Amazon's unknown bargain category

By Adrian Mühlroth | May 21, 2022 at 5:39 p.m

Warehouse items are products that have already been shipped and returned by Amazon. TECHBOOK explains how warehouse works and for whom it is worthwhile.
Amazon makes it very easy for customers to order items, try them out and return them if they don't like them. However, the returned products are often still in perfect condition, and in the best case scenario they were only unpacked or used for a short time. These items that can still be sold are tested and refurbished by Amazon. They are then offered as so-called "warehouse deals" at reduced prices on the Amazon site. TECHBOOK took a closer look at the used Amazon goods.
Here's what you need to know about Amazon's warehouse deals
Warehouse Deals is a private label operating under Amazon EU SARL and is part of the group of companies. The warehouse deals can be found on the page under the category "Amazon Warehouse Deals" or at the bottom of the page.

Item condition determines the price

Amazon tests the sold items for their functionality and they also receive a quality label that is visible to the buyer when ordering. Depending on the condition of the item, the retailer assigns the predicates "like new", "very good", "good" and "acceptable". In addition, the condition description can be used to see exactly what optical defects exist and whether any accessories, instructions or the original packaging are missing. The size and position of the optical defects are also precisely specified.
Warehouse items that Amazon declares as "like new" are in perfect condition, both functionally and visually, but the packaging may be damaged and the packaging film may be missing. The item may have been removed from the packaging or returned without unpacking. Original accessories and instructions are present.
If Amazon reports the condition as "very good", it is an item that has already been unpacked and shows slight signs of wear or blemishes. These could be small scratches or stains. Accessories that are irrelevant to the functioning of the item may also be missing if they are specified in the description. The item sometimes comes in a new outer box if the original box is damaged too much.
Amazon sells the items that have major cosmetic imperfections with a Good condition. The items have been in use for a long time. Original accessories, such as charging cables, may be missing, and the Company may exchange original packaging for new packaging. "Acceptable" warehouse items represent the worst condition of the merchandise still available for sale. Items may show significant signs of wear, scratches, dents and major cosmetic imperfections. It is possible that the original packaging and instructions are missing. Original accessories may have been exchanged for third-party accessories.

Warranty and right of return

Amazon warehouse products do not have a manufacturer's warranty, but the two-year statutory warranty is covered by Amazon. Like all other products on Amazon, warehouse deals can also be returned within 30 days. The return policy is guaranteed by Amazon.

Shipping costs and availability

The same shipping costs apply as for all products on Amazon, including free shipping from a purchase value of 20 euros. Warehouse items also fall under the Prime shipping benefits, such as free same-day delivery for goods worth 20 euros or more. The offer fluctuates and for many products there is not always a warehouse alternative. This is because, of course, not every product has been returned or damaged in the warehouse.

Conclusion on Amazon Warehouse: Used is worth it

We have placed various orders with Amazon Warehouse over the years. As we went through the orders, we found that we did not return any of the items that we bought as a warehouse deal back to Amazon. The situation is different with new goods, where we send an estimated 10-20 percent of the orders back.
Even if the quality assessment that Amazon carries out before selling the used goods sounds good at first, we found that the quality of the orders is not consistently the same within the categories. For example, the Xbox 360 controller was only sold as "acceptable" and the Russell Hobbs mixer as "very good". With the Xbox controller, however, we received a complete original packaging including instructions and guarantee card, the controller had no scratches or other signs of use. The mixer, on the other hand, came loosely wrapped in foil in a new outer packaging, with all the individual parts lying all over the place in the box. No trace of a manual, not even a piece of paper explaining how to operate or assemble the mixer.
There are also other examples where the description of the scratches and damage does not match the product that Amazon delivers to your home. For example, the board game Pandemic Legacy 2 was sold as very good and only damage to the packaging was reported. In fact, some game materials were also damaged. In addition, compartments were already open, the contents of which should not have been visible. Fortunately, this case is the exception. For most orders, we ended up with items that were undamaged, even though Amazon sold them as "very good", "good" or even "acceptable" in the warehouse.
The Amazon warehouse deals are a good thing. We have no problem with the fact that not all products are always brand new. After all, the items are significantly cheaper, offer fast Prime shipping and Amazon's 30-day right of return and customer support.

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