Is the Best Buy Buy Back Program better than nothing?
I buy a lot of devices and lately I have shifted some of my mobility business to Best Buy. Largely because I like the people that work at my local Best Buy, and the warranty option that they have. The Best Buy warranty is a hassle free plan without a deductible unlike AT&T’s. It is also a few dollars less expensive. But now Best Buy has announced that they will buy my less than 6 month old device back for 50% of it’s value after I pay $69.99. I was looking around for some examples and came across the Dell Streak on XDA for sale. Now the Dell Streak has been out for a while now. Originally it sold for $549.99 at Best Buy. If the Buy Back Program would have been in place back then it would have cost another $69.99 bringing the total Best Buy purchase price to $619.98. If before 6 months I wanted to trade it in to Best Buy I would receive 50% of $549.99 or $275. Check out if you bought the Dell Streak from Best Buy with Buy Back option what your total cost to use the Streak would be:
$549.99 plus $69.99 = $619.98 minus 50% trade in on $549.99 = $275.00 which means the device cost you $344.98 to use for less than 6 months.
Now what if I opted out of the Best Buy Buy Back Program and sold it on XDA? Checking around on XDA Marketplace and Ebay, a decent used Dell Streak is selling for $400 to $425. That would make your total usage for less than 6 months “worst case” selling at $400 at $149.99!
By selling the device yourself you can save yourself $200!! I have found that selling your device yourself can be a pain in the <bleep> but isn’t $200 worth your time? Now here is a big CYA on my part writing this article. Not all devices carry the same resale value, I’m sure everyone knew that. But there is little doubt that if you protect your device by using a screen protector and case, AND keeping all the original packaging without destroying it, that your device can bring you more cash back by selling it yourself.
So is the Best Buy Buy Back Program a good deal? If you have a big budget for mobility through your business and your time is more valuable maybe. But for the rest of us that go through devices every 3 months or so, I don’t think it is. Do your homework, protect your device, and keep your packaging. Your device is worth more than you think.
Here is the rest of the Best Buy press release on their new Buy Back program:
Buy Back Program from Best Buy Helps “Future-Proof” Today’s CE Purchases
Customers can buy new gadgets with added confidence from an upfront re-purchase schedule, instant re-payment on redeemed gear
MINNEAPOLIS–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Today Best Buy (NYSE: BBY) is launching its first-ever Buy Back Program to help customers embrace new technology with greater confidence. Created for people who want to stay current with their gear but who are concerned about obsolescence, the Buy Back Program provides convenient access to upgrades with the help of a Best Buy gift card from ”buying back” past purchases.
“We recognize that technology is changing faster than ever, and our customers tell us they want to enjoy these devices without worrying about when the next or newest version will launch”
Beginning this month, Best Buy customers can purchase the Buy Back Program in-store or online when buying products in one of five popular categories: laptops, netbooks, tablets, post-paid mobile phones and televisions. Customers may purchase the Buy Back Program when they buy their new devices, with pricing based on the product category. For example, Buy Back protection for any laptop, netbook or tablet is $69.99. Best Buy will purchase the product anytime within two years for laptops, netbooks, tablets and post-paid mobile phones, and four years for televisions.i Customers may receive up to 50 percent of the product’s original purchase price paid in the form of a Best Buy gift card if redeemed within six months of the effective date to purchase new products of their choice.ii
Buy Back Program appeal has been validated by a year of extensive consumer research, and most recently in a study conducted by Impulse Research Corporation.iii In the study, 40 percent of consumers surveyed agreed that concerns about technology becoming outdated have likely prevented them, or would prevent them in the future, from purchasing products such as laptops, mobile phones, TVs, tablets and netbooks. The study also affirmed the appeal of a Buy Back-like program when deciding on where to shop for popular electronics gear in the coming year. It revealed that 30 percent of consumers plan to purchase a TV or laptop in the next 12 months, and that 73 percent of consumers would consider purchasing these electronics from a retailer that offers a re-purchase type of program.
“We recognize that technology is changing faster than ever, and our customers tell us they want to enjoy these devices without worrying about when the next or newest version will launch,” said Brian Dunn, chief executive officer of Best Buy. “We call this ‘future-proofing’ because our customers can now have more confidence that they’re protecting the value of the products they’re purchasing today. With the Buy Back Program, consumers benefit from assurance, convenience and transparency so they can stay current and stay connected.”
Best Buy customers may purchase the Buy Back Program when buying a new product and redeem it at a later time, as long as the device is in good working condition and includes all original parts. Unlike typical retail trade-in programs customers don’t have to wait for re-payment, and can immediately apply money from their Buy Back product redemption to the purchase of new products at any Best Buy or Best Buy Mobile store. Better yet, consumers know what they’ll be paid up front, with a schedule that is available at the time of Buy Back Program purchase and is based on duration of product ownership:
- Redeem your Buy Back within 6 months from purchase effective date, and get up to 50 percent of your purchase price
- Redeem your Buy Back after 6 months to 12 months from purchase effective date, and get up to 40 percent
- Redeem your Buy Back after 12 months to 18 months from purchase effective date and get up to 30 percent
- Redeem your Buy Back after 18 months to 24 from purchase effective date and get up to 20 percent
- For TVs only, redeem your Buy Back within 48 months from purchase effective date and get up to 10 percent
“A program like Best Buy’s Buy Back should encourage higher consumption by early adopters and fast followers that are considering new technologies, because it gives them confidence that the electronic devices they have just purchased will have real value going forward,” said Stephen Baker, vice president of industry analysis for NPD Group.Impulse also found that when purchasing personal electronics, 84 percent of consumers say it’s important to deal with a reputable company who will responsibly re-use and re-cycle their old products. Electronics redeemed through the Buy Back Program will be assessed by its built-in team of Geek Squad Agents, and distributed among Best Buy’s aftermarket, trade-in and recycling programs. To learn more about the Buy Back Program and find the nearest Best Buy store, visit www.bestbuy.com.
Just like a new car dealer buying your trade in, BestBuy has to ensure this process is profitable for them. As with a trade in, the buy back program is a convenience for you, but usually not the best deal. Good advice though to save the packaging and keep your device in reasonably good shape if you plan to sell it, especially for a top price. Nobody wants your crap.
So you are paying Best Buy $70 for the right to sell them your phone back at a rate below market value. Brilliant.
And the kicker is you have to commit to the buy back(with the fee) at purchase. So later if you want to sell, or give, your device to a close friend or relative, you already had to pony up $69.95. Not my cup of tea.
Craigslist and eBay are much better ways to do this. I’ve bought and sold cell phones on both for many years, and I’ve had great success with each. Last year I had 6 cell phones, only one of which came from AT&T. The others all came from CL or eBay. They were all sold on CL. If you live in the suburbs of a major city, list the device in the city. You’ll get a better response. You just might have to drive to get the sale.
I just sold an Evo 4G for a friend on eBay. $370! He paid what? $175 on contract? He liked the phone he already had, so just got it to make a quick buck. Easy money. The better the phone, the better the return. What’s an iPhone 4 on contract? $200-300 or maybe $150-250 on refurb? Sell it on CL or ebay for over $400-600+
As for Best Buy, I buy almost everything from them.