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Companies in this industry sell used merchandise such as clothing, antiques, furniture, books, and jewelry. Major US companies include Goodwill, The Salvation Army, Savers, and Winmark.
The used merchandise stores industry in the US includes about 20,000 stores with combined annual revenue of about $16 billion.
The industry includes resale shops, consignment shops, thrift shops, and antique stores. Excluded are stores that sell used cars, boats, trailers, and mobile homes. Pawn shops, which sell a variety of used merchandise but generate most of their revenue from interest and fees on loans, are discussed in this profile but not included in store count, revenue, or employment statistics.
Demographics, consumer income, and consumer tastes drive demand. The profitability of individual companies depends on efficient procurement and effective merchandising. Large companies have advantages in marketing and finance. Small companies can compete effectively by offering specialty products, serving a local market, or providing superior customer service. The US industry is highly fragmented: the 50 largest US companies account for about 25% of sales.
Used merchandise stores compete with retailers offering new merchandise. Companies also compete with individuals selling used merchandise privately or through websites, such as eBay or Craigslist, or product swapping through services like Freecycle.
PRODUCTS, OPERATIONS & TECHNOLOGY
Major products include used clothing (about 25% of sales); antiques (13%); used furniture and collectibles (10% each); and used books and jewelry (7% each).
Resale shops buy merchandise directly ...
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