Can You Sell Used Items On Shopify? Is it allowed?

Can You Sell Used Items On Shopify

Can You Sell Used Items On Shopify? Is it allowed?


Want to open a Shopify store? There must be many questions you’ll want answers to. Some of them revolve around the types of products Shopify permits selling on its platform. To be specific, if it is legitimate to sell used goods and commodities in your store.

The answer is yes. You can sell secondhand items on Shopify. However, the customer must not be misled, in that case, Shopify has a very strict policy to ensure its customers are not cheated on. You can customize your store design and policies but selling illegal products and items is not allowed.

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From selling used items to the factors you must consider this article will tell you all you must know to conform to Shopify’s Acceptable Use policy.

Is Selling Used Items Prohibited on Shopify?

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After extensive research, I can tell you for sure that Shopify is an all-in-one eCommerce platform. It supports individuals and businesses selling tangible or intangible, new or used products and services. Shopify is an online platform that promotes eCommerce at its prime. Whether you sell used or unused items is your choice.

When we think of online shopping, we generally expect a brand-new product to be delivered. For some, however, buying expensive items is not possible. So, they look for cheaper options and this is where used items can be profitable. You can get rid of the product if it’s in acceptable condition or buy used items from others and sell them off for a profit on Shopify.


Consider eBay, for example, the platform works entirely on the trade of used products. This shows you the extent of the market for used goods and items that people no longer want.

Shopify lets you create a professional storefront and exhibit your products effectively.

What can be passed as used goods on Shopify?

When Shopify allows sellers to sell used items, you are bound to adhere to its Usage Policy. This is to keep the shoppers safe and keep the platform from making any illegal transactions. If you look at the policy and list of items that you are restricted from selling on Shopify, you’ll notice it includes many items you’d not try and sell anyway.

Legal Considerations For Selling Used Items

Shopify allows the reselling of all goods and services, except for ones that fall under the list of restricted items.

According to the AUP or Acceptable User Policy of Shopify, selling items that may harm your customer, physically or mentally, or selling anything that involves illegal transactions will be dealt with lawfully. Legal considerations also include product liability insurance.

You would need to adhere to regulations of selling used items regarding, pricing, promoting, and positioning of the products.

Importance Of Product Liability Insurance

In the business of selling used products and services, the importance of product liability Insurance is far-reaching. It can be a lifesaver for small businesses as well.

Product Liability insurance is a lawful insurance that protects businesses from costly lawsuits of customers. It can protect your reselling business from possible financial and legal upshots.

The insurance will make sure it covers possible mistakes in product descriptions and claims, marketing mistakes, defects in the products, and warnings for potential harm.

Guidelines For Product Descriptions and Claims

Following the guideline for product description, claims and policy would allow you to run a clean business.

You would be abiding by Shopify’s rules and regulations, all the while avoiding possible returns from angry customers. Here’s what you need to do:

  • Keep your target audience in mind: Whenever you write product descriptions, remember you have to know what your customers like and what they don’t like. Answer their questions and use words they want to hear or read.
  • Highlight product benefits: When you write the description, mention the benefits of using the used item, stating how the product can solve the buyer’s issues.
  • Be specific: In your description, avoid writing fluff sentences and phrases. Nobody wants to know if a watch is “great for keeping time”. Tell them about the battery instead.
  • Make only factual claims: If you claim that a particular used item is as good as new, make sure you have the pictures to prove so.
  • Give them stories and sensory words: The way to connect your customers is to use words and stories they can relate to.
  • Clear description: You can include scannable descriptions and claims for clarity.

What Shopify Prohibits

The online eCommerce platform outlaws’ certain activities, they are:

  • Bullying, defaming, harassing, and threatening other users.
  • Child exploitation.
  • Hateful content or discrimination based on caste, gender or race.
  • Illegal activities.
  • Intellectual property like copyrights, patents, and so on.
  • Cheating and deception.
  • Sharing confidential or protected information.
  • Self-Harm in any form.
  • Spamming others without consent.
  • Forming or supporting any terrorist activities.

If any of the items on your Shopify store promote these activities, then Shopify has the right to shut off your store and you may face legal actions. This policy applies to used and unused products and services. Now let’s see what things you can sell on Shopify (new or used).

You can sell physical commodities as well as intangible items, some of them are mentioned below:

  • Clothes
  • Electronics
  • Services
  • Workshops
  • Event Tickets
  • Gym Equipment

These are only a few examples of what people are selling on Shopify, you can choose any product of your choice that conforms with Shopify’s policies.

Top 7 Places to Get the Best Used Products

You know what you want, but where do you get it from?

Starting a Shopify store is simple but finding items to stock is not an easy task. So, here I have compiled a list of the top seven spots where you can find sweet deals on used products and get started in no time.

1. Thrift Shops

You can find many reusable items that people have donated to the thrift store for the least possible price. And if you look carefully you may even find something that has a very high resale value. So, my number one recommendation would be to raid your nearest thrift store. Find some great items and support their cause in the meanwhile.

2. Clearance Sections/Sales

Leading retailers often conduct clearance sales or have permanent clearance sections for old stock. You can also find items that have been returned by previous customers because of a minor defect. This is your chance to bag the item at a steal and sell them for a higher profit.

3. eBay

There is no doubt you can find great stuff on eBay. You don’t even have to leave your home. The eBay plus Shopify combination has fueled more businesses than you can imagine. Whether the auction has a minimum audience, the seller is inexperienced and has majorly lowered the price or you have simply found a good deal making money becomes simpler when you buy products from eBay.

4. Facebook Marketplace

If you are still unaware of this phenomenal platform by Facebook, you’re missing out on great deals. Buy, sell or trade items with people near you using Facebook Marketplace. The best part is you can negotiate with the sellers and get the best deal for used items and avoid those hefty delivery charges.

5. People Who You Know

This option is free of cost (most of the time). You can get in touch with your relatives, neighbors, or friends that can help you by providing the items for free or at cheaper rates.

6. Boot Sales

Boot sales are places where the locals gather and sell used household and garden products at low rates. You can get items fitting various categories; electronics, home décor, gardening–you name it and there’s a product fit for your store. Physical inspections are what make these sales stand out.

7. Auctions

Auctions are a great place to get your hands on something unique especially when there are not many people are bidding or the item is of no interest to them.

Now you know plenty of ways to get hold of the best-used items but believe me, these are not the only places. Getting used items can save you money and get amazing deals from people looking to get rid of an item quickly or who have misjudged the resale value of the product.

Pros of Selling Secondhand Commodities

Sure, there are a lot of benefits to selling new items but there are plenty more when you sell used ones. Let’s see some reasons why selling used items is a good way to rope in some profits.

You can update pictures regularly

When you sell used items, you can freely show clients the images you click on your device. This is much better than relying on images you are provided with for other methods like drop-shipping.

Easy management and delivery

You are responsible for your inventory when selling used items. Say goodbye to third-party vendors and manage the entire distribution process like the boss you are.

Be in control of the entire process

It’s your product, pack it as you find best, include your bill, vouchers, and so on without any hesitation.

Faster delivery

The minute you receive an order, you can get started on the delivery process. It’s all up to you, no more waiting for the shipment to be dispatched from warehouses.

Cheaper rates

Used items are a lot cheaper than brand new products. This allows you to sell the items for a cheaper price and beat your competitors. Don’t worry, you can still make a considerable profit while beating them.

Purchase at very reasonable prices

At places like thrift stores, car boot sales, and eBay you can find items for a very cheap price.

But before you begin, ensure you clearly state the refund policy and product condition in the product description. If the product is used or has some damage marks on it the customer should know. Rest assured as long as you’re not selling illegal products and conforming to Shopify’s Usage policy, you can sell used items on Shopify.

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Key Considerations Before Selling Used Items on Shopify

While selling used items on Shopify, you would need to keep a few factors in mind. Here are things you should consider:

Keep your customer informed

It’s imperative that you don’t keep your customers under a shadow about what they are spending their money on. Make sure that you tell your customers that the product is a secondhand one. You can do this by mentioning clearly in the product description or listing it under the used product category.

Be honest about product state 

It’s important to note the state of the product at the time of the sale should be visible. If there are stains, marks, damages, or any other issues with the secondhand product, you would have to mention it to keep your customer informed.

One simple way to do this is by taking photos the right way. In one of the pictures, you can capture the damage and let them know the condition. This way there will be a lower chance of your buyers returning the product.

Clarity on Returns policy 

When customers are buying used items, they would want to return the goods if there are slight defects. Be stern and clear on what your return policy is.

Target and reach the right customers: 

This applies to all Shopify stores, regardless of what they are selling. You would have to be able to target the right customers for your business to thrive. Most Shopify small businesses fail because they are unable to do this.

You can research the target audience by looking at your competitors and the people who are asking for the items. You would want to know how to reach that target buyers as well.

Be an expert in fulfillment procedure: 

Selling used items on Shopify means that you can be on your own regarding shipping, payments, and fulfillment. If you have a clear idea of these practices, you would be able to sell on the platform more easily.

Is Selling Used Items Online Profitable?

Recently, the digital marketing space has seen a rise in resale shops online. Why so? It’s because selling used items online can be quite profitable. It’s not to say that there won’t be any challenges related to it.

Like most businesses, there are thousands of businesses reselling items. Which means you would be entering a competitive market.

To make sure that the selling of used items is lucrative, you would need to know your target audience. The selection of products to sell is also important to make a profit.

Since you would be able to purchase these items from thrift shops and auctions, you can resell the right items at a higher profit margin. Keep in mind that customers expect prices to be reasonable as well.

How To Price Used Items To Sell On Shopify

Pricing used items to sell on Shopify can make or break your little Shopify thrift business. Hence you would want to be careful in pricing the products.

When you set a price on one of the used products, you need to take into consideration the quality and age of the product.

Additionally, keep in mind that Shopify hosts thousands of small, medium, and big businesses. Your price should be competitive enough when compared to others.

When you are pricing one of these items, the selling price should emulate what the customer is about to get their hands on. This would entail possible maintenance charges as well.

If a customer buys a product that requires them to spend more on maintenance, the price of the item should echo that too. You would also need to remember about any possible delivery and shipping costs to compensate.

If you’re confused about the price that could help you maximize profit while aiding you to sell the used item, you might want to look for prices other shops are selling at.

Other than that, it might help you to use eBay’s calculator for shipping these products, where they give you an estimate for prices on such items.


Can you sell used clothes on Shopify?

You can sell used clothes on Shopify. However, you must ensure that the clothes are wearable and in good condition. You should also price the clothes according to the condition. Stained or ripped clothes will be returned by the customer after purchase.

Can you sell used books on Shopify?

You can sell used books on Shopify. It is important to make sure you take good pictures of the booking, stating the condition of the book in the description of the product. Mention the kind of page, scribbles, and cover. You should refrain from selling books with torn covers or pages. Doing that increases the chances of return. The price of a used book is much more reasonable than the new one.

Can I sell used cars on Shopify?

Yes, you can sell used cars and automotive parts on Shopify, as long as you abide by the protocols given by Shopify. Since you would have to carry out all the shipping, payment, and fulfillment procedures yourself, selling cars may be hectic on Shopify. Most customers would prefer to inspect the car’s various parts with their own eyes before they buy it, even if it’s a second-hand one. You would have to be clear and honest in the descriptions and product images about the real condition of the used car, its engine, mileage, or interiors.

Final Thoughts

Selling used items on Shopify can be lucrative when you know what to resell and who to resell to. Being honest about the condition of the product with the right description and claims can earn you return customers as well.

You would be legally charged if you resell any items that Shopify restricts. You may want to remember that if you want to sell used products on Shopify, you would need to be able to control everything on your own: shipping, vouchers, bills, and payments!

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