Are you looking to start or grow your business in the second-hand clothes market? We can understand why. Valued at more than a trillion USD, the apparel market is thriving and projected to grow significantly by 2025.
Some entrepreneurs are torn between top reseller marketplaces when deciding on the best platform to start their selling journey. A popular subject of debate in the clothing market is whether Depop is better than Poshmark or vice versa. If you're on the fence and can't decide between the two, then you've come to the right place.
To decide which platform is best for your business, you need to consider several factors, including the established user base, fees, shipping costs, and more. To help you out, we've compared Depop vs. Poshmark, comparing each platform's strengths and weaknesses.
Differences in customer base
Understanding a selling platform's customer base helps the sellers understand the demand and price range of the items to be sold. While Depop and Poshmark serve the same general purpose, each platform attracts different age groups and personas. As a seller, gaining an insight into the nature of the buyers each forum appeals to is crucial to running a profitable business.
Poshmark's customer base
Poshmark's customers are limited to North America, specifically the US and Canada. The platform mainly offers clothing items, fashion products, and luxury goods. Most of the products sold on Poshmark are higher-end fashion pieces, including both second-hand purchases and brand new pieces.
Poshmark's customer base primarily consists of millennials interested in finding mid to high-end fashion pieces. So, sellers listing items from Zara, Coach, Banana Republic, Madewell, Free People, and Anthropologie are in demand. Several listings on Poshmark also offer luxury goods from famous fashion houses like Yves Saint Laurent, Chanel, and Gucci. Millennials are also the biggest customers of used items, which is why platforms like Poshmark are so appealing to them.
Depop's customer base
Depop is a platform used by both younger Millennials and Gen Z. As of 2019, around 90% of the app's users reported to be under 26 years of age. Depop is used globally and has found a niche market selling limited edition products, rare and vintage items, and designer clothing.
Many consumers consider Depop a thrift store of sorts. Thus, sellers offering products from popular brands and stores like Doc Martens, Levis Jeans, or Urban Outfitters generally enjoy a steady sales and revenue stream.
Depop is also particularly favored by Instagram and TikTok influencers who want to sell items from their closet.
Most online marketplaces charge a certain percentage from the sellers in exchange for listing their products on the platform and using its features. Commission fees vary from platform to platform, depending on their business model and what they offer.
For example, some platforms charge a higher percentage because their global reach empowers faster business growth. Other platforms charge lower fees to help sellers increase earnings and create a space for businesses to grow.
Poshmark commission fee
Poshmark has a simple system in place to charge sellers commission fees. It divides the collectible commission into two distinctive categories: if the item sold is above vs. below $15.
For all products sold under $15, Poshmark charges a fixed amount of $2.95. The fee charged is to facilitate the sellers in setting a reasonable price net of the commission and shipping fees.
In contrast, items sold for over $15 are subject to a 20% commission fees charge. The percentage remains fixed for all items above $15, regardless of their price range or brand. A 20% charge may seem a little excessive, but the overall costs add up to far less than what sellers might pay other platforms, such as PayPal.
Plus, the percentage benefits sellers significantly, as Poshmark doesn't charge additional payments. This structure means Poshmark doesn't have extra charges like PayPal fees, a cash-out payment charged by the platform, or listing fees.
Depop commission fees
Depop's commission fees are a low 10%, regardless of the listing price, which is partly why the platform is such an attractive option to sellers. However, unlike Poshmark, Depop charges you additional fees.
Depop payment fees include 3.4% + £0.30 for all its UK and EU sellers, whereas the US sellers are charged 2.9% + $0.30 on each payment. This variability can make profit margins harder to calculate.
When determining the listing price for a product, you need to factor in the shipping fees as they directly affect your bottom line. Some orders incur exceptionally high shipping fees, so you can end up with a thin profit margin if shipping fees aren't factored into the price. If you're charging buyers outright for the shipping fees, you may need to list products at a lower cost to encourage customers to buy.
Poshmark shipping fees
Poshmark partners with USPS to provide expedited shipping on all orders weighing 5 pounds or below at a flat rate of $7.45. The buyer mainly incurs the shipping charges, but there are options available to the seller, where they may offer a discount on shipping or completely free shipping.
In this case, you end up footing the build for the shipping costs. Poshmark's flat rate charges may seem like a lot, but the fee is quite generous for bundle offers and heavier items (as long as they're below 5 pounds).
Depop shipping fees
Depop lets sellers manage deliveries through in-app shipping, which USPS facilitates in the United States. Alternatively, you can arrange for shipping through the local post office or a third-party provider.
For in-app shipping through USPS, sellers can ship items within mainland USA, starting at a flat rate of $3.75 for items weighing less than 0.25 pounds. Depop can end up costing you more on shipping fees than Poshmark, given the rate per pound. The platform advises sellers to be careful about shipping fees as they're dependent on the item's exact weight.
Poshmark offers complete seller protection and requires a signature for deliveries of over $400.
Depop seller protection is offered through PayPal and is only valid if the purchase was made using the seller's PayPal account.
Poshmark ambassador programs help sellers gain visibility, and virtual parties are offered for marketing events. There are also opportunities for Poshmark sellers to submit their listings to the editorial team to be featured on the Poshmark website.
Unfortunately, Depop doesn't offer similar marketing opportunities.
Summarizing pros and cons
Poshmark and Depop are both popular competing platforms that offer attractive benefits and come with some cons to watch out for. There isn't a designated "best" of the two, but you can assess the pros and cons and determine which platform suits your needs better.
- Poshmark is easy to get started with - even beginners have a decent chance of getting their listings noticed. You don't need professional photographs to be successful.
- You can view previously sold listings to conduct market research, find your target audience, and grow your customer base.
- Poshmark is suitable for selling a mix of used products, mid to high-end brands, and luxury pieces.
- You can request to have your products featured to increase visibility.
- Sellers can't message buyers directly.
- Poshmark has higher seller fees for items listed over the price of $15. The platform charges 20%.
- There are limited sizes available beyond size 18 - plus sizes aren't the platform's strong suit.
- The platform only caters to the US and Canada.
- Depop facilitates two-way communication; you can directly message prospects and answer any questions they have.
- The seller fee is lower than what competitors like Poshmark charge. Depop only charges 10% of the listing price.
- You can take your pick of either paying for shipping yourself or charging customers.
- Depop is a global platform available worldwide.
- For each listing, you can only pick four photos to add to the gallery. The bar for high-quality product photography is higher on Depop.
- Visuals matter a lot. You need to come up with original, high-quality content to stand out.
- Since you have to manage payments via Stripe or Paypal, the seller must foot the transaction fees.
- Customers aren't too generous when they make offers on Depop - so you'll end up rejecting quite a few lowball offers.
- Depop doesn't offer additional marketing opportunities to improve listing visibility.
Depop vs. Poshmark: which is best?
Honestly, it depends. Both resale apps provide the same base services, offering an opportunity to sell products at a reasonable price and build a loyal clientele within a peer-to-peer marketplace.
However, Poshmark and Depop offer their own set of pricing structures and host different customer bases. Sellers need to compare the costs of each reselling app to determine which one is better suited to their needs. They will also need to consider the target demographics for their products, as Poshmark and Depop cater to slightly different crowds.
If you're a new seller looking to enter the online selling arena, you need to consider all the points in the Depop vs. Poshmark debate.
Depop caters to a much younger customer base worldwide, allowing sellers to reach a more youthful, geographically wider audience. Additionally, with a focus on the right fashion trends, sellers can potentially enjoy more significant earnings.
Poshmark's targeted demographic is mostly millennials interested in mid to high-end products. So, if you're targeting 25 to 40 years olds with the nostalgic Y2K era or vintage clothing, Poshmark might be the right choice.
Additionally, even though Depop is used worldwide, the total user base is only 13 million (in 2019) compared to Poshmark's reach of 30 million users in the United States and Canada.
Buyers on Poshmark look for products from renowned brands with signature streetwear such as Nike, Adidas, Victoria's secret, and more, so if you're in the market selling products from mid to popular high-end brands, Poshmark might be your best bet. The platform also benefits from no hidden Poshmark fees, while Depop’s fees require more careful calculation.
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Poshmark and Depop are both leading platforms for a reason - they offer sellers great value and can help you make a name in the apparel market. However, the two platforms cater to different customer bases, and their pricing models and services vary significantly.
To determine which platform is better, first, assess your brand's needs and consider what features can help engage your audience better. For example, is messaging vital to drive sales with your prospects? Then you might need Depop's direct messaging features. On the other hand, if you're looking to avoid complicated fee structures, then Poshmark might be the way to go.
The apparel market offers tons of potential for high earnings, but the platform you pick can significantly affect your bottom line. So, be sure to weigh the pros and cons before settling on a platform.