Ottega Free Ring Scam – Part of a Whole Network of “Smooth Operators”

A clear exponent of a new and very real internet (social media) phenomenon, Ottega is part of a network of several sites which have been pushing an unconventional, scammy, yet somewhat creative business model, that essentially allows them to make money out of thin air, without any significant risks and investment on their part. What are we talking about though? Let us take a closer look at this “phenomenon.”

If you are a Facebook/Instagram user, you probably know about the free bathing suit/free watch/free rings deals that are sometimes floated through these social media channels by “brands” like Ottega. Such offers – incredibly attractive at first glance – peddle these items for free. Essentially, the cost of shipping is all one has to cover to get his/her hands on them. Why do companies pull such moves though and do they really leave free value on the table through them? There is no such thing as free money, so we can exclude that theory from the get-go. These guys do indeed make money on these “free” offers, but how do they do it?

The recipe is so simple, it is quite ridiculous and if you run a reverse search on the product images featured by vendors such as Ottega, you will probably realize on your own, what’s going on here…

What that image search will reveal is that the products are all sourced from Alibaba, a Chinese mega-operation specializing in the bulk sale of cheap junk. Indeed, the rings and watches offered by Ottega are all made in China and they can be picked up for much less than the “shipping” price you’re paying for them through one of these smooth operators. In fact, the wristwatches Ottega have priced at $30-100, can be had for about $5.

So how exactly does the scheme work? Sites like Ottega are but mere fronts for the operation. What they do is called “dropshipping,” and it means they never even get their hands on the products they “sell.” They simply set up the sale, and combine their Alibaba sourcing with Shopify, a middleman who takes care of order- and credit card processing, and then delivers the information directly to Alibaba. That’s right. All these guys do is they operate a website and that’s about it.

Setting up the website itself and then relying on organic traffic to net “suckers” is not enough to provide a proper flow of revenue though, which is why the owners of these “brands” rely heavily on Facebook and Instagram to get the word out.

That’s a nice theory… you might say. Where is the proof though?

How can we be certain that Ottega and co. are indeed scams?

Above and beyond everything else, the proof of the pudding is in the eating as they say, which in this case translates to the quality of the products (jewelry, watches) you are given and the quality of the service itself.

As already mentioned, the quality of the products is abysmal. They are often delivered defective, and they generally look and feel extremely cheap. While it would indeed be reasonable to expect a $12 product in return for having paid that much, in this case, you’re getting an $2 product for a $12 price. It is just way too obvious that these are indeed cheap Chinese trinkets., the official website of the operation, is definitely part of a larger network of sites, which includes SofiCoastal and Folsom & Co, among others. There’s no way to be 100% certain of this, because none of the About Us pages of the sites offer any relevant information in any way. The whois information attached to the domains is kept private as well – one can’t help but wonder why?

All the above mentioned websites use the standard default Brooklyn template offered by Shopify. They did not even bother to change up the fonts. The businesses that are allegedly behind the websites, are claimed to be located in different geographic areas, though there is absolutely no proof delivered in this regard. In fact, on at least one of the sites, a photoshopped image purported to be of the physical storefront of the operation serves as an even stronger reminder that we’re dealing with scammers here: it is a “Five Free Store Sign Mockups” psd file made available by

If you are still not convinced that these shops work on the same blueprint, just take a closer look at their actual sales pages. They all sport the same countdown timer and the same “items in stock” feature designed to induce urgency in visitors. There are just way too many coincidences there.

Efforts to track down the actual maker of the watches/rings (neither physical product carries any kind of a reference in this regard) will usually lead to Chinese companies, who produce cheap junk. Don’t be surprised if you find your ring somewhere, available for $2-5.

If you’re still doubting the above-described MO of Ottega and its sister-sites, take a look at the customer feedback available for instance at trustpilot. There are indeed scores of people screaming scam over there too.

Some less-than-content customers have actually contacted site owners/representatives, and they told them the products they were “selling” for $15 were available for $2 for all comers elsewhere. On at least one occasion, a site rep was unexpectedly candid about the whole setup, telling the complainer to take a hike, and that “that’s how capitalism works” (in his/her view).

The bottom line

Ottega and other websites of its ilk (they cannot really be called “brands”) are dropshipping operations, taking advantage of AliExpress’ affinity for the business model. They have Alibaba deliver $2 products, pocketing $10-$15 in shipping costs from their victims.

While the operation is not a scam in the traditional sense of the word (for the most part), it is definitely a predatory setup, playing on its victims’ greed and gullibility. Steer clear of these sites. If you really need that $2 watch or ring, just look it up (you can always reverse-search the picture of the product featured at Ottega) and pick it up directly from its main vendor.

When it comes to shopping online, make sure you use utilize online retailers backed by a strong corporate entity and one that provides a more fair and user-friendly consumer shopping experience, such as

Ottega dot com should NOT to be trusted. Click To Tweet

Have you been scammed? File a complaint with us today!


  1. billl Lange

    ordered in NOV2019- a ring- last letter fro m OTTEGA said they will notify me when the ring is going to be delivered.

  2. Sabastian James

    I absolutely love everything I have ordered from Ottega London. I’ve received exactly what I’ve ordered.

  3. paul gaston marin

    i pay the shipping for ring end i dont receive my ring orderot194028 please check tank

  4. John Whites

    Guys don’t trust this company, I made an order with them and it never arrived. They took my money then they said we are sorry we cannot help you. This company should not be trusted.

  5. Maria

    Very useful, 👍, and what about those who are selling Versace, Ted Baker, Toys etc. with very low prices ? No address ,no answer to mails, we only must pay by credit Card👺.

  6. Marilyn Fraser

    I bought 3 different watches online at very cheap prices. They keep good time and are pretty good so far as I can tell. The only problem is the leather straps don’t hold up very well.

  7. KCGR

    I fell for the “scam,” which I knew was too good to be true, but I’ve ordered cheap jewelry from Amazon before, and I’ve had several pieces for years. So, it’s cool…I’m happy with my opal ring. I ordered it in August and it arrived in September. The only thing is, it’s now October and the black plating on the ring is wearing off. I expect it to be gone by the end of the month or so. Oh well, if the ring still looks good, I’ll continue to be happy.

    • Madison

      Same thing happened to me. I saw the ad and wound up buying it on a whim. Just received my ring now and while it’s not the best quality, I’m at least going to try to make it last as long as possible and fix it up a bit to justify the cost. Any ideas on how to keep the black plating from wearing off though? I was thinking of using some sort of sealer/finish like Mod Podge but I’m not sure how well it’ll work.

  8. AMP6500

    THANK YOU!!!! I was about to fall for this. When it wasn’t going through on my cell, I became suspicious.

  9. Wendy

    I don’t know, guys. If I had known about this maybe I wouldn’t have participated … I received my Opal ring two days ago from Ottega – exactly as promoted. Maybe I’m just one of the lucky ones, but it took almost 2 months to get it, but I did.

  10. Caitlyn

    I ordered a ring 5 months ago, and have not received my order. They refuse a refund and tell me the only way to get a refund is to send them back a product I never received… Don’t waste your money!

  11. Sophie

    I usually never buy into the “free” anything routine, but after doing it once for fun with another company, where I actually received the ring, I decided to try again with Ottega.

    I ordered the ring in April and never received it. Ottega said all they could do was send a replacement ring, which as of September I have still yet to receive.

    You get what you fall for, but this company is a complete scam.

  12. Ryan

    I managed to track down the owner of this particular site using certain contacts I won’t go into detail.. if you want to get in touch feel free to email me 👍

    • VK

      Hey i want to get in touch, i need to cancel my order

    • TT

      Hey, I have made two orders. Can I cancel the orders and get a refund for the shipping charges? Thanks.

    • Angelina

      I need to get some info please… ordered 15 November and wanted to cancel order less than 5 minutes later when I saw the ring was made of copper and not silver! They charged my card the 17th and sent an email telling the ring was shipped… till today no ring! 51+ days have pass and no sign of the ring! I really want my money back…

    • Anonymous

      Hey i would like to know the email because i just bought so many item and i dont know if it is gonna come or not

    • Ken

      I need an email because I have waited 2 months and nothing but the same old response letter.

    • Sydney

      I’d like their contact info. Bought a ring in September and still haven’t received it yet. Want a refund.

    • David

      I’d like any information you have please. I ordered items in September thinking they would be here for Christmas, with days to go I’ve had no items or replies to many emails. Thanks

  13. Stephen

    This dropshipping “scam” allows you to get these items at bulk prices… Have you ever ordered from Alibaba? You don’t get the low price unless you order huge quantities. If you were to buy these rings, the minimum quantity might be a bag of 500 or 1000. Good luck saving money that way. So, at the end of the day, this is not a scam… it is just a way for you to get bulk pricing without the risk of buying a bulk. And if you don’t get your ring, or it comes defective, well then you learned a hard lesson about karma. Buy super cheap goods, and they are usually unethically made, bad for underpaid factory workers, bad for the environment, and bad for the people who manufacture the higher end stuff and lose market share.

    • Mark

      The article got it wrong at the top – they’re not getting their products from Alibaba, they’re from Aliexpress which is more like an Amazon in China. Each shop order is individually ordered from a shop on Aliexpress. Also they are using the slowest (cheapest) shipping available. If they paid a few dollars more per item, shipping would be in 2-3 weeks and they could offer a tracking number to each customer.

  14. James

    I ordered a ring that still hasnt come in yet all i want to know is if the customers are receiving what they pay for i will determin the quality befor giving it to my daughter for her birthday or is this a total ripoff scam

  15. Chris

    Really? You do realize that dropshipping is only different than any other retail business in that there is no hands on inventory? What exactly do you think walmart, target, walgreens, etc do? Obtain cheap goods from China and sell them at a significant markup. I seriously question your grasp on how business and the retail industry works. If you’re going to make claims like these at the very least understand what it is you are trying to drag through the dirt.

  16. Cyntia

    Well you did a lot of research here and it looks very complete. Thanks by the name of all the customers of this website i guess…

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