Big data analysis of trends in the second-hand apparel market: a comparison between 2014 and 2019

Sanghee Kim, Hongjoo Woo

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)


Purpose: According to the perspective of evolutionary economic theory, the marketplace continuously evolves over time, following the changing needs of both customers and firms. In accordance with the theory, the second-hand apparel market has been rapidly expanding by meeting consumers’ diverse preferences and promoting sustainability since 2014. To understand what changes in consumers’ consumption behaviors regarding used apparel have driven this growth, the purpose of this study is to examine how the second-hand apparel market product types, distribution channels and consumers’ motives have changed over the past five years. Design/methodology/approach: This study collected big data from Google through Textom software by extracting all Web-exposed text in 2014, and again in 2019, that contained the keyword “second-hand apparel,” and used the Node XL program to visualize the network patterns of these words through the semantic network analysis. Findings: The results indicate that the second-hand apparel market has evolved with various changes over the past five years in terms of consumer motives, product types and distribution channels. Originality/value: This study provides a comprehensive understanding of the changing demands of consumers toward used apparel over the past five years, providing insights for retailers as well as future research in this subject area.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)138-155
Number of pages18
JournalResearch Journal of Textile and Apparel
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2022 Apr 13

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This article is based upon the conference abstract “Big data analysis of the second-hand apparel market trends comparing 2014 and 2019,” presented at the annual conference hosted online by the International Textile and Apparel Association (ITAA). This research was supported by the Yonsei University Research Fund of 2020 (2020–22-0100) and the Brain Korea 21 Plus Project of Department of Clothing and Textiles, Yonsei University in 2020 (2020–11-0025).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021, Emerald Publishing Limited.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Business and International Management
  • Materials Science (miscellaneous)
  • Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering
  • Management of Technology and Innovation


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