Keeping up with tech is tough. Enough new consumer electronics hit the market each year that, when considering the choices, you ask, “Isn’t there an app for this?” You’re not alone in your confusion. Like most other consumers, you’re in a race to stay up on new product releases. And you’re losing—losing time, losing money. Good thing, then, that recommerce is here. It may not be an app, but it’s a solution. It’s changing the way business is done. Recommerce flips the script on your relationship to tech by helping you get money for old devices for purchase toward new. Think of it as trading up or trading in.
Recommerce Wins the Future for Consumers
Recommerce redefines what it means to consume goods. In 2012, eBay reported that over 112 million users around the world participated in and benefited from the recommerce industry. This global secondary market amounts to an impressive 500 billion dollars. Consumers across the world can now turn to this innovative industry and market solution thanks to the trend gaining popularity among national retail chains.
The world’s highest-profile companies have embraced recommerce. National retailers such as Walmart, Best Buy, Target, Staples, and Waste Management are all profiting from this emerging industry. Demand is so great for this revolutionary market solution that online-only recommerce sites such as Gazelle, uSell, and Glyde are thriving despite not having any physical locations or face-to-face interaction with consumers. So great is consumer trust in these companies that people mail in their valuable devices in hopes of realizing the estimates they were quoted online.
The recommerce industry is keeping pace with the latest technological developments in consumer electronics that fuel demand for its services. New players in the industry are emerging with a dual approach of both online presence and physical locations. Sourcely stands as an example of a market-changing combination of online and in-store transactions. We are on a mission to equip any brick & mortar retailer across the world with technology to engage their customers in reCommerce.
A History of Innovation and Excellence
Forrester Research Chief Executive George Colony first coined the term recommerce in 2005. Colony referred to recommerce as a solution to shelf-life issues of consumer electronics because of the rapid updates in product features and functions. Recommerce now refers to the market practice of selling back obsolete or undesirable products to a vendor. Recommerce simply means that today’s waste is tomorrow’s future profits.
The trend has proven so popular that market analysts are exploring the psychology behind it. Trendwatching.com released a report outlining three main consumer behaviors behind the recommerce industry: nextism, statusphere, and excusumption.
- Nextism describes a class of consumers who must have whatever product is deemed best and latest. This class basically hops from one trend to the next.
- Statusphere describes consumers whose status is defined by their shrewdness in acquiring the latest device upon release.
- Excusumption describes consumers who use recommerce as an excuse to buy guilt-free branded premium items. Recommerce created a marketplace where such items can be sold for a price deemed reasonable by these consumers.
Recommerce offers the perfect answer for consumers continuously looking to own the latest product. Americans, themselves a sizable market share, change their smartphones every 22 months. That’s why retailers are also embracing recommerce. They can offer customers a discount on the sale of new products while profiting from the resale of the trade goods. Together these consumer and vendor behaviors are fueling the steady growth of the recommerce industry. It’s no surprise that recommerce is currently the fastest growing sector of the eCommerce industry.
Recommerce Unites Global Markets
What are the retailers doing with all the inventory being traded? Where, in other words, do the devices end up? Most devices being traded today end up in two places: overseas in emerging markets or parted out for phones in the United States.
This represents a larger trend in consumer and market relations. Many retailers are turning to reverse logistics to quickly offload excess or unwanted inventory while maintaining healthy returns. Traditionally this inventory was re-sold in stores or on such popular online marketplaces as eBay and Craigslist.
But with operators wanting a faster way of moving products and eBay banning the sale of bad IMEI (International Mobile Station Equipment Identity) and iCloud-locked devices, operators are gladly turning to reverse logistics as an effective market solution.
Reverse logistics has proven such a success because it moves goods from their usual final destination to buyers in emerging markets for the purpose of capturing maximum value. The process also allows the continual application of market research even after the product has been sold, effectively minimizing losses and maximizing financial investment.
The future is in reusing today’s hottest electronics. Recommerce allows consumers and retailers to embrace this trend with ease.