Vinted is a shopping app/website that I have been using for approximately 2 months as a buyer. It was constantly advertised on Spanish telly, but to be honest – I don’t normally do a lot of online shopping. I say “don’t” but that should say “did,” because since I got onto Vinted, all of that has changed.
I have not been offered any money by Vinted to write this review – nor have they asked me to write it. i simply love it as a “User” and wanted to tell you lot too!
The only exception to that is the inclusion of links below. If you click on one of those and then sell some stuff, I get a small bonus that I can use to buy more stuff! But you don’t have to click the links – just Google it instead. At no point does clicking any of the links on this page cost you money – it merely enables me to spend more. You only spend what you buy.
The history of Vinted
How many times have you sat with a friend, drinking wine and fixing the world – I know we have! Well, that’s exactly what happened with Vinted.
In 2008 Justas Janauskas and Milda Mitkuke were sat in a bar in Vilnius, Lithuania, talking about building a marketplace website where people could trade their used fashion items with each other. Janauskas built a prototype and gave it a soft launch. Word of mouth worked its magic and the site grew quickly. Mitkuke later joined as a “co founder”.
Fast forward a little, and one night, Janauskas was working on the website when Sophie Utikal (a couchsurfing guest from Munich) asked him to tell her more about the business. The more Utikal heard, the more excited she became and it was decided… Utikal would launch the site in Germany. Janauskas remained at the core, developing the website and handling the technical aspects of the business, while Utikal took care of the promotion and marketing.
It launched. It grew. It was a success!
Following that, Vinted launched in several other countries, including the United States (2015, thanks to an investment of €25 million) and the United Kingdom. By 2016, Vinted had more than 12 million users across 11 countries, listing more than 22 million items.
This tremendous growth didn’t come without issues, and the company became a victim of its own success… burning through most of its cash and facing bankruptcy at one low point. The company brought in an advisor (Thomas Plantenga who later became CEO), and Vinted pared back, concentrating merely on France and Germany.
The planning and restructuring worked well and in 2020 (due mainly to lockdown) the company bloomed! Today, Vinted employes over 1,000 people across the world. Furthermore, the platform boasts over 45 million members across many countries.
Why it is great for buyers.
Like I said before, I didn’t do much online shopping. However – there was a particular coat I’d been seeking for many many years – a retro suede long coat with furry collar, cuffs and hem – preferably in dark brown. It’s a style that was very popular in the 1970s… and I had been keeping my eye out for years.
One night, Alan and I were chatting and he suggested I look on Vinted to see if they had what I wanted. Off I trotted and signed up (which is so simple – but we’ll come back to that).
Sure enough – there were plenty of coats quite similar to what I wanted, though not exact. I was a little disappointed, but I found a pair of bootleg jeans I’d also been after.
They were listed for just €3.50 and at that price I couldn’t really lose. They were tagged as in “Good” condition. I didn’t mind if they were a little “worn” – jeans look great battered about somewhat. I made the purchase and thought, “well I’ll just wait and see what turns up then”. Within moments, I’d received a really lovely message from the seller, a sweet lady called Jessy from Santa Coloma de Gramenet in Spain.
Before long, we were chatting and getting to know each other a little more. I was, by this time, getting alerts from both Vinted and UPS to say that my package was on its way.
My jeans arrived and I eagerly tore the packaging off. They were perfect! Despite being marked as “Good,” they were in immaculate condition. I rushed back to Vinted to gush my thanks to Jessy.
This level of friendliness is normal when using the website – and I generally get to know most sellers I do business with. Since that first sale, I have spoken to sellers all over Europe… and bought lots more goodies! Including…
- Ivory faux-suede jacket (still with furry collar, cuffs and hem. It was listed as “New with tags” and for a great price)
- Another pair of bootleg jeans (it’s my inner cowgirl)
- Leopardprint dress (God, I love leopardprint)
- Drinking glasses (yes, they do homeware too!)
- A gold evening dress (which is really rather beautiful!)
- A brand new suit, brand new (never worn) designer shoes and two silk ties – for Alan. It sorted his wedding outfit for his middle son who was married on March 19 (congrats to Joe and Sophie!)
“But what about that coat you originally wanted though, Elle?” I hear you say. Ah – well yes – I found one. It was exactly what I wanted, was in immaculate condition and cost me just €40!!! I’ve gone from having no winter coats to having three – in the space of a month!
How to join Vinted
It’s really simple! Either click one of the links below (in which case if you start selling on there, I receive a little payment) or just Google for Vinted.
It doesn’t really matter how you get to Vinted, it will mould itself to your preferences very quickly – the amount of thought, time and money that has gone into this is very apparent.
If it is available in your country, it will immediately ask you to select your country from the list. Don’t worry about language here at this point – you can set your default language anyway. I obviously selected Spain, although I have my Vinted set to “English language”.
Once you’ve done that, click the signup link at the top of the page which will take you through the signup process – it doesn’t take long!
Once you’ve signed up and jumped through their hoops – do add the app to your mobile devices. It’s so much easier to use, and contains a couple of elements that don’t seem to be available on the desktop website.
If you are using the app, click on “Profile” in the bottom righthand corner and then click “Personalisation”. Set your preferences in each section. For example, I selected my dress size, shoe size but also those things for Alan too. Now when you search the website, it will auto-apply those filters for you.
Go back now a couple of screens and click your profile button again. Now scroll down and click “Settings”. There’s lots of stuff in here that you should go through at some point, but for now let’s click on “Postage”.
Here you can add your postal address for home deliveries, but also select which delivery companies you do or don’t want to use. We’ve deselected SEUR for example, because in this area they are beyond dire!!
The buying process on Vinted
To search for something specific, just type in the description. For example, “long summer dress” or “Nike trainers”. Once the search result loads, there are various filters you can apply such as price, size, colour etc igf they are different to what you did in “Personalisation”.
You can save your most frequent searches – great if you often buy something specific or want to follow a particular designer.
Click on each item to find out more and “favourite” some if you like. Then you simply “Buy”. You can also message a seller and offer them another price. For example, that long brown coat I wanted was marked for €46, but I offered €40 and she accepted. If an item has only been uploaded very recently… you’re unlikely to get much of a discount – but if it’s been listed for a while – then why not!
Once you’ve narrowed your list down – go over each in detail. “Gut instincts” to use include:
- If they have what looks amazing but the one solitary photo looks like it’s been lifted from another website
- If they’ve not taken the time to provide a description
- If the seller has no profile information nor photo
- If the seller has no reviews
Each of those signs on their own may be completely innocent – but you’re dealing with real people here… and if NONE of the above are showing positively… then think carefully before risking your hardearned cash.
The seller doesn’t receive your money until you’ve accepted delivery and you’ve said all’s well. But you could end up getting something not as described… or at the very least have wasted your time. If it’s too good to be true – it usually is. Caveat emptor.
If you mark an item as “favourite” the seller is alerted. Often they will send you a private message to see if you’re interested or not. I found that a little invasive at first – but I do see the big benefit for sellers there… they can move a sale forward simply by engaging with a potential buyer, or by discussing a discount. For a buyer, the benefits include receiving a quiet discount offer before something goes public. So not really a downside eh?! If you really don’t want sellers knowing you’ve favourited something – you can change that in your “settings”.
Offering discounts comes at a cost though – as I learned to my detriment. I’d seen a dress I really really wanted. It was listed for €40. I popped an offer in and waited. No reply was forthcoming but it sold at the full asking price. I was so disappointed! I should have just paid the €40 – it was 5 times that price on the original brand website and was marked as “New with tags”. More fool me! To be fair, Alan had told me not to mess about, and to just buy it. He was right but don’t tell him I said that – I’d never hear the end of it.
The buying process will take you through a few steps, such as delivery options and payment. Once done – you simply sit back and wait for your goodies to arrive.
The costs of buying
Although some items seem really cheap – once you add the “Buyer Protection” fee and the postal costs, it can add up. I’m generally paying €5 to €6 on top of a product for what I buy… and I always include that in my sums when thinking, “Is this still a good price”?
Once your product arrives and is signed for (by whatever method of postage you chose), Vinted will ask you how it all went.
Vinted will prompt you to leave “Feedback” for the seller and once that is done, the seller can leave feedback for the buyer. I have given feedback on all my sellers, and all but one has provided five star reviews back. Do provide feedback to the seller when prompted – it means a lot to us! It makes you feel more appreciated than buying from a High Street store’s website. This is more than a shopping website – it’s a community of people that enjoy having nice things and/or want to make a little money.
This brings us onto…
What are “bundles”?
Bundles are a great way to save even more money. When you view a seller’s collection, most will have a bundle button at the top. This enables you to buy multiple items from one seller. This immediately helps with the postage costs… but also most sellers offer a bulk discount, which can start at as few items as two! I bought two items from a lady in France – it worked out cheaper than buying just the one item on its own!! Plus I only had one set of postage and Buyer protection to buy too.
Did you like that seller? Follow them…
If you enjoyed the experience with your seller, and if they have other things you quite like, consider leaving them a “Follow”. This enables you to get alerts whenever they post something new. I “follow” a lady in Italy, for example, who posts the most amazing vintage clothing – styles that I love that areb’t seen too often here. I like to stad out – so she often has items that I love!
The selling process on Vinted
I knew quite quickly that I would be telling everyone who would listen how great Vinted is! But I wanted to be able to describe Vinted life as a seller too. So I have so far popped three items on for sale. One sold very fast (a “new with tags” formal shirt, still in its original M&S packaging). Two others are still listed. One of these is for an item that I have up for €1 – but the shipping costs are prohibitive to people buying (or so I have been told by a couple of interested parties).
The last item only went on yesterday (an item I’d bought for myself locally as a bargain anyway… and it still had tags on. It didn’t fit, so on it went for sale).
You can edit your item right up until the point that someone buys it – so it’s simple to change the price etc.
If someone marks your item as “favourite” you’ll get a notification. If someone makes you an offer, you’ll get a notification. If someone purchases, you’ll get a notification. Vinted keeps you fully informed at every stage of the process.
Once a sale is confirmed, Vinted will send you a packing label. Print this off, attach it to your outgoing parcel and take it whereever it needs to go (for me it’s either our local Correos, or the local UPS dropoff centre in the ciggie shop). That’s it!
Vinted will tell you when it has reached its destination, when it has been signed for, and when the buyer has provided feedback. Do provide feedback to the buyer too when prompted – it means a lot to us!
All you need to do now is to enjoy your purchase!
What if my item isn’t as advertised?
Apparently help is at hand from Vinted if the item sent doesn’t match the description etc – but as I’ve not had an unhappy experience yet, I can’t talk you through that process. One thing’s for sure though – everything else is so simple on the website that this is bound to be too.
Really nice plus points for Vinted
- Vinted will translate all conversations for you if you want it to. Because of this, I have conversed with people not only in Spain, but also Italy, France and Belgium.
- This is more than a shopping website – it’s a community!
- Buying preloved items is better for the environment.
- No seller fees
- Really REALLY easy to use for both selling and buying.
- You can save your most frequent searches – great if you often buy something specific or want to follow a particular designer.
- Speaking of searches – some people don’t buy second hand clothes (Alan for one). Don’t worry – just select “New with tags” and / or “new without tags” in your search filter and you’ll only see stuff that has never been worn. Personally, I’m fine with older stuff as my chosen stylpe is pretty “vintage”
Things I don’t like about Vinted
- I can’t think of anything!
What I’m planning to do on Vinted in the future
I think I’ll be spending more time selling. I’ll be timing my items for various times of year… for example I may be selling jumpers in the autumn and strappy dresses in the spring and summer. This should generate some income that I can then use to buy more goodies from Vinted! Win win!
That link again for you HERE.
Elle, along with Alan, is the owner of Spain Buddy and the busy web design business – Spain Web Design by Gandy-Draper.
Born a “Norverner”, she then spent most of her life “Dann Saff” before moving to Spain in 2006. Elle’s loves are Alan, the internet, dogs, good food, and dry white wine – although not necessarily in that order.