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[personal profile] amberssubs
Ioften see posts in communities and other place along with people asking where I buy stuff. Is this site safe? Is this seller any good? So I thought I would make this post talking about my experiences and where I buy stuff. LJ is a great place to find people that sell JE stuff but the downside of it is that their isn't a lot of good ways to tell if the seller is trustworthy. Feedback post can and are a lot of times screened and you don't even know if they are. I've already had one seller screen my feedback even though it was neutral and not bad just stating they didn't full-fill my order but gave me a refund. I do want to say this though this is my own personal experiences other people might have not had any problems with seller or vise-versa. I will not screen this post so you can state opposing viewpoint just don't get nasty about it. I'm also not going to include those that don't sell alot and are just trying to get rid of their small personal collections.

CD Japan
This is where I buy the majority of my new cds.  They do not have free shipping like Yesasia but what they do have is a coupon & point system.  For a frequent buyer like me that does add up in savings.  Their coupons can be combined as well which is a nice bonus.  They also have occasionally offered me a extra coupon for 500 yen. Their prices are lower than Yesasia but since they charge shipping, 500 yen for one cd, the cost ends up being the same or slightly higher.  The biggest plus is their packaging which is really great.  Always boxes except when I ordered a magazine only.  Their cds are well wrapped for protection as well.  For LE items and posters this is a must have for me.  they also recently have been shipping me free promotional magazines for visual kei groups as well. Their CS is pretty good usually responding within 24 hours and they have fixed any problems I've had.  They accept paypal although the downside is you can't combined or change paypal orders where you can with a regular credit card order.  I've used both credit card and paypal with no troubles whatsoever.  Although I have seen some debated about this they DO support the oricon charts so your purchase will go towards seeing your favorite artist rise in the charts.

Yesasia
This place is a good place to order any non-Japanese Asian music.  Or if your not concerned with having the Japaneses edition of a cd they also offer cheaper Asian versions of Japanese cds along with the Japanese versions.  Occasionally they do offer coupons on order over $50 but it is sporadic at best.  They do offer free mini toys with the purchase of two cds. They have free shipping on order over $39 so this is really a great place to buy magazines since shipping on them adds up really fast.  Their prices are higher than alot of other places but when you factor in the free shipping it comes out to about the same price as other online dealers.  Their packaging is not the best, usually they send orders out in a bubble envelopes with no additional protection unless your order is fairly big  They take paypal as well as credit cards but do not have the option to combine and move orders without contacting their CS. I've used both Paypal and credit cards without any problems.  I haven't had to deal with their CS so I can't comment on it. Like CD Japan they also support the Oricon Charts as well.

LJ Sellers

[info]je_goods   

Number of orders=5+ (I've lost count)
Types of Goods ordered= Shops, concert goods, JE items
Price= low prices
Shipping=higher shipping cost but she ships with in 1 to 2 days after purchase
Communication= Fast, friendly, and very very helpful.  She respond within 24 hr or less.  She is willing to help get information and answer any questions you have.

The absolute best LJ seller I've come a crossed.  She is very quick to answer any questions and has an easy order system.  She has helped me numerous times getting info on harder to find shops and has worked with me to get them.  Her prices are considerably lower than some other sellers although her shipping is higher since she will only ship registered.  She offers preorders on most JE concerts, shops, and movie goods.  She also offers older concert goods and items from Johnny's stores that she has picked up. 

[info]tsukasa0504

Number of orders=2
Types of Goods ordered= Shops
Price= low prices
Shipping=Fast within a couple of days. Average shipping costs
Communication= Fast with no problems.

She offers mainly shops, cutouts from magazines, and a few pamphlets/books.  Her ordering system for shops is a little bit of a pain since you have to save the images, mark which ones you want and send them back to her.  With her cutouts you have to buy a certain amount or you can't purchase them.  Other than that she is a great seller that I've had no problems dealing with.  Her packages always come with good packaging and her shops are in great condition

.
[info]velourish

Number of orders=2
Types of Goods ordered= Shops
Price= low prices
Shipping=No notification, Usually happens 1 to 2 months after order
Communication= With in 24 hr but she is an intermediary and not the actual seller so answers to questions could take longer.  Also she doesn't give any status reports or shipping notifications at all.

I've listed her as neutral since I've had some problems with this seller.  My first order ended up being refunded a month after I ordered, since all of the shops were now unavailable.  I left a neutral comment on her feedback page that was screened which I really don't approve of, but that is just me.  The second order I place on Aug 16 but she didn't want payment until Sept.7.  I had to email her for the status of the order since I never heard anything back from her  by the end of Oct.  I finally received them at second week of Nov.  I ended up with six shops I didn't order and missing 6 I would have liked.  I still haven't got an answer back on that question.  If you are willing to wait over a month for your shops then she does have the lowest prices I have seen on LJ.  I also did receive a full refund on my first order with no problems and the second order I believe was a simple mistake on the buyers part.  But there is very little communication with this seller unless you prod them and the wait time is a little long but I do believe they are honest and would buy from them again as long as the order isn't urgent.

[info]huisinhs
Number of orders=4
Types of Goods ordered= Pappazzi photos, concert goods, Je Items, replica items
Price= low to middle prices
Shipping= Very low shipping, shipping times vary
Communication= With in 48 hr.  They have answered all my questions even if I'm not happy about it.  No status updates at all.

Although I stated 4 orders most of them were place around the same time and I have only received a partial shipment of the items.  There is no status update from this seller.  Unless you contact them or follow their twitter account you won't know anything about when your order might come since they don't update the LJ or send emails.  My first order did get lost in the mail and that isn't the sellers fault they did contact the PO and I've since then received the package.  What has upset me is the fact I order the paparazzi photo in early Aug and they still have yet to purchase the majority of them which is holding up the rest of my items from shipping.  It is now Nov and I've been told they won't receive them until the END of Nov.  This upsets me greatly considering the SMAP concert goods were already delayed and now shops I order 3 months ago still have not been purchased.  Two items I've ordered from them were OOS which isn't their fault either but I have yet to receive a refund for the second OOS item and the first  refund wasn't prompt either.  Their packaging isn't great just an envelope and some cardboard backing but since their shipping is so low I can't complain to much although any LE items I would think twice before ordering.  Again I do think this seller is honest but not well organized or doesn't have a lot of time to deal with their business.  Their prices are pretty low and they do offer a lot of various goods but they are not my first choice of sellers on LJ.


Shopping Services

Mukunoki
Ok I've use this service for online auctions, Jweb store purchases, and Gackt fan club. My opinion the only thing they excel in is packaging.  The environment is crying at the amount of packaging they use.  It took me over a hour to unwrap the large box I got.  Everything else about this service in my opinion is average to out right poor.  I know others are fond of them but I am not.  Their service is at best confusing.  There is no good explanation or outline of how to use it anywhere on their website leading to surprising extra costs.  Their organization is abysmal.  The formatting of the emails I get from them is confusing.  Their shipping cost are appalling and their tack on service charges to EVERYTHING including their shipping!

Let me try to break it down.
First off their is no real list/FAQ about how to order from them or what their charges are.  They have a tier system of service charges and a system of a deposit plan or coupons that adds a layer of confusion to what is going on especially since there is no instructions on this.   It isn't a simple add up the price of the goods+shipping then calculate the service charge type thing. From them emails I get from them their English is not really the greatest only average at best and I've ended up with my questions only half answered sometime.

For their auctions. They usually get back to you with in a day. That's usually great but for bidding that isn't so great.  If you are bidding on multiple items the format they want is confusing and their order form doesn't work completely for their shipping since you can only choose ems.  You list all the item titles, then list all the links to the pages for them.  Their invoice are the same but even worse the shipping, and bank fees are also separate like that.  Here is an example
Gackt dvd
kat-tun shop
concert good

http;//gackt
http;//kat-tun
http;//concert good

500yen
100 yen
2500yen

300x2

For a couple of items this isn't bad, try keeping 20 plus items straight it is a nightmare. 

They started out sending me emails when they received items but it was sporadic and I they didn't do it for each item. No notification on whether you won a bid or not either.

What I also didn't realize is they charge their service fee on the shipping as well.  I ended up spending over $250 on shipping plus and additional 20% on top of that for a service fee. I did have alot of magazines but I still think they're shipping is high.  I also about burst a blood vessel when it came to shipping.  They just wanted to send me pictures of what was being shipped and not the auction item id.  For a couple items this isn't a problem for 50 plus items its is. We went back and forth with this several times.  I never did get a complete list of each auticon that was included in the boxes and somewhere along the lines I ended up short one item and got one item I didn't order.  To say they lack organization is the understatement of the century.

For their fan club, I'm not impressed either.

They said the translated everything for you.  I have yet to see them translate everything.  I got a web access id with only a link to the entrance of Gackt's official site.  No instructions on where I'm suppose to go to enter the fanclub site or anything else.  I have yet to receive anything from them except a single leftlet advertising the platinum box no membership card or anything else. I have received several emails for goods but no translated info on them only a link to a page for them, price, and basic info.  I've had to go to the dears site and google translate the complete info.  Service fees on fanclub goods where suppose to be 20% but for the latest tour dvd email I got the service fee is 33%.  They said shipping was included for for fanclub membership but I've since found out that doesn't include Dears merchandise something they neglected to mention when they say shipping is free.  I imagine there is probably the service fee tacked on their shipping charges as well. 

They package very well but I'm not impressed with this service.  Maybe I'm being a little harsh here but I do want good service with clear instructions and fees outlined.  My biggest complaint is they lack organization.  When they can't even give me a list of auctions they are shipping to me there is a BIG problem.  I also have a bone to pick with the fact their fees are not outlined.  I have a problem with them charging a service fee of 20% on shipping.  If I had known that I wouldn't have bought what I did.  As for the fanclub I'm disappointed by the lack of information given and the increase of service fee on some items.

(no subject)

Date: 2011-02-08 10:47 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] jhey-rhyn.livejournal.com
I appreciate posts like these even if I dont buy online -- your words are flawless, I hope people learn a lot from this =b=b

(no subject)

Date: 2011-02-10 11:59 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] amberssubs.livejournal.com
I've been burned a couple of times so I hope to offer help to others out there so it doesn't happen to them :)

(no subject)

Date: 2011-08-21 11:41 am (UTC)
From: [identity profile] lilliana-s.livejournal.com
I really appriciate this entry.
Since I have decided to have my bachelor thesis about Japanese contempoary popular music, I will have to ship a few items from Japan - and the information provided by you really helped me getting started.
Thank you very much!

Lilli

Ps: I experienced that shipping GACKTs goods is more easy through amazon than through any site else. I don't know which country you live in, though.

(no subject)

Date: 2011-08-27 03:48 pm (UTC)
From: [identity profile] amberssubs.livejournal.com
I actually haven't updated it in a while but I really haven't tried and new sellers . [livejournal.com profile] je_goods takes care of all my JE related stuff, and Cd Japan all my Cds.

I've never tried amazon JP but since I can't read Japanesse I think it would be rather difficult. Also I go through DearS since I want the fanclub version of stuff. The rest I can usually find elsewhere.

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