When you buy liquidation inventory from retailers, manufacturers or from other liquidators you must be very careful to understand the various product conditions you are likely to run across. Without a doubt, the most common problems I see with newbies in the business are related to their misunderstanding of what product condition descriptions mean.
Here is an overview of product conditions you are likely to encounter and brief descriptions of each one:
- NEW: This merchandise is in its original packaging and includes all features as advertised by the manufacturer. Usually, these are overstock items that were entirely ready for retail sale but never made it to the shelves.
- REFURBISHED: These items are used but have been inspected, tested, and restored to full working condition. They rarely come in original packaging and usually do not come with manuals, documentation or additional parts and accessories. The condition of refurbished items can range from visually perfect to imperfect with noticeable cosmetic defects and blemishes, such as dents, scratches, and other signs of handling. Again, despite these defects, the merchandise is in full working condition.
- SHELF PULLS: These are items that were at one time available for sale in stores but never purchased. They usually have assorted price tags and/or stickers, sometimes indicating multiple markdowns, and have been exposed to customer contact. In addition, since most of these items have been returned from retail stores back to the warehouse, they sometimes show signs of extra handling. Therefore, shelf pulls typically exhibit a wide range of individual package conditions.
- RETURNS: Returned merchandise was sold at retail, but returned by the customer. Often, these purchases were simply the wrong color or size, or were gifts that were brought back to the retailer. As a result, this merchandise can be in perfect working order with all original packaging and documentation. Occasionally however, products do have some operational and/or cosmetic issues, all of which will be noted in our auction listings.
- USED: These items were sold at retail and used by customers to varying degrees (i.e. light use, moderate use, and heavy use). These items often possess noticeable cosmetic blemishes including dents, scratches, and other signs of age and handling. They rarely come in original packaging and usually do not have original documentation, additional parts, and/or accessories. Used merchandise is minimally tested to meet only the most basic requirements of functionality — they may not be in optimal working condition and may require additional maintenance and repair.
- SALVAGE: Salvage merchandise has been identified as defective for reasons concerning functionality, appearance, or both. Salvage assets can usually only be used for parts but there is no assurance the particular parts you want haven't already been removed. As an example, if you are purchasing "Salvage" computers, DO NOT ASSUME that the hard drives are still inside. They may not be. If you have specific questions, please ask usbefore bidding. Be sure to carefully evaluate the photos and manifest details of all salvage auctions prior to placing a bid to make sure that you are aware of all known merchandise defects. Any listing described as "Salvage" will not be eligible for any return or make-good by the B-Stock or the seller for reasons related to condition.