Second Serve sprang from my love of resale, see Resale Manifesto, All The Reasons to Shop Resale, Second Serve and the Fashion Revolution. I love browsing resale sites. The most interesting items are the ones already out there in circulation.
Although I do a lot of browsing, there are a few instances when I search for specific things.
For example I am gaga over John Fluevog shoes. My sister-in-law Sibby first alerted me to this Canadian Company years ago, and I fell in love, hook, line and sinker. I have several pairs and all but one are resale. My husband bought me a new pair for my birthday several years ago. They are spectacular.
To follow the newest Fluevogs that come into resale circulation, I have searches saved on various resale sites and I log in from time to time to see what is new. I also have some email alerts—“1 new item for John Fluevog” or “just in- new items matching your search”—that tell me to check out new arrivals. This is how I shopped for resale Fluevogs.
Enter Gem, the search engine for anything resale. I found out about Gem through Emily of The Sequin Lead, who wrote about the founder of Gem, Liisa Jokinen. The Sequin Lead is a resale lifestyle site for “style lovers who want to unlock magic and possibility through fashion resale” (yes please).
Gem is like the Google of resale. Gone are the days of checking various sites and comparing offerings and prices. The home page is a search bar, type in any brand, and you will find listings across resale sites. Second Serve is on it! It is available for any online resale shop, big or small.
Promotion of Resale
A dedicated search engine like Gem advances the resale movement: easier resale shopping means more resale shopping. More resale shopping means our clothing is being maximized! This is what Second Serve is all about and we are thrilled that Gem makes it easier to shop resale.
The other great thing about Gem is that a small site, like Second Serve, is listed along with a ginormous resale site like Ebay. It’s not only great, it is unheard of. When you do a basic Google search the whole first page is paid ads. Companies pay to have their names pop up first so they get more traffic and more sales. Smaller stores cannot compete with that, and are often regulated to page 5 or 35 in the search results. Who actually, ever, goes to page 5? Page 2 even?
Gem equalizes the opportunity for sales, because it is organized by inventory without elevating one store over another.
Greater Resale Community
When the smaller stores get equal footing with larger ones, there is not only the opportunity for those smaller stores to generate more sales. There is the opportunity to learn about other organizations and their resale communities. It is the opportunity to share ideas, meet new people, and collaborate.
Magic and Possibility
Gem opens the door for someone to learn about Second Serve, and other organizations out there that want to change the way people shop and think about their clothing.
For example, someone is looking for Boden pants on the Gem site. They see a picture of a pair that interests them and click the Second Serve link. While checking out the pictures and descriptions, the person is alerted to the fact that Second Serve is a nonprofit, and that 85% of their purchase goes to the charity they select.
They say to themselves, “WHAT AN AWESOME IDEA!” They say, “I am able to maximize my resale purchase at Second Serve,” and “I can support my community, help the environment, and purchase cute pants”. They say “I will tell my friends about this site”. They say “I am going to change the way I shop!”.
Okay, I’m getting ahead of myself. Maybe.
Emily of The Sequin Lead got it right. There is magic and possibility in resale. That’s a perfect way to describe it.
I’m excited to watch what happens.