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What you need to know about buying health supplements online

Why you should be careful where you buy Health Supplements online.

Anyone can sell on the internet

With the proliferation of sellers on the internet, there is an ever widening range of sellers for customers to choose from. Almost anybody can decide to start selling - through their own websites, eBay or Amazon to name just a couple of the outlets. That's fine in principle but where do these sellers obtain their stock?

What you need to know about health supplements sold online?

As a customer, what you'll want to know is:

  • Is the item genuine?
  • Has it been stored properly?
  • Has it got a sensible "use by" date?
  • In the unlikely event of there being anything wrong with that batch, will you by told about its recall?

Unfortunately there are few safeguards to the customer concerning whether sellers are buying from a reputable company or instead perhaps, an individual selling "from the back of a garage".

First of all, you rely on us to ensure we only select products of proven quality.

Nutritional supplements need to be kept in optimum storage conditions, need to be well "in date", well presented and quickly dispatched. The increase in the selling of bogus products that are not even genuine is another issue which is, unfortunately, not entirely unknown. There have also been many examples of products sold by unscrupulous sellers on sites other than their own genuine sites, such as through Amazon and eBay which have been obtained fraudulently and the sold cheap on these sites. We do not imply that this applies to all sellers on those platforms but it is not possible for Amazon or eBay etc. to be able to check adequately on these sellers or their products.

For those reasons, to preserve the integrity of both their products and the service and support to which they believe their customers are entitled, most leading manufacturers are increasingly   changing their trading terms so that they will only supply sellers trading through their own identifiable websites (and not platforms such as eBay and Amazon). 

They also ensure that sellers with whom they are willing to trade, store their products correctly and that the their staff are fully trained about the manufacturers products and uses. Their dispatch and storage facilities must ensure products are properly stored in optimum conditions and that customers receive their orders fast and in perfect condition.

Sellers who buy direct from manufacturers always have access to those manufacturers clinical teams and so can help if you have issues or questions about the products you buy or are thinking of buying.

What if sellers buy from wholesalers and not direct from manufacturers?

Some sites acquire products not from the manufacturers themselves but from wholesalers who buy from the manufacturers in bulk. There is nothing wrong with this in principle, however, there is evidence that wholesalers are not always able to check on the quality of these sellers and so products do sometimes go to sellers who do not store their stock in an acceptable manner and/or dispatch them to customers in a timely manner, packed appropriately to avoid damage.

As stated above, many major manufacturers have now banned sellers from selling in eBay and Amazon, however it has proved almost impossible for them to police.

Therefore, you should always be clear to check:

  • Is the seller selling from its own genuine website and not from a trading platform such as Amazon or eBay?
  • Does the seller provide full details of its organisation on the website and full contact details?
  • At best, does the seller guarantee the goods are genuine and have been obtained direct from the manufacturer?
  • Can you see on the website, a legal returns policy
  • Whilst the goods may have been discounted in price, by how much? If it looks particularly cheap you will probably get no more than you pay for.

With nutritional health supplements you are putting substances onto your body. They are not products like say a cup of coffee, where you can immediately tell if you like the taste and texture and they will contain ingredients that you might not be familiar with. That's why it's so important you have faith in the brand, products, ingredients and the seller.

We hope this is helpful.