Checkout and Cash In: Tiptop’s Trade-In Feature Saves You Money on Online Purchases

Tiptop launches trade to pay less commerce feature. Image credit: Tiptop

Have you ever wanted a way to save when making purchases online? We scramble when sales like Black Friday and Cyber Monday take place or use apps like Honey and Rakuten to save as much as possible. But what if there was a way to reduce the amount spent while decluttering our home? Tiptop could be that solution, streamlining the trade-in process we’re accustomed to getting our favorite product for a lower price.

Founded by Postmates founder Bastian Lehmann, Tiptop initially helped users identify things they purchased online to estimate their trade-in value while providing access to a seller’s marketplace. Now, it’s transforming into a platform by embedding itself directly into the e-commerce checkout process.

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“There are lots of ways for people to pay for stuff right now: credit cards, Apple Pay, PayPal or even ‘pay over time’ plans,” he says in a launch video. “These services are convenient, easy to use, and are available everywhere, but making it easy to pay doesn’t make things more affordable. Everything is getting more expensive, and you’re often forced to pay for something in full that you may want to replace in just a year or two.”

This incarnation of Tiptop appears to be built on software like Shopify, Square, Bigcommerce, Adobe Magento, Salesforce and Stripe. It doesn’t seem to replace it but augments the checkout process. Tiptop will handle the trade-in process for merchants, from handling the exchange to payment, shipping and logistics. Consumers will receive between $30 and $3,000 off their purchases when they trade something in. More than 50,000 items can be traded in, and when done through a Tiptop partner, instant credit is provided.

Early launch partners include Nothing Tech, Cradlewise, Backbone, Phonedaddy and King of Christmas.

Offering a non-monetary form of purchasing is uncommon, Tiptop notes in its blog post. One obvious use case would be for technology retailers such as Samsung, Apple, Best Buy, Amazon, or smaller merchants. It could also be used by clothing businesses, media and entertainment, home goods, specialty stores and more. And with inflation and goods becoming more expensive, everyone is looking for ways to save money.

One unclear thing is what happens to the traded-in item when it’s returned. When it’s received by the merchant, is it refurbished and resold? Is it recycled? Will Tiptop make an effort to highlight products that can be sustainably managed?

Tiptop’s own data reveals that the average U.S. consumer household has $1,800 in goods represented in its catalog, and the average trade-in value is $300 per transaction.

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