Have you wondered what happens to the stuff that you return to stores? The appliances that you sent back to the online retailer or the furniture that dint quite fit in with your décor. Stores are now selling returned goods for deep discounts in bulk to other companies, then reselling them at a profit. The resellers are now gaining a stronghold in the business.
Websites like ShopJimmy.com offer a range of products to customers at low prices, the site which was founded to sell returned goods is now in a 50,000 square feet retail store.
“We’re Home Depot without the lumber,” Jimmy Vosika, founder of the store said. Contractors, remodelers, flippers, DIYers and cheapskates are frequent customers for products sold and returned to companies such as Amazon, Home Depot, Target and Walmart.
The business is termed as reverse logistics or liquidated returns businesses by those who are familiar with it. Experts suggest that U.S. customers are now so used to returning goods that resellers getting large inventory is the easy task, the reselling is the challenge.
Many large companies are selling the products they get returned. For example, Amazon gets hundreds of trailer loads of returns week and selling them at a bulk rate is the best way to get rid of the product they don’t want to accumulate.
Another reselling company Jacobs Trading specializes in furniture, hardware, TVs, and other appliances. Prices at this store are a lot lower than even bargain shops and bulk retailers, making it a place bargain-hunters seek out.
Some people are even gaining from the reselling trend without any actual retail experience. They buy the goods at a local auction or website and then sell at garage sales or flea markets for a profit. However, buying some products, especially electronic appliances and mechanical equipment, can be risky since determining the product’s condition is not always possible.
Customers can be reluctant to buy products even at a steep discount if they feel it would not work or be hazardous. Liquidators and resellers have to be cautious and sometimes even test out products before selling them.
Some reseller sites do give customers an option to return defective goods. While some offer up to a 14 day return period, others say customers have to return defective products in seven days or charge a restocking fee.
Offering returns can be a lot simpler than testing each product, resellers said. Testing mechanical and electrical appliances often need specific skills and experience.
Liquidation companies are having a good year according to Bob Bushey of DealSmart liquidation. The supply of merchandise in all categories is better than ever before thanks to the dot-coms,” Bushey said.
Around 30 per cent of purchases made online are returned, according to statistics. This is thrice the rate of return seen by regular brick and mortar stores. Customers are more likely to look for a better value while buying online than in a physical store, some experts feel.
Maybe the next time you want to buy something but don’t want to pay full price for it, you can head out to a liquidation store to score some bargains.