Have unused IT equipment lying around that you no longer need? Just because you no longer have a need for them, doesn’t mean it couldn’t still be of value to others, and so you can sell this used IT equipment for extra profits and maximize their ROI.
If you are planning to upgrade your devices, then selling these used IT assets can also be an effective way to finance the upgrade. Not to mention, selling your used IT equipment is also more environmentally friendly than throwing them away or destroying them via incineration or other means.
However, selling your used IT equipment always comes with the issue of data security, especially for equipment that stores data. Is it completely safe to sell your IT equipment? Can the buyer recover my confidential data?
In this post, we will answer those questions, as well as all you need to know about how to securely sell your used IT equipment while maximizing potential profits.
Things to Consider When Selling Used IT Equipment
No matter the type of equipment you are planning to sell, there are some key factors to consider before selling your used IT assets.
With data increasingly becoming today’s most valuable commodity, it’s crucial to make sure all data (especially confidential and/or regulated information) is securely and completely erased from the IT equipment. Ensuring data security and integrity is not only important for your business but also for your clients/customers.
It’s also crucial to understand that without the right practice of thorough data erasure, it’s possible for your buyer to recover your data. So, simply deleting and overwriting your HDD and SSD, as well as other types of IT assets that store data, may not be sufficient.
Understanding of Market Value
To maximize the value of your IT equipment, a thorough understanding of the resale market is crucial.
Obviously, the older your used IT asset is, the lower the value will be. On the other hand, if you are planning to upgrade your devices, then if you are selling too fast, you may not get the best value when purchasing the new assets.
Timing is key if you want to unlock the maximum value from your IT equipment, but the demand for specific equipment will also vary over time and between markets.
If you are storing confidential and/or regulated data, especially customer information, then you may need to stay compliant with certain regulations when selling IT equipment. Also, there may also be environmental regulations with which you must comply. Check whether there are any regulations and policies you must follow before selling your used IT equipment.
Documenting Your IT Equipment
Before you sell the IT equipment, it’s important to first know what you are going to sell.
If you are only selling one or two pieces of IT assets, then this might not be a major issue. However, if you are selling in bulk, then you might want to create a dedicated spreadsheet for this purpose.
Comprehensive documentation will help you in finding prospective buyers, whether when you are offering your goods to specialist ITAD (IT Asset Disposition) vendors or when you are listing your goods on online marketplaces like eBay.
For each IT asset, you should document at least the following information:
- Model name
- Serial number
- Whether you have the original packaging
- Size (when applicable)
Keep in mind that there are unique details you may need to add to the documentation for different types of equipment. For example, for HDDs, you may need to identify the type of connectors, while you may also need to identify whether a GPU or CPU can be overclocked.
The more details you can provide, the better.
Take photos of your device’s conditions
Photograph your used IT equipment, especially to showcase the condition of your equipment.
It doesn’t need to be professionally-taken photographs, and well-taken photos with your smartphone will do just fine. The focus here is clarity and honesty, capture any defects/imperfections in your photos, and don’t try to hide them.
Also, take photos of the serial numbers and other necessary details. If you are offering your goods to ITAD companies, serial numbers can help them in providing accurate quotes since they can identify the exact model of your devices from the serial number.
Knowing The Value of Your Devices
Now that you’ve identified the details of your used IT equipment, you should perform simple research to determine the average market price for your IT assets. Doing so can help you decide how much you should offer your goods to potential buyers.
In this digital age, this can be as simple as visiting online marketplaces like eBay, Amazon, or even Craigslist, and searching for used goods that are similar to what you’re selling.
Finding Potential Buyers
There are basically two basic options here: finding your own buyer (including listing your goods on online marketplaces) or contacting specialist ITAD companies like Big Data Supply Inc.
Listing your own goods and finding your own buyers will provide you with more freedom and versatility, and there’s the possibility of getting higher prices. However, you’ll need to do everything by yourself, including ensuring secure data destruction of your storage equipment.
On the other hand, when selling your goods to specialist IT vendors, they’ll do everything for you, and reputable companies like Big Data Supply Inc. will follow certified processes for wiping your drives and can provide a Certificate of Data Destruction if needed (which may be a legal requirement for your business). Also, some industries and/or geographical locations may require you to get a recycling certification.
Selling to ITAD vendors is typically the better option if you are selling in bulk and/or if you are in a heavily regulated industry and your storage equipment (SSD, HDD, data tape) is storing sensitive information.
Selling your used IT equipment can be a great way to maximize the values of your IT assets, and to help finance the upgrade.
The main concern of selling your used equipment is data security, but there are ways to securely delete your data and ensure it’s unrecoverable. Also, if you are selling your IT equipment to specialist ITAD vendors, you don’t have to worry about having to securely wipe your data.