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There are plenty of companies online that will sell you fake gold or are a complete scam because they will make you pay an absurd price for gold. In this article, you will learn how to buy gold online safely in 5 easy steps.
Buying gold can be a daunting task if you are not familiar with the process. You want to be sure that you are getting high-quality gold at a fair price.
The key is knowing how to buy it safely without being scammed or having your personal information stolen. To buy gold online safely, you should:
- Research the type of gold.
- Identify a reputable dealer with at least five years’ experience.
- Check previous customer reviews.
- Consider buying a certificate from a third-party verification company.
- Never share your credit card details with random people online.
Buying gold safely online requires that you also understand the risks involved. Most importantly, you should always be keen on any bait by potential fraudsters.
Read on for a deeper look into these and ways to reduce risks when buying this precious metal online.
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How to Buy Gold
To buy gold online safely, follow these steps:
1. Research the Different Types of Gold
Many types of gold can be bought online. The most common type is American Gold Eagles, but you can also buy South African Krugerrands and Australian Sovereigns.
Here are other types of gold on the market:
Gold Bullion Coins or Bars
One way to avoid the risk associated with paper currency is by buying bullion coins from a reputable mint that guarantees authenticity and purity for all their products sold.
Another option would be bars that come in larger sizes, so they’re less likely to get lost than smaller coins would.
Jewelry is a great choice for those interested in buying gold but might not want to buy something that has the same value as paper currency.
Gold jewelry can be purchased online or from physical stores and come in many different weights, styles, and shapes.
Mining stocks are also a great way to invest in gold. Because the price of gold is so high and volatile, mining stocks offer an added security against losses that investors may incur from fluctuations in the market.
Some companies mine and process gold, an aspect that makes their stock worth investing in because they’re guaranteed to have something valuable at all times.
The two main types of miners are:
- Exploration-stage mining companies that focus on finding new mines or identifying existing ones with potential.
- Production-stage miners that focus on extracting ore from already identified sites.
Exchange-Traded Funds, or ETFs, are another way to own gold.
These investments give the investor exposure to metals markets without going through all of the hassles that come with physical metal, such as storage and security.
The investor pays a small fee to the fund manager for buying and selling shares of stocks that represent different metals. These funds are backed by physical metal such as gold, copper, or platinum, stored in secure vaults around the world.
If you choose to invest in an ETF, there is no need for any other maintenance from your end.
2. Find Reputable Dealers
Check for reviews and testimonials online. Look at how many years they’ve been in business and what their return policy states.
Confirm that your purchase will be insured during shipping, and ask about the shipping costs and determine if you’ll have to pay any taxes or duties.
Also, compare the prices that different dealers charge to know which of them matches your budget.
3. Know Your Budget and Stick to It
Know your budget and the amount of gold you want to buy. Once you’ve figured out the weight of your preference, compare it with prices that are in dollar value.
When shopping for gold, look at the weight, purity, and style (karat) of the gold you want to buy. It’s also crucial to note that a higher carat will cost more than a lower karat, and 24k is purer than 18k or 14k.
Know what you want before buying because gold is a costly commodity and can be difficult to resell if you don’t know what you’re looking for.
Caution: Do not buy from private sellers, especially those on the street or in a hotel, as they might be counterfeit and rip-off artists trying to scam unsuspecting buyers. Also, never use your debit card when buying online because it puts your account at risk for fraud.
4. Understand the Risks
The next step in buying gold safely online is understanding the risks. Gold prices fluctuate more than stocks, so you need to be aware that there are times when your investment could lose value.
That said, it’s also true that these fluctuations often mean you can get a better deal when purchasing items from time to time.
You should also be aware of scams that claim they are selling authentic 24 karat gold but instead sell fake or low-quality pieces. Some of these companies can take your payment and never deliver the product.
There are also risks associated with storing gold online, such as hackers or dishonest employees gaining access. You might want to consider using a secure storage method like a vault on-site instead.
5. Manage the Risks
To reduce the risk of losing your money to fraudsters, consider buying a certificate from an accredited third-party verification company if you’re not sure about the authenticity of your purchase.
Another way to manage the risks is by investing in gold-backed ETFs or Gold Standard Bonds. With these, your return on investment will be determined at least partially by how well the price of gold does over time.
Safe Ways to Buy Gold Online
No matter what type of precious metal you are looking to buy, it is always a good idea to avoid scams. There are many different types of frauds that target online buyers and sellers alike, so here are some tips for how to stay safe when shopping for gold on the internet:
Buy From Established Agents
Look for a website that has been around for at least 5 years. Gold recycling by reputable companies is their bread and butter, so they’ve had plenty of time to build and maintain trust with customers over the years.
As you do that, I can’t overemphasize the need to check previous customer reviews! If you’re considering purchasing from a company that doesn’t have any reviews, it’s best to avoid them altogether.
If they don’t offer refunds or exchanges, then there is no way to get your money back if something goes wrong with the transaction.
Avoid Businesses Without Clear Addresses
Never do business with someone who does not have an established website or legitimate physical address. This is one way not only to prevent getting defrauded but also helps protect your identity by staying away from sites where personal information may be compromised.
Only Buy From Licensed Dealers
Closely related to the point above, it’s best to make sure the company has secured the necessary permits to buy/sell gold jewelry or bars (if you’re buying gold jewelry).
This is a good indication that the relevant authorities have information about the company and its directors or owners, who can be traced if they commit fraud.
Besides, it’s a sign that the firm is less likely to scam you.
Only Send Payment via Secure Methods
Some scams ask for payment via wire transfer, which exposes your account information and may incur high bank fees. Consequently, ensure all payments are made through secure methods like credit cards or PayPal.
Only Buy Small Amounts at a Time From Trusted Sources
If you’re on the lookout for larger quantities of gold, make sure only to buy small amounts from trusted sources to avoid being scammed and having your investment stolen.
A fraudster may try to convince people that they have excess stock or wholesale prices when they don’t. This is called “bait and switch,” where the seller delivers cheaper substitutes like fake jewelry with no value instead of sending the items the buyer expects.
If someone tries this with you, stay firm and don’t send the money.
Don’t Believe Everything You Read on Social Media
Be wary of anyone trying to sell products through social media, as this can be a prime area for fraud. If someone has a suspiciously good deal or wants to sell you gold at an unusually lower price than it’s worth, it’s probably fraudulent.
Report All Suspicious Activity
If you see anything suspicious or receive any unsolicited emails claiming to be from a reputable online gold dealer with details about how to buy gold, you’ll want to report such activity - even if they’re not trying to steal your money.
Never Share Your Credit Card Details
Most importantly- never give out any credit card info unless you feel 100% confident in the site’s authenticity. Most fraudsters will try to convince potential customers that they’re legitimate.
They can go as far as contacting potential victims by phone--only to ask for credit card info before the customer realizes that they’ve been defrauded.
4 Reputable Online Gold Dealers
Finding a reputable online gold dealer is not as easy as it sounds. To make your work easier, I’ve compiled the following list of established and renowned companies you can trust when buying gold online:
1. Noble Gold Investments
Based in Pasadena, California, Noble Gold Investments provides a safe and easy way to invest in gold. The company volunteers to protect your future by offering a gold IRA account and acquiring and storing bullion in their Texas-based depository.
2. Goldco Precious Metals
Goldco Precious Metals offers a self-directed gold Individual Retirement Account, which is an investment tool, as well as a direct purchase of gold. Goldco was founded in 2006, giving it longevity, even among competitors.
3. Augusta Precious Metals
Augusta Precious Metals offers a "partner" in gold IRA investment, a team that will help educate you on market conditions and protect your savings. Since 2012, the company has been offering knowledgeable and education-focused investment opportunities to its clientele.
4. Birch Gold Group
Birch Gold Group believes in empowering its clients to meet all objectives and motivations when investing in gold. The company offers educational resources, empathetic customer service, and an ethical and transparent process.
The internet is full of gold buying opportunities.
Still, it’s essential to do your research and identify a reputable dealer first. Before making the purchase, consider getting a certificate from a third-party verification company that will ensure that what you are buying is authentic gold.
Also, never share your credit card details, which includes sharing them when purchasing online or over the phone and giving out information on social media sites. If you follow these guidelines for safe gold shopping online, there should be no need to worry about being defrauded.
Want to learn how to invest in gold & silver in your IRA account?
You can know invest in gold & silver inside your retirement account in by having a gold IRA. This type account allows you to own precious metals in your IRA.
Learn about the best gold IRA companies that will help you setup one of these accounts.