Is Mercari Legit? Reseller Guide to Avoid Mercari Scams

Marketplace Strategies
Is Mercari Legit? Reseller Guide to Avoid Mercari Scams

Curious about Mercari? Wondering, 'Is Mercari legit?' We'll delve into the platform's reliability, growth, and essential safety measures.


Discovering the legitimacy of Mercari and understanding potential Mercari scams is crucial for sellers. Whether you're looking to earn extra cash by parting with items you no longer want or be a full-time e-commerce reseller, Mercari is an excellent marketplace to sell things online.


In fiscal year 2023, Mercari recorded around 23 million monthly active users on its platform, an increase from 8.5 million users reported in fiscal 2017. 


So, if you've ever wondered about Mercari, its reliability, or the common scams to be cautious of, you're in the right place. 


Streamlined Selling with Mercari's User-Friendly Interface

Selling on Mercari is a seamless experience. With just a few steps, you can have your item listed for sale in under three minutes. Begin by capturing clear and enticing photographs that showcase your item accurately. Following that, provide a detailed and precise description, ensuring potential buyers have all the necessary information at their fingertips.


What sets Mercari apart and makes it a favorite among resellers is its straightforward process and the extensive range of selling categories it offers. This diversity allows sellers to find the perfect niche for their items, catering to a broad audience.


You might also be interested in the article How to Start Selling on Mercari


If you're familiar with selling on platforms like eBay or Poshmark, adapting to Mercari is a breeze. The user-friendly interface and efficient selling process make it a welcoming platform for experienced sellers, while its simplicity ensures that even newcomers can quickly get the hang of it. Whether you're a seasoned online seller or just starting, Mercari provides a hassle-free and efficient way to showcase and sell your items.


Mercari Offers Same-Day Local Delivery in Partnership with Uber and Doordash

Innovating further, Mercari stands out as the exclusive selling platform in the United States, offering a groundbreaking local delivery service. Launched in 2021, this service, in collaboration with Uber, FedEx SameDay, City, Dolly, and DoorDash, provides a unique solution for local sales: A designated driver picks up items from the seller, ensuring delivery to the buyer on the same day. This innovative approach is particularly advantageous for the shipment of bulky items like coffee machines and printers.


Mercari even extends this service to deliver furniture in select cities, offering unparalleled convenience in the e-commerce landscape.


Mercari's commitment to growth, innovation, and user-friendly services positions it as a standout choice in the competitive resale platform arena.


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The Rise of Mercari: A Trusted Resale Platform

Mercari US, a dynamic subsidiary of Mercari Inc., a Japanese e-commerce powerhouse established in 2013, has witnessed remarkable growth since it’s launch.


In fact, Mercari reported $1.26 billion in revenue in 2022, a five percent increase from the year prior.


mercari growth

Data shows Mercari’s revenue growth in the United States is projected to exceed $2 billion annually by 2026.


Originally gaining immense popularity in Japan, Mercari achieved the distinguished status of being the first pre-IPO startup unicorn in the country, boasting a valuation exceeding $1 billion. 


Expanding its horizons, Mercari entered the United States market in 2014 and the United Kingdom in 2016. Regrettably, facing challenges in the UK, Mercari announced the cessation of operations by the end of 2020, attributing it to high labor and advertising costs.


Despite hurdles in the UK, Mercari's resilience has fueled growth in the US and Japanese markets, solidifying its position as a thriving online marketplace. Mercari is a top-rated e-commerce app on both the Apple App Store and Google Play markets. 


You might also be interested in our Ultimate Marketplace Guide for Resellers!


Is Mercari Safe? Transaction Security

Understanding how Mercari generates revenue sheds light on the platform's commitment to successful transactions. Much like Poshmark, Mercari's financial success hinges on the completion of successful sales. Every Mercari transaction is subject to a Mercari selling (commission) and payment processing fees.  Essentially, they have a vested interest in curbing fraudulent activities, as their profitability aligns with the success of legitimate transactions.


To ensure a secure environment, both buyers and sellers can employ precautionary measures while navigating the platform. While it's inevitable that scammers may attempt to exploit any online marketplace, including in-person sales, the implementation of straightforward steps can significantly enhance your safety on platforms like Mercari.


Comparison of Mercari's safety measures to other similar platforms:



    • Account verification: Most platforms require some form of verification, like email or phone number, to create an account. Mercari goes further with optional ID verification for sellers, offering a "verified" badge for added trust.
    • Payment protection: Most platforms hold funds until the buyer confirms satisfaction, protecting both parties. Mercari releases funds upon delivery confirmation.
    • Dispute resolution: All platforms have processes to mediate disputes between buyers and sellers. Mercari has dedicated teams for this.
    • Community guidelines: All platforms have rules prohibiting scams, fraud, and other harmful behavior. Mercari actively monitors and enforces these.



    • Seller verification: Some platforms, like Poshmark, require seller verification for all users. Mercari makes it optional.
    • Escrow: Some platforms, like eBay, offer optional escrow services for added protection. Mercari doesn't.
    • Buyer/seller ratings and reviews: Most platforms have these, but Mercari's system is more detailed, including badges for specific qualities like fast shipping.
    • Proactive monitoring: While all platforms monitor activity, Mercari boasts an AI-based system for early detection of potential issues.



Mercari's safety measures are comparable to other platforms, with some strengths like detailed reviews and AI monitoring. However, options like mandatory seller verification and escrow might be offered by some competitors, appealing to users seeking extra security.


Prefer watching to reading? Check out our full YT video here:



This robust understanding of Mercari's revenue structure and the shared responsibility between users form the foundation for a secure and trustworthy online buying and selling experience.


Unlock Explosive Growth: Sign Up for Vendoo and Start Crosslisting Today! 


Mercari's Legit Safeguards: Navigating Mercari's Protective Measures

Is Mercari safe for buyers? In the realm of buyer protection, Mercari stands strong, ensuring a secure transaction process. The assurance lies in Mercari’s practice of withholding payment to the seller until the item is successfully delivered and the buyer confirms its adherence to the listed description.


"If an item received is not as described in the listing, the buyer may request a full refund within 3 days of receipt of the item."


How Can I Get a Refund on Mercari? 

Let's delve into the qualifying conditions for a return or refund, which include:


  • Item Not As Described,” including undisclosed damage, receiving the wrong item, or a non-authentic item.
  • Item Not Received,” instances where the seller fails to ship the item entirely.  


An additional layer of protection revolves around late shipments. While Mercari recommends a shipping timeframe of three (3) business days from purchase, unlike eBay, this is not strictly enforced. However, if a tracking number goes un-updated for seven (7) days or more, buyers hold the right to request a cancellation and refund, providing a safety net for delayed deliveries.


Conversely, Mercari will deny return requests for buyer's remorse, sizing issues, accurately described items, requests made beyond the 3-day window, or transactions conducted off the marketplace.


Empowering yourself as a buyer involves mastering these nuances of Mercari's protection policies, ensuring a confident and secure online shopping experience.


💡 Tip: Use Mercari prepaid labels for shipping so your parcels are eligible for Mercari Protection and include insurance. If you ship on your own, you’re only protected to the extent that the package or service is insured. 





Tips and Tricks to Guard Against Scams on Mercari

In the digital marketplace landscape, ensuring the security of your Mercari account is crucial. Here are some essential tips and tricks to safeguard your Mercari experience, helping you to avoid common scams. From the importance of verifying seller badges and reviews to the advantages of keeping transactions within the Mercari platform, we'll delve into actionable insights to fortify your online presence and make your Mercari journey not just convenient but also secure


Mercari isn't just safe; it's designed with transparency in mind. Detailed seller reviews, clear listing descriptions, and buyer protection policies all contribute to a trustworthy experience, allowing you to shop (and sell) with confidence.


Mercari Profile Verification

If you are a Mercari seller, it is recommended that you get your profile verified. If you’re a buyer, you might check if the sellers you purchase with have verified accounts.


Here is what a verified account looks like: 

mercari seller


Although sellers are not required to get their profile verified, it is in their best interest to do so. To earn the profile verification badge, a seller must verify their email, SMS, and government ID.


Of course, this badge does not prevent fraud, but it does help to reduce it. A scammer certainly would not upload their government ID to a fraudulent account…


Mercari Seller Badges

Mercari offers various badges to allow buyers to shop with confidence. 


Mercari badges


There are three (3) badges that you should look for in a seller's profile:

  • Fast Responder badge: this seller responds to messages in an average of 12 hours.

  • Quick Shipper badge: this seller ships off items within 24 hours, not including weekends or holidays. This metric is based on when a carrier scans the shipping label.

  • Reliable badge: this seller rarely cancels a transaction.


Again, these badges do not stop fraud, but they do help to reduce it. If a seller has performed at this level, they are more likely to be a legitimate seller.


Mercari Seller Reviews

Another thing that can help a seller to establish trust with buyers or be more trusting as a buyer it to review seller reviews on a seller’s profile. These appear below badges and help you to get an idea of the way a seller operates by the satisfaction level of shoppers.


Want to crosslist your inventory to Mercari? 

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Mercari Authentication

Mercari offers authentication for some high-value items. Certain luxury items qualify for Mercari Authentication, such as wallets, eyewear, handbags, jewelry, and watches. The seller pays for the item to get the item authenticated by an independent third party that will carefully inspect photos of the items. 


You will know an item has passed the authentication process when it has a diamond logo on the listing. This helps buyers to shop with confidence. 


Want to learn more about the most common e-commerce scams? Check out the article Beware of These Depop Scams! Protect Yourself as a Depop Seller


Navigating Mercari Safely: A Guide to Avoiding Scams

Peer-to-peer marketplaces like Mercari are targeted by scammers as they know that they are speaking with one person. New and inexperienced sellers are particularly vulnerable to scams. Buyers and sellers are scammed on Mercari every day; some people are certainly more gullible than others, but scammers are also skillful at how they trick, fool, and manipulate sellers. Here are some tips to avoid some of the common scams and fraudulent activities on Mercari:


Common Sense & Due Diligence

Some unfortunate incidents of scams stem from avoidable mistakes. One such pitfall is sharing personal information on the marketplace or conducting transactions outside of Mercari. Others include purchasing items that do not include real images or proof that the seller had the item to begin with.


Keep All Transactions on Mercari

Most scams occur as a result of Mercari users taking the transaction off the Mercari platform, a practice that leads to a ban and eliminates the option of returning items. Reading product descriptions thoroughly and verifying items with additional photos are essential precautions.


Provide Detailed Descriptions and photos

When it comes to your Mercari listings, the more information you provide, the better. Not only does this give your buyer confidence that you're not a scammer, but it also covers you if the buyer is a scammer. 


💡 Tip: Before you ship an item, take pictures of your item with the shipping label present. Be sure to photograph all angles thoroughly to show the condition and include any special markings or serial numbers of the item. This might help to prevent buyers from claiming an item was not as described or performing a “switch” where they try to return a different item than they received. 


Use Mercari's Prepaid Label or Purchase Insurance

This will depend on the value of your item. Mercari offers up to $200 shipping insurance if you purchase a prepaid shipping label directly through Mercari.  You might also include signature delivery confirmation. 


You might also be interested in 10 Great Marketplaces Every Reseller Should Consider


So, is Mercari legit? The answer is: yes. 

It is safe to say Mercari is a legitimate online selling marketplace.


Sure, Mercari is a legitimate platform. But it's more than that. Mercari fosters a thriving community of resellers and deal-hunters, offering a vast selection of pre-loved treasures and trendy finds. So, is Mercari safe and legit? Absolutely. But it's also a treasure trove waiting to be explored.


Mercari is known for its reliability, remarkable growth, and essential safety measures to guard against potential scams. Whether you're a casual seller or a seasoned reseller aiming to optimize your experience, Mercari is an excellent choice.


As we navigate the nuances of its revenue model, buyer safeguards, and fraud prevention tips, it's clear that Mercari's commitment to a safe and trustworthy environment sets it apart in the competitive e-commerce arena. 


Want to share your own experiences with Mercari? Let us know in the comments below! 👇🏽


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