Here’s how small businesses can benefit

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The biggest new trend in retail isn’t that new at all: it’s resale.

Etsy’s recent acquisition of Depop for $ 1.6 billion puts it together. Attracting a conscious consumer increasingly concerned with fast fashion, it has become one of the biggest changes in retailing in recent years, with a new global report from market research firm GlobalData finding that the second-hand clothing market is growing 11 times. faster than traditional retail, and its value is estimated to more than double that of fast fashion, at $ 84 billion by 2030 (while fast fashion is expected to be worth around $ 40 billion in the same time).

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It is therefore not surprising that retail giants at all levels of the market are strengthening their position in resale: Gucci recently launched a luxury consignment online store, ASOS has invested in luxury resale and authorizes second-hand clothing in its ASOS Marketplace. , and Levi’s also launched its own resale site, Levi’s Secondhand.

Offering circularity, reduced waste and access to discounted clothing, resale ticks many boxes for today’s consumer – and trend reports prove it. With large companies getting into the act, is it time for small businesses to join the growing trend as well?

Whether it’s starting a resale business or adding circularity to an existing business model, many small businesses are embracing this trend.

Integrate resale into a small business model

Some small businesses are already adding reselling to their existing business model, similar to Levi’s and Gucci.

British luxury clothing brand Mignonnette London, founded by Joon Rajkovic and specializing in timeless, elegant dresses and slow fashion, recently launched a circular element in their business. ‘Mignonnette Reimagined’ is a new program through which the brand will offer you to buy back your old Mignonnette London dress, in exchange for credits to be allocated to a new one: to retain long-standing customers, while supporting the ethical values ​​of the brand.

New small business resale platforms

Other small businesses are launching their own resale platforms. Anne-Marie Tomchak, former digital director of Vogue and founder and CEO of sustainability technology company DesignTracker, also co-founded the ShareJoy fashion association. The platform allows users to donate their old clothes for resale, with the profits going to charity. Tomchak founded ShareJoy at the start of the lockdown to raise funds for mental health.

“The reason we chose to launch a resale platform is that there are literally tens of millions of pounds of clothing lying dormant in people’s wardrobes. We noticed that donations to charities had declined, despite an increase in demand for mental health services. We therefore wanted to use the existing resources of the circular economy to help the third sector. Our mantra is: “What’s in your wardrobe has the power to transform lives,” says Tomchak.

Tomchak also noticed a significant change in people’s attitude towards second-hand clothing: “The fashion industry is notorious for creating an appetite for new things. But our definition of what “new” means is changing. Now, a new outfit could come from rental or resale. There has been a big shift in consumer opinions towards a totally revolutionized resale. ”

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“We don’t try to preach, we try not to dictate what’s in fashion so that people can express themselves through clothes,” she adds.

The cutting edge technology behind resale

In addition to changing consumer behavior, resale is becoming more accessible for small businesses as the technology behind it improves.

ShareJoy, for example, uses Depop to sell – a great example of how this huge platform helps small businesses build resale businesses, as well as be used by individuals.

Tony McGurk, president and co-founder of Cryptocycle, uses blockchain technology to help track all items, including clothing, throughout their lifecycle.

Using an NFC tag that looks like a button, the life and journey of a garment can be tracked. The label itself is inexpensive (under £ 1) and can allow any business, large or small, to provide a clear account of how an item of clothing is made and subsequently used. For example, when an item of clothing is donated to a charity store, it can be tracked and means the consumer may be offered rewards for a new item of clothing from the brand.

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This is a new way for small businesses to easily add resale circularity into their business model, using a white label application, while also aiming to give back control of circularity to the customer.

With the boom in the resale industry, it makes sense that the infrastructure to facilitate is also growing at a rapid pace. While the future is never certain, you can always expect these advancements to follow where the money is – growing the market even more. The resale industry is circular in more than one way – it seems like there is no better time for small, sustainable businesses to join the growing market.


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