If you’re looking for variety and affordability look no further than Aliexpress.com. YES THEY DELIVER TO NIGERIA!!
I have started writing about places you can get things on a budget so look out for a lot more than DIY.
I’ve always loved budget shopping so Aliexpress has become my go-to place. Aliexpress has EVERYTHING and I’ll be showing you how to shop stress-free and also avoid getting scammed.
Update: The post office where we received aliexpress goodies have started charging a handling fee. This is really sad.
What is Aliexpress
Aliexpress owned by Alibaba is an online marketplace for goods produced exclusively in China. Unlike Alibaba, Aliexpress caters to individuals with no minimal order requirement.
Aliexpress is such a secure site to shop on. Even your login password is never saved on the site. Aliexpress also uses the Escrow Alipay system. This system ensures the seller never gets scammed as Aliexpress holds the funds until you confirm that you have received the goods. Funds are also automatically released when Purchase protection expires but you have the option of extending purchase protection and opening dispute if you still haven’t received your goods. Once the dispute is resolved between you and the seller, Aliexpress refunds your money within 7 days. Yes, they refund!! Cool right??
Even if you have received your goods and you’re not satisfied, as long as your purchase protection hasn’t ended the seller might pay for it to be shipped back and refund all or part of your money. It really depends on the seller
Here are ways I search and buy products on Aliexpress
- Search different names: Due to an error in translation (producers majorly non-English speaking Chinese) their description of certain products may not be what you’re familiar with. For e.g while searching for packing cubes, I finally found what I wanted listed as Hot Sell 5X Travel Storage Bag Luggage Clothes Tidy Organizer Pouch Suitcase Handbag Case Red Blue Pink Gray.? See what I mean?? I guess they do this to rank higher in searches. One way I would suggest to go if you have searched tirelessly is to type the name of the item+aliexpress on google e.g “packingcubes aliexpress” on Google and click the direct link from the searches. You just might find what you’re looking for. Another tip is to be descriptive in your search. As you can see above, packing cubes are described with keywords such as clothes, luggage and organizer so you can change the search to “luggage organizer” instead to find what you’re looking for faster.
- Buy small items:Since all Aliexpress products are shipped by air, weighty items may attract a higher shipping cost and that’s why you notice that most items sold on Aliexpress are not weighty items. In fact, NIPOST (where all free shipping items are shipped to) now charge a sum of 500 naira for items that weigh 0.5 grams so ill suggest you buy items that don’t weigh much. My friend had to pay 500 to NIPOST for 2 handbags she bought that weighed that much. If you don’t mind though, no problem. I realized they normally add shipping to the item and call it free shipping so I don’t want to pay an even extra charge for something I could find if I comb EKO market thoroughly.
- Ratings: Check the store’s rating. Anything above 95% makes me a little comfortable shopping on the store but better if I see a 98% or 100% rating.
- Save in your wish list: When shopping on Aliexpress I get a rush of excitement from the
hugeMASSIVE variety that’s on there. My advice? Take a breather. I know you want to snap up that item immediately but save the item in your wishlist and keep searching. The beauty of aliexpress is that you have several sellers selling the same item. You might find one that probably sells at a cheaper price, better quality and even better reviews. Now onto reviews
- Read the reviews: READ THE REVIEWS READ THE REVIEWS READ THE REVIEWS I felt the need to say that three times. You can get scammed if you don’t read reviews and check the star ratings. Focus more on the bad comments. Translate the comments that are not in English (easy type translate on google and paste on there and google immediately detects the language and translates to English for you. sorry if you already knew that.) If customers are saying the same thing e.g sizing issues, or delivery time or bad stitching on apiece of clothing you have to be sure you really want to risk it. When it comes to human hair I would suggest checking Youtube reviews
- Check the sizing: If you are buying a piece of clothing it’s essential you check their sizing. Do not assume the S small you normally wear will fit. Please check their specific under the product description.
- Photos: Since most manufacturers mass produce popular items they also use the same images. One tip is to look at the product description for extra images besides the general one that was copied. There should be one or two photos that are exclusive to the seller. Photographed on a mannequin or on the floor showing the tiny details of the item. Seeing this makes me a little more comfortable. If there are not enough pictures or the exact same picture is replicated on multiple sites be careful. You can gamble if you really love the item though.
- Contact the seller: Yes you may contact the seller on the item you want to buy and if you get a response within 24hours, you’re good to go. My belief is if the seller can respond to pre-sell questions, they’ll more than likely respond when I have post-sale issues.
- Post code: Put in your correct post code for added protection. Yes, your street has a post code if you weren’t aware. Just Google Nigerian post codes and check for your specific post code. This makes it much easier locating your house. Free shipping items with are normally sent to the post office closest to your address.
- Patience: Wait patiently for your goods to arrive. Yeah, this is probably the hardest part but after shopping a few times on this site you’ll get used to waiting. Free shipping to Nigeria takes 45-60 days although it can arrive earlier. What happens is, the store ships it quickly but the airlines normally wait for a full cargo load.
- Purchase protection: Make sure your purchase protection doesn’t run out. Read your mails and check your orders.
- Leave a good review: When you finally receive your item and you are satisfied. Please leave a good review This not only helps the sellers ratings but helps other customers make informed choices. I love those reviews that have customer photos. Customer reviews are key
Have you shopped on Aliexpress? Please share your tips with me. I look forward to hearing your thoughts.