The busiest shopping season is here, and with retailers struggling to keep up with holiday demand, people are buying and selling on resale apps more than ever before.
On OfferUp, we have 56 million yearly users posting amazing deals on everything from furniture to electronics to collectibles and even cars. This makes us uniquely positioned to figure out what it is that today's resale shopper is looking for this holiday season and beyond. And on the flip side, what secrets of the trade do our top sellers know that others might not?
So, we decided to take a deep dive into our shopping and selling data, and get feedback from our community of top buyers and sellers, to create a guide that covers everything from 2021's most notable resale and holiday trends, tips for buying and selling on resale marketplaces, and what's next for resale in 2022.
Why? Because if you are one of the millions of Americans shopping resale or considering doing so, we want to arm you with the information you need to find what you’re looking for and sell what you don’t.
And there's no better time to consider joining the resale economy. Our findings show that in 2022, 40% of secondhand shoppers plan to sell more on resale marketplaces than in 2021, and 1 in 3 admitted they would shop resale more than they did this year. This means it’s never too late to get started.
So, let's go shopping!
Vice President of Community, OfferUp
SHOPPERS TURN TO RESALE THIS HOLIDAY FOR IN-DEMAND ITEMS
‘Tis the season for holiday shopping, but inventory issues and shipping delays have shoppers bracing for a tough December. As a result, shoppers are turning to resale marketplaces like OfferUp to find what they need. Our survey of secondhand shoppers found that 1 in 4 will use a resale marketplace to shop for holiday gifts and decor this year.
Electronics (30%) in particular will be a major theme for shoppers this holiday, followed by furniture and home goods (20%) and clothing, shoes, and accessories (18%).
Another major theme this year? Early shopping.
On OfferUp, searches for holiday gifts began to spike in August got started as people began to shop earlier shopping this year.
Some of the most sought-after gifts people are searching for on OfferUp include Peloton, Pokemon cards, Yeezy shoes, Gen-Z favorite Squishmallows, Funko Pop! figures, and the PlayStation®5. The PlayStation®5 is so popular it was OfferUp’s second-most searched item for all of 2021.
If you have one of these notoriously hard-to-find items on your shopping list, we recommend turning to a resale marketplace like OfferUp for the chance to find a great deal in your neighborhood.
THE PANDEMIC-FUELED RESALE BOOM: 2021 YEAR IN REVIEW
Secondhand shopping isn’t only popular during the holiday season -- it’s popular all year round.
However, a global supply chain crisis made this a booming year for resale. So let’s take a look back at some of the biggest resale trends of 2021 so far.
RESALE GROWS STRONGER AS RETAIL SHORTAGES MAKE IT HARDER FOR BUYERS
As the pandemic disrupted America's supply chain, consumers turned to resale to help meet demand.
According to our findings, more than one-third (37%) turned to resale marketplaces in 2021 to find items in short supply at retailers, and more than half (56%) plan to continue turning to resale marketplaces for any shortages in 2022.
OFFERUP’S MOST POPULAR ITEMS AND BRANDS OF 2021
Electronics, furniture, and cars, in particular, were increasingly more expensive and hard to find. So it’s no surprise that these were some of the most-searched items on OfferUp this year.
Below is our definitive breakdown of the most popular items and brands on OfferUp in 2021. If you have any of these in your home or gathering dust in the back of your closet, now would be a great time to consider selling them on OfferUp.
RESALE TRENDS ACROSS AMERICA
Location, location, location. Just as seasonality affects what people are looking for, so does geography. Depending on where you live, specific items near you might be in higher demand than in other parts of the country.
Furniture has been particularly popular this year. Our 2021 Recommerce Report found that the furniture and home goods category was the fastest-growing resale category in 2020. Additionally, over two-thirds of American homes have secondhand home goods and furniture inside.
THE BEST TIMES TO BUY AND SELL
For everything there is a season, and the same is no different for the resale market. Taking advantage of popularity and seasonal interest is a great first step for those looking to buy or sell.
Here’s a look at some of the hottest buying and selling moments from the last year.
MOST PEOPLE SHOP RESALE FOR VALUE AND SAVINGS
Who is shopping resale? The short answer is: almost everyone.
People bought and sold on resale marketplaces this year more than ever, and while there are various reasons people choose to shop resale, our survey found that most people do so because they enjoy a good value and want to save money.
However, most resale shoppers are also known for their master negotiation skills. Buyers noted that the ability to bargain and negotiate is the second-most-popular reason why they shop secondhand. Convenience and the ability to find unique, rare, or limited edition items tied for third.
When it comes to buying and selling resale, the savings are real! In 2021, the majority of shoppers saved between $101 - $300. Some shoppers saw even more significant savings, with nearly 20 percent saving between $301 - $500 and 1 in 10 saving over $1,000!
But secondhand shopping is more than a way to save money; it’s also a great way to earn extra cash. In 2021, most people who sold items on resale marketplaces made between $101 - $300, with 1 in 5 making over $500. That’s not pocket money!
RESALE IS ALSO NEW ITEMS AND FREEBIES
Resale apps aren’t just for secondhand - they are also a great place to find brand new items from appliances to clothing to furniture and more.
Eighty-two percent of secondhand shoppers say they shop resale marketplaces for new items.
Don’t believe us? We asked our community members to let us know about the most fantastic new stuff they’ve found on OfferUp, and here is what they shared.
In addition to new items, our 56 million yearly users frequently post free items on the marketplace. Half of secondhand shoppers actively search for free items on resale marketplaces, with 10% of secondhand shoppers stating they “always” search for free items. So, next time you are considering throwing away an item you no longer need, consider listing it as a free item on OfferUp.
Here are a few of the best free finds our community members have found on OfferUp.
OUR BEST TIPS FOR BUYING SECONDHAND
Whether you are a seasoned pro or are just starting to consider buying on a resale marketplace, there are a few things you’ll want to keep in mind before browsing.
HOW TO BE A PRO-SELLER
According to our findings, the most important thing to a buyer is a seller's rating, followed by the listing price.
Any frequent resale shopper or seller will tell you that there are some tricks of the trade you learn along the way - and one of those is the terminology. Familiarizing yourself with common resale terms is one of the best ways to make your shopping and selling experience a breeze.
TRUST & SAFETY
At OfferUp, safety is our top priority and an essential consideration for anyone choosing to shop on a resale app.
OfferUp has prioritized features like TruYou identity verification, our designated Community MeetUp spots, and trusted partnerships with more than 2,000 local law enforcement agencies to help support safe transactions.
When buying and selling on resale apps, here are some more safety tips to consider:
Meet in a Sensible Location
Use Safetradespots.com to find a safe, well-lit, and well-crowded public location (not in your vehicle), and let a friend or family member know where you’re going.
Keep Your Personal Information Private
Never share your account info, password, phone number, or email address, and make sure to keep all communication in the OfferUp app.
Trust Your Gut
Do your research on both the item and the seller, and trust your gut if something doesn’t feel right. Your safety should always take precedence over a good bargain.
Items Bought and Sold Through Resale Will Continue To Increase In 2022
2021 was a defining year for resale, but according to our findings, 2022 is poised to break those records with secondhand shoppers saying they plan to buy or sell on resale marketplaces more than they did last year.
Forty percent of secondhand shoppers plan to sell on resale marketplaces more than they did in 2021, and 1 in 3 will shop resale more than they did in 2021.
This is OfferUp’s first Guide to Buying & Selling On Resale Apps and includes internal marketplace data of more than 56 million yearly users, a survey of 1,612 OfferUp users (conducted between October 14-19, 2021), and insights from OfferUp's 2021 Recommerce Report.