When I was a kid, my dad would take me to flea markets and garage sales every other weekend. I loved it because I could always find a cool toy for very little money. A few years later, as a teenager, I started looking for things I could resell for a profit. It was exciting and helped me make a little money to go out with my friends, but I had to stop when I got busy with college.

Fast forward a few years, while the ultra-fast fashion and disposable clothes from Shein often make the headlines in the news, recommerce is bigger than ever. Vinted revenues are growing year after year. Even Tiktok launched a new ‘Preowned Luxury’ category. Last week, eBay, one of the main channels for second-hand items, announced an interesting innovation for their clothing category. I think this is a great opportunity to go over this new feature, and review what the challenges are for small businesses in the pre-owned fashion industry.

What is Certilogo and How Can it Help eBay Sellers?

eBay announced the launch of “resell on eBay”, a feature that will facilitate the listing process for used clothing. It will use technology from Certilogo, which provides digital ID and authentication for clothing. A seller scanning the code on the clothes label will trigger the creation of a prefilled listing with information on the item. The seller can then edit the information before offering the listing to customers. According to Certilogo CEO, “This new ‘resell on eBay’ feature was a natural next step for Certilogo’s innovation and product evolution.”

It appears that clothing is a significant part of items sold on eBay, at 14%. I have not found data on the condition of clothes, so I did compare the number of listings for each condition for some popular search terms. While the company states that 80% of the items on its platform are new and have never been used, fashion-related products seem to be pre-owned most of the time, with the exception of jewelry.

It makes sense that eBay wants to facilitate the process of listing used clothes. Not only does it make a significant part of the items sold, pre-owned fashion items are a growing market. I discussed it in a previous article, where I talked about the growth of Vinted revenues.

Yes, Shein is currently much larger than Vinted. But it is clear that many customers tend to favor high-quality pre-owned items over disposable new clothes from Shein.

The Certilogo system also allows eBay and their customers to ensure product authenticity. Customers don’t go to eBay to buy used ultra-fast fashion items, they tend to be looking for name brands or even luxury items. Authenticity is especially important for these high-end items and the technology can serve as a way to avoid counterfeits.

Now the issue is that tags must be on the clothes. As of now, it isn’t clear how many brands are using this type of scannable code, so the technology can’t be used with every item. As of now, it appears that Certilogo’s platform is already used by more than 80 fashion brands, which is a good start. Hopefully, similar technologies will be used by more brands in the future.

The challenges of Selling Second-Hand Fashion Items

In addition to helping with authenticity and avoiding counterfeit items, technologies like Certilogo can help sellers address another issue when selling used clothes, the listing creation.

Typically in ecommerce, a seller will create a listing per SKU (even for variations, it takes work to add each variation on a product page). Once the listing is created, the only limit in sales it can generate is how much stock the seller has. And the seller always had the option to order more inventory for their supplier. 

When selling pre-owned goods, sellers almost never have more than one unit of each product (same item, in the exact same condition). This means that each physical unit requires its own listing. It is obviously very time consuming for sellers, especially if they need to upload pictures of potential defects on the clothes, like holes or stains. Certilogo technologies can help speed up this process and save valuable time for sellers.

Other challenges sellers may face are sourcing, as it can be difficult to find steady and reliable sources of pre-owned items. Pricing can also be a little tricky, especially if sellers manage a large assortment of products. They must consider competitors’ items, but also the item condition. Finally, due to the item’s condition, some sellers may experience higher return rates or more customer service requests, which can also be time consuming.

On eBay’s side, the company has to ensure products sold on its marketplace are legitimate, and get rid of scammers and counterfeit sellers. eBay is also competing with other marketplaces, and offering new features to sellers can help them gain market share.


While Shein is bigger than ever, the market for second-hand clothes is also on the rise. eBay has millions of listings for used clothes, and seems to be trying to attract more sellers and customers. The partnership between Certilogo and eBay is a good step towards facilitating the listing of products by sellers, while helping with customers’ trust. Being a frequent eBay shopper, especially for used clothes, I am hoping that we will see more similar initiatives like that, improving the quality of listings. But beyond that, I like that this partnership also favors more sustainable alternatives to fast fashion items.