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Tuesday, 23 December 2014

Pruany Review: A Taobao Agent - (All the Pros & Cons)

I've used Pruany multiple times, there are definitely pros and cons about them. So I will do a quick review on Pruany. Click images to enlarge them.

Pros of Pruany

  • "Cheapest" agent - Comparing speed and price, Pruany is the cheapest Taobao agent out there (that I know of - please let me know if you have any cheaper agents!). They don't offer SEA shipping which is the cheapest if you don't mind waiting 3+ months for your items, so they are technically not the cheapest agent. However, if you match up speed of shipping service and the cost of it, Pruany offers the cheapest.
  • 8% Service fee. Taobaoring (TBR - which I also reviewed) also have 8% service fee but some other agents will have 10% service fee. TBR and Pruany both have a minimum 30 RMB service fee charge.
  • No hidden domestic shipping fees. TBR has the rule of costing (in yuan) 15 + 10N (this means 15 yuan for the 1st kg and 10 yuan for each additional kg). Pruany doesn't have that stupid domestic shipping fee rule. So you get a cheaper domestic shipping rate AND a cheaper international shipping rate.
  • Have instant messaging (however it is also a con at times). Unlike TBR, Pruany has an instant chat function. Which is super nice if you want quick answer. However because of the time differences, most of the time I am already in bed before they come online + with the instant messaging you have no record unlike the "leave a message" function of Pruany.

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Cons of Pruany

  • Not proficient in English. One of the biggest things I dislike about Pruany is the lack of proficiency in English. If you can stand repeating and rewording sentences for the agents and decoding Chinglish, you have nothing to worry about. Most of the time if I have questions or demands that are more than "please correct the price", the agents will reply with something that is either not on point or a vague, mismatch sentence. Okay, I am not trying to be mean. I am just honest. I know I don't have the best grammar and such but when the replies literally don't answer your questions or the replies don't make sense, it is very frustrating to communicate.  

For example, the seller had a buy 2 get 1 deal and a buy 3 get 2 deal. I clearly stated that the item was buy 3 get 2. Then I asked the online help, Zui, about how should I go about paying for the items with this kind of promotion. He/she replied stating that I need to add 5 items into the order and pay for 3 and the agent will buy 5. And guess what! They bought 2 and got 1 "free" case. HUH?! So I bought 3 and got 3?? Clearly it is very frustrating due to miscommunications. PS: I don't have a screenshot of the convo between Zui and I because online chat doesn't keep any record. Boo~ Another con.
The page clearly state that if you buy over 75 yuan, you get 3 yuan off.
So apparently the agent doesn't understand 79-3=76. >________> I paid 76 yuan but they said I underpaid.
Did they just honestly tried to convince me that 102.97 is less than 100??? This Taobao seller' shop had a coupon of buy 100 yuan worth of stuff, save 10 yuan. I clearly stated that before my purchase (see first line). After they bought it I realized that the price didn't go down so I asked why was the price still the same? The agent replied with that the mobile price was ONLY 102.97 so the "buy 100 save 10" can't be used. Okay, hey there buddy, I thought China's math system was pretty intense. Sorry to break it to you but 102.97 is more than 100. -______-

  • Confusing website to work with. Honestly, the whole process of ordering from Pruany is not the easiest. It is not astrophysics but it is not obvious. Layout and tabs don't really flow. You know a kitchen normally has a dishwasher beside the sink, that's because it makes sense and makes the whole process functional! I feel like the website needs a redesign so everything makes sense. The pages aren't divided into different orders you've placed. Each item you add doesn't have a name or picture. If you are ordering multiple items, it is tedious to double check if you have the correct items. (I will probably offer a "Guide to Pruany" post or video later so what I am talking about will probably make more sense.)
  • When you get a message from the agent, you don't get an email or notification. You literally have to check the website and see if you got a message. A lot of the time, I am so busy that I don't have the time or energy to check my account to see if the agent replied. Please Pruany, develop a notification system, everyone will thank you.
  • Broken items due to bad packaging. On two separate occasions, my items broke. 
    Broken zipper.

    Broken wooden sword. The whole shaft was split in half.
  • The only time I thought they were going to redeem themselves was when they offered a compensation next time I ordered for the broken sword above. But now when I did order the next time.....
    They are denying that they know of convo when I even uploaded the exact same screencap above.
  • Wrong weight. Check your parcel's weight in the shipping slip when it arrives. I've been charged wrong twice. The first time, I paid for a 9.9kg package and clearly the slip said 8.7kg. I had to contact Pruany and show them the picture. They denied it over and over again that they charged wrong (mostly because my other package was around 10kg so they thought I was talking about that parcel even though I gave the specific parcel #). 
The weight on the shipping slip.
What I got charged with.
This also happened another time, I was confused by the weight because I knew my other parcel was heavier than this parcel however I got a more expensive shipping cost. 
I clearly asked  them if it is the right weight. They probably didn't even bother rechecking.
3 days later, they emailed me about the wrong weight. At least this time they corrected automatically. 
So moral of the story: CHECK YOUR PARCELS' WEIGHT.
  • Rude(?) Probably because of the language barrier, the agents can come off as rude. 
  • Work hours and slow replies. On the website it states that it works 10 am to 6 pm (Beijing time). However, I have stayed up late to 3 am (Beijing time 3pm) multiple times and they are still not on. Even when they are on, when I am not using their online chat (because with online chat you don't have any record), their replies are so slow. Just a quick fact to help you with scheduling: Pruany have a policy that agents can take Sunday or Monday off (very reasonable).
    Their working time shown when you login into your account,

Summary:

"Cheapest" agent but very frustrating to deal with. Honestly I don't know why I keep on going back to them. The energy and effort I put in don't seem to be worth the extra money I save. My verdict is NEVER AGAIN. (Edit: I actually found an agent even worst called Yoybuy, so I will definitely go back to Pruany) I should go back to Taobaoring. Check out my review of Taobaoring.

Like I said, I find Pruany to be confusing to work with. I might make a "Guide to Pruany" post or video for first timers later. 
Edit: Nevermind, I won't make a guide since they are not worth my time. If you have any questions or recommendation, please comment below~

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