What is “like new”?
Why pay full price? As you know we love buying things online. Not just some things, everything (almost everything, I’m still not buying groceries online but I could see how I may in the future). When purchasing something online, especially on Amazon or eBay, you will often see an item listed as “like new”. What does this mean? Well, if you want to be technical it can mean different things on each site, but generally it means the item is new but the packaging may have been opened or is damaged in some way. Any good online seller will only list an item as “New” if the item AND the packaging are in new condition. Some online sellers will try to sell items with only damaged packaging as new but they are usually reported in due time and either change their ways or get shut down.
Again, “like new” usually means the actual item itself is brand new, only the packaging is damaged. Damaged packaging could be something as simple as a corner of the box go smooshed during shipping or a sticker on the box got ripped off taking some of the box with it or the package was opened but the item was never used. This is not to be confused with items that are “used”. A “used” item is an item that has been used, maybe only once, but it would not qualify for “like new”.
Now I love Amazon, and the next time you are planning to buy something from Amazon do me a favor and click one of the links on this site, I’ll probably make a nickel. Anyways, Amazon does something that I think causes confusion. They will list an item as “used – like new” which goes against everything I just said. I think including the word “used” causes a lot of confusion, here is Amazon’s definition straight for their site:
- Used – Like New: An apparently untouched item in perfect condition. Original protective wrapping may be missing, but the original packaging is intact and pristine. There are absolutely no signs of wear on the item or its packaging. Instructions are included. Item is suitable for presenting as a gift.
As you can see right there in the definition “used-like new” is an untouched item, original packaging is intact and pristine, no signs of wear on the item or the packaging, suitable for giving as a gift. By that definition I think they have gone overboard in the other direction. On one hand they include the word “used” which would lead someone to think just that, that the item has been used. But on the other hand, using their definition of “used-like new” the item should be untouched and the packaging pristine. I know if I’m buying item, especially for myself, I couldn’t care less what the packaging looks like. For example, I recently bought a label printer. In “new” condition the printer was $60, however there was also one on Amazon in “used-like new” condition for $53. I ordered the “used-like new” one and when it arrived the item itself was perfect but the box had a rip on it that had been covered with packing tape. I saved $7 (12%) just because the packaging was damaged. If you look at it the other way if I had purchased the new one for $60 I would have in essence been paying 12% extra for new packaging.
Bottom line, when looking to buy something online always look and see if it is offered in “like new” condition. You’ll get exactly what you were looking for a usually save 10%-20%. Worst case scenario you can always return it later for any reason.
Just a goat trying to live the prudent life in a world obsessed with excess.