HMV considering online pre-owned move

HMV wants to be the next retailer to offer pre-owned games online following Amazon UK’s entry into the market.

Last week, began buying and selling second-hand titles.

Customers can buy pre-owned games from the retailer, check prices using an online calculator and post old games in exchange for gift vouchers.

Now HMV has said it is looking to introduce a similar online service in addition to its in-store pre-owned offering, Re/Play.

We don’t sell used games online at present, but it is something that we are considering for 2011,” HMV’s Re/Play games manager Martin Baxter told MCV.

Amazon’s move comes as no surprise given that some of the major players do not offer an online trade-in service. Although there are games swap websites and the likes of eBay who offer this type of service. But their prices can vary dramatically, making it difficult to understand the value of the offer.”

However, online retailer ShopTo and used games expert Chris Ratcliff have raised doubts over internet second-hand services.

Online trade-ins will always have issues and delays involved, which many consumers will find intolerable when compared to store trade-ins,” said ShopTo marketing manager Phil Driver.

Game Guide editor Ratcliff added: Having studied mail order and online trade-in games services for over 17 years, I cannot think of one overly successful dedicated service that relies on people to send in their games. But such a trade-in offer can complement an existing online business.

Maybe Amazon’s buying service will work, especially as it is associated with a global brand.

However, I am concerned by the small print, which states that if the item sent in is not as described, it may be disposed of by the merchant and may not be returned.”

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