Zalando starts offering second-hand clothing: customers will be able to ‘sell’ their worn items via the platform, but instead of receiving any money in return, they will receive a gift certificate or a donation to a charity.
Redeem for new
From now on, consumers in Germany and Spain will be able to buy and sell second-hand from Zalando. From the beginning of October, customers in Belgium, the Netherlands, France and Poland will also be able to do so. Customers can automatically register items they have purchased from Zalando for sale, but can also upload items they have purchased elsewhere.
“The launch of Zalando Pre-owned is a milestone in the company’s journey to become the starting point for fashion,” says the company. Rival Asos has had a second-hand department for some time, and other major fashion players, including H&M Group, are now focusing on pre-owned fashion as well. Unlike many other second-hand retailers, Zalando does not link a sustainability story to the initiative. The idea is mainly that customers can exchange pieces they no longer wear for new items.
“The interest in pre-owned fashion is great and growing, especially with millennials. We know that our customers like to make room in their closets by giving their items a second life and exchanging them for something new. And yet, customers miss an easy and reliable solution that combines everything: effortless exchange of items they no longer want to wear and a pleasant experience when shopping ‘pre-owned’ fashion online. Zalando is the first fashion platform that answers these customer needs on a large scale,” says Jacintha De Graaf, Head of Zalando Benelux.
However, Zalando does not want to risk cannibalisation, nor does it intend to let people make money from their second-hand sales: whoever sells something can either donate the amount to a charity (there is a choice between the Red Cross and WeForest) or receive a gift certificate from Zalando worth the amount sold. On the other hand, Zalando provides its logistics services, with free shipping, all payment options and free returns. The online retailer also promises to check and monitor the second-hand offer itself.