Online sales of secondhand fashion have been growing for a number of reasons, with the most common being the environment and saving money. Environmentally-conscious consumers want to say goodbye to fast fashion. Recent events accelerated recommerce market growth, as consumers sought out ways to save and earn money.
It’s one of the pandemic booms that’s expected to stick around indefinitely. Socially-responsible entrepreneurs and private sellers have recognized it as a purpose-driven way to make money online, while also contributing to a cause that’s close to the hearts of many consumers. Individual sellers have found it to be a perfect home business and side hustle.
The Secondhand Market in North America
The American consumer market often serves as an indicator of where the Canadian market is headed. In this case, the Canadian market for used clothing shows an equal or even higher demand.
According to recent research conducted by Vinted, over a third of Canadians have already purchased pre-loved fashion items, and more than half of the respondents who didn’t would consider buying or selling second-hand fashion online. Vinted was so impressed by the potential of the Canadian market, they decided to open one of their online marketplaces here.
For 45% of the respondents, the key driver to sell pre-owned items is the desire to repurpose, rather than throw them away. The financial aspect of earning extra money ranks as another important factor. The top driver to buy secondhand fashion, however, is it’s a sustainable way to get more value for their money.
The experts at Jungle Scout recently released their 2021 Consumer Trends Report, a quarterly study of 1000 consumers residing in the United States. The results cover both Q1 and Q2 of this year.
The report found that more consumers entered the secondhand market to earn extra income or save money.
- 32% look for secondhand products when they shop online.
- 44% have bought or sold a used item online over the last year.
- Of those who bought or sold pre-owned items online, 66% did so on Amazon.
- 60% of participants said they’re looking for ways to make money.
Online shopping platforms make it easy for people to buy or sell used items. Consumers buy & sell pre-owned products most often on Amazon, eBay, Facebook and Craigslist.
The top ten secondhand categories are:
- Sporting Goods
- Tools and Home Care Items
- Exercise Equipment
Should You Sell Used Clothing Online?
Recommerce (selling used or excess products) in general is growing 20x faster than the broader retail market and 5x faster than off-price retailers.
Sustainable Fashion is one of our Top 10 Hot Online Product Niches for Canadian Sellers. The sale of pre-owned clothing and accessories has become a very profitable niche. Buying used clothing was always popular here, but the sector has grown as Canadians become more aware of the environmental impact of ‘fast fashion’.
Take the time to research markets and focus on certain niches. The vast majority of successful sellers use tools like Jungle Scout to stay on top of demand and competition in specific niches and markets.
Secondhand luxury items will always fly off the shelves, but don’t miss the opportunities in children’s clothing, business attire and collectible clothing or accessories. Consider anything that supports the distribution of sustainable fashion as well, including platforms, apps and information.
Do you sell used goods online? Please share your experience or questions in the comments below or join the Online Business Canada Facebook group.
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Melody McKinnon's formal education is in business management, which she enhanced with more than 60 certifications revolving around business, marketing, health, general sciences and writing. In over 20 years of working online, she has owned or managed both educational and eCommerce websites.
Melody has worked with many businesses & brands in a multitude of capacities. She can often be found on CanadiansInternet.com, CanadianFamily.net and AllNaturalPetCare.com, as well as other quality digital publications. Her content has earned reference links from highly-respected websites, magazines and university textbooks.