Resale: an opportunity for the future
Even before the Covid-19 pandemic, the need for change in the fashion industry was already under discussion, since it is the second-most-polluting industry in the world. Over the past few years, it has become increasingly clear that sustainability is not an abstract concept, a passing trend, or a sector niche, but a new business model that has come to stay and transform the market.
Resale has become a vast example of a sustainable business model. They prolong the product life cycle and postpone the impact created by fast fashion and new items' unrestrained production. Especially appealing to the young consumer – not only due to the sustainability factor but also reduced prices, the fashion resale market was valued at $28bn in 2019 and is expected to reach $64bn by 2024 (ThreadUp).
Buying used products (in thrift stores, for example) was once practiced by a niche group of consumers who were mainly looking for vintage pieces, but today it is becoming an increasingly attractive option for different groups with different motivations. According to ThreadUp, 62 million women purchased a secondhand product in 2019, and 82% of consumers surveyed are willing to do so.
In the booming resale market, fashion brands have an opportunity to rethink how to serve consumers, generate a new source of income, and solve one of the biggest problems in the industry: waste, and the disposal of fast fashion. So, consider promotional activities and incentives for the return and resale of product, offering credit or discounts on new items, or forge partnerships with specialized resale platforms.
Also remember to make your cleaning protocols and quality assurance for these products very clear. Encouraging the proper care of the pieces you sell is the first step to the consumer valuing each item more, keeping it for longer.