Poshmark vs. eBay: Which Is the Best Site for Selling Used Clothes?
Reselling clothing online can be a great income source or a even full-time job. However, the platform a seller chooses has a huge impact on their success. This is true for both a full-fledged resale business and for anyone trying to clear out their closet.
Both eBay and Poshmark are huge marketplaces for selling used or new clothing online. But which one is better? To help you decide, let's examine these factors:
- Seller or listing fees
- Shipping costs and policies
- Demographics of buyers
- Ease of use
Poshmark vs eBay: Seller Fees
The fees that a platform charges cut into sellers' profits. It's a very important factor to understand when choosing a website to sell with.
eBay charges a 10% fee for most clothing categories and the seller covers the 3% PayPal fee, so in effect the total fees on eBay are 13%. That's a fair rate considering eBay's huge market.
Poshmark takes out a flat 20% fee for every sale. That's pretty hefty! As a casual seller, it was disheartening to get only $16 for every $20 sale I made. Sellers who use Poshmark for their business find that the fees really cut into their profits.
Sales Fees vs. Listing Fees:
eBay is the clear winner when looking at sale fees only. But sometimes, listing costs come into play and tip the scales. It's free to list any number of items on Poshmark, but eBay gives you 50 free listings and then starts charging in a listing fee. So for casual sellers and small operations on eBay, the sale fee is the most important. But larger operations need to pay attention to the listing fee as well.
Fees: Is eBay or Poshmark Better?
Bottom line is eBay charges a smaller fee. If your target buyers are on Poshmark, however, then the 7% increase in cost might not matter to you, since it might be worth it to pay a little more to ensure your product will be seen by those who are looking for it.
If both Poshmark and eBay are taking too big of a commission for you, there are alternatives. Mercari accepts used clothing listings and only takes a 10% cut. Read my Mercari Seller's Review if you're considering it as a new selling platform.
Shipping on eBay and Poshmark
Now for shipping costs and policies. Is shipping items on Poshmark easier for sellers than on eBay? No matter which platform you use, you'll have to account for shipping costs. Let's compare the two.
All items on Poshmark have $6.49 shipping. Since buyers cover this cost you might not think it affects you as a seller, but keep in mind this is a high shipping cost for low-priced ($5-$15) items.
Shipping out clothing once it's purchased is super easy on Poshmark. Everything goes in a USPS Priority Mail box and you use the shipping label Poshmark sends you. Then you can drop it off at any USPS pick-up location.
Shipping on eBay is more complicated. The seller can choose the cost of shipping. Shipping can be a fixed price, calculated based on the buyer's zip code and package size, or free for the buyer. This gives the seller flexibility to absorb shipping into their prices, which makes selling items under $15 easier.
Which Website Is Better for Shipping: eBay or Poshmark?
The better platform for shipping will depend on the overall cost of the product and its weight. Poshmark's shipping policy is super simple but can deter buyers of lower-priced items. Ebay's is more complicated but gives you more options.
Market Demographics of Buyers
Next let's consider the market. When you list an item, what kind of reach does it have on Poshmark or eBay? What demographic are you reaching and do they want to buy the type of clothing you're selling?
What kind of buyer shops on eBay?
The eBay marketplace is enormous at 150-200 million users a year and climbing. Granted, only a portion of those are looking for used clothing. Buyers on eBay know what to expect from buying used clothing online. Users are on eBay looking for a great deal. This makes it hard for a seller to add margin to their eBay prices.
What kind of buyer shops on Poshmark?
Poshmark has a smaller user base than eBay but it's large and growing at a faster rate. Also, users are on Poshmark specifically looking for used clothing. Posh users are very active in the app and many buyers are sellers, as well.
Poshmark's community is more social and interested in fashion. They're looking for stylish items in brands they know. They're less interested in what an item is worth and more interested in the style and experience. That's not to say a buyer can be scammed on Poshmark into paying way more. But prices on Poshmark listings can often be set higher to offset the 20% fee.
Level of Effort
The final category to explore is how easy each site is to use. Sellers put in a lot of work on any platform. We photograph, answer comments, write descriptions, pack, and ship. So the amount of effort it takes to create and keep up listings is a big deciding factor in choosing a platform.
Is It Easy to Sell on Poshmark?
Poshmark started as an app, so it's very easy to take pictures and add a listing, all from your phone. Replying to comments and sharing listings is easy, too. Still, the time commitment needed to keep up on Poshmark is huge. When a user searches for an item, the more-recently-posted listings show up first. Since posting all the time is important, you won't get any sales unless you're active in the app. It's easy to list, but Poshmark takes much more time overall.
eBay Level of Effort
All the subcategories and specifications make eBay listings more complicated. A lot of it is autofilled but it still takes more time to list an item than on Poshmark.
Which Platform Is Easier: eBay or Poshmark?
eBay is easier overall. On eBay, sellers can leave listings up without much ongoing maintenance, but a Poshmark closet requires constant activity or your items will languish for months. eBay also lets you turn on Easy Pricing, which lowers the price every 5 days until it sells. That makes a world of difference when you're unloading a lot of inventory but you don't know what your items are worth.
Which Site Is Better for Sellers: eBay or Poshmark?
13% (eBay + Paypal)
first 50 free
very flexible policies
$6.49 all items, paid by buyer
smaller, more trendy market
Which Is Better for Sellers?
eBay is better than Poshmark for the seller.
Is It Better to Sell on Poshmark or eBay?
Okay, let's get to the bottom line: which is better? Here's how they both did in my four criteria:
- Fees: eBay is better. eBay fees are lower but don't count out the fact that your buyers may be on Poshmark.
- Shipping: About equal. Poshmark's shipping costs are high but they're covered by buyers, while eBay has more options.
- Market Demographic: About the same. It depends on the type of clothing.
- Effort: eBay is easier. Inherently social Poshmark needs constant attention.
eBay slightly beat out Poshmark using these criteria. I personally think a seller could be successful with either one. The best way to know is to try listing some items and see what sells.
Cross Post Your Listings on Both eBay and Poshmark
There's no reason why a seller can't list an item on both Poshmark and eBay. This is called cross-listing or cross-posting, and it works well for many sellers. Be sure to take into account the time it requires to create and upkeep listings on each site. More often than not, the benefits of added exposure and quick sales outweigh the cost of your time.
This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.
© 2018 Katy Medium