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eBay instills a new life into imperfect goods to push sustainability

On Earth Day, April 22, eBay UK launches a new platform named “imperfects,” where shoppers can purchase imperfect goods at a discounted price in an attempt to minimise the planet’s environmental footprint and waste. Clothing, footwear, and accessories from over 100 high-street and high-end designers, including Givenchy, Versace, Adidas, North Face, Off White, Joseph, Puma, Fila, and Timberland, are available for up to 60% off retail price.


According to eBay, 13 million pieces of clothing are thrown away every week. As a result, eBay attempted to breathe new life into the damaged goods, giving them a second chance at being sold in the name of a more environmentally friendly choice.


When it comes to the degree of imperfection, eBay explains that defective items may include minor scratches, a small blemish, or other minor damage that could have come from the manufacturer or show items that couldn’t be sold at full price or didn’t match the vendor’s quality standards.


For example, a Saint Laurent handbag with minor scratches is 48 percent off, saving the purchaser roughly £900, or just receiving a discount for the ex-display items despite their near-new quality. All of the damaged objects for sale are explained in depth in the description, including with images of the flaws. Therefore, customers would be fully aware of the condition of the item with flaws. eBay also accepts free shipping and 30-day returns with an imperfection purchase, plus a money-back guarantee for consumers.


According to new market research, UK buyers are becoming more aware of their fashion purchases. As consumers look for ways to save money and the environment, demand for “preloved clothes” has increased nine times in the last year, and demand for “used dresses” has increased 156 percent.


As per eBay’s global 2022 Recommerce Report, while financial reasons are the most influential in their purchase, 42 percent of eBay consumers also care about environmental issues, fashion spending, and waste, hoping the imperfects will contribute to the perfect destination rather than just waste.


eBay is making efforts to increase circularity and reduce waste. In 2021, eBay saved almost 17,770 tonnes of fashion goods from waste, which is the equivalent of 1,404 double-decker buses. In addition, eBay revealed that two used things are sold every second and one refurbished tech item is sold every ten seconds.


In addition to environmentally conscious buying and selling, eBay’s community has assisted over 200 social enterprises by purchasing from forward-thinking firms devoted to doing good. According to a press statement issued on April 20, 2022, eBay collected £38 million in charitable donations in 2021 through its website and charitable programmes.


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