Online consignment shops create simple solutions for sellers to make money off their gently used clothing and accessories. Potential buyers can take advantage of affordable pricing to outfit themselves and their families in luxury brands. If you’re interested in improving your style without hurting your budget, here are four of the best online consignment stores. Plus, tips for both buyers and sellers to get in on the action.
1. The RealReal
“Empowering consignors and buyers to extend the life cycle of luxury goods.”
For Buyers: The RealReal allows buyers to shop pre-owned clothing, handbags, shoes and jewelry. The site features top designers like Chanel, Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Cartier and others. Buyers can shop with certainty, knowing items are rigorously inspected and authenticated. Looking for something in particular? Purchasers can become a “First Look Member” for only $10 per month. This grants 24-hour advance access to sales and monthly promotions.
For Sellers: The RealReal offers consignors a hassle-free way to sell their luxury goods and earn up to 85 percent of items’ sale prices. You simply ship items to verified physical locations for authentication before an official listing is posted. Sellers are then paid on a sliding scale, earning up to 40-85 percent of the sale price. Top consignors can earn 70 percent of all sales if they net over $10,000 in annual sales on the site.
“A vibrant community powered by millions of Seller Stylists, who not only sell their personal style but also curate looks for their shoppers, creating the most connected shopping experience in the world.”
For Buyers: Poshmark shoppers have endless options of gently used items for women, men, and children. The site hosts thousands of brands from luxury to every day, including Nike, Lululemon, J. Crew and Tory Burch. Unique to other platforms, buyers have the option to haggle with sellers and score items at up to 70 percent off retail. Note that items priced over $500 are eligible for free authentication through Posh Authenticate.
For Sellers: Poshmark places the power in the seller’s hands. Consignors will upload photos of their items, add descriptions, set prices, and accept and negotiate offers from buyers. Sellers are solely responsible for marketing their items with high-quality images and clear, detailed product descriptions. Similar to social networking, sellers promote their closets through likes, comments, and high-quality service in hopes of repeat buyers.
While sellers may have to do a little more work, there comes a potential for higher earnings: Poshmark takes a flat rate of $2.95 for items under $15 and only 20 percent of higher-priced items.
“Inspiring a new generation of shoppers to think secondhand clothes first.”
For Buyers: thredUP sells a broad range of budget-friendly brands for women and children like Gap, Anthropologie, Free People and Old Navy. Shoppers can filter items by department, designer, description, and price to find just what they are looking for. The site boasts itself as the world’s largest consignment store with thousands of new arrivals every day.
For Sellers: Before sending off any merchandise, sellers must request a clean-out kit from thredUP to fill with their items (clothing, shoes, handbags) for packaging. From that point on, the team at thredUP handles the rest! An algorithm will assess brand, style, season, and current inventory before accepting and pricing your items. Earnings vary from 3 percent to 80 percent of the sale; items not accepted are donated or returned to the seller for a shipping fee.
“The most stylish global marketplace for pre-owned luxury and designer fashion.”
For Buyers: Vestiaire Collective is a worldwide destination for pre-owned luxury goods. Shop the closets of men and women in Milan or Paris from your small hometown! The company boasts the most coveted and hard-to-find items from luxury brands like Burberry, Fendi and Prada. Over 3,000 new products are added each day. Buyers can shop confidently, knowing that all items are carefully examined to guarantee condition and authenticity.
For Sellers: Vestiaire Collective merges a traditional consignment shop with peer-to-peer sales, as sellers upload photos and descriptions of items for VC’s team to review. Once the goods are sold, the consignor uses a prepaid label to ship their item to the company for inspection and authentication before sending it to the buyer. Earnings are calculated by price to the items, with Vestiaire Collective taking a flat rate ($17 on items less than $50) or a percentage (10-25 percent) of the sale.
Find the Best Online Consignment Shop for Your Style and Budget
When it comes to figuring out which is the best online consignment shop for buyers—assess your current style and overall budget. Which brands do you already purchase? What’s your budget for clothing and accessories? Alternatively, if you’ve been coveting a luxury item, browse the higher-end consignment sites to see if you can find it and splurge.
For sellers, take stock of the type of clothing and accessories in your wardrobe and match up to the above descriptions. If you have a target revenue goal, keep the commission rates in mind. So often, we have clothes or purses that sit in the back of our closet, collecting dust. If you aren’t going to use it (or haven’t in recent years)—why not make a little extra cash and know that it’s going to another happy home.
Good luck, shopping and selling!