THE IMPORTANCE OF REMAINING YOURSELF ON AN EVER-CHANGING PLATFORM
How do you stay authentic on an ever changing platform?
‘Remaining authentic on a platform like Depop can prove challenging at times because you’re constantly flooded with new images and ideas. When I’m feeling a little lost, I like to scroll down and look at some of my first sales. This just reminds me of how far I’ve come and shows the phases my shop has gone through and the reasons I got started in the first place.
How do you keep up with the latest trends without yourself and shop looking like everyone else's?
‘I try to sell items that I would wear myself so that if the item does not sell, I would have no problem easily incorporating it into my own wardrobe and personal style. I could never justify buying clothing that I don’t like. Even if I am reselling the clothing, it would not accurately represent me or my shop.’
What intimidates you the most about being a Depopper and trying to stand out from the busy crowd?
‘It sounds silly but I often get intimidated by things like creative backdrops and great quality photos. As a seller, you try to attract as many people as you can and to do this you must stand out. At times, I over critique my shop and wish that I had better resources. At the end of the day I’m proud of how far my shop has come using my customised backdrop and phone camera.’
Have you always been individual and not allowed others to sway your views on how to style?
‘Not always. I think it's just a part of growing up. You follow the group until you're confident enough to branch off on your own. At least that's what I did.’
Did anyone in particular inspire you to take risks and be more original?
‘One of the most influential people when it comes to my style would have to be my best friend, Lindsay. Our styles are very different but she always encourages me to wear what I want and has really influenced my confidence in the best way.’
Depop has a whole array of different sellers, shops and styles. How would you describe yours?
‘To be completely honest, I can't really boil it down to a sentence or two. My style is always changing and I feel that my shop represents that change perfectly. I love 90s, y2k and even some modern trends. I know that many people also love an array of styles, so I try to consider this when deciding what to sell.’
Is it important to you to keep an authentic presence online?
‘To me, it’s extremely important to remain authentic online because I want my shop to represent me. It can be so easy to put on a completely different persona when selling and communicating with customers but I try not to do this because I know the best way to continue to attract customers is for me to be myself.’
Does being in such a big and busy community ever make you feel pressured?
‘If I do feel pressured, it’s usually to spend money on things that might improve the look of my shop, like a new backdrop, lighting, or camera. They are things that I don’t need but at times can feel pressured to buy when I see other shops with super creative backgrounds and high quality images.’
How do you deal with this feeling?
‘When I get this feeling, I try to remind myself about how much progress I have already made without all of those things. I even scroll through my sold items when I need a visual reminder. If none of those things work, I just take a break from the app for a while.’
Why do you think it’s important to not follow the herd?
‘If everyone followed the herd, there would be no originality and probably no Depop!’
What is the biggest lesson you’ve learnt regarding this topic?
‘The best thing you could do for your shop is be yourself, because there is truly no one person exactly like you. People are naturally attracted to uniqueness or things they haven’t seen before and Depop is the best example of this. The shops that do the best are the ones that no one else can replicate.’
Have you stuck to the same style from the very beginning of your Depop shop or has it evolved over time? (If it has evolved) Why and how?
‘The style of my shop has most definitely evolved over time. I started my shop in November of 2018 by selling random clothing from my closet. Some items I liked, others I just wanted to get rid of. Then I got into thrifting unique items that I could sell. My style fluctuates a lot so as my shop grew, so did my style. This can be seen in the types of clothing I have sold in the past compared to what I sell now.’
If you could enlighten someone who is feeling elements of pressure and worry when feeling behind the times or not ‘cool’ enough, what would you tell them?
‘I would tell them to first take the time to become confident in themselves and their style. When you are confident in yourself, you know you are good enough. Once they do this it will automatically translate into their shop and no amount of pressure will be able to sway it.’