Randy Couture, UFC legend, Actor, Patriot

“If you are buying physical gold and silver, it pays to shop with trustworthy dealers and Metalsmart helps consumers do that.”

- Randy Couture


How NOT to Find a Trustworthy Gold Dealer: Third Pary Review Sites

Don't rely on gold dealer reviews


If you are considering adding gold or other precious metals to your portfolio, you probably notice the advertisements from many gold companies as you research your options online. There are so many gold dealers to choose from and it can be hard to narrow down your choices to the best one or two dealers before making contact.

This article is the first in a series that provides you with examples of how NOT to find a trustworthy gold dealer. Today, we will discuss the risks of relying on third-party review sites.

Don’t Rely on Reviews to Find a Trustworthy Gold Dealer

If you visit a gold dealer’s website, you will almost always see a section that boasts about their positive reviews on third-party review sites like Trust Pilot or BBB. This must mean that they are trustworthy gold dealers, right? Not so fast!

Most of these third-party sites are easily manipulated by dealers. Dealers can post fake reviews to make it sound like they are the best dealer around and to boost their overall ranking. In some cases, the dealer can complain to (or pay) the third-party site to take down bad reviews, which again, will inflate their overall ranking.

If you do want to investigate a gold dealer on a review site, you should focus on the lower ranking reviews, while they are still up on the site. These unflattering reviews are often where you can learn the truth about a dealer. Pay particular attention to reviews that mention specific instances where customers realize, too late, that the price they paid for their precious metals was inflated and that their ‘investment’ has turned into a big loss, even when overall prices have increased since the purchase.

In case you don’t know, most review sites make their money by charging the dealers for their review profile. The result of this ‘pay to play’ model t that it is not in the review site’s best interest to hold gold dealers accountable and to a high standard.

Virtually all gold dealers use one or more review sites because the retail gold market is highly competitive, and most retail gold buyers still think that a high rated gold dealer on a review site is a trustworthy gold dealer. Despite all the issues with review sites, you can still use them to your advantage by employing the following strategies:

  1. Read the fine print on the review site. You should be able to determine if the gold dealer is paying the site and if so, you should be wary of “5 star” reviews.

  2. Focus on the lower rated reviews (before they are taken down). Look for reviews that provide specific examples of poor treatment or price gouging. When such specificity exists, there is usually a reason to steer clear of that gold dealer.

  3. Look for positive reviews that specifically discuss price transparency. This industry is littered with dealers that charge high markups. Gold dealers that offer fair and transparent pricing, like those on Metalsmart, are your best bets for getting great service and a fair deal.

gold coins
gold coins
gold coins