Posted by Alex Jackson on 4th Sep 2018
Consignment shops have gone mainstream to US consumers and the days of the upturned nose at the thought of second-hand merchandise is a thing of the past. It’s difficult to pinpoint a date or single factor for this change In US consumers opinion of consignment, but there is a lot of evidence that the recession of 2008 may have been the tipping point. For a few years’ budgets were tight, and consumers were looking for deals and also for some extra cash from their closets if possible. Ten years later with the recession in the past consumers still find themselves drawn to consignment stores for their unique mix of offerings and fantastic deals on clothing of every type. Consignment has been embraced by younger demographics for the environmentally friendly aspects of recycling clothing. There’s also clear evidence that some of the wealthiest consumers in the united states are not above shopping second hand either. The clothing resale website ThredUp in 2017 released some quite startling stats on the average income level of their shoppers with 21% reporting an annual income of 100k, 36% reporting income of $250k or greater and 10% reporting 1 million or greater.
Now that the stigma of buying secondhand merchandise has for the most part evaporated, the biggest problem consignment store owners face these days is sourcing merchandise. You have various options as a consignment store owner, you can source for more merchandise from your existing customer base and from various wholesalers who specialize in second-hand merchandise, but these methods are at best inconsistent. Getting your goods from your existing customers can be great as you can be very selective about the merchandise your taking in but it costs you time and effort, and the results can be mixed. Consumers tend to hang onto their best pieces and also have the tendency only to bring in either their worn to death items or last year’s fashion mistakes. There’s also the cost of buying these items outright to consider and the agony of calculating commissions for consignment sales. Buying second-hand clothing wholesale can be dicey as well. Your flying blind in most cases buying mixed loads of garments and paying by the pound in most cases, there’s some treasures to be had but an awful lot trash that ultimately costs you money. There is a third route that every consignment store owner needs to be aware of and capitalize on, and that is buying liquidation merchandise from a source like foxliquidation. There is no guesswork in what you are getting with manifested merchandise, and you are paying a fixed cost with no headache of buying item by item from a customer or calculating commission sales, these profits will be 100% yours.Consignment shops are also well positioned to capitalize on the heavily discounted category of customer return condition merchandise. These items are frequently missing tags and packaging which is a big deal to most retailers but not for consignment. Items with tags carry a bigger premium in a consignment environment and those with no tags or packaging well no big deal! Small stains can be easily cleaned up, and a great pair of heels with a little bit of wear and tear can still command a premium in a boutique consignment environment.
Consignment store owners or those considering opening their own boutique consignment shop need to realize that wholesale liquidation merchandise has a lot to offer to your business. It can be used as a primary or secondary source of goods and most important of all it gives you the right mix of goods without the guesswork or the headache of sourcing one item at a time or buying blind.