This is the complete guide to Aliexpress.
In this all-new guide you’ll learn all about:
- How to use Aliexpress
- It’s key features
- If it’s safe or not
- Our favorite tips
- Lots more
Let’s jump right in.
Aliexpress is an online shopping website that is extremely similar to Amazon.
Founded in 2010, Aliexpress is owned by the massive Chinese company Alibaba. To illustrate how big Alibaba is, its annual revenue in 2019 was over $55 billion.
Aliexpress is one of the most visited ecommerce websites in the world and has millions of product listings.
The growth of Aliexpress’ popularity can mainly be attributed to its affordable prices and massive product selection. Aliexpress is extremely safe to use, however, we have some tips for you to ensure you get the best results possible.
Continue reading to learn why:
How Does Aliexpress Work?
Aliexpress works just like Amazon or any other large ecommerce website. You can search for products using the search bar, browse the different categories, or look at what’s trending.
All the items on Aliexpress are listed by third-party sellers which means that Aliexpress doesn’t sell any products themselves.
It’s simply a platform that connects sellers and buyers.
The majority of the sellers are from China, which is the main reason that prices are so low.
Here’s what the homepage looks like:
As far as payment options go, they offer all of the standard options such as credit/debit card, PayPal, Pioneer, bank transfers, and so forth.
Furthermore, Aliexpress sellers ship worldwide and offer a variety of shipping options.
Here are the steps to purchasing items from Aliexpress:
- Go to Aliexpress.com
- Create a free account
- Find the product(s) you wish to purchase
- Add the items to your cart and head to checkout
- Fill in your shipping address and payment information
- Track your order and receive the item
Why Are Items So Cheap On Aliexpress?
As you’re browsing around Aliexpress you will probably notice that the items are much cheaper than what you’re used to seeing.
Here’s an example of some of the deals you’ll find on Aliexpress:
The main reason why products on Aliexpress are so affordable is because the sellers are in China. Being in China allows the suppliers to inexpensively manufacture their goods at Chinese factories.
Furthermore, Aliexpress sellers don’t have to pay massive shipping fees when they ship the products from the factory to their warehouses. Interestingly enough, the prices you see on Aliexpress are actually standard Chinese retail prices.
Since the products are so cheap to make with lower labor costs in China, the products are already marked up to standard Chinese retail pricing.
Another reason why items are so cheap on Aliexpress is because of competition. In any standard economic model, more competition means lower pricing, and China has a lot of competition when it comes to sellers selling the same products.
It’s extremely common for sellers to start selling a product once they notice a product is trending. For this reason, sellers will price their products lower than their competitors in hopes of catching more attention from buyers.
In summary, low production costs, low storage and shipping costs, as well as competition are the main reasons why Aliexpress products are so cheap.
Is Aliexpress Safe?
With the product prices being so low, people are always concerned about the safety of Aliexpress and if it’s a scam or not. Simply put, yes, shopping on Aliexpress is completely safe.
There’s a reason why it’s one of the most visited websites in the world and processes hundreds of thousands of orders from around the world each day.
Aliexpress automatically includes Aliexpress Buyer Protection on every order.
What is Aliexpress Buyer Protection?
- Privacy Protection – your payment information is secured
- Payment Protection – the payment is only released to the seller after you confirm that you’re satisfied with the condition of your purchase
- Delivery Protection – If you don’t receive your purchase within 60 days, you will be issued a full refund
- Guaranteed Genuine – If products that participate in the Aliexpress Guaranteed Genuine turn out to be counterfeit, Aliexpress will fully refund you and the seller will have to compensate you by paying up to two times the amount you paid
- Refund Protection – Aliexpress has a dispute process that helps you get a refund when you are unhappy with your purchase
Aliexpress has done everything in their power to make purchasing items as safe as possible. However, it’s imperative to check the seller’s ratings and product’s reviews before purchasing. Let’s discuss how to identify trustworthy sellers on Aliexpress.
How to Buy Safely From Aliexpress and Check Seller Ratings
Identifying trustworthy sellers on Aliexpress is an imperative step in ensuring product quality and quick delivery times.
With the amount of sellers selling the same thing on Aliexpress, it’s extremely helpful to check their reviews before purchasing from them.
Through this, you can purchase items with a clear conscience knowing the product quality is astute and shipping times are standard.
When you’re viewing a product on Aliexpress, look at the top of the screen next to the Aliexpress logo.
You will see the name of the seller with their feedback score underneath it. Anything from 90-95% ‘Positive feedback’ means that the seller is trustworthy and recommended. Anything above 95% ‘Positive feedback’ means that they are an outstanding seller.
Furthermore, if you move your mouse to hover the store name, you will see when the store opened and detailed seller ratings.
The detailed seller ratings rate three different attributes out of five stars which include ‘Item as Described’, ‘Communication’, and ‘Shipping Speed’. You should try to look for sellers with above 4.5 stars in each of these categories.
Furthermore, you can click ‘Visit Store’ and then click the header labeled ‘Feedback’.
The seller feedback page is where you can find even more in-depth ratings based on the past 1 month, 2 month, and 3 months.
Another thing you can look for is a ribbon labeled ‘Top Brand’ underneath the seller’s name. The ‘Top Brand’ icon is awarded to sellers who have a comprehensive assessment of good product quality, reliable business reputation, and after-sales service.
Seller’s with this icon are extremely trustworthy and have many popular products.
However, sellers without the ‘Top Brand’ icon can be trustworthy as well, be sure to check their ratings.
Lastly, we recommend scanning the reviews of the product you’re interested in. Specifically, we scan the reviews that include pictures to inspect product quality. Also, you can read about other customer experiences with the product and how long the product took to deliver.
To ensure your product has reviews, make sure to sort the catalog by ‘Orders’ so that the products with the most orders are listed first.
Products with a high volume of orders usually have trustworthy suppliers.
Taking advantage of these quick and easy steps will ensure that the product you see in the image is of quality and shipped quickly.
With the amount of competition on Aliexpress, it won’t be too difficult finding a reputable seller that sells the product you are looking for.
What Items Can I Buy On Aliexpress?
Aliexpress offers a massive selection of products, from men’s and women’s fashion, electronics, and cosmetics, to jewelry, furniture, and toys.
You will most find anything you’re looking for on Aliexpress by using the search function.
However, Aliexpress doesn’t sell weaponry, software, ebooks, and digital media.
Some common items that users purchase on Aliexpress are clothing and electronics. A lot of Chinese electronics are inexpensive but also have good quality.
Furthermore, clothing is also extremely affordable with a lot of styles to choose from.
As far as electronics go, be sure to do your due diligence and comb through the reviews and product description to make sure the product includes what you’re looking for.
Similar to Amazon, any product you have on your mind is right at your fingertips because of Aliexpress.
Who Can Use Aliexpress
Aliexpress is free to use from all major regions around the world. Additionally, Aliexpress offers alternative language versions of its website. The top 5 countries using Aliexpress are as follows:
- China – 10.58%
- Russia – 8.07%
- Spain – 7.53%
- USA – 7.39%
- Brazil – 6.49%
As you can see, the top country using Aliexpress is China with only 10.58% of all daily traffic. This means that most, if not all, countries around the world shop on Aliexpress.
Aliexpress said themselves that Aliexpress is present in more than 190 countries and regions.
What are Aliexpress Shipping Times?
A common question that we receive is regarding Aliexpress shipping and delivery times. Since the products are mainly being shipped from China, customers are often worried about long delivery times.
That being said, the shipping times entirely depend on the buyer’s location and which shipping method they choose. We recommend using ePacket Delivery or Aliexpress Standard Shipping because it’s usually free or very inexpensive.
These shipping methods deliver worldwide in about 2-4 weeks. However, due to the pandemic situation it may take up to a month or more to receive your purchase.
You also have the option of choosing a quicker shipping option such as DHL, UPS or FedEx, but these options are usually extremely expensive since the products are going to be shipped overseas.
Another reason an order may take longer to deliver is because of elongated processing times. The processing time is the time between when you place an order and when the seller ships the item.
Sometimes seller’s may take a few days before shipping your purchase out. For this reason, it’s imperative to find a reputable seller with good shipping ratings.
Can I Cancel an Aliexpress Order?
Yes, you are allowed to cancel an Aliexpress order and obtain a full refund only when the order is still processing.
However, the seller will need to approve the refund request so it’s recommended to cancel the order as soon as possible.
Sometimes sellers will refuse to cancel and refund an order if they are already in the process of shipping out the item. However, most of the time the seller will comply with the cancel request and issue you a full refund.
It’s a good idea to message the seller along with canceling the order to speed up your cancellation request. If the item is already shipped, it won’t be possible to cancel your order and you will have to message the seller about returning the products once it arrives.
After the order request has been processed by the seller, you can expect to receive the money back in 3-15 business days.
Aliexpress Returns & Refund Policy
An important issue to touch on is Aliexpress’ refund policy. If you receive an item with a defect, you will need to open a dispute with the seller.
To do this, simply go to the order on your Aliexpress account and find the button that says ‘open dispute’. Fill in the prompt and upload pictures of the defected item so the seller can verify the damage.
After the dispute has been issued, a few things can happen:
- The seller agrees with you and issues you a full refund
- The seller offers a different solution, such as sending a new product or refunding less money than the original price you paid
- You disagree with the sellers solution and reject their proposal, and wait until Aliexpress mediates the transaction and offers their final solution
When filling in the dispute prompts, you have the option of choosing ‘only refund’ or ‘refund and return’. We recommend choosing ‘only refund’ because you will most likely need to pay out of pocket for shipping and it could potentially be expensive since you will be shipping the product back to China.
Now that we’ve gone through how to purchase items on Aliexpress, let’s discuss some tips that can help improve your shopping experience
Reviews – Always look at reviews before purchasing any product. The number of reviews and ratings with pictures can ultimately show you if the product is actually as shown. For this reason, look for products that have reviews and sort the product search by orders so that the items with most orders are listed at the top.
Recommended Products – When you are on the product page of an item you’re interested in purchasing, scroll down until you see the section called ‘More To Love’ or ‘Recommended Products’. This section will most likely have the same product as the one you’re interested in, so you can scan around for cheaper prices and shipping times.
Seller Communication – If you are interested in purchasing an expensive item on Aliexpress (more than around $30), we recommend messaging the seller and trying to bargain with them. You can tell them you found the same product from another seller with a lower cost. We’ve gotten anywhere from $1-10 discounts using this method.
Counterfeit Products – Counterfeit goods are fake products that carry the logo and name of a real brand name. There are a lot of fake brand name products on Aliexpress so be cautious if purchasing one of them. When buying a brand name item, be sure to scan the product reviews and seller ratings. Aliexpress sellers usually say in the product description if the product is genuine or not. Furthermore, if the price is too good to be true, it probably is.
How to Make Money on Aliexpress – Aliexpress Dropshipping
If you are interested in starting an online business, there’s a business model called dropshipping that fully utilizes Aliexpress.
Dropshipping is the same thing as a traditional ecommerce business with the caveat being that instead of buying inventory and shipping products yourself, the Aliexpress seller ships the product directly to the customer.
Here’s how the dropshipping business model works:
- Find products on Aliexpress you’re interested in selling
- Create an online store using Shopify (an ecommerce platform)
- Import the products into your store
- Design your website easily using a pre-made Shopify theme
- Create a Facebook and Instagram page for your store
- Run advertisements on Facebook and Instagram using the Facebook Business Manager
- Customer clicks your ad and purchases a product
- You fulfill the order on Aliexpress using the customer’s information
- The Aliexpress seller ships the item directly to the customer’s home
The dropshipping business model is unique because you don’t need a lot of initial capital to launch a store.
Rather than investing a lot of money into purchasing inventory, you pay for individual products only after you received a payment from a customer.
Anyone around the world with an internet connection, a computer, and a few hundred dollars can start a dropshipping business.
Verum Ecom specializes in teaching dropshipping because we’ve personally generated over $20 million in revenue in the past three years.
If you want to learn more about dropshipping, check out our article titled ‘How to Dropship from Aliexpress’.
Furthermore, you can go to our YouTube channel with over 100,000 subscribers where we post dropshipping and Facebook ads tutorials.
Aliexpress is an infatuating online marketplace. The massive product selection and affordable prices makes it an incredible place for online shoppers.
Remember, it’s imperative to find products that have good reviews and a reputable seller. If you follow the guidelines we laid out in this article, you’ll have no issues using Aliexpress.
With the pandemic situation and the products being shipped from China, be sure to message the Aliexpress seller and ask them how long it takes to ship to your specific country.
Long shipping times is the most common issue people have with Aliexpress. However, it’s completely normal to receive your items in only 2-3 weeks if you use the right seller.
Keep all these tips in mind as you are browsing Aliexpress and happy shopping!