What Is Wish.com?

By HighYa Staff
Updated on: May 1, 2018

Founded in 2011 by former Google and Yahoo engineers, Wish.com is a direct-from-China bargain hunting website that features hundreds of different stores and millions of products from all over the world.

Compared to other “online shopping malls,” Wish.com allows you to personalize your shopping experience using their unique algorithm that recommends products based on your past purchases, as well as products you view and reject (more about this in a moment). You can even save your favorite products to your Wishlist and buy later, or share them with others through Facebook.

But you’re not stuck browsing items on your computer, because Wish.com also offers apps for iOS, Android, Windows, and Amazon devices. Taken together, the company claims to make shopping fun!

There’s no doubt that shopping can be enjoyable (that’s why they call it ‘retail therapy’!). But just because Wish.com might be enjoyable—not to mention their rock-bottom prices—does this mean you’ll get a good value? Or, will you wait a long time, only to end up with junk? We’ll cover your most important questions here.

To start things off, let’s begin from square one: How to set up your Wish.com account.

How Does Wish.com Work?

The first thing you’ll notice after landing on the Wish.com website is that you have to set up an account before browsing their products. This involves entering your email address, first and last name, and choosing a password.

In our experience, this seems to be a trend with many of these online discount marketplaces, but we think it’s a little annoying. In our mind, you should have the opportunity to learn whether or not you like a website before handing over your personal information.

At any rate, you’ll then need to enter your birthdate and gender in order to help the site “find products you love.” Remember that algorithm we talked about above? This is where it starts by tailoring your results based on your age and gender. Then, as you browse and view different items, the algorithm will continue refining your selections.

Wish.com’s home page will display their most recent listings, but you can also narrow your search by category (e.g. fashion, accessories, gadgets, etc.), or by product type (e.g. shoes, tops, underwear, and so forth).

If you come across a product you might be interested in, simply click on it and a separate window will appear with a description, pictures, and price. Here, you’ll also be able to view shipping charges, estimated arrival times, previous customer ratings and reviews about the product (as well as the store/seller itself), view related products, and more.

Wish.com's Product DescriptionAn example of what you’ll see after clicking on an item, including product and store ratings, shipping information, and more.

From here, you can buy the item or save it to your Wishlist. If you haven’t created a Wishlist yet, you’ll be prompted to do so, which only involves choosing a name for your list and pressing enter.

Under your account, you can create multiple Wishlists and add or delete items as you see fit. Wish.com also gives you the ability to follow your friends and view their Wishlists, and even make Birthday Wishlists that can be shared to Facebook.

What Products Does Wish.com Sell

Signing up for a Wish.com account is completely free, and you won’t have to pay anything until you decide to buy.

As we noted above, Wish.com features products from a wide range of categories, from gadgets to fashion—and even some products that defy categorization.

Overall though, they seem to specialize in inexpensive electronics and gadgets sourced from overseas (most of which are knockoffs of popular products from mainstream companies, such as smartwatches intended to look like an Apple Watch), Bluetooth earbuds, action cameras (knockoffs of GoPro cameras), storage media (USB flash drives), cables, and speakers. For the most part, the site’s products are less than $100, and usually fall somewhere between $5 and $50.

Pro tip: According to a recent Wall Street Journal article, “Mr. Szulczewski [one of the company’s co-founders] said Wish vendors are free to price goods and make claims about discounts as they see fit.” As such, you’ll want to take any listed retail prices (the crossed-out number in the picture above) with a grain of salt.

Since Wish.com only acts as a marketplace for other sellers, each listing comes with its own shipping charges, although we found free shipping to be the norm.

As you browse Wish.com, add items to your Wishlists, and purchase products, you’ll earn rewards in the form of gift cards, which can be viewed in the Wallet section of your account. These gift cards expire within a few days, so be sure to use yours as soon as you get them!

All products purchased through Wish.com come with a 30-day refund policy (from the date of delivery), less S&H charges. In order to initiate a refund, “Simply click on ‘Contact Support’ next to the item you wish to request a return or a refund.”

But is it really this simple? What are customers saying?

A Look at the Reviews and Complaints About Wish.com

You probably understand that, for the most part, you get what you pay for. But despite their ultra-low prices, does Wish.com rank high on the list of their customers?

On ComplaintsBoard, there were dozens of customer complaints about Wish.com, including unauthorized transactions soon after placing an order, poor quality products (especially related to electronics), long shipping times (as you can see from the picture above, it could take a month or more to arrive), difficulty obtaining a refund, and poor customer service.

Wish.com, based out of San Francisco, CA, also had an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau at the time of our research, based on 1,144 closed complaints (as of 5/1/18). Nearly all of these appeared to reference difficulty obtaining refunds, and the company’s tendency to continuously send automated email responses to very specific requests.

But what about Wish.com’s apps? In contrast to their business model, their apps were rated highly, earning 4.5 stars on Google Play based on more than 5 million votes, and another 4.5-star rating on iTunes, based on 53,500 reviews.

Is Wish.com Legit?

There’s an old project management saying that goes: You have the option of fast, good and cheap. Pick two.

And in the instance of Wish.com, nearly all of the emphasis is placed on ‘cheap,’ basically to the exclusion of ‘fast’ and ‘good.’ So, although you’ll be getting rock-bottom prices, you’ll have to wait a very long time to receive your order, and in general, the product(s) will probably be of less-than-stellar quality.

On top of this, should anything go wrong with your order, you might experience difficulty getting in contact with the original seller (remember, Wish.com only acts as a storefront, but doesn’t sell items directly). And if you need to get Wish.com involved, many customers have complained that they weren’t much more help.

Taking all of this together, Wish.com certainly isn’t a scam, although many of their vendors could be. After all, they’re probably located overseas and completely anonymous (at least to customers), and it’s not clear if they’re required to go through any kind of vetting process before opening their Wish.com store.

Despite this gamble, Wish.com has millions of fans who regularly buy from their vendors, and sing praises about the products they purchased and the ultra-low prices they received. Only you will be able to understand whether or not it’s worth taking the risk.

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790 Consumer Reviews for Wish.com

Average Consumer Rating: 2.0
Rating Snapshot:
5 star: 125 4 star: 64 3 star: 38 2 star: 47 1 star:  516
Bottom Line: 27% would recommend it to a friend
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  • Editor’s Note: It is our understanding that this company has been asking its customers to leave feedback on HighYa. We assure you that each of these reviews has still been subjected to the same verification & vetting process that all submitted reviews go through. Learn More Here
  • Fraud site...do not shop!

    • India,
    • Dec 18, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I had ordered a couple of things from this site. Since it was my first time, I shopped for around Rs 513.95. I paid online since COD option was not available.

    But to my surprise, I got a mail that the order is canceled and a refund is processed, but I have not gotten my refund. These guys are cheats and please do not shop on these fraudsters' site. I wonder how Facebook is allowing all the frauds to sponsor their ads. Absolutely ridiculous.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • Product is junk!

    • Albuquerque, NM,
    • Dec 18, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I ordered two 2-TB thumb drives for a very low price. I thought it was too good to be true, but I was curious. The items arrived and the transfer speed to and from the devices was so slow as to be completely unusable. It took four days just to format them. Now it's taking over two days just to write 150 GB to one of the drives. Junk!

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 2 out 2 people found this review helpful

    Horrible, horrible, horrible customer service

    • Dec 17, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    These people are horrible, please don't bother. I didn't get something and no refund from September. I also had money taken from my account a day after it was canceled, and it was canceled within two minutes. You never get to talk to anyone, only through chat or email, and nothing from them since November 4th (it's December 15th). This is the worst company; please don't spend a penny here. I will make sure everyone I know and all their people know how horrible this company is.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 3 out 3 people found this review helpful

    Not a happy customer

    • Duncan, OK,
    • Dec 16, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    We ordered three items on Wish.com.

    1. The cleaning sponges (cheap magic erasers), they were nothing but foam, nothing magic about it. I wrapped in garbage bag and cheap tape.

    2. Walking canes made of very cheap metal. Don't put to much pressure on the walking cane, it will bend the metal easily.

    3. I bought foundation makeup and it wasn't the color my wife ordered, and it has a sticky feel even after it has been on her face for over an hour with powder on top. It is not supposed to be or feel like that according to wife. I ordered a Kreg jig and got something totally different. Order numbers on packaging are very hard to find.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 3 out 4 people found this review helpful

    What, how?

    • Texas,
    • Dec 15, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I've always had great success with them, I mean, they did give me a free TV after it was two months late, and a lot of other stuff for free! I absolutely got my money's worth from them. Easy site to use, but I have received broken items and I just asked for a refund and got my money back.

    Bottom Line: Yes, I would recommend this to a friend

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  • 2 out 3 people found this review helpful

    Took my money, never sent 3 pairs of boots I ordered

    • Kentucky,
    • Dec 15, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I got a deal on three pairs of boots, supposed arrived on 9/22/18 and they won't refund my money and never delivered the boots. I'm angry. I really liked this app at first, I got all my other orders except this one.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 5 out 5 people found this review helpful

    A bad site, a company that steals you

    • Brasov, Romania,
    • Dec 13, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    Things of poor quality!

    I do not have eight objects. I did not get them by the deadline and they told me to wait for 30 days. After these 30 days, they wrote to me that their policy is that they cannot advertise after 30 days. They are thieves.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 5 out 5 people found this review helpful

    They gain your trust and then rob you.

    • Denver, CO,
    • Dec 13, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    At first, the free return policy seems really generous. About half of their products are good, and the other half are damaged upon arrival, but what’s the harm when you have free returns? Unfortunately, after you’ve returned "too many" products, they flat out accuse you of taking advantage of their return policy and won’t give you refunds anymore. This happened to me after buying a more expensive dress that was falling apart. Not only did they call me a thief, but they robbed me of my money after guaranteeing free returns. I won’t be shopping from any Chinese websites anymore.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 4 out 4 people found this review helpful

    Junk

    • Thessaloniki, Greece,
    • Dec 11, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I ordered a few things from Wish. Projector...junk... you can only project to 1M to see somehow clear.

    Camera 16M...junk...worst than 0.5M.

    2Tb USB sticks...fake...after a few Gbs it stores on top of other files and makes all data useless.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 2 out 3 people found this review helpful

    SCAM - don't believe it! 925 sterling silver chains are NOT sterling silver!

    • Texas,
    • Dec 10, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    I have ordered from several sellers who title their product as 925 sterling silver and they are not. I laid my jewelry purchases on the table to prepare for Christmas wrapping and noticed 5 of my "925 sterling silver" chains had an odd coloring - orangey - to them. So I did a little research and learned about the MAGNET test. Silver does not attract to a magnet. Much to my horror, all but one of my chains (a total of 35) are not 925 sterling silver. The pendants wrapped in sterling silver are real silver, and necklaces with chains appear to be 925 sterling silver, but chains only are a rip-off. And all of the sellers for them are from China - I'm just saying. Of chains that barely were attracted to the magnets, unfortunately, the clasps and jump rings did quickly attach to the magnets. What a shame - these bad guys will end up giving the good guys a bad reputation also.

    I've also ordered clothing from Wish.com, and that is another whole story - be careful - if they are from China they run very small, and it is worth your time to take body measurements for those sellers who post the same for their sizing.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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  • 5 out 5 people found this review helpful

    Scam...stay away.

    • Ontario, Canada,
    • Dec 10, 2018
    • Verified Reviewer

    Every item that I've bought from Wish has been garbage. I saw this website and thought I would order Christmas gifts from here. What a huge mistake! Clothes are 3-4 sizes smaller than everywhere else in the world. Shoes are about half the size they say they are. Anything that you don't wear is the lowest possible quality possible.

    Note: I think all items come from China in a canoe...add at least two months to any delivery time Wish gives you.

    Bottom Line: No, I would not recommend this to a friend

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