Recommerce is a commerce model of selling used and previously owned goods. This category includes thrifting, Facebook marketplace, eBay, craigslist, and more. Chances are you are pretty familiar with recommerce. Most of us already engage with the model, whether we know it or not.
Propelled by the internet, the recommerce industry has revolutionized over and over again in the passing decades. Today, our buying habits shift and adapt for various reasons and we can find so much of what we want and need on the internet – lightly used and resold by someone ready to pass things along. Here’s a guide to wade through the choppy waters of these changes today.
Why The Recommerce Revolution Is Awesome
It’s no surprise that recommerce is a thriving model today – it lines up with many people’s values.
Often, recommerce is more cost-effective. Frugal, strategic spenders know that they can save a lot of money by investing in items that are slightly used instead of brand new. Expensive items such as cars and laptops come to mind right away, of course. But clothes, books, furniture, and cooking appliances are popular recommerce items as well.
Additionally, our societal shift towards green economies, sustainable living, and renewable resources are reflected in our shopping habits. Recommerce lines up with this ethos in a big way, and people’s habits reflect that. In buying used products, people’s consumption habits can better align with their values. Buying something used can reduce that item’s carbon footprint by 82% – that is a striking difference!
And with the possibilities of the internet, recommerce has never been easier. Using a trusted platform, you are able to connect with individuals all over the world. You can find a rare vinyl LP in another country, you can buy vintage sunglasses, and you can stock up on recycled fabric. Really, people are only limited by their imaginations when it comes to recommerce today. The web is an incredible connective force that transcends borders, oceans, generations, and language.
Aspects Of Recommerce To Consider
The recommerce revolution transforms our lives. As it does, there are aspects to consider that promote safety and security in an era of hacked passwords and porch pirates. This should guide your recommerce habits.
Safety Of Products
With recommerce, you have to do your research.
Whether in person at a thrift store or surfing the web, adequate education on a product and a seller’s reputation can save you money and heartache. And in the case of certain products, it’s a major safety concern to ensure that what you are buying is safe to have in your home.
The best ways to stay safe with recommerce are to use trusted platforms and read reviews of the site and the seller. If buying online but picking up in person, do so in a public area with a friend or family member accompanying you. Have an understanding of what you are purchasing and the functionality of the product.
Security Of Delivery
Once you’ve covered the basic safety needs of recommerce exchanges, you can move on to good security practices to make sure the hand-off of used products goes smoothly. Most often, the onus falls on you as the consumer to take the proper steps to protect yourself.
If you can, use a platform that has seller protections in place. Such things exist on sites like Depop and eBay. As a buyer, make sure to send payments through the app. A request for direct bank transfers is a red flag to be wary of.
And then, of course, there is the last mile problem – a quandary that has stumped the shipping industry forever and is a problem that applies to recommerce deliveries in addition to other shipping needs.
Luckily, there are ways to tackle this and minimize the opportunities for miscommunications and mishandling of products. Smart lockers are growing in popularity as a secure delivery location within a community. The same goes for apps and courier services that allow customers to tailor delivery time and location to their specific needs. Just because recommerce isn’t for “new” items, doesn’t mean that these deliveries aren’t critical. As the recommerce revolution continues to explode into our world and changes consumer habits, these factors will guide your purchases and deliveries to be more successful and efficient. You’ll be saving money, time, and the planet. This is an awesome combination for everyone.