Facebook ads, no matter how cool, persuasive, funny and correctly targeted to you – are going to quite possibly be from a country far, far away. (And retargeted with every single ad just like it when you click)
They are getting much more sophisticated in appearance. So if you open the ad, shop inside the pop-up and complete your order within Facebook, consider these three things before you buy.
1. You don’t mind that it’s on a slow boat from China.
Yes, some things are worth waiting for. As long as it’s not last minute, meaning ten days out or less. In a world of next-day Amazon and our immediate gratification requirements of ‘Merica, it can feel weird to wait as long as you do. Heck, if it was something for yourself, you may even forget you ordered it. Surprise, you’ve got mail!
But, on the other hand, the prices are right. You probably won’t realize the business origin until you already purchased your item, paid the extra money for expedited shipping (receive in less than ten days), completed the entire order process only to get a Thank You auto message that states the expedited shipping you just wasted $7.95 on will take effect after production of the item which takes a minimum of 10-14 days….
Do the math. 20-24 days, right? Yeah, they also overpromise that. Try 30+.
Fool me once, China…
I mean, here’s one example of three. A custom name jewelry place in grammatically correct English and smooth transaction process with PayPal. That’s just plain trickery right there. What’s behind the curtain is a whole lot of WTH.
So Mother’s Day gifts arrived to my special ladies in June this year. The item was great quality for the price as promised, but next time I would need to think about Mother’s Day around Valentine’s Day.
Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me.
Example 2 – My aunt moved into her new home three weeks ago. I ordered her gift via Facebook sponsored ad and I ordered it the week before the big move. Hoping it arrives this fall. But hey, at least I didn’t buy expedited shipping… never again. I have two more, sadly, but I digress.
2. You like having your bank call you at 8 am on a Saturday to question your late-night purchase overseas.
Each time, even using Paypal as the go-between just to be safe…
Here’s a lesson I learned.
It dings your card’s fraud flags because Paypal figured out that if you process outbound US purchases to other countries, they automatically default to process it through a hub of theirs in Singapore.
When your bank has protections in place and it sees your debit card is funding to Singapore, it stops it. Paypal then has the automatic response to send the transaction back to their stateside hub and attempt to process it again. It’ll go through, but it still needs to be verified if your bank is watching out for you.
I’m sure it’s a brilliant savings plan that some savvy accountant at Paypal uncovered and makes total business sense on a global market. Even if only half the US banks allow Paypal to process payments in Singapore, their interchange savings must be substantial to try and run it that way every time.
But still. I use Paypal as a layer of protection because I want to use cash with a debit card. Plus if I ever fool myself again when I don’t feel like waiting beyond what I’m used to, I’ll know my bank will call me because their well-played trickery of vague delivery details also includes a bogus tracking link that wants your email address first to show you where in the world your package is currently at.
No thanks. See you next season, pretty necklace.
3. Maybe divulging your deets globally isn’t the best idea.
Fraud happens stateside all the time. Even more so, actually, because I would guess it’s even higher when you add in the face to face scams and phone call scams. Granted, most are still foreign, faceless criminals tricking your permission to access your information, almost like welcoming a vampire into your home.
Then there’s that sh*tty group of evils here on grandma’s phone, pretending to be you because her Facebook privacy settings aren’t hiding her friends and they know who her grandkids are now. The sad part is she’s impressive for 80, tackling Facebook to stay connected with the family.
So yeah, that’s the kinds of things that happen right here. Roof and driveway scams to boot.
It’s sickening to imagine how people on any side of the contact attempt can sleep at night. It’s not like normal leeches that collect on top of the giant hippos…skimming off the top kind of scams. Even that is bull crap. I say we all play by the rules. And I mean all the rules. Good, clean games of chess. Values and ethics not crossed. May the best strategy win.
That’s how everything should be. If it were, destroying everything a defenseless senior citizen spent their entire life saving for, regardless of the amount – is straight-up evil at work.
I think those crimes should be considered three-strike laws because you broke three major, ethical values. Respecting your elders, stealing, and impersonating a human being who cares. Strike three.
That goes for the majority of abuse to senior peeps, since most of the time it’s someone they know who gets comfy milking them dry. Honor is strike 4. Throw the book I say. And tell any unreasonable siblings who get all drama about money to shhhhhh… time to give back to grandma and pamper her. She can’t take it with her, might as well let her treat herself and get the most out of it her legacy of hard work.
Wow. I put a long tale on that kite from China, huh?
So what do you do?
Look, there are legit Facebook advertisers out there and if you go past the basic pop up and do some research. I mean, leave Facebook and begin online research of similar products, you could find the same thing was right here all along.
There’s good sites to order from out there. I don’t want this story to take away trust or confidence from Shinesty Men’s Ball Hammock biddies. They were legit. It’s just hard to decipher the two at first glance.
So if you ever are like me, and find that cute razorback T that you must order now or that custom engraved thingy that is very neat – be wary and do some checking first. Even then they may be doing that cookie retargeting crap to you. Who knows. Clear your cache and carry on.
Either way, with a little research you’ll find the same custom service or shirt and they were a dime a dozen pop up sites for it to be reproduced. Chances are, for $5 more you can have it shipped someone here and get it within 10 days. Even if it’s Etsy.
Thanks for reading!