8 easy ways to stay sharp when buying on OLX

buying, tip, help, OLX, safety, security, scam, fraudYour safety is just as important to us as it is to you. So here are eight tips that can help you stay safe when you’re buying online. We’re all about win-win deals after all.


1. If it’s too good to be true, it probably is

We’ve all come across an unbelievable offer and jumped on it, because who doesn’t want to purchase something at a fraction of its value? But there’s always that little voice in your head telling you the deal you’re about to close might be too good to be true. Even though it’s saying what you might not want to hear, you should always listen to it. No deal is worth taking chances with your safety or money.

2. Google is your friend

Not too sure about the item you’re buying? Pop a few details into google and make sure that you’re all clued up about it, and even compare prices. Also do a google image search to make sure that stock imagery isn’t being used in the ad.

Here’s a nifty research trick – you can check where the image has been used on the internet before with these quick steps on a Chrome browser.

  • When you’re on an OLX ad you’re interested in, click on the image to enlarge it.
  • Then right-click on the same image to see a drop-down menu.
  • Choose “Search Google for Image”.

Take a look at the search results. The information on the links should coincide with the ad you’re interested in.

3. Do your homework

Make sure you ask the following questions:

  • How long have you had it?
  • Why are you selling it?
  • Can I see recent pictures of it?

We also recommend doing a quick search on OLX for similar items and comparing the prices. If it all seems legit, then the price research could help you negotiate the price down.

4. Keep it in Chat

We updated OLX Chat so that you don’t have to giveaway your private information. Try to keep all conversation about the deal in chat if you can. You will be able to see when your messages are read, the seller is online and even share images and Google Maps directions.

5. Your chommies have your back

stay sharp, safety, tips, security, friends, OLX, seller, buyerThe best way to quieten that voice, is if you do as much research as you can on the deal, especially the person offering it. See if you have friends in common with the buyer. They can help you figure out whether the buyer should be trusted.

6. If it’s that good, it’s worth the wait

There shouldn’t be any reason why someone must pressure you to hand over money before you see the item. No money should be exchanged before you have the item, not even a deposit. If they insist, back away from the deal.

7. Never roll solo

Once you’ve agreed with the seller on price, plan to meet somewhere public like a shopping mall parking lot, or police station. And no matter how much of a tough cookie you are, make sure to bring a friend along. That way, there’s less chance of any funny business.

8. Cash is king

It’s always better to pay in cash for the item once you’ve inspected it and have it in-hand. However, it’s understandable that a seller would prefer not to carry a whole wad of Randelas. If you must pay via EFT or eWallet, do it only after you seen the item in person, not before.

We take your safety very seriously and as always, if you have any questions or feedback, drop us a line at support@olx.co.za or find us on Facebook and Twitter.

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