Online Shopping a Concern

20/08/2013 16:11

The Consumer Council of Fiji is advising consumers to take precaution and responsibility when purchasing products from the social network site such as Facebook.

This comes after the Council received 9 complaints whereby consumers purchased clothing from a Facebook page but the product was not delivered within the promised timeframe of 2 weeks.  

In these complaints, consumers had purchased Indian attires and made payments through deposits into a bank account number provided by the Facebook page administrator. One consumer had paid $800 and continued enquiring about the delivery even after 5 months. 

Consumers lodged their complaints with the Council after the Facebook page administrator failed to acknowledge their order or provide them with a favourable response. Eventually with the Council’s intervention, these consumers were provided with refunds.  

During mediation the Facebook page administrator advised the Council, that the delay occurred because their manufacturers failed to supply on time.

It has been noted that Facebook online shopping is quite popular and there are a range of Facebook pages selling products such as, footwear, clothing, jewellery, Indian outfits, electronic goods, mobile products, cosmetics and handbags.

Consumers must be mindful when shopping through Facebook, especially as they will be unable to try on the clothing or footwear to determine the correct size or even test electronic goods before purchase. Some Facebook users may find it easier to dupe consumers by selling defective products or even fail to deliver products after receiving payments.

The Council reiterates that consumers must tread with caution when purchasing products through Facebook. Particularly, as there is little or no guarantee that the purchased product will be delivered on time or be fit for its purpose.