I’ve recently had a rash of emails asking me about StrawberryNET.com because I’ve been telling you about my purchases from there. I did share my shopping experience on Strawberrynet once before but apparently, its too hidden away so here’s my 101 on shopping at Strawberrynet.
Why use Strawberrynet?
Why not? 😛 I learned about Strawberrynet about 5 years ago and like many of you, I was worried but the site was a lot more messy back then and yet I took the plunge. I didn’t have friendly blogs like this to turn to for advice then 😉 The reason I took to it is because it stocks many brands we don’t get here in Malaysia and because of the discounts and free shipping offered. I made a small order the first time but my orders these days are a lot bigger.
Is it cheaper than buying at the department stores?
It depends on where in the world you live. If you know your prices, you will be able to work out if the prices are cheaper or not. I usually shop the Gifts and Specials page where things go on sale twice a month. I’ve picked up lots of goodies there and I love shopping for high end or discontinued items there because the prices are very very attractive. I picked up the Scott Barnes Posh Chic blush palette at a mere US$11 (RM38) and most recently, YSL Rouge Volupte lipsticks at US$17 (RM59).
Some items are more expensive than buying in stores here. The reason is because its a borderless world so what we perceive to be more expensive for us, might still be cheaper compared to elsewhere in the world. E.g. cosmetics in Europe and Australia are priced high, so the prices on Strawberrynet are still are cheaper for them but maybe not for us.
Are there other discounts on top of the sale prices?
The other thing I like about Strawberrynet are the loyalty discounts. The discounts start from 1% from your 2nd order and go up to a maximum of 10%. On top of that, there is a 5% discount with purchases of 3 items and above – no price cap – and the discounts are cummulative. E.g. I now get 15% off flat if I purchase 3 items and above AND its applicable ON TOP of existing discounts. E.g. A lipstick is discounted 70% to $10 and you have a loyalty discount of 5% so you will only pay $9.50. It can make things very cheap and very tempting 😛
Are the products genuine?
From my 20+ purchases made, I’d say yes. I have not had problems so far. That is not to say that others might not have had problems. I cannot speak for them just for myself.
Are the products expired or close to expiry?
My caveat – I don’t usually buy skincare. I have noticed that sometimes if there is a very big discount, they mention the expiry date on the site itself. Most times they don’t but I have not had problems. I have bought discontinued cosmetics but I don’t go too far back. I make sure I know when the products were discontinued so I have an idea. Powder cosmetics don’t really expire so I’m less fussed. I don’t buy mascara because of bad experiences at a warehouse sale and I stick to more recent lipstick releases.
Why are the products so cheap on strawberrynet?
Gosh! I don’t know! 😛 Sometimes, the products are purchased from other countries – perhaps its been discontinued so they buy it up in bulk and sell it at a cheaper price. Or perhaps they import it in themselves without going through the distributor like Sasa does. You’ll have to ask them this one 😛
Is the shipping really free?
Yes it is and it comes by registered post so you can track it. They will notify you when it is sent out and they give you the tracking number. It also comes with a lilac ribbon tied around it like a gift and each item is gift wrapped individually. Its like receiving a gift from a friend which is awesome!
How long does shipping take?
Packages come from Hong Kong. To Malaysia, it takes about 1 week from the time I make payment. Update 2012: I have noticed that my recent purchases come in from Sweden and shipping is now longer i.e. between 7-10 days which is normal for shipping from Europe.
Where do the items come from?
From what I know, Strawberrynet is based in Hong Kong. All my packages come from there. I’ve actually called up their office before to clarify something. They exist 😛 As for the individual products, they come from everywhere.
Have you lost packages before?
I’ve made over 20+ purchases and I have only had 1 package go missing – my purchase #2. I notified the company and after 6 weeks, I received a refund. They aren’t very communicative but I’ve never really had problems with them other than this one.
Do the packages get taxed or held up by customs?
I have never had my packages taxed or held by customs. I live in Malaysia and I believe we do not get taxed on cosmetics. Well, not cosmetics purchased in small quantities. Thus far, my packages too have never gotten held up or opened by customs. Different Customs Departments in different countries might operate differently. If you get taxed, Strawberrynet offers tax refunds but you’d have to inform them of this. I don’t know how reliable it is, but its offered and I think that’s great.
Is it safe to pay using my credit card?
My first ever purchase was made using my credit card. I had no problems. Just make sure your billing address matches your credit card statement. These days, I use Paypal to make payment. You can link your credit card to paypal and make payment that way. Your credit card information is then never sent to sellers so its “safer”. How you pay is your choice.
What currency do you use when making a purchase?
I use USD because Malaysian Ringgit is not accepted for payment purposes. You can choose Malaysian Ringgit or any other currency to compare prices, but its just a rough guide. I prefer using USD and I always choose USA as my entry portal. When you choose Malaysia, the site is translated into the Malay language. Useful for those who prefer using it but I prefer using English 🙂
So if you haven’t started shopping on StrawberryNET.com, perhaps you better not start. It gets too addictive – especially with the discounts currently running 😛
Me? I’m already addicted so I’m a goner 😛
Hope this guide helps someone. Please feel free to ask any more questions below if I did not cover it here and please feel free to share your experiences (good or bad) too. Please also note that this is based on my personal experience shopping the site which I have done since 2007 and which I still do today without any problems whatsoever whether with delivery, authenticity or service.