71% of consumers across the UK, US, France and Germany bought or sold used goods in the past year, with 63% purchasing used items at least once a month, according to new research.
MPB and Retail Economics’ report, Second-Hand, First Choice: The Psychology of Recommerce, surveyed a sample of 6,000 households across the UK, US, France and Germany in August 2023.
The report found that 9.4 million UK adults bought used items more often in the last 12 months. 84% of millennials (people aged 30-44) said they were participating in the used goods market, with 50% making at least one used purchase a month.
The most popular categories for recommerce were fashion, technology and homeware, the report found. Fashion made up 37% of all recommerce purchases in the UK and 45% in the US. Homewares and furniture made up 30% in the UK, while the technology sector captured around one-fifth of the recommerce market share.
The report found that 78% of respondents use online marketplaces as their go-to platform for buying used items.
This report demonstrates a fundamental shift in consumer behaviour and the nature of retail more generally, and this is just the beginning.
The research forecasts an 80% increase in the growth of the recommerce market across the UK, US, France and Germany. The value of the UK recommerce market is currently £6.5 billion and the report expects it to rise to £12.4 billion over the next 5 years.
Commenting on the research, Matt Barker, CEO of MPB said: “This report demonstrates a fundamental shift in consumer behaviour and the nature of retail more generally, and this is just the beginning. With the recommerce market forecast to grow by almost 80% by 2028, it is clear that this is an industry with tremendous growth potential and one which echoes the values and preferences of many consumers.
“Overall, buying and selling used is a win for your wallet and the planet alike, and putting more items into the circular economy is a win for the next owner too. Our findings indicate that we truly are undergoing a ‘Recommerce Revolution’ and retailers would do well to recognise the enormous opportunity within this space, as circular behaviour continues to catch on.”