August 10, 2020

What Are Renewed Products on Amazon & How Can You Sell Them?

By Kevin Lamb / Amazon

Barely used items—the culprits of many an A-to-Z claim and the bane of an ecommerce seller’s existence—now have a safe place to call home on Amazon: Amazon Renewed.

But what exactly is Amazon Renewed and is it worth it for your brand? Here’s a quick look at the things you need to know about this latest offering from Amazon.

What is a renewed product?

According to Amazon, a renewed product is a high-quality, like-new item that’s either refurbished, preowned, or open-box. That seriously dented water bottle or scuffed-brown shoe in your returns department? They probably won’t cut it. But if you’re selling an item that’s as good as new, fully functional, and has every relevant accessory a customer would expect if they were purchasing it as new, that product will more than likely qualify as an Amazon Renewed product.

Amazon Renewed Program Explained | Pattern

What is Amazon Renewed?

Amazon Renewed is the exclusive program offered through Amazon that allows sellers to move their renewed products on the site.

In order to qualify to be an Amazon Renewed seller, vendors need to meet Amazon’s performance bar, which means your products have to have been tested and certified to look and work like new. A typical refurbishment process for an Amazon Renewed qualified product includes a diagnostic test, replacement of any defective parts, thorough cleaning and inspection, and repackaging when necessary.

Not every product category qualifies for distribution, but renewed products in the following categories do:

  • Automotive parts
  • Cameras
  • Headphones and audio
  • Home appliances
  • Home and industrial tools
  • Kitchen appliances
  • Laptops and computers
  • Musical instruments
  • Outdoor and sports
  • Office equipment
  • Smartphones
  • Tablets
  • Television sets
  • Video game consoles
  • Watches

Now that you know the what of Amazon Renewed, you may be wondering the why. Why might selling through Amazon Renewed be a good option for your brand? Why might it not be?

Here are some things to consider.

Pros of Amazon Renewed

Because of its high standards for entry, Amazon Renewed is an exclusive program, which gives you less competition on the market and allows you to move returned product that you wouldn’t otherwise be able to move.

A big benefit of Amazon Renewed is that it allows you to reach a whole different demographic of consumers. Customers that may not be able to afford or are not yet willing to pay full price for a new product can be acquired as customers for the brand, possibly leading to repeat purchases from your brand in the future.

Amazon will also back your products with a 90 day guarantee. Keep in mind the following disclaimer from their site: “This product has been professionally inspected and tested by Amazon-qualified suppliers. The product may have minimal scratches or dents, and a battery with at least 80% capacity. Box may be generic and accessories may not be original, but will be compatible and fully functional. This product is eligible for a replacement or refund within 90 days of receipt if you are not satisfied.”

Cons of Amazon Renewed

While Amazon Renewed has benefits for many brands, it may not be the right option for your brand. One thing you’ll want to consider is what selling through Amazon Renewed may do for your brand image.

Brands may not want their customers to experience their products as ‘renewed.’ This may especially be the case with luxury items, where the brand relies heavily on delivering a premium customer experience with new products that cannot be replicated with an open-box product.

Another drawback of Amazon Renewed is that renewed products appear in search together with new products, meaning you’ll have to ensure customers can easily differentiate renewed products from new ones.

Having your brand on Amazon Renewed may also set it up for further instances of arbitrage.

If the discount on the renewed products is too steep, it is very likely they will pop up on other marketplaces like eBay or Facebook Marketplace where arbitrage sellers will try to make money selling it closer to the retail price of the new product.

To learn more about becoming an Amazon Renewed seller and what’s required in the application process, visit the Amazon Renewed website or reach out to one of Pattern’s Amazon experts below to get started.

More Resources
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