Amazon Warehouse launches, offering discounted returned items

YOU know how when you buy something from a shop or reputable online retailer and it’s not quite suitable for you, but still works and the retailer refunds it?

Those items don’t just vanish into a pocket dimension somewhere after you take them back to the post office or the store – they end up back in a storeroom or warehouse at the retailer.

A lot of these items are absolutely fine – think “Xbox controller returned because it was a gift for someone with a PlayStation 5” or “Item was the wrong shade of blue” – but they’re not doing anyone any good there, so it makes sense to mark them down and sell them at a discount.

To that end Amazon Australia have announced Amazon Warehouse, which they describe as “a new storefront on Amazon.com.au adding thousands of discounted items to the more than 125 million products on Amazon.com.au, with free delivery available for Prime members on eligible products.” 

Amazon Warehouse will be selling things which have been returned to Amazon for one reason or another and can no longer be sold at full price as a result.

Amazon Australia country manager Matt Furlong said items were returned to Amazon for many reasons, be it a change of mind, a cosmetic defect or damage to packaging.  

“These items can’t then be sold as new but are still great quality and in good working condition. Amazon Warehouse gives these products a new lease on life and offers customers an even wider selection to choose from,” he said.

Amazon note that before being listed for sale, each item undergoes a thorough quality check to ensure it’s in good functional and physical condition and is then graded according to one of four evaluations: “Like New”, “Very Good”, “Good”, and “Acceptable” which determines how deeply it gets discounted.

The company also notes that “to help customers further assess each item and make an informed purchase decision, clear details – such as appearance, functional qualities, accessories and packaging condition – are listed on the product page”.  

It’s not a new idea – I used to work in retail and we’d always have a table or shelf of “saleable returns” that were discounted (sometimes heavily) to move them – but it’s good to see the idea being applied by a major online retailer.

Amazon say discounts are available across the following categories:

  • Books 
  • Electronics 
  • Kitchen and dining  
  • Movies and TV
  • Computer and accessories
  • Stationery and office products 
  • Clothing and shoes 
  • Toys and games 
  • Video games

Some of the specific Amazon Warehouse examples they provided from a gaming/tech perspective included a Logitech Lightspeed Wireless Gaming Mouse for AUD$149.99 (new AUD$275), Nintendo Switch Joy-Con controller pairs for AUD$99 (new $119), Google Pixel 4 64GB unlocked phone for AUD$376.68 ($411.98 new), a Samsung Galaxy S20FE 5G smartphone for AUD$755 (AUD$995 new), and a Fitbit Ace Activity Tracker for kids at AUD$90.21 ($229.61 new).

The discounts vary from “significant” to “not a lot” but if there’s an opportunity to save yourself some cash while still getting a perfectly functional and serviceable product, why wouldn’t you?

For more information (or to see what’s available), visit http://www.amazon.com.au/warehouse

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