A shocking revelation
Most autoship programs online are scam!
If you have already ordered a product through autoship, panic not.
Autoship programs began with a good intention. They were supposed to let people try a product before they decided to buy it.
So, if a company is genuine, then an autoship program is a great tool – for the company and for its potential customers. For example, a skin care company offers its cream on trial. The product works well. The company sincerely sends its customers monthly supply, as per the autoship program policy, so that they do not run short of supply. The customers are happy, as they need not order every month or drive to the store to get the product.
This is an example of a successful autoship program.
Magazine subscription is a fine example of autoship program. The monthly issue reaches your doorstep without fail. It gives you sheer convenience of reading your favorite magazine.
However, if the same program is offered by a malevolent company, it turns out to be one of the biggest scams of the internet…and it is happening…in many cases.
Should you avoid autoship programs completely?
This is no hard and fast rule. As mentioned above, certain programs are scams; certain are genuine.
However, you must be wary of the following slogans:
- “Our company will help you look years younger by shipping you the cream monthly at slashed prices!”
- “Our company will ensure you continue reaping the benefits of weight loss through the supplement through our continuous monthly supply!”
- “Our program makes it convenient for you to re-order so you continue to feel awesome without running short of product supply!”
These are marketing gimmicks. They sound so noble. They are not.
There could be danger lurking around autoship programs!
Ideally, a genuine company offers autoship programs that truly help people. You get an attractive discount on monthly orders. The company honestly ships the product so that you are never out of supply.
Alas, not everything is ideal or genuine in this world. Most programs are found to extract money through your credit cards. Before owners of the credit cards realize what is happening, the money from their accounts is gone.
Realizing that you are trapped in a scam is only half the awakening.
The complete awakening about the scam comes when you are unable to cancel the subscription. The so-called company continues to ship the product every month and continues to charge you. There is hardly a company (of course, exceptions are there) that provides a simple cancellation form. Instead, hoax companies give you a customer care number, which is either busy always or difficult to reach.
One fine day, when are able to reach the customer care official, you still don’t get to cancel the subscription. Instead, the company tries to upsell, i.e., the official tries to sell you another product.
In some cases, the customer care official may transfer your call to another official. It is only in rare cases that you get your product subscription cancelled.
In the worst cases, you don’t get to cancel your subscription; rather, you may have to cancel your credit card so that they don’t take more money from you in the future!
How do you avoid this mess?
Believe it or not, scam autoship programs can almost ruin your life. They can destroy your peace of mind and taint your credit rating, as you are left with a debt of hundreds of dollars. Sounds like a nightmare, doesn’t it?
To avoid falling in an autoship scam, do this:
- Avoid signing up for free product trials
This is for the simple reason: free trials are not free. In case of scam, they prove to be costlier than the actual price of the product. Often, the company traps you by sending you a 15-day introductory supply of the product, which is free of cost, except a small shipping charge. They ask you to fill a form, which asks you to enter your credit card number. The trap lies here.
Once you enter the number, you are trapped! Whether you like the product or not, you are sent the supply and charged from the card. You may struggle to cancel the order or even shout profanities at the customer care number, but they are thick-skinned people and nothing seems to deter them.
Remember: genuine companies need not offer free trials. Their products are good enough to be sold like hot cakes.
- Know where exactly to look for autoship details
Any company offering trials need to follow regulations set by the US Federal Trade Commission (FTC). The irony is that shady companies do follow the regulations; yet still manage to dupe people.
Genuine companies are usually found to harbor a transparent approach and display autoship details on the front page. This informs customers that they will be billed every month through their credit card. Most companies hide this information on some page of their website. So, they are abiding by FTC guidelines, but are not transparent.
In a standard format, you must find autoship details on the following pages of the company’s website:
- Order page: Several companies put autoship disclaimer on their ‘order’ page. You can find it just below the section where you enter billing details. It is generally in tiny font.
Advice for victims of autoship scam
In case you are trapped in a scam, you can do the following:
- Be prepared for going through the nightmare of contacting the company’s customer care service, long wait lines, explaining to them what happened each time you are transferred to another official, and trying desperately to cancel your subscription, which the fraud company makes sure it does not happen.
- Contact your credit care company. Tell them about the fraud. They may refund your money. If not, at least you can get your credit card cancelled.
- Spread the news about the company’s fraud on social media. This will hit the company’s ‘reputation.’ It will also help to prevent others becoming victims.
Don’t let the fraudulent company go scot free. Don’t suffer silently. Let the scam go viral.