Why brands should get involved in re-commerce, according to Recurate

A new report from Recurate has highlighted the growing consumer popularity of resale, thrift and vintage shopping. In the report, titled ‘Circular Fashion is Now’, the resale platform outlined the results of a survey it conducted with 1,000 adults in the US and Canada, with additional data from a further 11 markets curated from GlobeScan’s 2021 Healthy and Sustainable Living survey.

According to the resale platform, 74 percent of people across the global re-trade already shop, most of which are in Australia, Canada and the US, with mid-price brands being the most favored by both sellers and buyers.

Of those who resold clothes, sustainability was not a main factor. 23 percent of respondents said they sold because parts were unused, while only 15 percent said it was because it was good for the environment. Meanwhile, for shoppers, the motivation was mostly to save money, with sustainability taking third place on the list.

In its report, Recurate highlighted a prominent customer in the resale space that it called “Circulars,” defined as the 73 percent of resale sellers who also did resale. The platform described the group as “young, urban, high income” and highlighted the motivation behind their behavior of frequently refreshing their wardrobes. It added that 48 percent of the group bought with the intention of reselling.

What is there to win?

The main advantage of re-commerce, according to Recurate, is the ability to attract new customers without producing more products. Across all segments surveyed, trying a new brand was a prominent motivator for resale purchases, with 85 percent of the “Circular” group also saying they would try a new brand if resale was offered. In addition, seven out of 10 people in the survey said they shopped or sold clothes in love at least once every two to three months.

A brand-led re-commerce model also gives shoppers flexible shopping options, low prices to try a brand and the ability to shop and sell in one place. Furthermore, the report stated that 75 percent of repeat shoppers said they would be more loyal to brands with resale opportunities, while 47 percent said they would return within a month to shop again.

How to get involved

Brands looking to adopt a re-commerce model need to give both sellers and buyers motivation to participate, the report said, with 62 percent of respondents saying they felt brands could do more to help them participate in re-trade. To make re-commerce a good loop, Recurate added, brands need to streamline the process for merchants through easy resale options, return programs or digital IDs for products.

For sellers, the biggest tipping point for participating was making back up to half of the original price on resale, while 64 percent said they wanted to sell items individually rather than in bulk to earn more value per item.

But while value for money was the main motivation for many, sustainable living remained an important element, with 71 per cent of buyers saying they cared about their impact on the planet. “Consumers’ desire to reduce environmental impact is high across the board,” the report said. “And this desire is increasingly influencing their lifestyle and purchasing decisions.”

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