Vintage Clothing Online Marketplace Adds IT and Support Services to Retailers

Thrilling provides product photographers.

Shilla Kim-Parker said her best product ideas came from “listening carefully and intensely” to her customers. The latest addition to Thrilling Inc., an online marketplace for vintage and second-hand clothing and accessories, is no exception.

“Since the founding of Thrilling and connecting with store owners across the country, I have found that one of the biggest issues for them is the time it takes to upload their large unique inventories online.” Kim-Parker said via email. “To overcome this hurdle, I launched Thrilling-on-Demand… which allows store owners to book professional and approved vintage assistants at their convenience to handle the entire store inventory download process. “

Thrilling recruits its vintage assistants as entrepreneurs mainly from fashion and photography schools. They provide their own mannequins, lights, and everything else they need to photograph, measure, and upload store inventory to the Thrilling platform for sale within 24 hours. Store owners can book Thrilling On-Demand as a one-time service for $ 3 per item or purchase a monthly subscription.

The latter is more popular, as most of the ‘more than 500 Thrilling store partners are operated by a single owner where the owners are responsible for the majority of the tasks required to run their entire business, from customer service to logistics to accounting and more, ”said Kim-Parker.

She added that the service has had “incredible success in its pilot phase” in New York and that they are “extremely excited to launch in Los Angeles, where Thrilling was founded, and soon to expand to over cities across the country “.

Kim-Parker co-founded Thrilling in 2018 with Brad Mallow, who is the company’s chief technology officer. While other platforms – including Tradesy Inc. in Santa Monica, RealReal Inc. in San Francisco, and ThredUp Inc. in Oakland – offer space to sell lightly used luxury or everyday clothing, Thrilling is focuses on ‘true vintage’ to ‘encourage and enable more sustainable buying habits.

“With contemporary clothing or fast fashion items, consumers often think of wearing an item in the shorter term rather than how long they can extend the life of an item of clothing,” Kim-Parker said. “What a lot of people don’t know or tend to think is that the fashion industry is actually responsible for 10% of the world’s carbon emissions, which can in part be attributed to fashion. fast and contemporary.

“When consumers buy real vintage clothing and accessories, they help reduce waste and reduce the damage the clothing industry causes to our environment. “

Thrilling employs 40 people; almost two-thirds are women and half are people of color. About half have come on board in the past year.

“Recruiting diverse talent becomes easier when people can see you’re walking in stride,” she said. “Candidates are increasingly selective … and they are increasingly constrained by companies that reflect their values.

Rather than charging a listing fee, the company charges a 10% commission on each sale. The commission of ThreadUp and RealReal is 20% to 95% and 55% to 85% of the sale price, respectively. Tradesy’s take on items that sell for $ 50 or more is 19.8%.

Over the past year, Thrilling saw a 1900% increase in sales and 400% growth in stores selling on the platform as retailers and consumers switched to e-commerce during the pandemic.

“Some of the most difficult times came at the start of the pandemic when we went against the advice of our investors and… made the decision to suspend all commissions on any sale so that 100% of all profits were made. returned directly to stores in this time of existential crisis, ”said Kim-Parker. “This allowed us to gain a level of trust with our stores, which felt like real partners. Not only has our store base more than doubled, but less than 1% of our stores are already gone. “

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