Why Brands Need to Own Their Resale Channels or Risk Losing Out to Third-Party Resellers Like The RealReal and ThredUp

Recommerce is growing as more consumers look to “shop their values” and buy fewer, better things in order to lessen their consumption footprint. For retailers and brands, already under increasing pressure as more sales shift online, taking control of their own resale operations is one key to not being left behind.

In this episode, host Matt Rubel interviews Trove CEO Andy Ruben to find out how the circular economy will figure into holiday shopping this year and in the future. Trove powers circular shopping for leading brands such as Levi’s, Patagonia, REI, Arc’teryx, Eileen Fisher and Taylor Stitch. The company differs from third-party recommerce platforms by providing the technology and logistics that let brands control their own resale strategy, shopper experience and customer relationships, at scale.

Here are a few highlights from the conversation:

  • Brands are losing customers to third-party resale platforms like The RealReal and ThredUp. Consumers, especially younger ones, are shopping in different ways and brands can’t ensure their product integrity or control their customer relationships (or data) when their preowned goods are sold through an outside party.
  • Preowned gifts will be more popular than ever this holiday. Consumers concerned about sustainability are looking for circular economy options and purchasing preowned items as gifts is a trend that’s gaining momentum. This year, resale will give many a way to afford to gift aspirational brands that they wouldn’t be able to give otherwise.
  • Circular shopping is the fastest-growing segment in retail today. Already estimated to be worth approximately $30 billion, the US recommerce market is expected to double in the next five years, with resale accounting for the majority of those sales.
  • Resale is a great loyalty driver. For one popular premium outdoors brand, resale already accounts for 10% of its business. Branded resale, powered by Trove, lets the brand attract new customers who might not have otherwise made a purchase and turn those shoppers into lifelong loyalists who can bring an item back and get a gift card that they can then use for another preowned item or to upgrade to a full-price purchase.

To hear the rest of Andy’s insights on the circular economy and the benefits of branded resale, watch the full episode.