The retentions battle is heating up as Everything Everywhere gears up to launch a major recycling initiative next month aimed at winning new customers and reducing churn.
Everything Everywhere has cut a deal with repair and recycling company Regenersis to roll out the scheme to all 293 T-Mobile and all 31 Everything Everywhere stores from 2 April. The initiative is open to all customers, regardless of the network they use.
The deal reflects a rising trend among operators and retailers to use recycling schemes to limit churn and win new customers. It also throws down a challenge to independent recycling companies such as Mazuma Mobile and Envirofone. Earlier this month, Carphone Warehouse launched a revamped recycling scheme, where it pledged to match rivals’ offers for used handsets.
Under the Everything Everywhere scheme, customers can recycle smartphones at any T-Mobile store for the market rate or above with no obligation to buy a T-Mobile or Orange contract. The offer will also be available on T-Mobile’s website.
The launch will be supported by promotional leaflets, in-store brochures, point-of-sale material and window displays. Staff will be trained to push the scheme to new and upgrading customers.
An Everything Everywhere spokeswoman said: ‘People are looking for ways to make the most of their money and getting money for an old phone lying round the house is a smart way of getting a bit of extra cash.
‘Our trade in scheme will be simple and fair where the price quoted is the price the customer gets. The prices will also be consistently benchmarked to make sure they represent competitive value.’
Analysts said the scheme’s ultimate target is to win new customers and cut churn rates. CCS Insight director Ben Wood said: ‘Recycling is on the increase as a way to acquire new customers and keep existing [ones]. Customers are increasingly aware of the value of their smartphones, as are operators.’ Wood predicted that more recycling schemes would follow.
A Regenersis spokeswoman said: ‘Networks are increasingly using recycling as a retention and acquisition tool by offering the same or even better deals.’ She said Regenersis already runs a recycling scheme for Orange, launched two years ago, which had delivered ‘significant numbers’ of recycled phones.