It will come as no surprise that, for the most part, Gen Z buy and sell their second-hand tech on social platforms. Because social media is popular among Gen Z, shopping via those platforms is highly appealing to the group. It’s why social commerce-- the division of e-commerce involving social media-- is on the rise. In fact, social commerce was an $89.4 billion market in 2020 and is projected to grow to $604.5 billion by 2027.
Where Gen Z are buying refurbished tech
To this generation, social commerce is attractive because it meets them where they already are and it’s interactive. This is partly why Depop, eBay and Facebook Marketplace are where Gen Z might start their search for refurbished tech.
Before their electronics policy prohibiting the sale of digital items on their platform, Depop was also used for buying and selling second-hand electronics. It was more informal than eBay which made it appeal to Gen Z the most. Still, Gen Z are attracted to eBay and Facebook Marketplace because they are able to negotiate on price somewhat easily – though new tools now exist to make online negotiation even easier. More on that later.
They might also go to Amazon because of the convenience of Prime; or even CeX (now Webuy) because there are brick-and-mortar stores around the country and are a well-established business.
Other places to buy and sell refurbished tech
In the last decade, startups have entered the refurbished tech market which is great news considering that e-waste contributes to 70% of toxic waste globally. Some of these new businesses have really attractive offerings. For example, Swappie buys back even broken phones; Northladder offers free home-pick-up for old devices; Refurbed allows free product testing for 30 days; and Grover lets customers subscribe to tech products instead of buying them.
Some other notable new players in the refurbished tech space include:
To become mainstream and front-of-mind to this new generation of consumers, there are two areas these brands can invest in.
1. Enabling social commerce
Since 40% of Gen Z are shopping on social media, don’t forget to sell to them through those platforms, especially on Instagram which makes this easy through Instagram shopping. It also makes sense to diversify platforms to avoid forcing all of your business through one store. If your target customers aren't coming to you, you need to go to them. Some brands, like Samsung and Music Magpie, have opened their own stores on eBay to sell refurbished tech. These platforms come with their own fees which need to be factored in, but represent a great opportunity to showcase your products to a wider audience.
2. Utilising gamification
90% of Gen Z consider themselves gamers. Having some form of gamification on your website can engage Gen Z consumers. For example, renewedmacs uses quizzes to get more information about what a buyer wants and uses the response to offer a convenient shopping experience. Alternatively, Nibble’s first-of-its-kind negotiation chatbot can make buying fun even as customers are trying to negotiate a price that works for them. With Nibble Buyback, even the process of buying tech back from customers is automated, so deals can be reached faster and without offers needing to be approved manually.
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