No one could have been more surprised than Bill and I when we were awarded First Prize in the Jewelry category at Art on the Square in Williamsburg, VA yesterday. It's a beautiful show with fabulous work in every category, including ours. We just couldn't believe it, but so grateful. Not only did we receive the coveted blue ribbon, we got a cash prize too!!! So much fun!!! It was our first show of the season, and were feeling bit rusty and disorganized in the wee hours of the morning for the set-up routine. But by the end of the day we definitely got our groove back. A big thank you to the Junior Woman's Club of Williamsburg and to the support of all of our customers who made the show one to remember.
My public service announcement today is a warning about e-commerce order scams. I received two yesterday and experienced this last year too. The approach is always nearly identical. Thief is who-knows-where and wants to make a big order to be shipped overseas, but you need to pay up front with his/her shipper.
Here are two excerpts from yesterday:
Am interested in some of your products, do you ship to Switzerland and accept US issued credit card as payment?, you will contact my shipper who handles all of my shipment, they pick up the items at your location and deliver directly to my store doorstep without hassle.
l want to know if you ship to Sweden and Accept Credit Card Issued in USA as Payment Method,Concerning the shipping l have a freight company that you will contact regarding shipping ,They can get the items picked up from your location and deliver directly to the final destination without any hassle.
These are bad actors people. They won't go through PayPal and beware of PayPal scams too. They get their money for an exorbitant "safe & convenient" shipping scam, convoluted wire transfers and other BS. Once the product leaves your door, one way or the other you will be left holding the bag and the email trail will go dead. Do an online search and you will find countless stories like this. They like to target small and mid-size businesses.
If you get these fishing emails you can always contact the FBI internet Crime complaint center at http://www.ic3.gov/default.aspx or your local FBI field office.
I've sold to lovely customers overseas through my Etsy site. I've also bought products from overseas purveyors myself. Just be careful people. If red flags go up, there is probably good reason.