By Maeve Winters
Depop, founded in 2011 by Simon Beckerman, is the internet’s shining beacon of hope in the face of rising global consumerism. The new and revamped eBay and Tinder for clothes, Depop offers users the opportunity to buy new clothes, sell old ones, and in some cases even swap one pre-loved item for another. Being a member of the site for a couple of years now and having had varying levels of success as both a buyer and a seller, I’d still by no means call myself a Depop connoisseur, but nonetheless, here are my top ten do’s and don’ts of Depop for those with no clue where to start:
1. DO create an account and add yourself to Depop’s global network! Even if you don’t use it much at first, creating an account means you can get used to seeing what sells and what doesn’t, figure out what kind of style you’d like for your own page and what prices your out-grown favourite clothes could sell for.
2. DON’T click “buy” without messaging the seller first! If the seller is nearby, you could arrange to meet in person and save yourself the shipping cost and Depop’s 10% processing fee (although they won’t refund your item if you choose this course of action). If nothing else, it’s a great way to bond with other users over your mutual love of clothes!
3. DO try to buy locally! It’s a mistake that I have made in the past. Avoid monstrous shipping costs by purchasing items either from Ireland (or whatever your home country is) or the nearest country possible if that’s not an option. Keep in mind that multiple users may be trying to sell the same item, so it’s a wise idea to shop around before making a final decision.
4. DON’T buy from any shop reselling items in bulk from AliExpress or other similar sites! While not strictly breaking the rules, these pages go completely against the ethos of Depop and, in many cases, the item that you purchase from them may look very different to the one that arrives in the post. Beware Depop bios that warn of three plus week’s delivery time, the same item being listed in multiple sizes, plus pages that list only brand-new items are all red flags – be warned!
5. DO check the sellers’ reviews before purchasing! As Depop is a loving community, users generally give each other 5-star reviews – if not, something is usually seriously amiss with the item or transaction. Depop reviews also work both ways, with both buyer and seller being able to leave feedback, and getting a couple of 5-star reviews as a buyer is a great way to demonstrate the trustworthiness that could help you make that first sale.
6. DON’T add a bunch of tags to your items which are not applicable – searching for a pair of black Converse and seeing results for neon-green bodycon dresses is always aggravating, and cheapens the look of your page in general. While a few relevant descriptive words are essential to getting your stuff out there, any more than eight to ten tags will result in annoying buyers and won’t make your clothes any more likely to sell.
7. DO promote your own page on your other social media sites – it’s the best way to gain followers who live nearby and may actually buy your items, unlike the hordes of sale-hungry opportunists who follow anyone in their search query merely to gain followers back, with no intention of buying or even looking at their items.
8. DON’T sell yourself short – if you have a really great item which you think deserves a particular price, don’t accept offensively low offers, as you’re sure to get more if you wait! Also, make sure to apply the correct shipping fees in order to avoid making a loss rather than a desired profit.
9. DO sell, sell, sell any reworked or vintage clothes – unique or one-of-a-kind items sell like hot cakes if marketed correctly (clean and in good condition, photographed in flattering but realistic lighting and with a plain or clutter-free background). Also make sure to post any sustainable gems, as they’re sure to get you some attention!
10. And finally, DO check out these fabulous sellers – @kee_mon, @seasonsofella, @dalliance3, @turnbacktimevintage and @celestialyouth. All are hugely popular Depop sellers with their own individual styles, as well as being sustainability advocates. Their pages are worth a look for inspiration on how to create your own stamp and get selling on Depop, or even just to treat yourself – if their fabulous haven’t sold out yet!