Selling pre-owned items is one of the hottest home business ideas of the moment. Many sellers are able to start with minimum investment, selling preloved items from around their homes while investing a portion of their profits into items they pick up from garage sales, thrift stores and flea markets.
Depop is a free smartphone app available to sellers in the U.S., UK and around the world. In a short period of time, Hazel has been able to generate an annual income of over $18,000 while going to college.
Tell us a little about yourself. What was your motivation to join Depop?
I am currently studying Graphic Design at Norwich University of the Arts and have an eye for all things quirky, from 80s film memorabilia to kitschy mugs and homewares. Previous to Depop, I was selling clothes on other platforms such as eBay, however, I became bored of the whole selling/bidding method and wanted to reach out to a different audience. Luckily, I heard about Depop and was so excited by the concept of being able to buy and sell through an app, from my pocket!
Please share your success on the site. It's my understanding you have been able to earn quite a bit so far.
I have been an active user on Depop since July last year and over time I have managed to earn quite a nice amount of money. I would say the busiest times of the year have been over the summer period to mid-autumn as this is when the car boot season (editor note: think flea market here in the US) is on and I, therefore, purchase a larger quantity of items due to the low prices, as opposed to charity shopping (US ex. thrift stores). I think my success has been down to the selection of stock I sell and the reasonable pricing. Furthermore, being on Depop the majority of the day means I respond to customers immediately, providing them with instant satisfaction.
What’s the process like getting an item listed on the site? What are the requirements?
The process required to list an item is super simple and takes less than two minutes! You can upload up to four photos per listing and can also add filters to enhance your images. The next step is writing a short yet detailed description while also selecting the Category and Size, this is a great way for users to filter their searches on the app. Next, you set your price and delivery method, having the option to post National and Worldwide can help attract more customers. And that’s it!
What’s the normal sale like in terms of making a sale and receiving payment?
The experience of making a sale is easy and secure. Users receive a payment via Paypal when an order is complete as well as a sale notification and email from Depop. After you’ve sold something it appears in the ‘Sold items’ list on your profile and each item has a receipt with the user's address and the option to add Tracking information.
Does the site take a commission of each sale or do you pay a flat listing fee?
The app is free to download and listing on Depop is completely free, however, they do take a 10% commission on each item you sell.
What tips do you have for those getting started on Depop?
When it comes to photographing your items, my top tip would be to shoot your photos in natural daylight as this portrays the item in its truest form and always looks professional. If possible, model the clothing so customers can gauge its fit and also take close up shots of details on the item. When it comes to user interaction and communication, replying to messages and comments as soon as possible is a top tip in keeping your customer interested! Using relevant hashtags will make your items more visible on searches and uploading items daily keeps your followers engaged. Another tip would be to list your items at a reasonable price if you want them to gain interest and sell quickly. Most of all just be really friendly and happy as this will leave a memorable impression on customers and will get you five-star reviews!
It's my understanding you have made the transition from selling items from your personal closet to become a successful reseller. Can you share with us a few of your favorite places to pick up items to resell? What do you look for when shopping for new items to list?
I started on Depop by selling my preloved clothing in the hope of downsizing my wardrobe and to earn some money before I started university. As previously mentioned, I used to resell items on other platforms/websites so I have an eye for what’s in fashion and what customers are looking for. I pick up the majority of my stock from car boot sales around my area and can visit up to five boot sales every weekend. Car boot sales are a fantastic way to source unique items and trendy clothing at a good price. During the week, I pop into charity shops to see if there are any cool objects to upload on to my Depop store.
When shopping for new items to list, I search for retro sportswear and other trendy garments which I know create a buzz on my page. I also keep an eye out for unique homewares, key chains, accessories, pin badges, cameras etc. which make my Depop store more diverse and interesting, while also attracting a different type of audience. Not only do I buy these kitsch trinkets to sell, but I personally, have always loved collecting unique treasures and memorabilia for my own use.
The thing I love about reselling is that items and clothing can get passed on from home to home where they’ll be re-loved again and again, this is what spurs me on to source the best products for my customers!
Tell us about your favorite programs or resources for getting started? Any must-have tools of the trade?
The great factor about Depop is that you don’t need to invest in a professional camera or equipment as all photographs can be taken using your mobile phone. This not only makes it super easy to use, but it also means anyone with a smartphone can do it! One thing I would suggest buying is mailing bags to post your items safely and securely. They are cheap to buy from places like eBay and come in a variety of sizes, they ensure that your items are packaged securely and are easy to address with a permanent marker. Apart from that, you’re good to go!