Its new Buy Back Program puts a new spin on reuse, refurbishment and recycling, covering the purchase of laptops, netbooks, tablets, post-paid mobile phones and televisions. Customers can now purchase Buy Back protection, with pricing based by category, giving them the right to return operational products within a two year window. Buy Back protection for a laptop or netbook, for example, is $69.99. Items can be returned for up to 50% of their original purchase price.
The credit is given in the form of a Best Buy gift card to be used to purchase new products. Best Buy discovered from a market study that 40 percent of consumers have concerns about technology becoming outdated which has likely prevented them, or would prevent them in the future, from buying these electronic products. It further found that 30 percent of consumers plan to purchase a TV or laptop in the next 12 months, and that 73 percent of consumers would consider purchasing from a retailer offering a Buy Back arrangement.
From a recycling perspective, my assumption would be that there will be a greater incentive to purchase new products, with a corresponding greater availability of near-new used products through Best Buy's Dealtree online subsidiary. The Buy Back move will promote reuse and refurbishment, but shouldn't have an impact on the volume of electronics products being recycled.