The trend of selling and buying used smartphones is on the rise. In 2016, studies estimate that consumers sold or traded in over 120 million devices, a marked increase from 80 million devices in 2015. In the United States, the trend of selling used devices has gone hand-in-hand with smartphone ownership trends. In 2017, studies estimate that 77 percent of adults own a smartphone, compared to just 35 percent in 2011.
If you’re thinking of selling your phone to either make some cash or upgrade to a new device, there are a few important things to keep in mind before you take the plunge. Consider these factors to ensure your sale gets you as much profit as possible.
How Much Money Can You Make?
Naturally, all phones maintain their value differently. Even if you paid $800 for the latest 2016 model, it might now be obsolete after the latest edition hits the market. In a study done by Deloitte Global, they found that the average trade-in value per device for about $140. This obviously varies quite a bit depending on make and model, but it’s a good starting point when trying to plan your budget. To see how this might work with a phone currently on the market, consider the iPhone 6s at $449.99 new.
Where Should You Sell It?
Because you want to get the best price possible, you should carefully browse the market before committing to a certain sale method. The easiest method is probably to sell it directly to a retailer. There are a number of companies that will buy your phone, including BestBuy.com, Amazon, Apple and even ecoATM kiosks.
However, to eke out a bit more profit, try selling to an individual buyer. The only problem with this method is that it takes a little more time and effort. You’ll need to upload a lot of pictures and information about the phone, as well as spend the time to find someone interested. Check out sites like eBay or Swappa, where you can set your own price and wait for the buyers to find you.
Finally, consider trading it back in to your carrier. About half of all smartphones are sold this way, as this method gives you credit to purchase a new phone.
What Precautions Should You Take?
Once you have a good estimate through a reputable company, there’s a few things you need to do before handing over your device. You’ll need to delete everything off of your phone so that the new owner doesn’t have access to your private data. After backing up your photos and other documents, perform a factory reset to completely wipe everything. If you have an iPhone, you may need to go a step further and disable your Apple ID so that another person can use the phone.
Lastly, remember to remove your SIM or SD cards, as these both hold important information. Now, your phone will be a blank slate for the next user. Experts predict that 10 percent of smartphones sold in 2016 will have an average of three owners before being retired for good. By getting an estimate on your earnings, finding the best place to sell it and taking precautions, you can make the smartphone selling experience quick and easy. Technology continues to change daily, and selling your smartphone helps you stay up-to-date with the latest devices.
Save More Money in 2018
Subscribe and join the worldwide 52-week money challenge! Get the tools you need right to your inbox.