The sneaker resale market is retreating to normalcy as prices that were once skyrocketing are slowing back down to a normal pace.
- The sneaker resale market has been hot the last few years, but prices are declining, leaving analysts to watch and see if the market is crashing or just returning to normal.
- Price data from the resale platform StockX for over 100 popular sneaker releases from the last several years found that the average price return in 2022 was negative 7%, while the same sample was up an average of 23% in 2021, according to Axios.
- Although prices for sneakers are retreating, the resale value is still high, leaving sellers with a profit, but the profit is now lower. For example, the popular Nike “panda” dunks were reselling for more than $300 on StockX in 2021 but are now typically going for $150 or lower, which is still higher than Nike’s retail price of $110.
Why it’s important
The sneaker market is a huge market that has been red hot the last few years, but prices are beginning to drop in the sector, making some shoes more affordable while still leaving sellers with a profit.
Prices have recently been declining in the shoe resale market as shoe prices have been dropping considerably. Analysts have been watching to see if the market is crashing, but many seem to think it is settling back into a state of normalcy after being in high demand for so long.
While prices are dropping, many of the most coveted shoes are still going for extremely high costs, and sellers are still turning a profit, just not as much as they would have in the last few years.
Most of the shoes with the highest demand are celebrity-endorsed shoes, like rapper Travis Scott’s collaboration with Nike. Some pairs in Scott’s latest collaboration are reselling for nearly $500, while in previous years, the shoes would have been reselling for thousands.
While $500 is a large drop from the thousands the celebrity-endorsed shoes were once reselling for, it is still a large profit for the seller as the shoes typically retail on Nike around the $150 to $200 mark.
Sneaker resells reached a high mark during the pandemic as people used the influx of extra money and time to buy shoes and resell them for more than what they paid.
“It got to a point in 2020 and 2021 where basically every single sneaker that released on Nike’s SNKRS app was selling out and going higher on secondary markets. It barely mattered what it was,” says Dylan Dittrich, author of the 2019 book Sneakonomic Growth.
While many shoes that would have been resold years ago for high prices aren’t doing so anymore, most of the celebrity-endorsed and fashionable shoes are still hot on the market, but the profit isn’t nearly as high as it once was.
“The fever pitch that the market was once at is gone … I think we’re finally starting to get back to a period of normalcy that we were once in, where you can resell sneakers and make a profit—but it’s not going to be as crazy, and it’s not going to be as profitable,” says Dittrich.