Shopping on AliExpress from Kenya: How to get started

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Have you always been interested in shopping on AliExpress from Kenya? If you are like many out there that have never done it before but do not know where to start, this guideline should help you get started.

When you are shopping online, one of the very first things that you have to do is find ways to shop for less.  One of the best ways that you can ensure that you are saving money is by buying your goods from the most popular online shopping mall in the world, AliExpress.

AliExpress is a sister company of Alibaba; the only difference between the two is that AliExpress is specifically designed to handle small retail orders while Alibaba caters to wholesale clients and businesses.  Just like Amazon, you can buy anything from AliExpress. Unlike Amazon, however, the sellers in AliExpress are independent so it might be more accurate and safer to compare AliExpress to eBay.

Should I shop on AliExpress from Kenya?

AliExpress is a Chinese based retail company. Naturally, if you have never shopped on AliExpress before, you may have some questions and concerns especially regarding the safety of the marketplace and the quality of the products sold.

In an extremely short time span, AliExpress has consolidated itself as the world’s largest online store and it has quickly become the preferred shopping platform for anyone that is looking for quality but affordable goods. If you are concerned about the reputation of goods that are  ‘Made in China’, you should know that AliExpress has rules in place that control seller’s behavior as well as regulations that protect buyers should they encounter any issues with the sellers in question.

AliExpress is extremely intolerant of any vendors or sellers that do not follow the rules. As a measure to encourage excellent customer service, it goes the extra mile to punish unreliable vendors by drastically reducing the reputation of their store or by shutting down the vendor and banishing them from the platform.

Furthermore, AliExpress relies on Alipay, Alibaba’s international system of payment, which is well secured. This means that you can rely on the system in terms of security. Please note that even though AliExpress is safe, it is not invincible; like all platforms, it is bound to be affected by various online shopping scams. Fortunately, their track record is good so you can be confident that your information will not be stolen.

Why is shopping on AliExpress from Kenya so affordable?

When shopping on AliExpress from Kenya, there is a good chance that you will be buying your goods directly from the manufacturer, which automatically cuts down their cost of selling. Additionally, since most of the sellers on AliExpress are from China, where the cost of production tends to be lower than in most other international countries, the goods on offer tend to be inexpensive.

How to find a brand when shopping on AliExpress from Kenya

As mentioned earlier, you can get anything on AliExpress from the latest fashion trends and beauty products to electronics and phones& accessories. AliExpress deals mainly with three types of brands namely original products, Chinese brands (original) and counterfeit merchandise. Unfortunately, there are a lot of counterfeit products available for sale on AliExpress so it requires a little vigilance on your part to ensure that you are investing in the quality of goods that you want.

Original products on AliExpess are easy to find here but if you cannot afford original products, there are plenty of famous Chinese brands such as Huawei and Xiaomi that can serve you well. There are also some Chinese white label brands available: this simply means that the brand will not have a recognizable name or a visible logo. White label brands are the most commonly purchased items on AliExpress because they often work and nearly look like the original but are available at a much more affordable price.

When shopping on AliExpress, you should make it a point to avoid fake brands or shops that specialize in selling replicas. There are specific sellers that are open and honest about the kind of products that they are selling but there are some that are not as straightforward. Fortunately, AliExpress has been working to eliminate vendors of fake products so as time goes on, there will be fewer of them to deal with.

ACG’s tip for shopping on AliExpress: AliExpress recently introduced a logo to identify original products. You should look for this logo if you want to know if your product is original or not. In any case, if you should purchase fake goods, AliExpress has rules that will protect you in case you doubt the authenticity of your product.

How to find a trustworthy seller when shopping on AliExpress from Kenya

Now that you know how to find the brands that you are interested in on AliExpress, the next obvious step involves finding a reliable and trustworthy seller. You want a vendor that offers superior and quality goods and one that has a high reputation. When looking for a trustworthy seller on AliExpress, you should consider the following:

The reputation of the seller

Every seller on AliExpress has a reputation that can be found at the top right part of the page. Each seller is given a score out of five that is based on the seller’s communication, shipping speed and accuracy of the item described.  The seller reputation is broken down this way:

  • Excellent reputation: Crowns
  • Very good reputation: Diamonds
  • Good reputation: Medals

Air cargo’s tip for shopping on AliExpress: If the seller has a score that is above average, their score will be displayed in green while those that are below average will be displayed in red. You should always stay away from any seller that has red scores.

Look at the reviews or the seller ratings

When shopping online, it is essential that you look at the seller ratings and reviews before you settle on a product.  The reviews will give you a clear picture of the quality of the goods available and it will help you establish whether previous customers have been satisfied with the service received. If you are concerned that a piece of clothing will not fit, for instance, AliExpress allows customers to post first-hand accounts of their shipping experience (i.e. how long the goods took to get to them), the sizes and how they fit and the overall quality.

Air cargo’s tip for shopping on AliExpress: If you can, you should try as much as you can to stay away from any vendor that has a rating below 90-92 %.

Number of people that have bought the same item

If you are interested in buying something, always ensure that you look at the past number of people that have bought the item that you are interested in. If the item has been bought by a lot of people and the reviews and ratings are positive, then you can almost be sure that you will receive a high-quality item.

Contact the vendor

When you are trying to avoid surprises, the best thing about shopping on AliExpress is that it is entirely possible to contact the vendor directly if you have any doubts about the quality of the products that you are buying.

Air cargo’s tip for shopping on AliExpress: You can contact the vendor directly to ask for pictures of the goods, whether the products are original, whether they have the right size for you, etc. If you have any doubts, no matter how small, ensure that you get in touch with the seller so that you can get detailed information to make an educated decision.

Our final thoughts

When it comes down to it, if you are looking for a wider array of quality goods than you would typically not find here at home, then you should definitely consider AliExpress. As long as you remember to keep the things listed above in mind, AliExpress is a fantastic option for online shopping as it will save you money.

Do you shop on AliExpress often and are looking for an affordable way to get your goods to Kenya? Talk to us about how we can purchase on your behalf or have your goods delivered to you. Contact us today to learn how.

Next, we shall cover in detail how to make a purchase when shopping on AliExpress from Kenya.

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