August 2, 2023

Sella vs. The RealReal: Which One Should You Use to Sell Your Stuff?

Photo by Antoni Shkraba via Pexels

When it comes to selling your stuff online, you probably prioritize simplicity and maximizing your profit. Sella and The RealReal are two online selling services that offer both, which could make it challenging when deciding which one to use. Explore this guide as we compare these popular selling services to help you determine the best one for your specific needs. 

In this article: 

What Is The RealReal?

The RealReal is a marketplace for designer products, like shoes, bags, and jewelry. It allows people to sell items from luxury brands, including Gucci, Louis Vuitton, and Chanel.

How Does The RealReal Work?

Person wearing designer coat and bracelet holding a designer bag
Photo by Snapwire via Pexels

To sell your items with The RealReal, you can either bring them into a retail location, order a pickup service, or ship them directly to a The RealReal location. Then, the company gets to work on listing your items. It handles everything from taking professional photos of your items to describing them, pricing them, and posting them on the site to sell.

After your items sell, your commission payment will be available on the 15th of the following month via check, direct deposit, or store credit. 

What Is Sella?

Sella is a service for people to resell items on multiple online marketplaces at one time. You can sell a variety of items with Sella, including small appliances, electronics, gym equipment, clothing, and collections. It does have some restrictions for items that can’t be sold, like large furniture and perishable goods.

How Does Sella Work?

Cartier watch laid on top of a Cartier box
Photo by Antony Trivet via Pexels

Sella partners with six selling marketplaces: Craigslist, eBay, Facebook Marketplace, Mercari, OfferUp, and Poshmark. You can choose to list your items on any or all of these marketplaces when you work with Sella, so long as those marketplaces allow the types of items you’re selling.

You can start the process by clicking the Get Started button on the website to register an account. Then, either bring your items to a Sella Hub, request a pickup, or mail them in. Sella’s team then takes photos of your items and lists them on the marketplaces you choose with optimized descriptions. 

Sella experts will also recommend prices for your items based on their condition and how much comparable items have recently sold for. Still, you can change the prices to whatever you see fit. Your payment becomes available to transfer to your bank account once an item sells and its return window closes, which is usually between 3 and 30 days, depending on the marketplace. 

Sella vs. The RealReal: How Do They Compare?

Person wearing designer jewelry touching a pair of designer heels just removed from a box
Photo by Anastasia  Shuraeva via Pexels

What Can You Sell?

The RealReal is only for designer, name-brand items, such as fine art, jewelry, and handbags. You can find a complete list of accepted brands on The RealReal’s website.

On the other hand, Sella has a much broader list of what you can sell. Generally, if it’s something that makes sense to sell, is under 40 pounds, and fits in a car, it might be sellable through Sella. For example, tools, accessories, and hobby equipment can all be sold with Sella’s services.

Of course, Sella does have some restrictions for non-sellable items, including designer items that haven’t been authenticated, perishable and edible goods, weapons, and oversized items, like large pieces of furniture. 

Fees and Commissions

Because The RealReal’s specialists put in the work to describe and list your items, The RealReal takes a commission from your sales. The lower your item’s selling price, the higher The RealReal’s commission. Additionally, commissions vary based on what you sell. 

For example, clothing items selling between $150 and $199 give The RealReal 55% commission, but items selling for over $5,000 reduce the company’s commission to 30%. Meanwhile, a piece of jewelry selling for just $750 yields a 30% commission for The RealReal, leaving you with 70%. 

The commission you earn also increases as you sell more with The RealReal. For example, once you reach at least $1,500 in sales, you can earn an extra 1%, and net sales of $10,000 or more give you an extra 5%. Aside from the commission The RealReal takes, there are no fees to sell here. 

It’s important to note that The RealReal’s specialists set pricing for each item, so you won’t be able to change it. 

Sella is similar in that its team of resale experts is responsible for taking photos, listing items, and completing other necessary parts of the sales process. Therefore, Sella takes commissions from your sales to cover the costs of these duties. 

However, Sella does not have any confusing commission structures to pay attention to. Instead, you pay a $5 deposit for each item you send to Sella. Then, you keep 90% of the profit from your items, giving Sella 10% for its share of commissions, regardless of what or how much you sell. Your 90% is based on the selling price minus costs associated with your sale, like shipping and listing fees for the marketplace.  

Unlike The RealReal, Sella recommends prices for each item, but you’re ultimately able to stick to or change those pricing suggestions. 

Seller Protection

Person taking a designer bag out of a box
Photo by Antoni Shkraba via Pexels

The RealReal and Sella both have protections in place allowing sellers to end a sale if their item doesn’t sell.

The RealReal has a window known as a consignment period that begins the day your items are accepted by the company for sale and ends 365 days later. If you want an item that hasn’t yet sold returned during that consignment period, you can send a written request to The RealReal to have it shipped back to you, but you’re responsible for shipping costs.

After the consignment period ends and an item doesn’t sell, you have the choice of having your item returned to you or donated on your behalf.

Sella gives items 60 days to sell from the date they’re published on marketplaces. After this time, you can choose between donating your item or having it returned to you. You also have the option of canceling your sales early. Shipping costs for returns start at $10, but you can pick up your items at a Sella Hub for free. 

The Bottom Line

The RealReal and Sella both offer concierge-type services to help you sell your items online, taking photos and listing items for sellers. However, while Sella allows for more generalized items to be sold across multiple marketplaces, The RealReal caters only to designer and luxury items, selling them strictly on its website or in its stores. 

Additionally, sellers keep less of their profits with The RealReal, which has a tiered commission structure that varies based on the type of items you sell and how much they sell for. Meanwhile, sellers who work with Sella always pay a flat $5 fee per item and keep 90% of their profits from sales. 

Frequently Asked Questions

What percentage does The RealReal give you?

The RealReal’s commission for sellers varies by item type and sales price. Watches, men’s sneakers, and men’s collectibles offer the highest commission at 85%, but items must sell for top prices to earn that commission. 

What is the difference between Sella and The RealReal?

The RealReal accepts only luxury items from designer brands, like Gucci, Chanel, and Jimmy Choo, and sells items on its website or in its stores. Meanwhile, Sella accepts a variety of items with a few exceptions, selling them on up to six marketplaces. 

Is Sella or The RealReal better for sellers?

If you have non-designer items to sell or want to list your items on several marketplaces for quick sales, Sella is the better choice. For sellers living close to a The RealReal location who want to get top prices for their designer products, The RealReal could be the best option.