SEOUL, Feb.11 (Korea Bizwire) – As the period of economic stagnation is dragging on, consumer demand for used or refurbished products (displayed products or returned products that have been fixed) is increasing greatly both online and offline.
Sales of used laptops and PCs online have shown a two to threefold increase with the new school year approaching.
According to the online shopping site 11st (www.11st.co.kr), sales from the company’s ‘used street’ sector, a category on the site dealing exclusively with second hand products, increased by 49 percent in 2015 compared to the previous year.
‘Used street’ was first launched in February 2012, and sales have jumped by 50 percent every year.
Sales of used books in 2015 were 6.8 times higher than the year before, showing the most noticeable increase, and 11st even provided a service to disinfect and sterilize used books during the latter half of 2015, due to high demand.
Motorcycles also showed a noticeable growth in sales (58 percent).
The sales of second hand items (including displayed and refurbished products) at GMarket (www.gmarket.co.kr) also increased 21 percent compared to the previous year.
Popular second hand products were cameras (82 percent growth), mobile phones (48 percent growth), monitors and printers (29 percent growth) and PC parts (27 percent growth).
The sales of used desktop PCs and laptops from January 5 to February 4 jumped 3.2 times and 2.2 times higher respectively. There was also a 35 percent increase in sales of used monitors.
Sales at the ‘used market’ of the shopping portal Auction (www.auction.co.kr) also showed a 22 percent increase over a one year period.
Used bags and fashion items (56 percent growth), mens’ clothing (42 percent growth), tools and packaging (31 percent growth) and mobile phones (17 percent growth) saw high demand.
Offline stores are also preparing to meet consumer demand for second hand products.
Lotte Department Store opened a ‘Factory Outlet’ that is similar to warehouse discount stores. The outlet holds furniture, electrical home appliances and everyday items.
Lotte Department Store has also sold its refurbished electrical appliances at discounts of 30 to 70 percent. The company sold out all the items earlier than expected, with 20 percent higher sales than predicted.
GMarket officials comment that the slow economy triggered a trend of ‘reasonable spending’ among consumers. “As long as they can get satisfaction by spending the least amount of money, consumers are no longer obsessing about new products. Instead, they are buying second hand products.”
By M.H.Lee (firstname.lastname@example.org)