BROOKVILLE, Ohio -- As the DVD format proliferates, more and more supermarket retailers are finding that previously viewed discs are both popular among customers and profitable for merchants.
Theresa Daniels, manager, McMaken Super Market's McVideo, based here, said the store started selling $10.99 used DVD copies three months ago with much success.
"The customers feel that why should they spend $3.50 to rent a movie when they can buy it for a few dollars more?" Daniels said.
After a month in the new release DVD section, she takes two or three copies of a title and displays them for sale. The store rotates 30 previously viewed, new-release titles on a cart near the front entrance every second Saturday of the month. On average, 25 of the 30 titles available sell out, according to Daniels. After another month or two, she lowers the price to $8.99 or $9.99 for the remaining titles.
"Customers see the [previously viewed] sign when they first come in, and everyone seems to look at [the DVD cart]," she said.
By selling DVDs at lower price points, it opens up the possibility to stimulate further DVD player sales and allows the product inventory pipeline to flow more smoothly, according to Robert Feinstein, president, Supermarket Video, Los Angeles.
"The selling of used DVDs gives money to buy new product and the space to display it," he told SN. "There's another category of DVD [consumers] who only want to spend $5 or $10 on DVDs -- it opens up a new market."
Brady, Texas-based McShan's IGA stocks about 100 new-release DVD titles for rent only, but the retailer plans to dip into the market for previously viewed product within a year, according to Terrie Veazey, video manager.
"The requests have been getting bigger and bigger for previously viewed DVDs," she said.
As retailers add more DVD rental titles to meet consumer demands, the sales of their excess inventory will naturally lead to the sale of previously viewed merchandise, they said.
"When our [inventory] stock builds up, we'll carry them," Veazey said.
Super Saver, a banner under B&R Stores, Lincoln, Neb., started selling previously viewed copies of DVDs two years ago, said Bob Gettner, video buyer and coordinator.
"We kicked it off almost as soon as DVDs started -- I just had a gut feeling about it and we've done quite well," he said.
Out of the few B&R Stores that merchandise used DVDs, the Lincoln unit has the most extensive selection, according to Gettner. The 40 to 50 revolving DVD titles for sale, displayed in empty boxes to deter theft, are sold for $12.97.
"We don't have too many problems getting rid of them," he said.
B&R also merchandises previously viewed VHS tapes for $7.97 to $9.97, but Gettner pointed out that "[customers] don't want to spend $10 for VHS when they can get DVD."