Online returns find a second life in the “real scavenger hunt” business – fr

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Online returns find a second life in the “real scavenger hunt” business – fr


If you’ve ever wondered what happens to items returned to online retailers, you might find some of those rejected purchases at a new retail outlet called Krazy Binz in Ontario and Alberta.
The chain of clearance centers gives a second life to items returned, overstocked or opened after leaving online stores and supermarkets.

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“We have different suppliers for different retail businesses,” said Nora Mousa, Managing Director of Krazy Binz. “We receive shipments, everything is mixed up and we put it all in the bins. “

The prices are fixed according to the day of the week, the stock being replenished on Wednesday evening. These shipments can include everything from TVs and video game consoles like Playstations, to cat condos, to kitchen sinks and to KY Jelly.

WATCH | Take a look at Krazy Binz on their Facebook page:

“It’s a brand new shipment every Wednesday night, every week. So we start our week Thursday with a $ 25 day because it’s a brand new shipment, ”Mousa said.

The prices then decrease each day of the week, until a new shipment arrives after seven days.

On Mondays, the items are priced at six dollars each and on Wednesdays, everything is at one dollar.

Our motto is the real treasure hunt.– Nora Mousa, Managing Director of Krazy Binz

The remaining items are donated, recycled or packaged by the hundreds in mystery bags and sold for $ 15, according to the general manager.

“Our motto is the real treasure hunt,” Mousa said.

A potential solution to online returns

Krazy Binz’s business model has worked in the United States for years, according to retail analyst Farla Efros.

Efros told CBC Radio Cost of life this type of activity came about in part because of reports, such as a survey conducted by CBC’s Marketplace, into what really happens to online returns.

Half of Calgary’s Krazy Binz store is devoted to larger bulk items. Customers pay 70% of the price on the box. (Tracy Fuller / CBC)

The pandemic has more than doubled online purchases made by Canadians since COVID-19 lockdowns and restrictions.

Unlike regular stores, online retailers like Amazon don’t have the infrastructure or resources to handle returns, Efros said.

“Amazon is not a [physical] store, “Efros said,” so if you buy something from Nordstrom, and you send it back, it goes into the distribution center, they check it and they filter it. [and then] they put it back in a store. ”

A Marketplace survey of Amazon returns found that some of the items were not returning to the company’s virtual shelves at all. (Norm Arnold / CBC)

In the case of online returns that are mailed back to distribution centers, “they don’t have the infrastructure to be able to process these items,” Efros said.

“It just becomes too problematic. And from a cost-benefit analysis, it doesn’t make sense for them to put [those returns] back to the distribution center. So it’s better that they pack it up and sell it. “

When high-end items such as laptops, Play Stations, or TVs arrive at Krazy Binz, staff hide special eggs in the bins to keep customers safe. When an egg is found, those customers can purchase the premium item for the same daily price as other items in the bins. (Tracy Fuller / CBC)

When clearance centers like Krazy Binz buy these bulk returns for resale, they are working in symbiosis with big box stores and large online retailers who want to avoid sending items to landfills.

An Edmonton location will soon join this Calgary Krazy Binz in Alberta. (Tracy Fuller / CBC)

“It’s just a great way for Amazon to be able to get rid of things that have been returned,” said Efros, who added that putting items back in the fulfillment center is not tenable for many online retailers.

“Recycling [them] this way is just too bulky because [they] could come from many places and regions. ”

Krazy Binz could expand beyond Alberta and Ontario

Krazy Binz opened its first Canadian branch in Hamilton, Ontario, in February. They have since expanded to Kitchener and London, Ontario, as well as Calgary and Red Deer, Alberta.

“Right now we are focusing on Ontario and Alberta,” Mousa said.

“Our next location in Alberta is in Edmonton. We have two more locations to open in Ontario. And once all of these locations are opened, installed and completed, there is a possibility that we are considering expanding our business to different provinces.


Written and produced by Tracy Fuller.
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