Fruugo is an ecommerce marketplace that connects buyers and sellers globally. The India-based company was founded in 2010 and has grown to offer over 30 million products across thousands of categories.
But is Fruugo legit and trustworthy platform? In this comprehensive review, we’ll examine Fruugo’s reputation, business model, product assortment, shipping and delivery, customer service, and more. By the end, you’ll have a clear understanding of Fruugo’s legitimacy as an ecommerce marketplace.
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Overview of Fruugo (Is Fruugo Legit)
Fruugo operates an online marketplace that allows merchants from around the world to sell to customers globally. The company does not hold any inventory itself. Instead, it provides the ecommerce platform and tools for sellers to manage their online stores, process orders, handle payments, and ship products.
As a marketplace, Fruugo brings together sellers ranging from small independents to major brands and retailers. Buyers can browse and purchase from this extensive catalog of products. Fruugo currently has over 30 million SKUs available from thousands of sellers.
The company is based in Bangalore, India but ships products worldwide. It handles payments, order processing, and customer support from its headquarters. For logistics, Fruugo relies on its sellers to handle packaging and shipping through various carrier services.
Some key facts about Fruugo:
- Founded in 2010 in Bangalore, India
- Founders are Ahammed MP, Fahad K, Roby John, and Rahul Sadekar
- Raised $30 million in funding as of 2022
- Has over 30 million product listings
- Features thousands of sellers from India, China, the Middle East, and other regions
- Ships products to over 100 countries worldwide
- Gets over 5 million monthly website visitors
So in summary, Fruugo operates as a global ecommerce marketplace connecting buyers and sellers from around the world. But how does this business model impact the shopping experience and Fruugo’s legitimacy? Let’s analyze further.
Is Fruugo Legit? Assessing Fruugo’s Reputation and Reliability
As an ecommerce marketplace, Fruugo’s reputation depends heavily on the thousands of third-party sellers that use the platform. Since Fruugo does not sell products directly, the quality of sellers can make or break customers’ trust.
We’ll analyze key factors that shape Fruugo’s reputation:
On Trustpilot, Fruugo has a 3 out 5 star rating based on over 1,400 reviews. Here is a summary of the sentiment:
- 34% rate it “Excellent”
- 27% give it “Great”
- 15% say it’s “Average”
- 13% rate it as “Poor”
- 11% describe it as “Bad”
Positive reviews praise Fruugo’s good value products and smooth delivery. Negative reviews mainly criticize shipping times, seller reliability, and product quality.
So Trustpilot paints a mixed picture in terms of Fruugo’s reputation. There are many satisfied customers but also a significant number of poor experiences.
The reviews on SiteJabber are more negative with just 1.5 out of 5 stars across almost 300 reviews. 60% of reviewers rate Fruugo as just 1 star.
The main complaints on SiteJabber relate to extremely slow shipping, items never arriving, unresponsive sellers, and terrible customer service. There are far fewer positive remarks on SiteJabber compared to Trustpilot.
Fruugo’s business page on Google My Business has a 3.8 out 5 star rating based on over 570 reviews. The majority are positive, praising good prices and product selection.
However, there are still many 1 star complaints about items never delivered, seller scams, and awful customer service response.
The Better Business Bureau gives Fruugo an NR (No Rating) due to the company’s location overseas. Since the BBB does not have sufficient information on Fruugo, they cannot provide a letter grade rating.
Discussion of Fruugo on ecommerce forums and Reddit paints a mixed view. Satisfied customers praise the good deals they find. But many angry customers complain about absurdly long shipping times, unresponsive sellers, and being unable to get refunds when orders go wrong.
Main takeaways on reputation:
- Reviews are polarized – some very satisfied customers, some very dissatisfied
- Most complaints relate to shipping, seller reliability, product quality
- Fruugo’s reputation depends heavily on its sellers
- As a marketplace, Fruugo has limited control over sellers and shipping
Overall, Fruugo seems to have a mediocre reputation that really varies depending on the sellers that customers interact with. Top rated sellers generally deliver a good experience. But there are clearly issues with many sellers in terms of product quality and fulfillment.
Fruugo’s Product Catalog and Seller Base
With over 30 million product listings across thousands of categories, Fruugo offers an enormous catalog for shoppers to browse. Let’s examine the key characteristics of Fruugo’s product selection:
Fruugo covers every major retail category including:
- Home & Kitchen
- Toys & Games
- Sports & Outdoors
- Beauty & Health
- Clothing & Accessories
- Books & Media
Nearly any type of consumer product can be found on Fruugo. The electronics, home furnishings, clothing, and beauty categories have especially large product ranges.
True to its market positioning, Fruugo sources products globally. Top seller countries include:
- India – Fruugo’s home country makes up the largest share of sellers
- China – Chinese manufacturers and exporters offer huge variety of products
- United States – Many US brands and retailers sell on Fruugo
- United Kingdom – British brands give Fruugo a strong European seller base
- Germany – Known for precision manufacturing, German companies add industrial products
- Turkey – Turkish producers provide apparel, home items, and artisan wares
This worldwide seller pool lets Fruugo offer extensive multi-cultural selection. Shoppers can find Ayurvedic remedies from India, anime collectibles from Japan, leather goods from Italy, electronics from China, and American fashion brands all in one place.
Product listing formats
Fruugo gives sellers a choice of listing formats:
- Individual products – Sellers can list single SKUs just like Amazon or eBay
- Online storefronts – Sellers can set up an entire customized online store within Fruugo
Storefronts allow for branded design, custom layouts, enhanced SEO, promotional capabilities, and expanded product catalogs. Many of Fruugo’s major retailers like Walmart, Rakuten, Wayfair, Newegg, and Overstock have built out extensive storefronts.
Meanwhile, smaller sellers generally opt for listing individual products. This flexibility allows sellers of all sizes to leverage Fruugo’s platform and global customer reach.
Seller verification processes
To join Fruugo as a seller, merchants must submit an application and go through a review process. Fruugo checks for valid business registration and contacts to verify seller identity.
Approved sellers can then onboard their product catalogs to the Fruugo platform through bulk uploads or XML feeds. Fruugo requires imagery, titles, descriptions, specs, and other standard attributes.
Sellers are also encouraged to share policies around shipping, returns, and warranties. Displaying this information builds buyer trust and confidence.
While Fruugo does vet sellers initially, the company seems to take a hands off approach once sellers are onboarded. Fruugo does not consistently monitor seller performance or remove negligent sellers.
Many reviewers complain that Fruugo allows poorly rated sellers with a history of complaints to continue operating stores. More stringent seller oversight could improve the customer experience.
Range of seller reliability
Given the open application process and lack of ongoing performance monitoring, Fruugo inevitably attracts sellers across the spectrum of reliability.
Top tier sellers include major brands and retailers that deliver high quality products within stated timelines. These stellar sellers make up a minority on Fruugo.
On the other end, many sellers appear to be smaller operators that dropship untracked orders from other websites. These less professional sellers generate a disproportionate share of negative Fruugo reviews related to shipping times, product condition, and unresponsiveness.
The truth is buyers must vet individual Fruugo sellers just as they would on eBay or other marketplaces. While Fruugo has some excellent sellers, it also harbors many mediocre or outright scammy merchants.
Fruugo markets itself as a discount marketplace promising prices 5-20% lower than major online retailers. Sellers are able to offer reduced prices by:
- Manufacturing in low cost countries like India and China
- Buying in bulk directly from factories
- Avoiding middlemen by selling directly to consumers
- Displaying cheaper pricing in Indian rupees that converts favorably
However, Fruugo pricing is not always the lowest on every product. Comparison shopping against Amazon, Walmart, or other big marketplaces will sometimes reveal a better deal elsewhere.
It’s wise to use Fruugo as a price discovery tool, but still compare against other sites for the item you want. Fruugo does not guarantee to match the lowest price, so shop around.
Product selection key takeaways:
- Huge catalog, but quality depends heavily on seller
- Worldwide sellers provide unique global selection
- Major retailers mixed with potentially sketchy small sellers
- Fruugo does limited oversight of bad sellers
- Pricing can be very cheap but compare against other sites
While Fruugo offers access to 30 million+ products across nearly any category, buyers must be cautious and selective when choosing sellers. Focus purchases on highly rated sellers and compare pricing for the best deal.
How Fruugo Delivery and Shipping Works
One of the most common complaints against Fruugo relates to absurdly long shipping times. Delays of 4-6 weeks are not uncommon, especially for sellers shipping from overseas.
Let’s examine how Fruugo coordinates delivery and shipping:
- Buyer places order on Fruugo website or app
- Fruugo collects payment and processes order
- Fruugo sends order to seller
- Seller dispatches shipment using their own process
- Package travels to buyer’s address via postal service or courier
- Estimated delivery times are provided but not guaranteed
Fruugo passes off fulfillment entirely to the sellers once an order is placed. Fruugo does not take possession of inventory or coordinate shipping itself.
Shipping carriers used
Fruugo sellers have the freedom to use any shipping provider they prefer:
- India Post – The national postal service of India; offers basic untracked shipping
- Delhivery – India based ecommerce logistics company
- FedEx – Global express transportation provider
- UPS – Major international carrier familiar to American buyers
- DHL – Leading courier company with worldwide delivery network
Reputable sellers tend to use established couriers like FedEx and UPS. Smaller sellers are more likely to use cheaper but unreliable carriers.
Shipping time estimates
Fruugo provides estimated shipping times during checkout based on seller location:
- Within India – 1 to 3 business days
- China – 15 to 25 business days
- United States – 10 to 20 business days
- United Kingdom – 15 to 30 business days
However, these estimates are not guaranteed or enforceable. Actual delivery time often exceeds the estimates by weeks or even months.
Sellers also frequently neglect to provide shipment tracking numbers to buyers and Fruugo. Packages seem to disappear for long stretches with no updates.
Customs, duties, and taxes
For international orders, buyers are responsible for any import taxes, duties or customs fees imposed by the destination country. Fruugo provides customs paperwork but buyers handle the actual tax payments.
Shipments can often get held up in customs for days or weeks leading to extended delivery times. Any issues with inaccurate customs forms also fall on the buyer to rectify.
Certain product categories like alcohol, supplements, electronics, etc. may have import restrictions imposed by the receiving country. Sellers are responsible for knowing these trade regulations.
If a shipment is refused entry due to improper customs paperwork or failure to comply with import laws, buyers have little recourse. Fruugo accepts no liability for such issues.
Lost or stolen packages
Without tracking numbers, it’s nearly impossible to investigate missing shipments. Fruugo relies on customer-submitted claims and seller response. Sellers can easily blame the postal service and provide minimal help.
Fruugo also refuses to offer refunds for lost/stolen packages in most cases. It falls completely on the seller to determine goodwill compensation if a shipment goes missing.
Shipping key takeaways
- Fruugo is solely a platform – sellers handle all fulfillment
- Cheap, untracked shipping methods prone to extreme delays
- Lack of seller accountability for delivery issues
- Customs and regulations add complications for international orders
- Very limited recourse for fixing shipping problems
Fruugo’s hands-off approach to fulfillment leaves buyers at the mercy of sellers. Reputable sellers use proper carriers and delivery systems. But many Fruugo sellers cut corners on shipping which leads to awful buyer experiences.
Fruugo’s Order Payment and Refund Policies
Fruugo handles all order payments and processing on its platform. Let’s examine how transactions work:
Payment methods accepted
Fruugo offers a variety of payment options:
- Credit cards – Visa, Mastercard, American Express and Discover
- Debit cards – Visa and Mastercard
- Net banking – For customers of Indian banks
- eWallets – Paytm, Freecharge, Ola Money
- Cash on delivery – For orders shipped within India
- Fruugo wallet – Loadable balance for future purchases
The ability to pay by credit card or global payment providers like PayPal provides security for international buyers. Fruugo’s order system is generally considered safe and reliable.
Fruugo transmits and stores all shopper payment information securely through encryption. Data only gets shared with banks to authorize payments. Sellers do not receive buyer financial details.
Shoppers can feel confident Fruugo properly secures payment data and reduces risk of fraud.
Once an order is placed, Fruugo quickly collects payment on behalf of the seller. Funds get transferred to the seller (minus Fruugo’s commission) automatically upon shipment.
Fruugo sends order details to seller within 24 hours. But actual fulfillment time depends on each seller’s operations. Fruugo does not dictate shipping timelines to sellers.
Fruugo promises refunds in the following scenarios:
- Items damaged during delivery
- Products that arrive materially different than described
- Returns due to seller error like wrong item shipped
- Failure to receive shipment within 40 days in India, 60 days internationally
However, securing refunds often proves extremely difficult due to seller resistance and poor Fruugo support. Sellers frequently push back on claims or stop responding.
Without Fruugo stepping in on the buyer’s behalf, refund requests go ignored. Many complaints relate to failure to receive promised refunds from Fruugo.
Order modification or cancellation
Fruugo orders cannot be changed or cancelled once payment is submitted. Buyers must request a refund and re-order if they made a mistake or changed their mind.
Again, refund approval depends completely on the seller consenting. If the seller refuses, Fruugo provides no assistance.
Payment and refund policy key takeaways
- Fruugo’s payment system is safe and convenient
- Order processing is quick and reliable
- Refund enforcement depends on seller cooperation
- Fruugo provides little help with refund disputes
- No order modifications allowed after checkout
Fruugo handles payments well but drops the ball on supporting customers when sellers push back on returns and refunds. Lack of order cancellation is also problematic if details need to be changed.
Is Fruugo Legit or Scam? Customer Service and Support
Given the many hands involved in a marketplace model, customer service is crucial for resolving issues between buyers and sellers. Let’s examine how Fruugo provides support:
Fruugo offers customer support through:
- Email – Customers submit tickets through a web form
- Chat – Live chat available during Indian business hours
- Phone – Indian call center reachable at +91-806-701-0003
No address is provided to submit physical letters. Support is mainly through email, chat, and call center.
Ticket submission process
Customers with issues must submit tickets through an online form. You need to select a pre-set category like “delivery problem”, “missing item”, etc and provide order details.
The form does not allow attaching photos or documents as evidence. All communications go through the ticket.
Fruugo aims to respond to tickets within 3 business days but delays are very common. Many customers complain of waiting weeks with no reply or useless copy-paste responses.
Lack of phone support outside India also slows down communication for international buyers. Expect a very slow back-and-forth via tickets.
Fruugo provides support in English, Hindi, and Tamil. Those are the main languages spoken by its Indian customer service reps.
Buyers must be able to explain issues clearly in one of those languages. Language barriers can further complicate communications.
The main problem with Fruugo support is its inability to decisively resolve buyer issues. Reps seem to lack authority to make judgment calls or push sellers.
Support agents request buyers to wait longer for shipments or urge sellers to respond. If sellers continue ignoring or refusing refunds, support agents have no means to compel them.
Fruugo also refuses to provide refunds itself unless sellers explicitly approve. The marketplace merely acts as a messenger between buyers and sellers rather than an arbiter.
With no power to decide outcomes, Frrongo support ends up frustratingly ineffective when sellers are uncooperative. Simple disputes drag on for months with no resolution.
Customer service key takeaways
- Contact options are limited to email, chat and call center
- Slow response times and language barriers
- Support agents lack authority to resolve issues
- Seller participation required to fix problems
- Refunds and cancellations at seller discretion
Fruugo customer service lacks the capabilities expected of a major global marketplace. Without backing up customers when sellers are unreasonable, Fruugo breeds distrust and dissatisfaction.
Pros and Cons of Shopping on Fruugo
Based on this extensive analysis, here is a summary of the key advantages and disadvantages of using Fruugo for online shopping:
- Huge selection with low prices, especially on Indian goods
- Access to brands and products not available locally
- Smooth payment processing and order system
- Some sellers provide quick, reliable shipping
- Major Indian and global brands with official storefronts
- Discovery of unique items from around the world
- Quality varies drastically depending on seller
- Long delays and lack of delivery tracking
- Seller unresponsiveness and order issues
- Poor customer service and refund enforcement
- Allows many unreliable sellers to continue operating
- Language barrier and cross border complexities
Fruugo is worth exploring for the unique selection and deals, but buyers should understand and accept the risks involved with cross border marketplace buying. Do thorough vetting of sellers and order at your own caution.
Best Practices for Buying on Fruugo
While Fruugo is legit in the sense that it’s an established business, shopping there safely requires diligence from buyers. Here are some best practices:
- Review seller ratings and only buy from stores with at least 4 stars
- Look for reassurances like a return policy, past sales data, detailed product info
- Reverse image search product photos to check for dropshipping
- Compare prices against other sites to validate the deal
- Don’t buy high value, fragile, or perishable goods
- Use a credit card for purchase protection and ability to dispute
- Screenshot order details in case seller info vanishes later
- Prepare to wait weeks for international delivery
- Have patience responding to customer service issues
As the buyer, the burden is on you to vet both the product and seller upfront. Proceed cautiously, especially for first-time purchases. Don’t take anything at face value or expect protections comparable to Amazon or big box retailers.
Platform Trustworthiness – 3 out of 5 Stars
Evaluating all the factors discussed, on a trustworthiness scale of 1 to 5 stars, I rate Fruugo as 3 out of 5 stars. The main factors influencing this mediocre score:
- Legitimacy – Fruugo is a registered legal business but has transparency issues
- Website Security – The website and apps use encryption and data protections
- Seller Reliability – Roll of the dice based on minimal seller vetting
- Fulfillment & Delivery – Logistics are out of Fruugo’s control leading to delays
- Customer Support – Very limited power to resolve disputes and enforce policies
- Refund Process – Cumbersome and contingent on seller approval
Fruugo provides a real ecommerce platform, but the overall shopping experience is a gamble versus more reputable online retailers. Proceed with clear eyes about the risks involved before purchasing.
Top Alternatives to Consider
If you find Fruugo’s reputation concerning, here are some alternative ecommerce sites to consider for safer online shopping:
- Amazon – The quintessential marketplace with buyer protections and logistics oversight
- Walmart – Retail giant also offers marketplace buying and order guarantees
- eBay – Similar auction format to Fruugo but with decades of trust built
- Etsy – Leading marketplace for handmade and artisanal goods
- Best Buy – Reliable for brand name electronics and appliances
- Home Depot – Trusted home improvement, furnishing, and garden supply shopping
While no retailer is 100% perfect, the above alternatives offer far more recourse and accountability than the average buyer experience on Fruugo. The peace of mind is worth paying slightly higher prices for.
Is Fruugo Legit or Scam? Final Verdict
After extensive analysis, our final verdict is Fruugo has major shortcomings in terms of business transparency, seller accountability, shipping reliability, customer support, and refund enforcement.
Despite offers of big discounts, we believe buyers are better off paying a little more to trusted retailers that stand behind their orders. Fruugo is worth investigating for discovery and price comparisons, but proceed with extreme caution before placing first time orders.
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