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All Things Shipping | September 9, 2021

Treet Guest Post: How to Own Your Secondhand Market with Recommerce

Do a quick Google search for any “[brand name] resale” or “[brand name] bst facebook” and you might be surprised at the  level of existing resale activity for your products. With the massive growth in BST (buy/sell/trade) Facebook groups and secondhand marketplaces like Poshmark, ebay, Tradesy, and Grailed, it’s no wonder your customers are flocking to these platforms to buy and sell your items. According to ThredUp’s recent 2021 report, resale is projected to grow 11x faster than retail to become a $77B market in the U.S. by 2025. Consumer shopping habits are rapidly changing and the good news is that brands are finally able to participate in the action.

Historically, setting up a recommerce or resale operation as an SMB e-commerce brand was a daunting and unattainable task. The overhead, logistics, and technology needed to implement recommerce effectively made it simply too costly to justify. Flash forward to today: with the emergence of end-to-end shipping platforms like Shippo, payment companies like Stripe, and resale platforms like Treet that tie it all together, we finally have the right tools at our disposal to enable recommerce for brands of any size.

While there are a handful of recommerce models out there, peer-to-peer resale where your customers can buy and sell from each other allows for the quickest implementation and the highest margins for you and your customers.

Here are the four steps to take to start owning your own secondhand market with peer-to-peer resale:

1) Understand your brand’s resale potential.

Before jumping headfirst into launching a recommerce experience, take a step back to understand whether resale is the right fit for your brand. Unsurprisingly, not all brands are great candidates for resale; the world probably isn’t ready for a peer-to-peer resale experience for used undergarments. 

Here are some questions you may want to consider:

  • How and where are my customers currently reselling my products? The best way to determine whether to incorporate resale is by identifying existing resale activity and deciding if capturing a percentage of these sales is appealing.
  • What’s the longevity of my products? If your items are designed to last several years or longer, the likelihood of resale working is higher.
  • What’s the resale activity like for my competition? If you’re a newer brand without a lot of items in circulation, research the secondhand activity of your competitors to see if there’s interest in reselling items like yours.

2) Get set up with a recommerce solution.

Companies like Treet can help you get set up with a dedicated and fully-branded recommerce site in a couple of weeks. The platform pulls in stock photos, descriptions, and original pricing from your main site so customers can list items directly from their order history or your product catalog. Treet handles all of the logistics, verification, disbursements, and customer support, while your brand gets revenue and customer data from each sale. 

Once an item is sold, Treet uses Shippo to automatically generate and send prepaid shipping labels to the sellers. Sellers have the choice to receive store credit back to your brand or a lesser value in cash, creating greater customer loyalty and LTV.

3) Seed your marketplace with listings.

Before going live, we always recommend seeding your site with listings so your earliest customers have options to purchase right away. This can be accomplished in a couple of ways:

  • Inventory on-hand. Do you have returned, unsold, sample sale, or slightly imperfect inventory lying around? This is a great place to start. Treet actually has a path for selling these types of items directly from your brand on the platform.
  • Invite your customers to list. Open the “sell” side of your site to invite your community to list their items in advance of the “buy” side going live. They’ll want to participate in the launch event to give their posts the most exposure.

4) Launch and incorporate recommerce in your customer journey.

When you’re ready to go live, you can promote your recommerce site just as you would a new product line. Give it proper promotional support across email, social, and homepage visibility to create the momentum it needs to get going. From there, you can weave it into your customer journey for maximum effectiveness. 

Make sure to add links to your recommerce site in all of the appropriate places on your site, like in the “shop” section. You can also set up emails to send out months after purchase to remind customers of the ease of re-selling through your official channel.

With just a bit of effort, your recommerce site will quickly become the go-to place for buying and selling your items secondhand.

This is a guest post by Jake Disraeli, the Co-Founder and CEO of Treet. Treet is a recommerce platform that helps e-commerce brands be more sustainable and increase customer loyalty through resale. They manage the entire experience from support through logistics while brands unlock a new revenue channel and access new customers from each sale. Leading brands like Boyish Jeans, Wolven, and Goodfair use Treet to achieve their sustainability and customer loyalty goals simultaneously.

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