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Secret Sales marketplace sees 4000% month on month revenue growth during global pandemic

Secret sales generates rapid growth across lockdown

Secret Sales has seen month on month revenue grow by 4,000% during the global pandemic, following the transition of the former flash sales outlet to a premium ecommerce marketplace.

Superdry, Ted Baker, Jigsaw, GStar and Versace 19v69 are among the growing list of designer and high street names showcasing end-of-season stock via Secret Sales since retail entrepreneurs Chris Griffin and Matt Purt acquired and remodelled the business in March 2020, launching a unique proposition for the fashion industry intended to disrupt the discount space.  

It also chimes with the growing trend of ‘affordable luxury’ as identified in the latest RetailX sector report on the luxury market, which identified the growing move of consumers to buying affordable luxury items as one offs, which the lux industry is increasingly tapping into to on-board new, younger consumers.

115 brands, retailers and multi-brand companies have partnered with the new marketplace to sell surplus inventory, taking the current number of individual brands shoppable on the website to more than 450. 

Offering more than 66,000 product lines across fashion, footwear, accessories, beauty and homeware, Secret Sales provides a dedicated channel that enables brand equity to be maintained when clearing stock, while also identifying new customers for full price targeting. 

Each brand controls the look and feel of its merchandise. By owning product selection, pricing, images and copy, they can digitally connect supply chain and inventory systems to the plug and play platform and trade more efficiently, without the need to physically move stock to a third-party seller. Products are displayed in a clean and stylish environment with complementary product and brand adjacencies, away from cluttered listings associated with traditional marketplaces and long delivery times commonly experienced on flash sales websites. 

In an industry first, a data share programme allows customer data to be used in a fully GDPR compliant way, brands can promote full price channels to customers who purchase their products on Secret Sales and opt in to hear more about full price merchandise directly from the brands themselves. 

“Retail is undergoing a revolution, and companies need an effective and profitable way to clear excess inventory without eroding sales in full price channels or brand equity by selling to third party retailers that aren’t concerned about brand positioning,” says Chris Griffin, CEO of Secret Sales. “Secret Sales was already a respected outlet name, but we pivoted the business to a more compelling marketplace model to align with current needs and prepare for the future of ecommerce. Our technology and marketing-led proposition drives growth, offering a cleaner, premium clearance strategy and the ability to reach a new customer base.” 

More than 18 million unique users have visited Secret Sales since it launched as a marketplace, with the platform gaining hundreds of thousands of new customers.

Based on its current repeat purchase rate, Secret Sales forecasts that each shopper will return five times to make purchases in its first year of trading. 20% of customers shopped twice in the first month, which is four times the industry average. Current average order value is £65. 

“We aim to disrupt the discount sector. Our model provides the answer to excess inventory and acts as a perfect extension of a fashion brand’s ecommerce operation,” Griffin continued. “Imagine Bicester Village or similar shopping hubs brought to life online – we’re the digital equivalent of designer outlet destinations and want to become the largest discount-only marketplace for premium fashion.”

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