C2C E-Commerce

Online transactions between two private end users in order to sell or purchase goods are referred to as consumer-to-consumer or C2C e-commerce. C2C activities are carried out via online marketplaces such as eBay, Etsy, or Taobao, as well as via auction websites and forums such as Craigslist. These platforms allow consumers to sell and resell both new goods and preowned items.

The switch towards mobile in recent years has ushered in retail and shopping platforms that encourage consumers to sell to and purchase from other consumers without having to set up a business or turning to a third party. On the app front, C2C e-commerce is especially favorable for the fashion industry and popular with younger generations. An example for this trend is social shopping app Depop, which enables millions of sellers and resellers to set up store and connect with consumers.

Share of C2C in online retail sales in China
41.1%
Total number of active buyers on eBay
724m
U.S. state with the highest number of Etsy sellers
California

Market size

More power to the consumer
Total number of visits to leading C2C buy/sell marketplace apps in the United States from Q4 2019 to Q4 2020 (in million visits)
Further details: Visit original statistic

Consumer-to-consumer e-commerce is a smaller segment within the larger e-commerce market, with fewer players compared to the B2C e-commerce giants. As in the other segments of the market, both websites and apps that allow C2C transactions are widely used for selling and buying goods. In the United States, 2020 saw more than 100 million visits to the leading C2C and buy/sell marketplaces.

Fastest growing C2C websites in the U.S.
Fastest growing C2C apps in the U.S.
C2C e-commerce share in China

Market segments

Online marketplaces: a close neighbour to C2C platforms
Distribution of online purchases worldwide as of July 2019, by channel
Further details: Visit original statistic

The consumer-to-consumer segment of the e-commerce market frequently overlaps with online marketplaces, which facilitate both B2C and C2C selling via a third-party platform.
Out of all available e-commerce channels, consumers turned to online marketplaces the most often. Nearly half of all online purchases worldwide were made through online marketplaces in 2019. In contrast, individual retailer websites or apps accounted for only a quarter of online purchases.

Online marketplaces
Online marketplaces in France
Amazon

Industry trends

C2C fashion resellers flourish
Number of unique visitors to selected C2C fashion e-commerce platforms in May 2020 (in millions)
Further details: Visit original statistic

With the intermediaries eliminated, consumer-to-consumer commerce platforms and websites allow for the utmost flexibility and control for those who like to buy or sell goods and services. In recent years, the most popular C2C platforms were those specializing in the selling or reselling of fashion items.
Among the many C2C fashion e-commerce platforms, Poshmark is the most popular with audiences worldwide. The marketplace is used for both new and secondhand fashion and other items.

Apparel and footwear resale market
Poshmark
Depop

Industry leaders

eBay - the indisputable leader of the field
Number of eBay's total active buyers from 1st quarter 2010 to 4th quarter 2020 (in millions)
Further details: Visit original statistic

C2C e-commerce is gaining more traction thanks to the expanding landscape of available platforms. eBay, which has been around since the early years of the internet, is currently the biggest C2C and B2C e-commerce platform, with around 724 million active buyers worldwide.
eBay started out as an auctioning website where consumers could list and bid on goods. In the 25 years of eBay's existence, its business model has remained largely loyal to the original.

eBay
Etsy
Alibaba Group

Industry definition

C2C e-commerce refers to online transactions conducted between two private consumers via online marketplaces, auction websites or classified advertisements without the involvement of a third party. Statista's content on C2C e-commerce provides information on the leading global C2C e-commerce platforms, as well as C2C e-commerce website and mobile app usage among online consumers in different markets worldwide.

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