If you are someone who is interested in second hand clothing, thrifting, or even just scoring a great deal on some lightly used clothing items, chances are you have probably heard of Karrot Market. If not, this is your chance to learn all about the customer to customer secondhand trading app that is gaining popularity insanely fast in South Korea!
Karrot Market (or Danggeun Market) was founded in 2015 by former KakaoTalk employees, Gary Kim and Paul Kim. As stated above, the Karrot Market is a trading app that is designed for iPhone and Android users and works by using your location to identify potential trading partners near you. Karrot Market’s main rule quickly set them apart from their competitors, that is: only users within 6km of eachother can buy and sell goods with each other. No further.
Danggeun Market (which means “near you” or “carrot” in Korean, hence the cute carrot logo) was designed specifically for smartphones to differentiate from other person-to-person marketplaces. For example, their 6km rule makes listings easier to spot, and encourages interactions among people in the same neighbourhood.
The app is pretty simple to use, even if you have never bought or sold anything online before. Some Korean is required at certain steps to use the app, but if you have ever made a Facebook post, the steps are similar and pretty intuitive. Something to note is that because the Karrot Market app is based on who is in your neighbourhood to trade with, the creators made a function that will not let you use the app until there are 500 people in your area who are also members.
Once the app is installed, the first thing you will be asked for is your location (aka your neighbourhood). Once you enter that the app will ask you for your phone number so they can send you a PIN and get started with the registration process. You might need to change the language settings from Korean to English depending on which language the app opens with as a default (it will probably be Korean). In that case, follow the steps below to see how to change the language.
Once you have set up an account you are ready to buy and sell. In your “My Karrot” section you will be able to track your sales, purchases, and liked items. If you are just interested in browsing, you can scroll through the homepage to see what people in your area have posted, or click the nearby tap to search for more specific things in your neighbourhood. You can adjust the distance of how far within your neighbourhood you want the he radius to extend in your profile settings as well. For example, if you live in Sangsu-dong, the app might show you items for sale in Yeonnam-dong, since both areas are in Mapo-gu. But if that is too far for you, you can shorten the radius for buying and selling. The app also has an advertising feature available for businesses, hence the ability to see things like cafes close to you. Overall the app is really straightforward and easy to use.
If you are looking for something specific, click the magnifying glass in the top right corner of your homepage to search for your item and see what's available! When you find an item you want to buy, click the posting to see more details. Here you can see additional photos of the item, the sellers profile, their location in your neighbourhood, a description and information about the item, price, etc. You can also see what other items that seller has posted and their rating as a Karrot Market user. If you are interested in purchasing an item, you can simply click the chat button to contact the user. You can also choose to like the item and it will be saved to your “favourite” list. This way you can easily access it again if you choose not to purchase right away, or set a notification on the item to see if the price changes! Payments however are not made through the Karrot Market app and it is up to the seller how they want to receive payment!
Selling an item is also super simple! You will have to upload at least one photo of the item, the price you are willing to sell it for, and some sort of description. The rest of your info will come from what you provided when you registered for the app! SImilar to the buying process, if someone is interested in purchasing your item, they will contact you through the app and you will be notified! Only registered and verified users are able to use the app, which is why it is best to keep all contact with potential buyers and sellers within the app via the Karrot Market messaging system.
After you post your item, you are also able to make the price higher or lower if you change your mind! As mentioned before, payment is not received through the but in person when you meet the buyer. It’s best to discuss payment methods beforehand to avoid any confusion when you meet! You also are not able to chat directly with the buyer through the app until you accept or decline their offer or request to chat. This does not mean you are required to sell your item to that person, but do not accept the offer unless you have some intention of carrying out a transaction with them.
The Karrot Market app is currently available in Korean and English and can be used in South Korea and the United Kingdom. The company plans to expand the app to be available for use in other countries in the near future, but for now is focusing on perfecting it before releasing it worldwide!