ReBuy: A German Alternative for Disillusioned eBay Users
By Mark O'Neill
A new ecommerce website has hit the German scene, trying to take advantage of online shoppers and sellers who may be completely disillusioned with the eBay experience. The Berlin-based site is called ReBuy, and although it is currently a Germany-only site, it is starting to gain traction after being featured on some popular and prominent German TV shows and newspapers.
The concept is simple for both buyers and sellers. If you are looking to sell something, ReBuy will quote you the current going market rate for that used item. If you decide that it is a fair offer and you want to accept the amount ReBuy is offering you, then you click accept, and once the company receives the item from you, they will deposit the money into your bank account within one business day.
So let's pretend for a moment that I want to sell my Thunderbirds complete DVD boxset (I would rather sell my kidney than hand over my beloved Thunderbirds boxset, but the site doesn't deal in body parts!). Anyway, let's assume for a moment that I am temporarily insane (happens often) and I want to sell the discs. First off, put the barcode number into the search box (this ensures that it understands the correct product you're trying to sell) and press "suche" (search).
It will then tell you the current going rate for the Thunderbirds discs. The price can fluctuate every so often, so if you don't like the price, you can check back another day and see if it has risen. But today, ReBuy is offering just over 8 Euros. Now assuming I have totally lost the plot, I think to myself "8 Euros?! That much?! Yay!" and I decide to accept their generous offer. I would then click "Artikel verkaufen" (sell article).
At this point, I would point out that if you don't understand German, Google Translate is your best friend and can easily translate anything you throw at it.
Once you click "Artikel verkaufen," the item goes into your basket (or as they call it, the Versandbox - Postage Box). If you have anything you want to sell, repeat the process as before. When the things you have agreed to sell are in your Versandbox, then click on the orange "Zur Versandbox" button to be taken to the next stage of the process.
Once you have either created your account (or signed into an existing account), you will be told where to send the items. Amounts over 10 Euros will result in free insured postage for you, so it pays to accumulate some stuff before doing a ReBuy transaction. Once the company receives the items and verifies their condition, then the money will be put into your bank account within 1 business day.
Now isn't that easier than doing it "the eBay way"?
How does ReBuy make their profits? Simple - by selling the items they buy back to the users. If you are looking for something, it pays to check ReBuy first. For example, I have been lusting after an Apple Macbook Air for the past several years, but with a 1,100 Euro price tag, my wife has put her foot down and said no. But on ReBuy? The top results are 959 Euros but they could potentially be as low as 649 Euros - used of course, but if it was a well-cared for used laptop from a loving home, so what? You've just saved about 450 Euros - which you could use to buy an iPad Mini to placate the wife with.
ReBuy is starting to resemble the used version of Amazon - selling books, DVD's hardware, games....you name it. And with some big bargains to boot.
It's unfortunate that ReBuy is only in Germany at the moment, but hopefully if the company does well (and the signs are good) then they may expand to other countries. And then eBay might just find itself with a very serious competitor for the first time. ReBuy removes the need to write auctions, chase non-payers, there are no "fees" as such - when you see a price, it's "take it or leave it." I really like the site. Do you?
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