“Okrika” or second-hand stores were born in Nigeria. initially, for two main reasons: because of economic crises and as a means of recycling. However, nowadays they are becoming more and more popular. This type of business does not require a high budget to invest, however, like any business, you need to apply sales strategies that attract the attention of customers. Do not be alarmed! If you still don’t know how to start a used clothing business in Nigeria, we would love to guide you through this process.

You are not sure? Don’t you feel ready? Starting a used clothing business allows you to free up space in your closet and get rid of clothes in good condition that you no longer wear so that someone else can give them a second chance. In addition, by selling used clothes you can recover part of your expenses and, as if that were not enough, recycling clothes helps to care for the environment.

How does an “Okrika” store work?

 

 

Second-hand stores usually work in the following way: suppliers come to the store to sell you a product; As a store, you value this product and set a price that you can both agree on; you pay the price of that product to the supplier and you go on to place it for sale.

Another alternative that you can travel down to places where these clothes have been collected in bulk and resold at a lesser price which you can come back to sell for a profit.

Before making the decision to start a used clothing business in Nigeria, it is convenient that you are aware of the pros and cons of buying this product, so that you can get to know potential customers better.

In short, the main reason why most people decide to buy a used object is its value. Any product that we find in a second-hand store will be cheaper than that same new product. This guarantees customers money savings and a contribution to the environment.

However, you will surely also face one of the most frequent fears of people when buying a used product, and that is that they are old and worn items that have lost part of their quality. Therefore, it is in your hands to make a difference and that your clients trust you. But in this article we will provide you with multiple ways to run your business and enter the fashion market.

How profitable is “Okrika” business in Nigeria?

 

 

 

From time immemorial, Nigerians prefer to , second-hand clothing brands are experiencing tremendous growth. The reason is the combination of the three basic elements of the textile sector: the resurgence of vintage fashion, the success of low cost  and respect for the environment through responsible consumption.

The new generations are committed to reselling, recycling, reusing and even exchanging their clothing. Thus, it is considered that it is a good business to sell used clothes, since people are betting more on reinserting previous fashions and giving clothes in good condition a second chance.

In addition, second-hand clothing stores allow the customer to finally buy what they could not afford at the time. Clothing businesses never go out of style as people need to dress for any type of occasion.

The main objective is to convert the second-hand store into a first-class business that can comply with the same guarantees and securities and, for this, the most practical thing is to dedicate yourself to an article that you can review and offer without defects.

The big problem you have to face in this type of establishment is provisioning, for two reasons. On the one hand, because you need to make a prior initial contribution to stock up on merchandise and, on the other, because you cannot make sales plans.

How much does it cost to open an Okrika store?

It is advisable to start with a fairly large budget, resorting to personal financing or through loans, which may be the best option for a self-employed person.

However, the main expense corresponds to the initial resources. In this case, it is advisable to start with smaller batches of garments, so that it is possible to analyze which products generate greater demand and which ones leave higher profit margins. In general terms, this would represent an expense of approximately $25,000 USD.

 

Where to buy second hand clothes to sell

 

 

 

How to get clothings to start a used clothing business? Garage sales, flea markets, and wholesalers in Lagos and Ogun State are the best places to find great deals on clothing to start your business. In these areas you can buy cheap items that need repairs that you can do yourself and request discounts for those that are damaged.

You can also take advantage of these spaces to request costs per lot, to make a wholesale purchase. This would be profitable both for you and for the seller, since he would take out a certain number of products in a single moment and the offer in your business would increase.

Also, you can order used clothes online through a search engine and you will be presented with a large list of online sellers who have good prices. If you add the market niche in the search terms you will get better results. Another strategy is to place an ad in the newspaper or on a local online event site and offer to collect the donations. In the ad you can request the type of clothing you want to collect.

Among the options where you can get good deals on used clothing, you can visit the following markets to get the best of materials in Nigeria for resale:

  • Katangua market. This market houses a larger chunk of Akube clothes in Lagos. …
  • Tejuosho market. This is an ultramodern market located along the Ojuelegba-Itire Road in Yaba, Lagos.
  • Oshodi market. …
  • Badagry market. …
  • Balogun market. …
  • Yaba market. …
  • Aswani market. …
  • Bali market.

 

How to sell used clothes: 8 steps to create a successful business

 

 

If you are looking for a business with a fast return on investment and a high customer flow, you have come to the right place. Used clothing stores in Nigeria have become a trend in the fashion market. However, it may still be people’s second choice, so you’ll have to work twice as hard to make it stand out and your potential customers want to visit it.

Now, how to start a used clothing business in Nigeria? Very simple! Follow the steps we have left for you.

 

1. Store location

 

In the fashion market, you can start your business with endless opportunities, you can start selling used clothes from your home garage or from a space you rent. However, it is important that before starting a used clothing business you do a study of the sector where you want to establish yourself and confirm that your idea is a solution to the needs of the people around you.

 

2. Suppliers 

 

This idea is profitable since you can acquire your clothes in multiple ways: garage or clearance sales, flea markets, moving sales, or used items sold online. It is essential, it will be that you establish a policy on the type of clothes that you are going to receive and the conditions that must be met.

 

3. Target Audience

 

Analyze which audience you want to attack when starting a used clothing business. You need to focus on a specific audience so as not to oversaturate your business and generate losses. Some of the options you have on hand for the sale of second-hand clothing are children’s clothing, designer clothing, women’s and men’s clothing, vintage clothing, party clothing, among other styles.

 

4. Grading the clothes

 

If you are an entrepreneur and want to know how to open a used clothing store, you should start by looking for the grade of clothing that you’d prefer to get for resale. You should be renowned for the kind of quality you offer in the fashion market so your specific audience can know when you patronize you when you have consignment ready.  Of course, this requires some sort of technicality. We’ve highlighted some of the grading below for you to understand;

  • Grade A: This kind of clothing are those ones that are fairly new. They either have not been worm before or maybe once or a few times but appear preface without any defect.
  • Grade B:  This kind of grading are the ones that come with a minor dent, such as a washable stain
  • Grade C: This kind of clothing have major dent, are either too old or torn or what have you. They usually are the least wanted
  • Mixed grade: This has blend of the three grades, A, B and C

5. Equipment and tools

 

What materials are needed for a clothing store? Among the tools you will need, we think of: displays, hangers, garment racks and cabinets, changing rooms, cash registers, shopping bags, mannequins, boxes with terminals to include various forms of payment, such as debit cards or credit. In addition, you must have useful elements such as stationery, calculator and others.

6. Decoration

 

Sometimes people tend to associate used clothing stores with a dirty and old place. Prove that it is not so! Keep everything clean and scented so that your customers feel fresh when they enter. Keep in mind that the garments must be in good condition and be organized correctly, sizes, colors, type of material, etc.

Decorate your store with accessories that catch the attention of your customers: lamps, plants, wall art, tablecloths, mirrors or any other detail you consider. You can place the prices on the racks or on a billboard by type of garment, which are striking and in vibrant colors.

 

7. Set your store policies

 

The sale of used clothing can be a bit delicate, it is normal to want to please all customers, but you must set limits for your business to work correctly. For this reason, we recommend that you offer a layaway system for no more than 30 days and a return policy that does not exceed 15 days. You can define a specific time to remove previously set aside garments and to make returns.

 

8. Promotion

 

This is important because you must explain to your potential customers that the product you are selling is not a new product, but it is in excellent condition. Make statements like: It’s worth buying! o It has an eye-catching design! You must trust what you offer and give yourself publicity, as this will improve the willingness to buy and increase your profits.

Additionally, you can promote in radio media, ads in newspapers in the area, advertisements, flyers, social networks and through word of mouth.

 

Tips for a used clothing business

 

Running an “Akube” business can be an exciting and rewarding job, especially if you love fashion, and therefore clothing and accessories. But like any other business, it requires human resources and an entrepreneurial spirit. We know that you don’t just need personal skills, so take note of these tips to lead your business to success .

What price is put on used clothing?

 

Defining the cost of items can be difficult because the price may be too low to maximize your sale or too high to sell.

We recommend you visit several stores that sell products like the ones you are going to offer but new. From there, use the 50-20-10 rule , i.e. price items at half their original cost if they are still fairly new, 25% for anything used between 1 and 5 years, and 10% for everything else.

How to promote second-hand clothes?

 

The value of used goods inevitably increases when they have a funny or emotional story to go with them. Used products with memorable or captivating stories can attract more customers. Also, one of the best ways to advertise your business is to hold events like garage sales to sell products and acquire new customers.

Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are classic and essential social networks to promote your store. The key to using them is to make the most of graphics, design art that helps promote your product or brand, and use lots of photos. The important thing is that you generate valuable information for your followers such as data, curiosities about old objects, tips to care for and maintain second-hand things, etc.

How to take photos to sell used clothes?

 

High-quality product photography is critical to the apparel business. A photograph can be decisive for all second-hand garments, your products must look completely perfect in your photographs. Follow these steps to achieve it

  • Prepare your clothes : You have to wash, iron, repair damage and remove imperfections.
  • Turn any spacious room into a photography studio: You can do this with a camera, tripod, white seamless paper, tape, and natural light.
  • Use a white background: To avoid distractions and ensure you capture colors as accurately as possible, always use a white or light gray backdrop.
  • Find a good camera: We recommend that you use a digital SLR camera that has a manual exposure and allows you to set the lens aperture or you can use the camera on your smartphone.
  • Find a good light source: If you have a large window and plenty of natural light, you don’t need anything else. On the contrary, having artificial lighting equipment available will allow you to shoot when there is not enough natural light through the window.
  • Take photos of the clothes on a mannequin: They are an affordable and easy-to-use alternative and you can use the invisible mannequin technique in the post-production phase, leaving the garment in 3D.

What is the second-hand clothing that is sold the most in Nigeria?

 

The first thing you should take into account to know how to start a used clothing business in Nigeria is what are the products that are sold the most. You can sell whatever you want (except underwear) as long as it’s in good condition and quality.

Try to establish quality control, that is, before selling second-hand clothes, you must review each garment in detail. Among the best-selling clothings, you can offer: Blouses, Tops, Jackets, Coats, Pants, Jeans, Skirts, Dresses, Sets, Sportswear, Shoes, Scarves, Wallets, Belts and Sunglasses.

On the other hand, clothes that are worn for a very short time, such as maternity outfits, baby outfits, and costumes, sell out very quickly. Most likely, on some occasion you yourself have kept these clothes like new in your closet, take advantage of them!

 

Sell online

 

If you don’t know how to sell used clothes online, don’t worry, it’s easier than you think. The trend of buying and selling used clothes online has seen remarkable growth due to the current condition of the pandemic. Many people have decided to purge their closets and others to renew it.

According to a study, the used clothing and accessories market is predicted to overtake the fast fashion market by 2028. Therefore, you should start by creating solid foundations in social networks and on web pages. You must consider that when using a website to sell used clothing, you must handle your product, manage the publication, respond to customers, make shipments or meet with them if necessary.

There are many sites on the Internet that specialize in buying and selling clothes and through them you can sell your used clothes, as well as on your own website, blogs and even social networks. However, the easiest way to do this is to use a specialized site. There are thousands of registered users looking for just what you are selling.

Do not try to sell used clothes for new

 

When buying used clothing to resell you must be clear that you must offer it in the condition that you bought it, it is not an option to trick the customer into paying more. When you sell used clothing, think that your customers will be more attracted if they see that it is worth buying it from you instead of in the brand store.

Success stories

 

Have you thought about buying second-hand clothes? It is an increasingly fashionable habit: those who have tried it have discovered that it has many benefits. In addition, many people are joining this trend and, as proof, we bring you some platforms that have been successful through used clothing.

Jiji.com

 

It is a online selling platform available only to Nigerians. It is very easy to use and it is an option to sell used clothes that you could consider. To be able to buy and sell on Jiji you need to be registered, so you can save your favorite clothes, comment, ask questions, negotiate the price, follow the closets of other users, receive your payments, and monitor the packages that are going to arrive.

In this space you will have fun selling or buying new or used clothes, bags, jewelry, shoes and accessories. However, you must complete the following:

  • Define a strategic title for your publication.
  • Choose the product category.
  • Detail color, material, size and stock of what you are selling.
  • Clarify if it is a new or used product.
  • Provide a detailed description

Facebook Marketplace

 

It is an app and social network that you can take advantage of to sell your used clothes. Facebook decided to implement its own sales tool: Marketplace , which allows users to publish their products without joining a group.

Businesses can use Marketplace to: display inventory of retail items, home rentals, vehicles, and event tickets, or advertise their store or items to reach more people, even if the business doesn’t list directly.

 

Final words

 

The trend to recycle and sell used clothes is an opportunity to allow other people to wear clothes that are in good condition. Starting a used clothing business in Nigeria has many advantages, through it, you may be able to face the economic crisis that affects people’s consumption, keep part of the history at home or reduce production to protect the environment.

At this point, we think you are ready to start your business. Remember to look for the best suppliers, keep your clothes in excellent condition and make discounts to motivate your customers.