Can You Get Scammed on Etsy? (A Look at Etsy Scams, Avoiding Scammers, & What To Do if You Have Been Scammed)

Are There Fake Sellers on Etsy?

In the era of online shopping, it’s easy to be scammed. You may think that because an item is being sold online, through a platform like Etsy.com, it must be scam-free. But this isn’t always the case.

There are plenty of scams going on in the online world, and Etsy is no exception. In fact, because Etsy is seen as a more trustworthy, online marketplace than some of the other options out there, scammers may specifically target users of the site.

So how do you protect yourself from being scammed on Etsy?

Below are a few tips on how to protect yourself while shopping on Etsy.

How Do I Know if an Etsy Seller Is Legit?

With over 1.5 million sellers on Etsy’s site, it can be hard to know how to avoid getting scammed.

Here are a few signs to look for when verifying if an Etsy seller is a scammer:

1. Feedback

One way to verify whether a seller is a scammer or not is by checking their feedback score. All sellers on Etsy are given a feedback score in the form of a 5-star rating based on the number of positive ratings they have received from buyers.

2. Reviews

Another way to verify if a seller is a scammer is to check for customer reviews.

If you scroll down on any product page on Etsy.com, you’ll see reviews written by Etsy shoppers in many categories, such as:

  • Product quality
  • Shipping and delivery times
  • Customer service
  • Handling of returns, replacements, and refunds

An Etsy buyer has 100 days to write a review after the estimated delivery date of their order. They can also edit their review as many times as they want during this 100 day period.

Good sellers will have many positive reviews from happy customers. If there are no reviews or if the reviews are negative, it may be best to find a different seller.

3. Return Policy

Another way to judge whether a seller is OK is by looking at their return policy. A good return policy shows that the seller is confident in their product and willing to stand behind it.

4. Send an Etsy Message

When in doubt, it’s best to send an Etsy Message to a seller before buying the item(s) you’re interested in. Communicating with the seller will be the best way to ensure that you are buying from a reputable seller who takes customer service seriously. If you are not satisfied with a response from the seller, don’t buy from them!

5. Etsy’s Star Sellers

Check to see if the seller is labeled as a “Star Seller” by Etsy. (This information can be found by visiting an Etsy shop and looking under their header image.)

Star Sellers have an outstanding track record for providing a great customer experience for the past 3 months. They repeatedly earned 5-star customer reviews, shipped their orders in a timely manner, and answered any questions promptly.

Can You Get Money Back if Scammed on Etsy?

If you have been scammed by an Etsy seller, you may be wondering if you are eligible for a refund. Fortunately, Etsy does offer refunds for scams or fraudulent purchases in most cases.

You may also be able to get your money back through your credit card company or PayPal. Be sure to contact them as soon as possible to start the process.

In many cases, order issues can be resolved directly with the seller, or items can be returned according to the seller’s return policy. However, we believe that you should always get the item you ordered or get your money back, so when those expectations aren’t met, Etsy will step in to support you. Buyers may receive a full refund for purchases that never arrive, arrive damaged, or do not match the listing description.

https://www.etsy.com/legal/buyers/
What if You Get Scammed on Etsy?

If an Etsy seller doesn’t respond to your messages or doesn’t ship your order, here are a few steps to follow:

  1. If you’ve noticed that your order hasn’t been shipped or there’s something wrong with the order, the first thing to do is to contact the seller.
  2. If you and the seller can’t resolve a problem with your order or they are not responding to your messages, report it to Etsy by opening a case with Etsy’s Issue Resolution.
  3. Once a case is open, Etsy can become a mediator, working with you and the seller on whatever issues you may have.

Quick Tips to Protect Yourself Against Scammers:

  • Make sure to never give your card number or password over the phone, in an email, or any messaging system.
  • Etsy can’t confirm or help with payments made outside of their own online checkout system or PayPal. This is why it’s better if you can pay for products through Etsy’s site, instead of sending payments like cheques or money orders directly to the seller.
  • If you see an unauthorized charge from Etsy on your credit card statement, contact Etsy’s customer service right away.

For more up-to-date information about Etsy’s Purchase Protection Program, check out Etsy’s Buyer Policy.

Conclusion: Is Buying From Etsy Safe?

Yes. Etsy is safe to buy from. But unfortunately, some people do get scammed on Etsy by scammers selling fake goods or by not shipping the item(s) at all.

However, if you’ve checked the seller’s reviews and shop stats, and have read their policies and terms of sales, then you should be able to recognize when an Etsy seller is legit or a scammer.

And if a seller’s Etsy shop is brand new, be cautious! I personally never buy from an Etsy shop that has less than 20 positive reviews already. It might sound selfish, but I’d rather other buyers find out whether an Etsy seller is trustworthy or not.

So go ahead and find handmade or vintage items that are uniquely you, support small business owners, and (most importantly) HAVE FUN shopping on Etsy.com!