Poshmark helps clothing sellers set up shop with grants and wholesale access
The clothing consignment platform wants you to open a boutique, not just sell your old clothes.
By Caitlin McGarry
Selling your unwanted clothes has never been easier, thanks to apps that handle most of the legwork of selling and shipping your new or gently used items. But those same apps also make it easy to essentially run a boutique from your home, selling clothes you buy with no intention of wearing them.
Poshmark, a 4-year-old resale platform, saw what its users were doing and decided to help.
Poshmark users have been running boutiques on the platform almost from day one. CEO Manish Chandra said sellers are already earning up to $500,000 a year from selling retail on the platform. Rather than lose that part of the community by honing in on resale, Poshmark is legitimizing existing storefronts on the app by opening a wholesale portal to connect certified, experienced sellers with brands like Shop Jeen, Style Mafia, and Snob Essentials. There are no fees for sellers to buy wholesale, but they do have to obtain wholesale certification and meet Poshmark standards. Chandra said about 20 percent of its more than 1 million Poshmark sellers meet those requirements.
Chandra doesn’t expect much to change in terms of the app’s community. The users who were already selling retail will continue to do so, and now retail items will be marked clearly with a “retail” tag (as opposed to buying a resale item from someone’s closet).
The move might entice sellers who are using other resale platforms (from eBay to Threadflip) to make the jump to Poshmark, though Chandra said he is “not doing any active marketing to poach sellers from other platforms.”
To sweeten the deal for sellers to go wholesale, Poshmark is opening up grant applications for 50 sellers to receive $500 each. The grants are grants, not loans—sellers won’t have to pay Poshmark back. The goal is to help sellers “scale their business and become full boutiques,” Chandra said. Poshmark will announce the recipients of the first set of grants early next year.