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AliExpress cracks on Europe - Part 2

Did we receive an authentic product?

Within our case study on AliExpress the main purpose of our investigation was to check if the goods offered by the online marketplace are legitimate. Thanks to our test purchase service, we’re able to get the full picture on the end to end process.

We recently debuted an article series in which we put popular marketplaces to the test! Alibaba have recently made a number of moves that indicate that they are trying to take on their main competitor in Europe - Amazon. The amount of sellers trading in European countries has increased quickly, so the main purpose of our investigation was to check if the goods offered on AliExpress are legitimate.

Our purchase arrives

As you will remember from our previous article, we set up a test purchase using popular Adidas trainers. But what did we actually get? Did the product arrive within the specified timeframe?

Once we’ve ordered the product, we received confirmation via email. Soon after, we got the shipping notice, and within the expected timeframe, our trainers arrived.

As you can see from the pictures below, our trainers looked quite authentic.

Front picture of adidas trainers
Front picture of adidas trainers

Picture of the soles of the adidas trainers
Picture of the soles of the adidas trainers

Picture of the inside of the adidas trainers showing the adidas label
Picture of the inside of the adidas trainers showing the adidas label

How long did it take for the product to arrive?

It took the product 3 days to arrive in Germany, just as specified by the seller. Although this would suggest that it did not travel far, there are easy ways to manipulate an item’s location - so much so that eBay has recently made a point of putting in measures to stop this happening on their platform.

We wanted to investigate the origin of the product, because if it had been disguised as an Italian product but in reality had been shipped from China, it would have been a subject to customs tax. The delivery process is part of what we track, because a seller could potentially deliver from another address.

Did we receive a legitimate product?

Picture of label of the adidas trainers
Picture of label of the adidas trainers

The product appeared legitimate on the surface and the packaging looked real.

The short journey of the product indicated that it was indeed sent from Italy. And selling counterfeits there is definitely harder than in China.

Knowing a product’s origin is an important clue when determining whether it is authentic or not.

Did we get any information on the product’s origins?

However, we didn’t receive any written information about where the product was shipped from. It’s quite alarming that there was no return address included in the parcel, and we struggled to find information about the seller. Ideally, we would have been given at least basic information, like their name and the return address.

To find out more and to see how that process worked, we decided to send the product back and ask for a refund in our third and final article in this series.

Contact us today to find out how we can help you with distribution control and online brand protection

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