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eBay’s partnership with Love Island has driven strong interest in buying pre-owned clothing, analysis suggests 

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The partnership between Love Island and eBay has helped drive interest in buying pre-owned clothing, new analysis suggests. Following the tie-up, which saw eBay style contestants in the ITV2 show in secondhand clothing while hosting a Love Island style edit on its website and a shopfront in the Love Island app, listings of secondhand clothing on eBay grew by more than 1,000%, ecommerce data platform Optiseller found. Love Island worked in previous years with fast fashion retailers including I Saw it First and Missguided.

Raymond Booth, chief technology officer at Optiseller, says: “As data lovers and experts, we couldn’t wait to analyse the relationship between this exciting partnership and listing behaviours. We gathered data from selected fashion stores on eBay UK who have listed some of Love Island’s most loved, and similar, brands. We then monitored the number of listings pre and post partnership announcement and gathered sales data for these stores. The split was then broken down to men and women; used, new and unknown; clothing, shoes, accessories, and handbags. We were then able to determine the impact of Love Island on the accessibility of pre-loved clothes on the marketplace.”

Key findings

The research measured the live listings for secondhand clothing on March 28 – before the partnership announcement – and on May 30, a week following the announcement, and found that the number of live listings rose by 990%. By June 27, when Love Island was in full swing, live listings had risen by 1,026%. 

The highest GMV (gross merchandise value) for any clothing brand on eBay was Zara, the top-listed brand for women’s clothing, Optiseller found. GMV was 43% ahead of the second-listed brand Hugo Boss, the top listed brand for men’s clothing. Mens’ clothing tended to include more designer fashion brands, while high street and fast fashion brands tended to generate the most sales for women’s clothing. 

Women’s fashion had 21.9K stores listing used clothing from the brands assessed, while men’s fashion and 15.2K stores. There were 50% more listings for women secondhand clothing than men’s. However, women’s clothing tended to be lower prices – at an average of £12.21 – then men’s (£25). Clothing in the women’s category is bought in an average of 37.27 days, while men’s is sold in an average of 38.43 days. 

Richard Falconer, chief operations officer at Optiseller, says: “The future of selling pre-loved items looks bright, with fashion leading the way for other industries. The burst in listings over the past three months has paved the way for development in this industry. There have already been various moves to improve the buyer and seller experience on the marketplace with authentication processes established. Now that eBay have seen such an uplift, there’s no way they’ll be stopping here! This marks a new era of pre-loved selling with accessibility at an all-time high, and the influence of the Love Island cast shifting public opinion from buying second hand being a necessity, to shopping pre-loved because they can. Ultimately, I think we can all agree that eBay are the true winners of Love Island 2022.”

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