Back Market Review: Personal Experience Of This Second Hand Tech Platform

Buying brand new electronics comes with an environmental cost. As well as a cost to your bank balance of course. 

So, when I went self-employed in 2023, I had a plan to buy second hand tech to reduce both my environmental and monetary cost. 

My first port of call was a laptop. I assessed a few different platforms that sell second hand refurbished laptops and ended up going with Back Market. There were a few different reasons for my choice, which this Back Market review will get into. 

We’ll start with an overview of my experience so you can get the quick take, then for those who want a few more details, we’ll dig into these too.

Top Rated Platform
Back Market Refurbished Tech Platform

Back Market is a popular platform for buying refurbished tech and electronic products. Great service and high standard refurbs at low prices.

  • Outstanding value (up to 70% cheaper than buying new)
  • High quality refurbished products restored to full working condition
  • Reduce e-waste and emissions by around 90%
  • Smooth buying process
  • Wide range of products
  • B Corp Certified company
  • No comparison functionality between products
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

Overview of my experience buying tech from Back Market

For those who don’t already know, Back Market is a popular platform for buying refurbished tech and electronic products, such as laptops, mobile phones and even coffee machines. The Back Market website offers customers a wide range of products at competitive prices and refurbished to high standards. 

In April 2023 I bought a HP ProBook 440 G6 14-inch (2018) laptop for £250. Yep, £250. I went for the ‘good’ grade.

After a few good months of using my new laptop, I was in the market for an iPad. Thanks to my good experience last time, I returned to Back Market to see what they had to offer. 

Back Market had plenty of iPad options. In August 2023, I ended up buying a 7th generation iPad 10.2 (2019) in ‘excellent’ condition for £185. 

back market review laptop and ipad space

The whole process of buying from Back Market was straightforward and cost-effective. There was a good reason why I ended up going back to make a second purchase a few months after my first. 

The Back Market website is user-friendly and makes it easy to find all of the product details at a glance. As the items are refurbished, Back Market has a simple grading system to make the buyer aware of the product condition, based on the appearance and aesthetics. 

Back Market assures that all of the items they sell are in perfect working condition, as they state: ‘Every device is guaranteed to be 100% functional, regardless of its cosmetic grade’. 

My HP Probook Laptop

back market hp laptop open

My HP Probook laptop, purchased in May 2023, has proven to be a reliable and powerful device. Performance-wise, it runs smoothly, fast and the battery life is as good as new.  

I’ve had a number of new laptops, both personal and through previous work, and I genuinely can’t tell the difference. 

As the laptop I bought was graded as ‘good’, it had a few minor scratches on the lid, but nothing I’ve really noticed. This wasn’t a problem whatsoever. 

Considering that a brand new HP Probook 440 costs £960, I’ll take a couple of minor scratches and pay £250.

I won’t review the laptop, as this review is about Back Market and their service. As Back Market is a marketplace, the laptop was actually refurbished and sent from UK-based XPO IT Services. The laptop was sent out in protective packaging inside a slim cardboard box. All great. Happy days. 

My 7th generation iPad 

back market ipad in hand

I bought my 7th generation iPad (2019) in August 2023 for £185. It’s proven to be a fantastic choice. 

In terms of performance, my 7th generation iPad offers a good balance between power, functionality and efficiency. It provides smooth operation for everyday tasks such as browsing the internet, watching videos and doing day to day business.

I paid £185 for the model. Compare this to the full price of £369 you’ll pay on Apple for a brand new 9th generation version, and it’s a no brainer for me.  

I bought my ‘excellent’ condition iPad from USMAC UK, based in Milton Keynes, who’ve been selling refurbished tech on Back Market for three years. 

who are Back Market?

Back Market is a marketplace platform specialising in a wide range of refurbished tech products. They’ve earned a reputation for providing excellent service and great products at a significantly lower cost. I’ve experienced this first hand in the two products I’ve bought. 

They were originally founded in France in 2014 by three co-founders who are still involved in the company. They now run many Back Market websites across the globe, including in the UK. 

As well as buying tech, it’s also possible to trade in your old tech using the Back Market platform. All you have to do is make a few selections about your item and you’ll receive an offer from an expert refurbisher. It takes a minute or two max. If you like the offer, you can send your item for free and get money in your bank. 

back market laptop on train

My HP Probook laptop, breakfast in stainless steel food container and Ocean Bottle on the train.

Back Market sells popular refurbished products from all the biggest brands, such as:

  • Laptops – MacBooks, Acer, Asus, Dell, HP
  • Tablets – iPads, Samsung Galaxy Tab, Microsoft
  • Smartphones – iPhones, Samsung Galaxy, Google Pixel
  • Smartwatches – Apple, Samsung Galaxy, Garmin
  • Headphones – AirPods, Beats, Bose, speakers
  • Kitchen appliances – Blenders, coffee machines, food processors
  • Games consoles
  • Desktop computers

The refurbished tech available on Back Market is sourced from trusted sellers and carefully inspected to ensure the items are in proper working condition. This process contributes to making Back Market a reliable destination for those looking to purchase refurbished devices at competitive prices.

One significant aspect of Back Market’s services is its dedication to customer satisfaction. They have received numerous positive feedback from customers, particularly in the categories of laptops and iPads. 

Benefits of buying from Back Market

Ok, if you’ve got this far, I’m assuming you’re in the market for some new tech. Maybe you’re already set on refurbished second hand tech but aren’t quite sure on Back Market. 

Here are the benefits of buying your second hand tech products from Back Market. 

back market laptop in manchester library
My HP laptop in Manchester Central Library (great place)

Better for the environment

Buying a refurbished electronic item is a great step for saving emissions. 

A refurbished smartphone, for example, uses:

  • 91% less raw materials – check out my material sustainability resource page
  • 86% less water
  • Generates 89% less e-waste. E-waste is a huge problem that is going to bite us in the behind eventually as very little e-waste gets recycled. Read more about the importance of recycling e-waste
  • Overall, it puts 91.6% less carbon emissions into our atmosphere compared to brand new.

And these are just the average figures.

Making use of existing resources, rather than mining and producing new, really is so much better for the environment. For me, it’s a major part of living a more sustainable life.

Professional refurbishers

Back Market work hand-in-hand with professional tech refurbishers. They guarantee that every device has been tested and restored to perfect working condition according to industry standards.

Lower cost

Being second hand and potentially a few years old, the products are much cheaper than buying brand new. Back Market states items are available for up to 70% less than brand new. 

When I bought my HP Probook, it was around 60% cheaper than new. 

B corp certified

If you’re wondering whether the green claims of Back Market are legit, you can rest assure in the knowledge that they are a certified B corporation. This is an official accreditation that ensures a business cares as much about the planet as it does about profit. 

In terms of green business claims, being a B Corp is currently the pinnacle. Back Market achieved B Corp status in April 2023. Learn more about what it means to be a B Corp here.

back market ipad in hand screen

Is Back Market trustworthy?

When buying refurbished electronics online, it’s natural to have some concerns about trustworthiness. However, there are several reasons why Back Market can be considered a trustworthy platform:

  • 5 million customers have previously bought from Back Market
  • They only work with professional, certified refurbishers to source products. These refurbishers must meet strict standards.
  • All devices are thoroughly tested and restored to like-new condition before being resold. They guarantee full functionality.
  • Their refurbishment process ensures any prior user data is wiped from devices. Your data is secure.
  • They offer warranties on all products in case issues arise after purchase.
  • Back Market is a certified B Corporation, meaning they meet high standards of social and environmental performance.
  • They have an excellent TrustPilot rating of 4.5 out of 5 stars based on over 44,000 independent reviews.
  • My personal experience has been great, receiving high-quality refurbished items as advertised.

While buying refurbished does require some trust, Back Market has established a strong track record that speaks to their trustworthiness. For tech bargains you can feel confident in, Back Market delivers.

Best Recommendation
Back Market Overview
  • Outstanding value (up to 70% cheaper than buying new)
  • High quality refurbished products restored to full working condition
  • Reduce e-waste and emissions by around 90%
  • Smooth buying process
  • Wide range of products
  • B Corp Certified company
  • No comparison functionality between products
We earn a commission if you make a purchase, at no additional cost to you.

Liked that? Read more reviews…