Trust is the currency for a successful relationship between a crystal reseller and their supplier, and between a crystal shop and their customers. It's essential that every party involved in a sale is confident that they're getting their money's worth.
Frauds, rip-offs, and scams are not uncommon in the gem trade. So it's important that you exercise vigilance to avoid getting burned and losing your hard-earned money!
We lay out some buying and selling tips for a safe and secure crystal purchase. Keep these in mind when building your inventory and letting in customers to your shop.
1. Research, research, research.
Eyeing on a potential crystal supplier? Before ordering anything, make sure you do your research first. Read reviews/testimonials on the store and assess the quality of their customer service.
Check their permits and licenses when you can. These are all crucial steps to ensure you're dealing with a trustworthy wholesaler. (As well, be ready to share the same information to customers who request it.)
Additionally, Crystal Boss sharesh some red flags to spot when evaluating a prospective supplier:
Prices are too good to be true/too high for you to make a profit The pricing of the items seems shady Product photos blurred, filtered, or highly saturated They don't readily provide additional photos, videos, or measurements when you ask The seller hides or edits out chips, blemishes, and imperfections of their crystals They don't provide an itemized list of of your purchases They don't reveal their payment gateways on their website
If the seller has any or all of these red flags, run!
2. Beware of unsolicited calls.
Some scammers use phone calls, text messages, or emails to advertise crystals. They lure victims into parting with their money by promising them they'll earn massively when they get their supplies straight from the source. And that buyers risk missing out on a great deal if they don't buy ASAP.
Be quick to discern when an offer appears too good to be true. Often, it's an empty promise. Avoid entertaining offers from sellers you're not familiar with to lower your risk of getting scammed.
3. When you can, shop and purchase in-store.
With the tight Covid-19 restrictions in place, buying and selling products including gemstones moved online. Many scammers seized this opportunity to post information about products aimed at misleading buyers. If you're transacting with a seller for the first time, it's best to visit their store and inspect their products personally.
Another tactic by scammers is to swap out products between the first viewing and when the customer has paid their order. So make it a habit to re-inspect your order before having it wrapped. This helps you ensure that the product you're taking home is what you actually picked, is genuine, and hasn't been switched with another (possibly fake) product.
1. Greet customers personally.
This applies to resellers with a brick-and-mortar shop.
Saying hello to each person who walks through your door is an effective way to prevent malicious shoppers from victimizing your business. You can even greet them with direct eye contact.
Although you're attending to another customer, make sure to go out of your way to greet the customer who just came in, or quickly assist the person browsing through the shelves. This gives a possible criminal the impression that you're alert and your guard is up.
When greeting customers, pay attention to anyone wearing hats, hoodies, sunglasses, or baggy clothing, basically any article of clothing a person uses to hide their appearance/identity. Also, keep an eye out for anyone making a phone call inside your store premises. They might be speaking to an accomplice and giving away info about your business.
Take note of a customer asking probing questions about your shipping process, staffing, or any other information that should be confidential. If you sense anything suspicious, report it to your staff or call the police.
Brief all your store staff to do these and to be extra wary of people's presence when manning the store.
2. Be cautious of rushed orders.
There are scammers who call retail stores to request high-value items to be shipped overnight. In this scenario, the scammer aims to divert the package from its original destination to an address of their choice.
To prevent your business from being their target, contact your courier and set certain security safeguards on your account. Specifically, ask to restrict package redirects to your employees. Doing this will ensure that your packages don't fall in the hands of scammers.
Choose a Supplier Trusted By Many
The best way to protect your business from scams is to work with a reliable crystal supplier. Choose a store with good reviews and a track record of satisfied customers. Not only will you get your money's worth, but they will also put your interest, safety, and security above anything else!
When it comes to honesty, transparency, and reliability, Stonebridge Imports is the name you can trust. We've been the trusted supplier of hundreds of rocks shops across Canada and the USA for over two decades now. We won't be in the industry for this long without the vote of confidence from our loyal customers!
If you have questions or concerns about our services, **send us a message. Our lines are open from Monday to Saturday, 11 AM-6 PM EST.
Ashenhurst, S. (2022, September 29). *Buying & selling: Tips to avoid getting scammed. Jewellery Business. https://www.jewellerybusiness.com/features/buying-selling-tips-to-avoid-getting-scammed/
SBGL Editorial Team. (2022, June 20). 6 Ways On How To Identify Fake Gemstones & Protect Yourself From Fraud. Buy Wholesale Gemstones in Jaipur - Best Gemstone Dealer & Supplier. https://www.sbgl.in/how-to-identify-fake-gemstones/
What to look for in a wholesale crystal supplier. (2022, April 14). Crystal Boss. Retrieved January 6, 2023, from https://www.crystalboss.co/what-to-look-for-crystal-supplier/