Results of the 2012 Online Gold Buyer Consumer Report Released

Share Article sponsored an industry-wide test of online gold buyers to review the payouts and treatment received from industry leaders. Today, they have released the report, detailing what each online cash for gold company offered for identical pieces of gold and silver jewelry, as well as company customer service information.

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The industry has improved a lot, but there are still plenty of companies low-balling consumers for their valuables.

On January 5th, 2012, Top 7 Cash for Gold sent seven of the top online gold buying services identical packages of valuables. Each one of the packages contained a 14k gold ring and an American silver dollar. The purpose of this was to discover which online cash for gold companies offered the best prices for gold and silver jewelry, as well as the quality of customer experience received when going through the process of requesting that the valuables be returned.

With gold prices hovering just below all-time highs, many experts are predicting that the explosion in gold prices over the past several years has finally come to an end. Warren Buffet and Bill Gates, two of the most influential investors in the world, recently forecasted a drop in the prices of gold. For those people that have been holding on to old, unwanted, broken, and scrap gold, now might be the time to take advantage of high prices before they decrease in value.

When it comes to selling unwanted gold online, one thing is for sure: not all online gold buyers were created equal. From service records and how they dealt with processing the items’ return to the prices offered for precious metals, there was an alarming difference between the best and worst companies.

First, Top 7 Cash for Gold requested Gold Kits from each online gold buyer. The request process was fairly standard, with the ability to either call or fill out a form online. Once the gold kits arrived, however, the differences between quality companies and the unprofessional ones started to become evident quickly.

“Some companies provided a very safe medium for shipping valuables, complete with padded envelopes, FedEx shipping labels, detailed instructions, and extra packaging. Others simply included a prepaid printout of a label, brief instructions, and left customers to figure out the rest,” explained Kyle Powell, who organized the industry test. “And those companies that provided the more professional Gold Kit also turned out to give consumers a much better experience.”

Once the gold arrives at the gold buyer, some immediately send out payment, while others call or e-mail an offer for the valuables. Either way, each company is very quick to send payment. When that payment arrives, however, the numbers on that check can be very different.

The highest rated online gold buyer offered $158.12 for the 14k gold ring and the silver dollar, while the lowest offer received was for $54.77. To see which companies ranked the highest and lowest in their gold test, visit their website at

In addition to the large variance in pricing, the BBB ratings and customer service experiences also differed immensely. Eventually, all of the packages were successfully returned, so the horror stories of cash for gold scams a few years ago seem to have made the industry improve: not a single one of the companies refused to return the jewelry, although some made fulfilling the request more difficult than others.

“For the most part, the customer service in the industry was very understanding and help,” continued Powell, who spoke with the majority of the representatives. “The better companies we just had one conversation with, discussed the offer, and then they simply agreed to return it for us. Some of the lower rated, and also lower paying, companies passed us off to a couple different ‘managers’ or had us call back once or twice. It was inconvenient and less professional, but in the end everything we sent out was returned safely.”

One of the companies even sent a $20 bonus check just for “giving them a chance for their business.”

“The industry has improved a lot, but there are still plenty of companies low-balling consumers for their valuables. We hope our test and report helps consumers get a fair value for their old gold,” Powell concluded.

For a complete information on the gold consumer report, visit Top 7 Cash for Gold’s website at

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Kyle Powell
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