Now that Poshmark has established itself as a destination for new and pre-owned apparel, accessories and shoes, as well as beauty products, the social commerce platform is venturing into the $582 billion home category with the launch today of an in-app marketplace for buying and selling home decor.
“This is a long time coming,” said Manish Chandra, founder and chief executive officer of Poshmark. “We started with women’s fashion in 2011 and expanded into men’s and kids in 2016 and 2017, respectively. Recently we added sneakers with a market for posh kicks for men. Those areas are all still very fashion-related. This is our first major foray outside of fashion. Adding home gives people another dimension of their style to showcase.”
Poshmark’s initial new categories include home accents such as pillows, coffee table books, wall art, beach towels, party and wedding supplies, closet organizers and office supplies. “These are lightweight items,” Chandra said. “We haven’t touched large-scale items like furniture or mattresses. These are things people are buying and selling much more frequently. For now, we’re sticking to lightweight, very stylish items that are very social in nature.”
Chandra expects home to grow “significantly faster than fashion. We have 40 million users now. Everything we launch scales very quickly.”
Asked whether Poshmark will launch an initial public offering a la The RealReal, Chandra said, “The best I can tell you about an IPO is we’re obviously growing fast, and we’re considering all of the possibilities.”
A significant overlap between Poshmark’s core fashion seller/stylists and sellers of home products is expected, Chandra said, adding, “We may also attract people who are less interested in fashion and more interested in the home area.”
A Posh Market for the home category is launching; the feature allows sellers to create shopping experiences surrounding categories, which helps them expand more nimbly. Posh Markets, which launched in 2018, created an immersive way for Poshmark’s users to access the platform’s various categories. Women, men, prom, maternity, petite, plus-size, luxury, kicks and boutiques are among the existing Posh Markets.
“We’ll be launching a series of home markets that will be available to our communities,” Chandra said. “We’ll also be hosting Posh parties and we’re starting a Posh ambassador program for home just like the one for fashion.”
As for new categories Poshmark will launch next, Chandra said, “Anything that has to do with personal style. When you think about women’s, men’s and kid’s, home became logical. Think of everything that’s within the home. So many categories are moving toward personal style. Personal electronics, for example, are moving toward [making a fashion] statement. We’re also considering pets.”
The Poshmark ceo wants to find a way to forge stronger connections with buyers, but he’s not convinced a brick-and-mortar store is the answer. “Posh parties are the physical events we host in cities where people come together,” Chandra said. “They have all the elements of a physical shop. Our buyers would love more physical interaction with Poshmark, but it’s not clear to me that they’re asking for a shop.”
Earlier this year, in partnership with Macy’s, Poshmark invited select brands to showcase their fashion at several Macy’s stores. “That experience will continue to evolve over time. Malls are blending entertainment with restaurants and bars. There has to be a high frequency of engagement. You have to make it something people will want to come back to over and over.”
With the ability to spark conversations about style, Poshmark is driving engagement and proving that the platform isn’t only for fashion. Poshmark’s growth into new categories is just beginning now that the social commerce platform has demonstrated the potential of pairing social media connections with the transactions of a marketplace.
“We’re impacting the home market with social commerce in the same way we impacted the fashion market,” Chandra said. “Sellers can tap into revenue streams and scale their social retail businesses.”