Your Guide to Buying Refurbished IT Hardware
Staying competitive in a world of scale means reducing costs at all cost. Refurbished IT hardware is one way to do this. However, there are many advantages to surfing the secondhand market outside of price. Here are some of the ways you can get the best deals and stay on the cutting edge of tech at the same time.
Refurbished Means Reputable
Buying refurbished hardware does not mean that you are giving up any of the protections you would normally demand of a purchase. As a matter of fact, you should demand more protections as your purchases scale. As you shop the secondary market, you should immediately steer clear of sellers who do not offer reasonable return policies and warranties.
In most cases, sellers will offer anywhere from 30 day to 90 day warranties on refurbished products. This is the same warranty they offer on new items. To be sure, however, you should check a sample of any order you receive for missing parts or damage. If you find anything wrong with the sample that you check, send the entire order back. Make sure that you perform this inspection as soon as possible after receiving your order.
Trading Selection for Pricing
You will definitely have to put on your walking shoes if you are looking for a very specific type of hardware. Many vendors in the secondhand market receive their deals from very limited associations with manufacturers. Every vendor may not have a deal with every manufacturer. For the deepest discounts, you will have to put up with a rather limited selection most of the time.
How do you counter this? You must extend your web of contacts. Although each seller may not have the widest selection in the world, they will have a similar selection to the new market if they are taken cumulatively. Form relationships with a wide variety of vendors so that you can upgrade your selection without having to give up price.
If you’re not already worked with us at IT Xchange, you’ll know our long partnership with Lenovo and IBM allows us to offer hard-to-find product as well as deep discounts on the hottest items to hit the secondary market.
Following the Market
One of the best ways to get good deals on relatively new refurbished models is to watch the market. When a brand comes out with its newest model, the model immediately previous will begin to flood the secondhand market. Basic supply and demand tells you that this older model will have some of its deepest discounts during this period.
If you time this correctly, you may be able to pick up orders of fairly new hardware at discounts of up to 50%.
In some cases, older hardware can have problems related to aging. You must be aware of these problems if you are looking to resell your inventory. For instance, aging smartphones tend to have shorter battery lives than their brand new counterparts. However, if you know that Apple guarantees new batteries in its refurbished smart phones, you may be able to make better deals in the secondhand market.
You should also be wary of manufacturers who “refurbished” their hardware with surface level, cosmetic changes. In the refurbished market, all that glitters is not gold. Look for manufacturers who focus their efforts on functional upgrades and maintenance. You will gain a better reputation with your customers for providing products that last. Remember that people who come to you for secondhand hardware probably do not care about cosmetics as much as function. IT Xchange’s in-depth refurbishment process, warranties and excellent customer service make this easier for you to manage.
Certification from a manufacturer is certainly worth looking into. However, you should not swear by it unless it is a certification that is verified by a disconnected third-party. Keep in mind that this third-party can be you. From personal experience, you may simply find that certification from a particular manufacturer holds weight.
Licenses and Forfeiture of Warranty
If you are making big purchases of refurbished materials, you must be sure those materials have not been refurbished in a way that voids their warranties. In some cases, you may also be able to purchase a license that will help to protect your hardware during the resell process. This is one of the most important distinctions that you can have if you are dealing in well-known consumer products, especially hardware that requires a Windows license.
Follow the tips above to ensure that you get the best deals on refurbished hardware. Make sure that you pay close attention to licenses and warranties if you are buying in bulk. Your customer base is relying on you to serve them with the best hardware you can find. You can certainly do this at a discount, but you have to do your homework first. Some products still have the manufacturer warranty in addition to a warranty offered from ITX. Your rep will make this clear to you before making an order.
Want to learn more about saving on refurbished hardware for your customers? We’re helping resellers around the world extend their margins and increase customer satisfaction by delivering quality products at the right price. Contact us to find out how we can help you.