A Used Clothing Business Spreads Across 50 STATES
Jennifer Zuklie, started ‘The Swoondle Society’ as a hobby to relocate piles of used kids’ clothing.
Today the business has expanded to over 50 states and has doubled its subscriber’s count since 2020.
Surrounded by a sea of used kids clothing
When Swoondle Society’s founder Jennifer Zuklie had her first daughter, she went extravagant with clothes and toys.
But when she had her second child, she was aghast being surrounded with used clothes-some of which just needed a size down.
“I tried to save them and put them in all the bins. I really just wanted to wave that magic wand and turn it into that next season or that next size.” says Zuklie.
But she noticed this being a common issue among parents and thus, combining her corporate experience, came up with a global used clothing platform for kids.
What is the Swoondle Society?
The Swoondle Society is an online platform where members can trade-in their children’s clothes for credit to buy other items.
Their mission is to create an easy, hassle-free marketplace for parents to trade their children’s clothing.
Zuklie had over a decade of experience in working with both membership and trading models as she worked as a head of an ecommerce business centered around vacation exchange.
When Swoondle Society started, it was self funded by Zuklie. Initially the platform was free for all users as a way to gain subscribers, figure out the logistics involved as well as build their customary website.
In 2018 with the help of their first investors they launched the subscription-based revenue model that is in place today.
Members pay a monthly or annual fee to easily trade-in kids clothing through pre-paid shipping bags.
According to Reviewed.
‘Memberships cost $15 a month, which entitles members to five free trades and one free order shipment per month. Additional trades cost $4 per item, and an additional trade-in bag costs $5. An initial trade-in bag is included with membership, and a trade-in bag is included with every order. Members also get 15% off any cash purchases or trade upgrades.
Non-members can purchase a trade-in bag for $10, and clothing items range in price from $6 to $54.’
How does it work?
Once a user signs up for the service through a monthly or annual subscription plan, a prepaid shipping bag is delivered to them.
Once it’s filled up with clothes intended for the trade-in, the user delivers it to their nearest post office and this is then delivered to Swoondle’s inventory.
It is then checked, cataloged, valued and sent in. They are prepped, packaged and are sold to someone who needs it.
Once the items are processed, users receive credits in terms of one, two, three, four or five based on the value of the item.
The user now has credit to buy other items that suits their requirement
Clothes that are not in demand do not go into trash, instead they are either up-cycled, get bundled in bulk for resale or donated to local NGOs and community organizations.
“That’s the behavioral change you hope people are getting from this. It’s a mindset. Let’s buy something that’s better quality. Let’s buy something that will have value for the world as well as me after I’m finished with it.”, says the founder.
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Better than Use and Discard is Trade and Exchange–
Zucklie explais that the objective with which Swoondle Society started out was to give buyers a sustainability perspective and in general change the way users shop.
Eyeing the subscribers count almost double since 2020, that objective, according to Zucklie, is ‘slowly coming together.