This was one of the comments I’ve read from a blog post i did several weeks ago, but I’ll elect to avoid the naming game as that’s not the point. But for the record I do try to read every single comment when time permits. This was somewhat a bold and sensitive statement in my opinion, but it’s been one of the topics I’ve always wanted to talk about over the last year. By purely looking at the surface, you can possibly say yes re-sellers are an added expense for those intending to buy the shoes, but 99% of the general public tend to look no further than what they see with their eyes and get blindsided by what they don’t see of the bigger picture. This is probably an endless conversation of right or wrong, but here’s what most people DON’T SEE.
In my opinion, re-selling is a form of business. What do businesses do? They capture a market opportunity and they provide supply for those that demand it. Facts are, if a business fails to do either of these, they tend to phase out pretty quickly. Yes, re-sellers don’t have contracts with Nike to re-sell these shoes like a Foot Locker, but what we do provide is contribution to the GDP of the economy. Just to put things in perspective, if you have any friends or relatives that work for the postal service or Paypal…guess what? I contribute to keep these people employed. Over the years i’ve been doing this, I’ve paid close to $100k in pp fees and shipping costs collectively.
To keep things short and sweet, yes the end consumer is the eventual one that gets shafted because he’s paying for everyone in the food chain, but more importantly the end user is willing and capable of paying the re-sell price. If one is not willing or capable of paying re-sell prices, they wouldn’t go up from retail price to begin with. That’s just simply how the market works – demand and supply. Obviously Nike has created a desirable product that EVERYONE wants, but not EVERYONE can get it. I’m sure this is a simple theory everyone understands. If one is to argue if established re-sellers didn’t exist, it will be better for everyone. I highly beg to differ because you bet re-selling will still exist, but at the individual level instead of a business point of view. Established re-sellers simply work like brokers/agents in real estate. We provide a service to find prospective buyers and sellers from our own network and we provide confidence and guarantee. Yes, there is a price tag involved with that confidence because everyone needs to eat. If you argue, re-sellers aren’t needed…sure! Just don’t be that guy that pays $1,000 for a pair and actually finding out later they are fake. You could have easily paid a slight premium and ensure what you got were LEGIT with peace of mind. Doing legit checks can not be taught because every shoe is different – this comes from experience. Ie. Flight Club still exists for a reason – because there are customers that are willing to pay for that peace of mind.
Real estate broker? Not entirely. Perspective property buyers don’t deal directly with builders. In that aspect, brokers are needed. Sneaker (or any) resellers are not needed as consumers have the ability to buy directly from the manufacturer.
I enjoyed the read. While you tried to see it from both sides, I tend to agree more with the initial commenter.
The glaring problem that is being overlooked is that sneakers, like many other hobbies are just that, hobbies. When resellers added the additional business step between store and consumer, it can be viewed as unnecessary and/or greedy.
In my opinion, resellers stay afloat because of lazy buyers that lack self-control. With enough research/searching, most anything can be found without a middleman. It hasn’t failed me in the 27 years of buying.
I will agree that SOME releases can be unattainable due to regional constrictions, that has everything to do with businesses intentionally generating hype and nothing to with resellers other than to take advantage. One hand feeds the other in that respect.
A good amount of enthusiasts have been around long enough to remember when every shoe you wanted could be had at any time of the day/week. The business of shoes operated just fine without a middle-ground bloating the prices.
Have I accepted the current state of shoes, yes. Adapt or die. Every one, including myself, has resold something along the way. So, I’m not angry or mad people are getting their money. The only part that bothers me is the constant money-grab mentality and no actual appreciation or respect for the hobby.