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Your Friend the Secondary Market – Part 2

In an earlier post we discussed what secondary markets are and one simple way to take advantage of them. Today we are going to look at a little less obvious use of secondary markets.

You can utilize the power of secondary markets by factoring them into your thinking when purchasing new items. We rarely, if ever, consider how or if we are going to sell something we are purchasing. For most people, we buy things, use them, they sit in a garage until they annoy us, and then we donate them to charity. But, by simply using a little forethought, we can take advantage of secondary markets even when we are buying new items.

Let’s consider buying the new Dan Brown novel. It recently was released and many people purchased it in hardcover format or as an e-book. Imagine you really want to purchase the new Dan Brown novel, but you can’t decide what is the cheapest way to do that. You price search and sure enough the price is essentially the same across retailers. You look to buy it used, but because its only recently been released, there are only a few selling it used and by the time shipping is calculated, it is essentially the same price as buying it new. You look at purchasing the e-book and notice that it is a few dollars cheaper, so that sounds like the best option, right? Not so fast hotshot.

Take a moment and consider the secondary market. “But wait,” you yell, “I did consider the secondary market. I looked to purchase it used and it wasn’t any cheaper.” Correct, but consider the effect of the secondary market on your purchase of a new copy of the Dan Brown novel. If you spend $12 and buy the e-book you save some money over the hardcover book, but what can you sell it for down the road on the secondary market? Here is where digital media can end up being more expensive, even when its cheaper to initially purchase. You cannot re-sell e-books (at least not yet). Consequently, if you only get half-way through the book and hate it, you are stuck with a $12 e-book that you have no use for and that cannot be resold.

Now, if you purchase the $14 hardcover book, once you are finished with it, you have a market whereupon you can recover some of the value you already paid for it. Again, let’s say you read it half-way through and hated it, now you can go to Amazon.com, and resell it at whatever the market is asking for. Even better, if you know you only want to read it once, you can hurry up, read it, and resell if for almost the same amount you purchased it for, thereby essentially reading it for free.

And, this thinking goes for any type of digital media. Music, movies, software, etc. all have secondary markets for their physical forms. Until a secondary market is created that allows the exchange of digital media, you are almost better purchasing the physical item and utilizing the secondary market down the road.

What about you savvy shoppers? How do you utilize secondary markets to your advantage? Let me know below.

Article publié pour la première fois le 15/08/2013