Thanks for Visiting!

Register for free to get the full story.

Sign Up
Already have a Placer.ai account? Log In

Secondhand News: Kids' Thrift Shops

by 
Bracha Arnold
 on 
December 14, 2023
Secondhand News: Kids' Thrift Shops

Thrift and secondhand shopping have been growing in popularity, driven partly by young, environmentally conscious consumers seeking the hottest Y2K styles. But the retail segment is not limited to young fashionistas – parents, too, are embracing thrift shopping to keep up with their kids’ growth spurts. 

And thrifty parents can find plenty of places to pick up clothing for the whole family without breaking the bank. We looked at two secondhand children's clothing stores – Kid to Kid and Once Upon A Child – to see how they are faring, what might be driving visits, and who tends to visit their stores.

More Thrifting, Please

Kid To Kid and Once Upon A Child were both founded by parents looking for ways to cut down on the costs of keeping their growing children clothed. The two chains operate on a franchise model and boast hundreds of stores nationwide. Like many chains in the thrift store segment, visits to both are growing, with year-over-year (YoY) monthly visits between July and November 2023 displayed year-over-year (YoY) up – and outpacing increases in the wider thrift store category – for most months analyzed. And October’s visit dip is likely more reflective of consumer sentiment than any real decline in thrift shopping interest – by November, foot traffic to the chain was up again. 

The sustained visit strength to child-oriented thrift stores serve as a reminder that even in challenging economic conditions, there are plenty of retail bright spots.

Poppin' Tags At The Thrift Shop

Kid to Kid and Once Upon a Child both have locations across the country, and diving into the demographic data of the chains’ visitor base in four states – Texas, Virginia, Georgia, and Pennsylvania – reveals some similarities and differences between the two brands’ audiences. Examining the captured market trade area data for the chains revealed that, overall, visitors to Once Upon A Child came from areas with a median household income (HHI) below the state average. Meanwhile, Kid To Kid’s trade area followed the opposite pattern. (A chains’ captured market refers to the trade area with each census block weighted according to its share of visits to the chain or venue in question.) 

For example, visitors to Once Upon A Child in Texas tended to come from trade areas where the median HHI stood at $61.4K/year, while the state’s median HHI was $67.9K. Kid To Kid Texas shoppers, meanwhile, came from trade areas where the median HHI was $69.3K/year. 

The difference in HHI between the two chains’ trade areas highlights that second hand stores are successfully reaching shoppers across many income levels – and may explain some of the differences in cross-shopping patterns, as outlined below.

Visitor Journey: Secondhand Strength 

Analyzing cross-shopping patterns of Kid to Kid and Once Upon A Child visitors – chains that visitors to the chains also frequented – reveals a strong preference for thrift and off-price retailers. 

In the off-price category, Kohl's and T.J. Maxx were particularly popular, with 43.1% of Kid to Kid and 41.0% of Once Upon a Child shoppers also visiting Kohl's between December 2022 and November 2023. Also popular was Ross Dress For Less, with 41.6% and 34.6% of visitors to Kid To Kid and Once Upon A Child visiting the chain over the past twelve months. 

In terms of thrift stores, around a third of visitors to Kid to Kid and Once Upon a Child’s also visited Goodwill, although the thrift store giant is slightly more popular among Once Upon a Child shoppers (37.7% cross-shopping compared to 34.0% cross-shopping for Kid to Kid). A larger share of Once Upon a Child shoppers also visited Plato’s Closet – another leading second-hand apparel chain – when compared to Kid to Kid visitors (15.6% compared to 9.4%).  

In general, it seems that off-price retailers were slightly more popular with Kid to Kid, while more Once Upon a Child shoppers also visited thrift store chains – perhaps due to the income differences among the two brands’ audiences. 

Thrifty Business

Thrifting remains a cost-efficient way to bring home new threads without breaking the bank – a bonus to any parent wondering why their children outgrew their clothes overnight. And retailers can continue to build on this interest by expanding into new markets and reaching out to new audiences. 

For more data-driven retail insights, visit placer.ai/blog.

Get 3 brand & industry
breakdowns every week

Subscribe to the newsletter

Great! Prepare your inbox for data-driven insights...
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.

Get a Demo

Please enter your first name
Please enter your last name
Please provide a valid email
Please enter your email
Please enter company name

Thanks for reaching out!

One of our experts will be in touch soon

Try Placer.ai Free
Oops! Something went wrong while submitting the form.
Text Link
Secondhand Clothes
Text Link
Thrift Shops
Crocs’ Footwear Fairytale
Who Attends NCAA Final Four Events?
Eclipse Fever: How Did the (Retail and Hospitality) Stars Align?
Exploring Albertsons Companies’ Grocery Growth
Placer.ai Mall Index: March 2024 Recap – Malls Rise Again
Placer.ai Office Index: March 2024 Recap
Florida Spring Break Break-Up? Travelers Still Love Florida!
Provo-Orem and Ogden-Clearfield Emerging As Utah Hotspots 
Three Formulas for Experiential Retail in 2024
Aldi & Lidl Making The Cut
Texas Suburbs on the Rise
Exploring Luxury Hotel Brands’ Guest Segmentation
The St. Patrick’s Day Effect
How Can JOANN Make a Comeback?
Panera Bread Well Positioned for Possible IPO
Who Will Benefit From Family Dollar’s Downsizing?
Dave & Buster’s and Main Event Entertainment: Food and Fun for Everyone
Darden Brands: Location Analytics and Consumer Behavior
Nike and lululemon: a Strong 2023, Sprinting into 2024
Where Is Retail and Dining Foot Traffic Thriving in Early 2024?
Placer.ai White Paper Recap – February 2024
Three Retail & Dining Chains That May Surprise in 2024
Specialty Discount Chains Rock Retail Therapy
Placer.ai Mall Index: February 2024
Placer.ai Office Index: February 2024 Recap
Ulta Beauty Continues To Shine
First Watch Sails Into 2024
Hibbett Sports and DICK’S Sporting Goods: A Psychographic Analysis
Checking in With Discount & Dollar Stores
Peeking Behind The Curtain: Movie Theaters in 2023 and Beyond
Diving Into Brick-and-Mortar Eyewear
Getting Into Gear: Exploring The Auto Part Industry
Recapping Valentine’s Day 2024 Foot Traffic Trends
Fitness: A Strong Start to 2024
Dutch Bros. Continues To Percolate Visits
Super Bowl 2024: Placer.ai’s Postgame Foot Traffic Analysis
CAVA & sweetgreen Are On the Rise
Hats Off For Off-Price
Who Is Shopping at Malls?
Drilling Down Into Home Improvement
Walmart, Target, Costco & Superstore Space 2023 Recap
Catching Up With Shake Shack and Wingstop
Something To Chew On: Demographic Shifts at Steakhouse Chains
Placer.ai Office Index: Looking Back at 2023
Recapping RBI & Yum! Brands’ 2023 Foot Traffic Performance
Placer.ai White Paper Recap – January 2024
Who Shops at Anthropologie and Urban Outfitters?
Three Taco Chains to Watch in 2024
Starbucks and Dunkin’: 2023 in Four Data Points
Who Visits CVS and Walgreens?
Fashionably Frugal: Apparel in 2023
Catching Up With Fast Food
The Grocery Sector in 2023: An End-of-Year Recap
3 Mall & Shopping Center Trends for 2024
Bakery Chains Rising To The Top
Placer.ai and Esri Partner to Deliver Geospatial Analytics
Tampa Tourism Trends
Going For The Green: The Changing Dynamics Of Country Clubs
Christmas Day Dining Recap
Major Urban Shopping Districts – Holiday Season Recap
Placer.ai Office Index: December 2023 Recap
Recapping the 2023 Holiday Shopping Season
Placer.ai White Paper Recap – December 2023
7 Retail & Dining Segments to Watch in 2024
Diving Into Holiday Season Favorites
Super Saturday and Christmas Eve Eve: A Winning Combination
3 Budget Grocery Chains Finishing 2023 On a High Note
Making It In America: International Chicken Chains Bring The Heat
Domestic Tourism at a Glance: A Q3 2023 Roundup
Five Pizza Chains On The Rise
Jewelry Brands Taking Advantage of the DTC Opportunity
Secondhand News: Kids' Thrift Shops
Recapping 2023’s Dining M&As
MetLife Stadium Kicks Off Football Season
Placer.ai Office Index: November 2023 Recap
Small Coffee Chains Brewing Big Success
Placer.ai White Paper Recap – November 2023
Thanksgiving Travel 2023 Recap
Checking in With Nike and Lululemon
Black Friday 2023 Retail Recap
Starbucks’ 2023 Holiday Menu & Red Cup Day Performance
Turkey Wednesday 2023
Who Attended the 2023 Pickleball Championship? 
Three Surprising Holiday Shopping Trends
What’s in Store for Ulta Beauty This Holiday Season?
Best Buy and Department Stores: A Holiday Deep Dive
Discount & Dollar Stores: Strength Toward The End of the Year
The State of Off-Price Retail: Discounts Seal The Deal
Placer Mall Index Recap: October 2023
Placer.ai Office Index: October 2023 Recap
Retail Corridors Ahead of the 2023 Holiday Season
California, Here Gap Comes
Checking in With Home Improvement
Getting Into the Glasses Game: Warby Parker Takes Over
Fitness Positioned for a Strong 2023 Finish
White Paper Recap: October 2023
Coffee Giants Brewing Up Business
Popeyes and Burger King Lead the Way
Diving into Yum!
Looking Ahead to Black Friday 2023