The Real Real: Unique Fashion

As Julie Wainwright said in an interview, many people from older generations used to keep their consignment shopping a secret from people. However, younger people today often brag about finding a good deal on second-hand clothes. Since people have been more open about their love for bargain hunting, Julie knew it would be a good idea to open retail stores. Many shoppers who come to the Real Real say that they are tired of typical fashions and do not want to conform to what is popular today. They are often annoyed that trends change so quickly, and many people just want to wear what they like. For this reason, the Real Real is a good choice. People can buy unique modern styles or vintage items. They can wear a pair of vintage pants with a modern shirt to make their own style. For shoppers who want to build their own ensembles, the Real Real is the perfect place to visit.

According to The Real Real's chief merchant, modern styles include a lot of layering and mixing. Although fusion looks produce some specific style trends such as athleisure, which blends athletic and casual fashion items, many people prefer to create their own elements of fusion fashion. Some people mix formal accessories with casual attire or wear a mixture of formal and casual garments in layers. While the Real Real's price tags are not cheap, they are more affordable than full-price luxury designer goods. One shopper who visited the SoHo store said that the price tags were often around $300 or $1,200. Since some items were higher, she felt compelled to buy lower-priced items when she found them. The pricing gap adds to the sense of urgency that many customers feel when they find something that fits and is unique. As Julie Wainwright pointed out in an interview, many Americans today are value shoppers. Some buyers also become sellers and vice versa. She said that buyers often make a purchase after they sell something else on consignment.

Not all people who visit the Real Real like to wear what they buy. For some individuals, the treasure hunt is about collecting or archiving. Many people who come in there look for vintage handbags, dresses, shoes or other items from a specific designer. Once in a while, the store receives a rare item that is especially valuable to collectors. When the Real Real values and prices items, it considers this as well. It strives to give sellers the best value for their consignment items and shoppers the best price for each item. However, some people who love last season's fashions or styles from a few years ago often like to look for gently used clothes. Although some fashions go out of style, a person may not get tired of them for many years. With individualism as a top trend, many younger people today do not have any reservations about wearing styles that are considered outdated. Some shoppers see items that they admired in the past and wanted to buy but decided not to at the time. If they find such items at the Real Real, they are excited to have a second chance to own them.

How Resale Retailers Help the Luxury Fashion Market
While some designers and luxury fashion stores may see the Real Real as a threat, it could actually be helping them. One of the reasons why the company is so important is because it introduces new customers to luxury fashion. When people who may not otherwise buy luxury fashion products purchase them from the Real Real, they get to experience the privilege of owning unique items and the benefits of buying high-quality merchandise. Many of these people develop a taste for luxury fashion and wind up buying new items from designers or from distributing companies.

The Real Real is essentially a champion for creating first-time luxury fashion customers. One of the common reasons why people buy from the Real Real for their first luxury fashion purchase is because they want to see what luxury items feel like or how long they last before they buy new items. Also, if shoppers know that they can put a new item that they buy on consignment later, they feel more confident about buying it. The purchase does not seem like a loss if they have some assurance that they may get 80 percent of its value back.

Julie Wainwright knows that customers are smarter today, and she said that no business should underestimate the intelligence of modern shoppers. With the availability of the internet and an endless stream of information, they are more educated and informed than ever. Julie and her expert team also pay attention to what fashion lovers crave the most from the new market and from the resale market. According to the company's recent data, Gucci is the top-selling brand. Louis Vuitton is a close second, and Chanel ranks third in popularity. Cartier, Tiffany, Dolce & Gabanna, Saint Laurent, Tory Burch and Fendi are also gaining momentum. However, the Isabel Marant and Goyard labels are decreasing in popularity. For average popularity online and in stores, Prada, Burberry, Valentino and Christian Louboutin are a few of the names on the list of the top 10 designer labels. For men, Yeezy X Adidas shoes from Kanye West are especially popular. The company said that Hawaiian shirts, fanny packs and ball caps have been hot-selling items recently for men.

The Real Real: Online Popularity Grows
SimilarWeb data showed that the Real Real increased its online presence in 2018. During the past two years, the company saw an average of more than 2 million views each month. That figure included both mobile and PC traffic. This means that the company's traffic increased by more than 30 percent from the prior year's number. Although the overall average was in the lower 2 million range, the average for the first half of 2018 was 2.5 million views per month. In the first half of 2017, the monthly average was 1.9 million views. According to visitor data, the average visitor clicked through about 10 pages of content, and the bounce rate was 35 percent.

Research also shows that most site visitors know what they want. About 50 percent of the site's current traffic comes from people who go directly to the online store. More than 20 percent of people find the site from an organic search. This is good news for the Real Real, and it does not have extensive advertising needs. Less than 10 percent of visitors come to the site from clicking paid advertisements. According to demographic data, most site visitors are between the ages of 24 and 34. However, nearly all of its visitors fall into the broader age range of 18 to 44. Since the Real Real has been around for several years, it has witnessed generational shifts. According to Julie Wainwright, millennials are the most powerful and most educated group of shoppers, and they are the key to the future success of the Real Real.

The Real Real keeps its commitment to take good care of its loyal customers. On its site, it offers special deals and discounts. For example, sellers who want to list a Stella McCartney consignment item with the Real Real currently receive a $100 gift card to shop sustainably for new merchandise. Also, people who come in and sell items on consignment may qualify for a same-day shopping credit if they want to browse The Real Real's racks and shelves.

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