Before we jump right into the subject of customer returns, I thought it would be best to get everyone up to speed in terms of where we are at, and what projects we are working on. We spent this last weekend in Roseville at Denio’s Auction and Flea Market. The purpose for this trip was to interview flea market vendors and look for people selling customer returned merchandise. It was a long, hot day at the market, but we stayed till closing gathering as much information as possible for our new program called, Flea Market Liquidator.
This new site is being put together solely for the purpose of introducing and teaching flea market vendors about reselling secondary market goods, i.e. customer returns and shelf pull items.
Out of about 200-225 vendors at the Denio’s Roseville auction, only about 5-6 vendors were selling secondary market goods. Most of the merchandise we encountered at this market was cheap imported electronics, toys, and furniture. There was plenty of room for a large vendor to bring in half a truckload of customer returns and make, in my opinion, a killing!
Our new training program will consist of several written modules, along with video/audio lessons geared to the new flea market seller.
Let’s jump right into today’s post – Sticky Stickers found on customer returned merchandise. What the heck is that all about? – A little story first…
Way back in the day my wife and I were working way into the evening hours processing 17 pallets of customer returns that arrived earlier in the day. It was about 11:45 PM when we decided to take a break. We sat out in the warehouse and started laughing because we had rectangular orange stickers all over our clothing, the floor, and our processing table. I don’t know if we were just delirious from working so late, or if the site of hundreds of orange stickers actually made us laugh? Some of you might know what I’m talking about when I mention sticky stickers in terms of secondary goods or customer returns.
These Sticky Stickers are used by the originating store and/or reverse logistics providers as a means to identify items that are to be savaged. Every store has a different category of salvaged items, some are marked customer return, while other simply code an item MOS or Marked Out of Stock (shelf pulls). In any event, these sticky stickers must be removed when you are getting items ready to resell.
Along with removing store labels, warranties, and private labels brand tickets, these stickers give a clear indication to your customer that the item they are purchasing was salvaged or returned. This is an important step to complete when processing loads of customer returns because you do not want your customer taking the item back to the store you bought the load from, with the hopes of getting a refund or store credit. This is a big No-No in the salvage industry.
As a ‘salvagor’ (one who buys secondary market goods), we have a responsibility and, in most circumstances, we have signed agreements stating we will do everything in our power to keep salvaged goods from re-entering the consumer return cycle. Make sense? If not, please comment below. I do not want anyone receiving a stiff penalty because sticky stickers were not removed!