When You Order from Essential-Vitamins.com™
Our policy on pricing, shipping, returns and security
Despite our best efforts, some misunderstandings about expectations are bound to occur from time-to-time. The information presented here is offered in an attempt to clarify our policies and practices, to avoid these problems, as much as possible. It’s a dual safeguard:
- It lets you know just what to expect with your orders from Essential-Vitamins.com™, and provides you with a fixed standard to hold us to, and
- It makes clear the limits of our service to you, so you don’t make requests that we can’t fulfill.
A note about our Better Business Bureau Online status
Essential-Vitamins.com™ was a member of the Better Business Bureau Online from February 2002 through August 2007. It served as your guarantee that this business is run according to the highest standards of ethics and business practices.
As a member of the BBB Online, I agreed to participate in an arbitration process for any complaints that couldn’t be resolved between me and a customer. While this situation never arose, I was glad to offer you another safeguard.
But, for the year 2007, the BBB Online significantly raised its membership fees, and I could no longer justify the expense. However, you can be assured that I will continue to conduct business with the same regard to ethics and high business standards that I always have.
All of the prices listed on this website are retail. As with any business, we order the products at wholesale, give them a mark-up and sell them to you. Several of the companies we work with have strict policies on minimum pricing. To offer them to you at all, we have to abide by these policies. But, in every way, we strive to make the best products available to you at the best prices possible, while still staying in business.
Many people feel that, since they are ordering product over the internet, there should be no sales tax on their purchases. Personally, that is how we feel, too. Unfortunately, it doesn’t always work that way. When we’re charged taxes on the inventory we purchase, we have no choice but to pass that expense along to you; and for purchases within the state of Nebraska, we are required to collect tax. we hope that you will be understanding about this.
That said, at this point, we only charge sales tax on purchases made within the states of Nebraska and California, as well as the Virgin Islands.
Shipping PolicyWhen you place an order with Essential-Vitamins.com™, we’ll do everything we can to get that order processed and on its way to you that day. However, in January 2018, I had a stroke, so packaging products for mail is beyond my capabilities, right now. With the care I need, as well as the demands of getting me to my physical therapy and other appointments, Linda isn’t able to pick up that slack. As a result, we’ve been forced to rely on suppliers who will drop-ship orders for us. Generally, the service I receive from these companies is very good. Energique normally ships the same day. Bio-Design has generally been very good, as well. However, from time-to-time, products that cannot be drop-shipped might not be in stock when your order is placed. Should that occur, I’ll do everything I can to get the product in and on its way to you as quickly as possible. It should be noted, as well, that stricter regulation by the FDA has made the sourcing of ingredients for many products, from several companies, at reasonable prices very difficult. As a consequence, there has been a dramatic increase in the backorders from my suppliers — sometimes very lengthy backorders. I do my best to keep this problem to a minimum; but at some point, there just isn’t anything more I can do. However, it is my policy to have all orders processed and on their way to you within 72 hours (although, in the 17 years I’ve been in business, I don’t recall any time it has taken that long, except when I’ve been having computer problems). It’s also my policy to send an e-mail when your order is processed, giving you some idea when to expect it at your door. We don’t normally send out tracking for orders, but you would like it, you can indicate that in the comment box/special instructions box during checkout.
Shippers:Since we no longer ship from here, we rely on the shipping methods used by our suppliers. That has been, for the most part, the United States Postal Service (USPS).
- For Standard Shipping on smaller packages, they send orders via First Class Mail®. First Class bumps up to Priority Mail™ at 13 oz.
- For 2nd Day Shipping, they ship via Priority Mail™, but make a special effort to get the order processed right away. I realize this isn’t actually 2nd Day shipping, but it is the best I can do from here.
Shipping RatesSince moste of the orders placed on this website are now drop-shipped from the manufacturers, all shipping charges are determined, to some extent, by them. I am appauled at the cost of shipping, but it is an expense over which I have no control. I have done my best to keep the shipping charges as low as possible, without losing money. I should also note that, when drop-shipping from Energique, I actually pay more for shipping than I charge you. It should also be noted that shipping charges cover more than just the cost of postage. Since I have done my best to keep the price of the products offered here as low as possible, I have no real wiggle room when it comes to shipping. However, I do offer free shipping for any order of $325.00 or more. That is a high threshold, I know, but it also reflects my concern to keep my prices down, as much as possible. Note, as well, that when there is a significant difference between what you pay for shipping and what I have to pay to get your order on its way, it is my policy to refund what is overpaid. This generally only occurs with Next Day shipping.
International Shipping (Ordering from outside the United States):
Shipping orders outside the United States often involves higher shipping rates. While we used to offer international shipping, over the years, we found that almost no one chose the International Shipping option during checkout. This meant that we either had to find some creative way to collect the added funds required to pay for shipping or cancel the order. This was starting to take up a lot of our time and, when we had to cancel the order, it was costing us substantial money, since we have to pay credit card processing fees when an order is placed and when an order is refunded. It got to where it wasn’t worth our efforts.
That said, if you live outside the United States and would like to order products from our website, we would be happy to consider this, on a case-by-case basis. However, for us to be able to manage this requires that you have a PayPal account, so we can invoice you. You can contact us, to see how we can arrange for your order.
Return/Canceled Order Policy
If you are dissatisfied with any product ordered at Essential-Vitamins.com™, you may return it within 30 days for a full refund (minus shipping charges). We may, at our discretion, charge a small re-stocking fee for any product that is opened (and can’t be re-sold). Simply contact us and we will work out the details.
If, after ordering, but before product is shipped, you decide to cancel your order, we reserve the right to charge a reasonable fee to cover the credit card processing expenses. Ordering is free, to you the customer; however, we are charged a fee by our credit card processor, both when you order and when we refund your order.
When transacting business online, security is always an issue. Every precaution has been taken by Essential-Vitamins.com™ to safeguard your personal information.
- This website is hosted on a secure server. Our host, ICServ, uses best practices in all elements of internet security. All transactions are encrypted, and are as safe as placing orders with a card swipe or chip in a brick-and-mortor store or over a chorded phone line (cordless and cell phones present a different picture). No system is absolutely safe, but you can be assured that every effort has been taken to guarantee a secure transaction.
- All credit card transactions are processed by Authorize.Net, using best practices, offering you the added assurance of security in your online shopping. You have the option of paying through PayPal, as well, to take advantage of the security offered there.
- The information gathered during the ordering process is kept secure. Most of it is stored at ICServ, encrypted and off-server, with access by password only. We, at Essential-Vitamins.com™ never see it. The information that we have (which does not include your credit card information) is protected by a firewall and port cloaking, and all printed documents are accessible only by us. Also, while you must provide your credit card information during checkout, we never see it. This is just another way your personal information is protected. (You can trust us; but it closes down other security breaches.)