The Consumer Behind Fashion’s Growing Secondhand Market

The global secondhand market is predicted to grow by a CAGR of 15% to 20%

Secondhand consumption is largely driven by consumers’ desires for affordability, selection availability, and sustainability

Customer segmentation is key to understanding secondhand commerce

PARIS, Oct. 20, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Vestiaire Collective, the leading global community platform for desirable preowned fashion, and Boston Consulting Group have partnered for the second year running to release a new survey, The Consumers Behind Fashion’s Growing Secondhand Market, exploring the evolving dynamics of the global resale market. The survey—of 7,000 individuals from six countries—reveals the diverse customer attitudes and behaviors of its respondents, the growing importance of sustainability—among other drivers—in driving the resale boom, and some of the ways luxury brands can benefit from the growing resale market.

Vestiaire Collective x BCG: The Consumer Behind Fashion’s Growing Secondhand MarketVestiaire Collective x BCG: The Consumer Behind Fashion’s Growing Secondhand Market
Vestiaire Collective x BCG: The Consumer Behind Fashion’s Growing Secondhand Market

The resale market is currently estimated to be worth $30 to $40 billion, with the market predicted to grow by a CAGR of 15% to 20% globally over the next 5 years, and even higher in developed markets, which could see a 100% YoY growth. The expansion is being driven by an increase in the number of customers starting to buy secondhand and by the number of secondhand pieces consumers are purchasing. Combined, these developments are leading to a share of secondhand clothing in people’s closets that is predicted to grow from 21% in 2020 to 27% in 2023. 

Accelerated Consumer Trends

Although affordability, selection availability, and item uniqueness have contributed to the growing popularity of the secondhand market, the survey reveals that consumers’ mounting environmental concerns are also contributing to the secondhand market’s growth. This shift has been further accelerated by the pandemic, with 70% of respondents in 2020 saying they feel compelled to shop for preowned goods in an effort to become more sustainable, compared with 62% in 2018. 

A Thriving Secondhand Market Drives Sustainable Consumption

The survey also reveals shoppers’ wants: to own fewer, better pieces; to reduce overconsumption; and to take better care of what’s in their closets. The presence of a thriving preowned market encourages all three goals.

  • The Upscale Effect: “Buy Fewer, Better Items.”
    85% of preowned buyers participate to reduce overconsumption by trading up fast fashion to fewer, higher-quality, longer-lasting items.

  • The Durability Boost: “Take Greater Care of My Things.”
    70% of fashion consumers say that the existence of a secondhand market encourages them to take better care of the items they own.

  • The Circular Life Cycle.
    60% of sellers would have not given a second life to their pieces without the secondhand market.

Customer Segmentation Is Key to Understanding Engagement in the Secondhand Market

Looking beyond general preferences, the report also identifies six consumer segments, each with distinct attitudes and behaviors, representing the various ways in which participants engage with the secondhand market. The analysis offers valuable insights to help brands better understand the shoppers of today and tomorrow, which will also be useful in recognizing how secondhand consumers may evolve

Consumer Survey Shows Just How Dramatically COVID-19 Has Transformed Holiday Shopping This Year

SAN JOSE, Calif.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–One out of every three consumers has lied or bent the rules in order to obtain free or discounted products from online retailers, a Signifyd survey of 1,500 U.S. consumers has found.

Consumers also said they will avoid shopping in stores this holiday season because of the threat of COVID-19, with 54.5% telling pollsters they will limit store visits as much as possible and 22.9% saying they will not shop in brick-and-mortar stores at all.

Instead, consumers will turn to options such as curbside pickup, which is growing in popularity as the pandemic drags on. More than 34% of respondents said they would rely more heavily on curbside service and 41.5% said they’d be turning to its better-established cousin, buy online, pick up in store.

The survey findings provide a warning sign for retailers as they move into the most crucial selling season of the year: A significant number of consumers have no qualms about taking advantage of merchants and many others expect new and safer ways to buy their gifts and goods.

Seven months of living with the pandemic has dramatically altered consumers’ shopping behavior and sense of fair play when it comes to their relationships with online retailers. In fact, the survey found that:

  • 40.3% of consumers said they had sought a refund from their credit card companies for a charge on their bill that they falsely claimed was fraudulent.
  • 33.2% of consumers admitted to seeking a refund by falsely claiming that an ordered package never arrived or that an item was unsatisfactory in order to keep the product and a refund.
  • 30.5% of consumers acknowledged violating discount or promotion rules by, for instance, claiming to be a “first-time buyer” or using a one-time-only discount more than once.

“It’s disheartening to see the extent to which some consumers are willing to take advantage of merchants who have shown such resilience in the face of massive disruption caused by COVID-19,” Signifyd CEO Raj Ramanand said. “Fortunately, we have the solutions and expertise to turn back these forms of digital shoplifting and we continue to innovate to protect retail enterprises every day.”

Survey respondents also indicated that COVID-19 has changed the way they will shop in both the short-term and the long-term. This holiday season they will be spending less, shopping online more and paying close attention to the measures taken to keep them safe from COVID-19 in brick-and-mortar stores. For instance, more than three quarters of respondents said they would shop only in stores where employees and customers are required to wear face masks.

Moreover, a number of the habits being established in the pandemic will last long after the holiday and COVID-19. Nearly 80% of respondents said they expected to be shopping differently a year from now than they were a year ago.

The Signifyd survey was conducted by market researcher Upwave from Sept. 3 through Sept. 16. For more on the survey, visit the Signifyd Blog.

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