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eBay expands authenticity guarantee to kids sneakers in boost to ‘modern heirloom’ market

Continuing its push into the vintage and pre-loved market, eBay UK is expanding its ‘Authenticity Guarantee’ programme to kids, as 86% of parents look to get heat on their kids’ feet, by buying branded sneakers.

With searches for popular silhouettes such as ‘Kids Nike Dunks’ increasing by almost 140% over the last year on eBay, kids’ models are increasingly becoming a key part of the sneaker conversation. The term ‘mini me’ also rings true as the resurgence in popularity for New Balance across the sneaker industry is also being seen for kids, with searches for the brand growing 100% from the previous month on the marketplace. 

eBay’s expert team of sneaker authenticators will vet and verify the most popular brands of box-fresh and pre-loved children’s sneakers, over £100 on the platform, to ensure timely and quality checks. This includes infant/toddler pairs starting at UK size 1, alongside pre-school and grade school up to UK size 6. 

Wahaaj Shabbir, Head of Sneakers at eBay UK, says:  “As a sneakerhead, the guarantee of authentication is key, no matter what age or shoe size you are. On eBay we’re seeing more parents flock to kit their kids out with the latest drops and even purchase matching pairs for themselves. Passion for sneakers is passed down through the generations of a family, and I’d like to think sneaker collections will be the next modern family heirloom. As these smaller sizes boom we want to make sure they receive the exact same trust and gold plated service through our ‘Authenticity Guarantee’ programme.”

The move comes as the designer sneaker and streetwear market is seeing a demographic and economic shift, with the Global Children Shoe market set to grow by $5.3bn by 2026. As the value of kids’ sneakers continues to grow, 68% of parents spend more on their children’s fashion than their own, with 85% of parents also looking for confirmation of authenticity when buying children’s designer fashion to ensure guarantee of quality and peace of mind.

Streetwear content creators and father to sneakerhead Maddox, aged 8, J.M. Melchico Bronx, said on the importance of authenticity for his shoes: “It’s so important to know the shoes you’re wearing are the real deal, and for Maddox, it’s no different. I love that he’s interested in sneakers too and look forward to passing down my collection when he’s older. But for now, as well as selling the pairs he grows out of, eBay’s ‘Authenticity Guarantee Programme’ for kids sneakers means it’ll be even easier for us to find matching pairs.”

This announcement represents the latest innovation from eBay’s ‘Authenticity Guarantee’ programme, which already encompasses adult sneakers, watches and luxury handbags. More categories are set to form part of the programme, with eBay hoping to continue to drive growth in high value categories, as a trusted marketplace for the resale of luxury and high quality goods. 

How ‘Authenticity Guarantee’ for sneakers works 

When a sneakers purchase is made, the seller ships it directly to eBay’s authentication centre for a comprehensive, multi-point physical inspection by independent inspectors. Following this rigorous assessment, the sneakers are sent via expedited shipping to the buyer. Additional details include:

  • Proof of Authentication: Upon receiving the sneakers, the independent authenticator confirms they are consistent with the listing title, description, and images, and then performs a multi-point physical authentication inspection. An eBay tag embedded with NFC chip technology is attached to guarantee its authenticity and finalise the process, driving confidence in the collectability and resale value.
  • Expert Authentication: eBay’s expert authenticators, a robust checklist of product specifications, and best-in-class processes ensure accuracy and efficiency. With rigorous inspection of the box, shoe, and accessories, the authentication underscores eBay’s commitment to giving shoppers exactly what they want. 
  • Verified Returns: For sellers who choose to offer returns, eBay’s sneaker authentication program ensures the exact item initially sold is returned to the seller, via a verified returns process. Returns are shipped back directly to the authentication centre, where the experts verify each item and its condition before returning to the seller.

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