The reseller’s market has boomed in recent years, powered by the ease of use for platforms such as eBay (NASDAQ: EBAY), The Real Real (NASDAQ: REAL) and Poshmark (NASDAQ: POSH) among others. A 2020 report on the market by ThreadUp and Global Data predicts the resale apparel markets alone will top $64 billion by 2025 – up from $28 billion in 2020.
Resale is growing 25 times faster than retail overall, the companies found.
The problem sellers face with the resale market is that it is fragmented – they often must input the same information on multiple sites in order to sell even a single item. Once that item sells, they then must visit each of those sites again to remove the listing or update inventory counts.
Automation is the answer, and Washington-area-based Vendoo thinks it has the solution.
“To be a successful seller, you want to have your items listed on multiple marketplaces to get visibility,” Josh Dzime-Assison, chief marketing officer and one of four co-founders of Vendoo, told Modern Shipper.
Dzime-Assison said the idea for Vendoo, which provides online tools and a user-friendly interface to allow sellers to cross-promote their goods on multiple marketplaces, started with Thomas Rivas. Rivas, he said, was trying to sell goods and found the process of inputting the same information repeatedly cumbersome. Realizing the only solutions on the market were for enterprise-sized sellers, Rivas started Vendoo.
Rivas reached out to childhood friend Ben Martinez, who had joined with an affiliate marketing company to build a team of 265 active consumers, and Chris Amador, a friend of Martinez’s and someone with experience in various startups, UX/UI design and front-end programming, joined the team. Rivas serves as CEO, while Martinez came on as COO and Amador as CTO.
Dzime-Assison, himself a seller, met Rivas through selling events and was asked to join in his current role.
The team started building the software in 2017 and during that period also started looking at reseller influencers on social media “to find out where they were and what they needed from us,” Dzime-Assison said. A year of talking to sellers and collecting feedback on their ideas followed before a friends and family investment round occurred in early 2019.
By June 2019, the beta version of Vendoo’s platform had been released.
“At that time, we had about 2,500 resellers that were using the software for free and providing us live feedback,” Dzime-Assison said.
“Our main value proposition was cross-posting on multiple marketplaces,” he added. “We created a form that is a composite of all of the different marketplace forms that they can fill out at one time … and push [the product] out to all the marketplaces.”
Still in its early stages, resellers currently can post on nine marketplaces – eBay, Facebook Marketplace, Depop, Etsy, Tradesy, Kidizen, Poshmark, Mercari and Grailed. Shopify (NYSE: SHOP) will be added soon.
Vendoo began charging for the service in January 2020, offering multiple tiers for customers. For those sellers that list fewer than five items per month, there is no cost. Listing up to 25 items each month is $8.99 per month and includes three marketplaces plus additional services such as image resizer and editor, image hosting, CSV export, inventory page and daily seller analytics. A $19.99 per month plan offers up to 125 listings. Additional plans up to $149.99 a month plan with up to 4,000 listings are available. All the plans include listing on three marketplaces.
Additional add-ons are priced a la carte. These include importing functionality (to bring items over from other marketplaces) delist and relist services, and posting on all marketplaces. Each add-on is $4.99 per month, or the customer can add all three for $11.99.
Since its launch, Vendoo has added features as it looks to scale the solution, including business data and analytics. Users can see revenue by date, listing activity, best performing marketplaces including a revenue split, best-selling brands or categories, and more.
“We saw after a few months how much information we were collecting, and we’ve been able to [present] that information to users,” Dzime-Assison said.
The platform currently has 11,000 paid monthly users and 30,000 users in all. One of the features is that when a product sells out, the Vendoo platform will automatically pull that item down from all marketplaces where it appears so customers can’t order an out-of-stock item.
Dzime-Assison said shipment tracking has just been added to the platform, although shipping itself remains within the control of the reseller or the selling platform. Mobile capabilities are on the road map ahead – Vendoo currently runs as a Chrome extension. Expansion into other countries is also being looked at, with Canada likely first on the list, but Dzime-Assison said Vendoo has received inquiries from users about entering Australia and the U.K. as well.
Vendoo seems to have entered the reselling space at the right time. Just months after launching its platform, the company was profitable, Dzime-Assison said. In 2020, it grossed $1.4 million in revenue and is projecting between $1.9 million and $2.1 million for 2021. Vendoo has 17 current employees but will surpass 20 in the next few weeks and has enough financial runway at this point for two years without any added investment.