A month ago, my sister introduced me to the world of online thrift shopping. She had become obsessed with live auctions on Instagram and would go on and on about how much these people were making off such a small investment. It had me wondering how long did it take for these people to make a career out of selling thrifted clothing online. Some of them make hundreds of thousands of dollars a year. And while that is extremely few and far between, many others have made this their main (or only) income source. So, with a $40 investment at Goodwill and a trash bag of old clothes, I decided to give it a shot. I am by no means an Instagram live auctioneer and have already tried my hand on Etsy a time or two, so Depop seemed to be the obvious route.
I will be honest with you; until a month ago, I hadn’t heard of Depop. I think the best way to describe it is Instagram and eBay had a Gen Z baby. I love it! You post up to four pictures and one video followed by a description of the item and up to five hashtags so shoppers can find your items. It’s extremely simple, but there are a few crucial elements, I’ve found, in getting your item sold.
There are a lot of varieties of pictures on Depop. Some people prefer to model their items, some take pictures outside with the item in the grass, some hang the items, some photoshop backgrounds; there’s a lot going on. What I found I gravitated toward, when looking at items, are the ones that aren’t being modeled. For whatever reason, it made it feel more like an instagram page showing off the outfit than someone trying to sell it to me. Obviously, that is my personal opinion, many people love being able to see the pieces on before they purchase them. What I’ve found on Depop is the trendier the picture is, the better. As opposed to someplace like eBay where you want to show every aspect of the garment and have a detailed description. With Depop, all you have to do is a front view, back view, the size tag if you can or want, and a general description with the brand, color, size, and hashtags. But, people rely on picture quality. If they want more information, they will message you. I’ve had someone message me to post more pictures of a pair of boots to make sure what she was ordering was what she wanted. Pictures are everything on Depop.
Again, very similar to Instagram, hashtags are what get your item found. However, unlike Instagram, you only get five in every post. So, deciding on the right tags are important. I’ve found that tagging celebrities, movies, decades, or trends can help you reach a bigger audience than just tagging the brand or type of clothing.
Discounts and sales
Running a sale on Depop is pretty easy, they do all the work for you. Items have to be in your store for 10 days or more before they can be discounted and you can run discounts from 5-50% off on the whole store or select items. This is a great way to get a little more business and, if you stay in the 10-15% range, you’re only losing a few dollars.
We’ve all done it; fill up the shopping cart online and then back out because of $5 shipping. Same principle on Depop; if you offer free shipping, you’ll make more sales.
In the past month, I’ve made $115 on Depop with very minimal effort and, like I said, a $30 investment. Depop works fully with PayPal, so you get paid immediately when someone purchases a product. Depop also takes their 10% fee from each item sold through PayPal when the item is sold. I’ve been transferring the money to my bank account every two weeks like a mini paycheck. Overall, Depop has been a great platform for me. The people are all very nice, the payout is good, the amount of effort that goes into keeping items in stock and up to date is way less than Etsy or eBay. I will definitely be continuing to sell clothes on Depop and, who knows, maybe make it full time eventually.
Check out my Depop store