know what products are currently trending.

Suggested reading: Best 30 items on Dhgate

How LeelineSourcing Help You Avoid Getting Scammed From AliExpress?

LeelineSourcing is an online sourcing platform. The company has been in the domain for years, assisting clients to get the best suppliers from China. It also has competent expertise in handling suppliers from various platforms such as AliExpress, Alibaba, etc.

Getting in contact with the support team of LeelineSourcing will help you engage with reliable suppliers. Moreover, the company ensures that you get the best of the services, including buyer protection offered by AliExpress.

With its experience in the domain, LeelineSourcing ensures that any fraudulent activities or scamming sellers are avoided. In addition, product quality and delivery are ensured so that the sellers can benefit from their investment.

Whenever you need to buy goods from AliExpress, this is the company to count on. From arranging sellers to ensuring quality products and fast delivery.

Suggested reading: Alibaba vs Dhgate
Suggested reading: How to pay suppliers on Alibaba via Pay Later?

Final Thoughts On AliExpress Scams

Getting goods from AliExpress is easy. However, you must take some parameters to avoid getting scammed. Ensure to inquire completely regarding the seller you’re buying from. Go for the ones with a high rating and several reviews.

Buy products by assessing and comparing their price rate. Always go for AliExpress’s Escrow service to avoid getting your money wasted.

In case of ineffective product quality or late delivery, open a dispute within 24 hours so that you may receive buyer protection. Engage with companies such as LeelineSourcing to get reliable suppliers, effective product quality, and agile delivery.

Suggested reading:How to Avoid Alibaba Scams: Ultimate Guide 2020

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Article by:

Sharline Shaw

Hey I'm Sharline, the founder of Leeline Sourcing. With 10 years of experience in the field of sourcing in China, we help 2000+ clients import from China,Alibaba,1688 to Amazon FBA or shopify. If you have any questions about sourcing , pls feel free to contact us.

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Derek Chen
Derek Chen
April 18, 2024 9:11 am

Eye-opening read on potential scams on AliExpress. It’s crucial to be aware of these risks, and your guide on how to avoid them is invaluable. Thanks for the precautions!

Emma Martin
Emma Martin
April 16, 2024 9:23 am

Eye-opening post on potential scams on AliExpress. What are some immediate steps one should take if they realize they’ve fallen victim to a scam?

Morgan P
Morgan P
April 9, 2024 9:18 am

Sharline, this article on AliExpress scams is a goldmine for anyone navigating the platform! The tips on spotting fraudulent sellers and understanding AliExpress’s escrow service are crucial. It’s a reminder of the vigilance needed in online marketplaces. Has anyone tried these strategies? Any success or learning experiences would be great to hear about!

Laura Rodriguez
Laura Rodriguez
April 3, 2024 9:16 am

The article on AliExpress scams is a must-read for online shoppers. Staying informed about common pitfalls can save a lot of hassle. Any additional advice?

Ethan Wright
Ethan Wright
April 2, 2024 7:31 am

This article is a must-read for anyone shopping on AliExpress. Knowing about common scams and how to avoid them is essential for a safe experience.

Derek Brown
Derek Brown
April 1, 2024 5:57 am

Staying informed about potential scams on AliExpress is crucial. This article is a must-read for all users. Any personal encounters you’re willing to share?

Alex Rivera
Alex Rivera
March 29, 2024 7:07 am

Awareness about potential scams is vital. Could you share more about the most common scams on AliExpress and how to avoid them?

Noah Lee
Noah Lee
March 27, 2024 9:52 am

Your coverage on potential scams is a valuable resource for new users. Could you elaborate on the most effective preventive measures one can take?

Olivia Smith
Olivia Smith
March 26, 2024 7:52 am

The tips on avoiding scams on AliExpress are crucial, Olivia. Your article is a must-read for anyone new to the platform. Much appreciated!

Sofia Martinez
Sofia Martinez
March 25, 2024 9:10 am

Excellent resource on steering clear of scams on AliExpress. The practical tips and red flags to watch out for are super helpful, especially for newcomers to the platform. It’s all about staying vigilant and informed. Curious if anyone has personal stories of dodging a scam using these strategies?

March 23, 2024 2:09 am

Your insights on navigating through potential scams on AliExpress are incredibly valuable. It’s a jungle out there, and having a guide is essential. Have you ever personally encountered a scam, and how did you handle it?

Emma Thompson
Emma Thompson
March 22, 2024 8:27 am

Thanks for the valuable insights into avoiding scams on AliExpress. In your experience, are there specific product categories that are more prone to scams, or is it widespread across the platform?

Mark Thompson
Mark Thompson
March 21, 2024 8:42 am

Navigating scams on AliExpress can be daunting for new buyers. Do you recommend any additional third-party tools or services that can help in vetting potential suppliers?

Jake Robinson
Jake Robinson
March 20, 2024 8:44 am

Really eye-opening read on avoiding scams on AliExpress! Has anyone had success using these tips for high-value items?

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