The Rise of Secondhand E-Commerce and Marketplaces

Adnan Umar
5 min readAug 8, 2022


In only the beyond two years, the retail landscape has gone through an intense transformation with COVID-19 setting off an exodus to eCommerce without any signs of slowing down.

As indicated by Statista, all-out global eCommerce sales for the following four years are projected to develop by half, with a gauge of US $7.4 trillion by 2025.

In any event, for the most digitally adroit businesses, in any case, the test of scaling upward remains with regard to eCommerce. Reports show that inside the United States, more than 90% of eCommerce storefronts earn under $1 million in annual revenue, notwithstanding the barriers to passage remaining low for new players.

One common theme we see is that many organizations are not successfully connecting the dots between emerging eCommerce trends and the pandemic.

For instance, the current wave of “re-commerce,” or secondary resale, is driven primarily by global supply chain obstacles that have caused shortages of new products and broadened delays for restocking. Moreover, eCommerce marketplace sales in the United States soared in 2020, with 45% growth in the beginning phases of the pandemic.

As we reach the halfway point in 2022, organizations should keep alert and aware as fresher eCommerce trends assume control over the market.

To keep a steady growth trajectory, the best brands remain cognizant of these progressions and are fluid in moving their business strategy.

Driving B2C with secondhand approaches

The concept of buying secondhand is a long way from new to those acquainted with thrifting for garments or examining local flea markets. The pre-owned industry overall, in any case, has begun to dominate online spaces, particularly as the pandemic reshaped how the typical consumer valued utilized products during seasons of low supply.

Inside the context of high shopping periods, this scarcity translated to the north of 6 billion “out-of-stock” messages during the 2021 holiday season, a 253% increase in notifications compared to pre-pandemic conditions.

According to a company perspective, it has become financially advantageous to invest in the pre-owned segment across different industries.

As per an exceptionally well-known secondhand apparel firm, its annual resale report expresses that the global market for thrift fashion is on an accelerated trajectory, expecting tripled growth by 2026 compared to the regular dress market. In the automotive industry, involved vehicles in Ireland are selling for above retail, with a cost increase of half starting from the start of the pandemic.

Furthermore, consumers are additionally reaping the advantages of resale, with new roads opening for the typical individual to sell their pre-owned merchandise online. The latest Recommerce Report from eBay, which reviewed individuals from the US and a few European nations, revealed that 75% of respondents began selling secondhand to lay out another revenue source.

The other essential inspiration driving the pre-owned industry is the increased accentuation on advancing the round economy through manageable practices. Particularly in the fashion industry, Gen Z and twenty to thirty-year-olds are noticing the underlying natural results of inefficiency and need to counter it. As a matter of fact, they will venture to such an extreme as to get down on organizations that participate in this way of behaving.

For developing organizations that need to take a supportability point with resale, it’s basic to expand these activities past qualities based informing. In this season of uplifted awareness, more youthful consumers are more ecologically cognizant and will determinedly research which brands they need to help, regardless of whether they are freely marketed as secondhand or “pre-cherished.”

By and large, the interest for utilized merchandise will probably persevere past current supply chain issues, particularly as Gen Z and millennial consumers drive secondhand buying to decrease the ecological effect. Shippers should be purposeful with how they integrate resale into their business model, particularly since manageability and responsibility assume a key part in how organizations are seen.

The rise of online marketplaces

Given the previous context around resale, it is nothing unexpected that online marketplaces are filling in as a significant unique piece for an assortment of purchaser vendor connections. Online marketplace sales represented 67% of all global eCommerce in 2021, with a sum of $3.23 trillion spent in the best 100 marketplaces. It might try and be that you have bought something from an online marketplace like Amazon or eBay.

In its easiest structure, an online marketplace can measure up to a customary retail chain. Both act as stages to offer products from various brands. Outsiders and businesses often offer through marketplaces to open their items to a more extensive crowd, while consumers prefer marketplaces for the comfort of one-quit shopping and the capacity to compare costs between comparative products.

Moreover, marketplaces give merchants liquidity, which creates a reasonable assumption for vendors to find purchasers and for purchasers to find the products they look for. To help this cooperation, organizations like Airbnb are intended to coordinate and combine lodging facilities given by merchants, as opposed to offering up their own real bequest like a customary inn chain.

Airbnb’s prosperity is subject to its capacity to share data with consumers as effective inquiry customization and then again interface with likely voyagers. Since liquidity works in the two directions, everybody benefits from the marketplace model when supply and request are adjusted well.

As referenced before, the pre-owned industry is encountering huge growth, and online marketplaces are filling in as a significant driver of sales.

For instance, Vestaire Collective, a forerunner in the apparel resale space, is an online global fashion company that uses the marketplace model successfully to have a huge repository of very good quality, secondhand dresses.

In particular, Vestaire has realized that liquidity is urgent to a marketplace’s prosperity and uses innovation to keep trouble spots out of the purchaser dealer condition. In doing as such, the fashion company is profoundly well known and fills in as an ideal example of overcoming adversity for organizations hoping to mix resale with the marketplace model.

Rather than making a fast change to marketplaces, nonetheless, organizations ought to consider how online marketplaces can help launch or expand upon an omnichannel approach.

As per a report, consumers anticipate that organizations should tailor their client experience consistently both online and in-store. What’s more, they expect self-administration features like live hunt that reduce the number of obstacles to reaching the checkout.

For businesses that are more up-to-date with eCommerce, marketplaces might act as an optimal beginning stage, whereas digitally local brands can see marketplaces as a sensible following stage in retail extension.

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Adnan Umar

BIZSOL Technologies LLC

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