The 1980s brought a notable change in the footwear and fashion industry. The Air Jordan line inspired by Michael Jordan took the mainstream by storm giving birth to the sneakerhead culture.
Since then, the sneaker craze has spiraled. Fans search every outlet to get hold of the latest and rarest sneaker collections on the market.
The sneaker industry is valued at $86.58 billion in 2023 and will continue to rise further. The existence of several trading platforms has made it challenging for the average person to decide on which one to trust for authentic and genuine kicks.
GOAT has emerged as the savior in this billion-dollar industry. It’s gained immense popularity as an authentic sneaker trading platform. But is GOAT legit? Is it safe? And what measures does it take to guarantee authenticity?
I’ve compiled all the information you will need to decide whether to buy and sell sneakers using this global platform that operates in around 170 countries.
What is GOAT?
GOAT is a leading online marketplace for buying and selling brand-new and pre-loved sneakers and apparel. It allows members to get hold of limited-edition sneakers that are unavailable elsewhere.
Valued at $3.7 billion in 2021, GOAT continues to receive massive praise from sneakerheads for its high standards and authenticity checks.
The platform was launched in 2015 by Eddy Lu and Daishin Sugano in hopes to provide a competent and reliable middleman for thousands of sellers worldwide.
Sugano was motivated to start a legitimate program after experiencing fraudulent behavior and receiving fake Air Jordan 5s via eBay.
They then set to create a system that verifies and ensures the delivery of authentic sneakers. 8 years later, GOAT is one of the most popular downloaded apps in the United States.
In February 2022, the app registered 600,000 downloads on apple devices while android devices registered downloads of 120,000.
Who is GOAT for?
GOAT is a platform designed for sneaker enthusiasts.
The 40 million members possess the following traits essential to reap the essence of this marketplace.
- Honesty: Sellers should truthfully comply with the selling regulations; list any defects of the product along with truthful images
- Reliability: One successful sale does not guarantee a permanent place for your listings. Continue posting items that are genuine and not fake or duplicates.
- Communicative: Buyers and sellers are equally responsible for the success of a transaction. Discuss product details before finalizing the sale
- Not money-minded: Yes, buyers and sellers use the platform to derive the best bargain for sneakers, but their aim is greater than that. They invest in the industry to help the sneaker community grow.
How to buy on GOAT?
I found GOAT’s buying process to be very convenient. It provides buyers with a variety of options when making a purchase.
You can choose from a selection of new and used pairs accompanied with the right size to complete the purchase.
For “New Items”, GOAT provides buyers with the following options:
- Buy at the Best Price: Buy sneakers at the quoted competitive price. Products get dispatched once verified through GOAT’s testing center.
- Instant Purchases: These are pre-verified sneakers available for dispatch as soon as purchased.
- New with Defects: Unworn sneakers with a few defects that require buyers to review images before purchasing.
If you’re looking to snag a great deal on “Used Pairs”, simply browse through the listing images and purchase once you find one that meets your needs.
GOAT also allows users to buy and sell products through a bidding process. You can select “Make Offer” on your choice of sneakers and the highest bidder will win the pair.
What I found unique about GOAT is that it doesn’t shy away from sharing the true price of its products. All prices on the platform are transparent and inclusive of taxes and import duties so buyers can make a practical choice from the very start.
Once you’ve picked your favorite sneakers, you can complete the transaction with your preferred payment method and wait for the parcel to arrive in a few days.
How to Sell on GOAT?
I found GOAT’s selling policy to be vigilant and strict. With more than 600,000 verified sellers on the platform, it ensures all seller accounts go through rigorous checks before approval.
To enlist as a seller, one must send a request to create a seller account via the GOAT app. This requires filling out the necessary information and confirming ID for security purposes.
Once GOAT approves the seller account, you can create a product listing. Just enter the SKU of the sneakers and choose whether to sell a new or used pair.
Add images if required, and don’t forget to check the GOAT’s photo guidelines before posting to avoid rejections.
Once the sale is processed, we can ship the order and receive a payout upon GOAT’s verification.
How much can I make as a Seller on GOAT?
Following GOAT’s best-selling practices can help you to earn a decent amount on the platform.
GOAT assigns a seller rating of 90 when a seller starts on the platform. Every successful sale is rewarded with 2 points and any seller cancellations will reduce your rating by 10 points each.
Sellers pay a seller fee of $5 if in the United States. The fee differs depending on the location and address of the seller account.
The minimum commission starts at 9.5% on GOAT with the rate increasing as the seller rating drops.
To ensure high customer satisfaction, GOAT monitors sellers and can suspend accounts with a rating below 50.
How does GOAT authenticate sneakers?
GOAT carries out a rigorous and meticulous procedure to authenticate sneakers before they hit the market. All new and reused pairs of sneakers are verified by experts through “digital authentication, in-hand verification, and/or machine learning technology”.
It uses the following methods to authenticate all sneakers submitted to the platform:
- Newly released pairs: The authentication team goes through an extensive process of logging in minute details of new releases.
- Reused pairs: The authentication team uses images provided by sellers to create multiple data points for every feature. This help identifies any fake products.
GOAT also provides mandatory training sessions to help authenticate and inspect sneakers for every possible detail. Color, stitching, labeling, and material are all monitored through multiple checks. This passion for authenticity has established GOAT as one of the trusted marketplaces for sneakers in the world.
Payment methods allowed on GOAT
Customers can use a variety of payment options. This makes the platform easily accessible to the majority of the population.
Does GOAT allow refunds?
GOAT aims to provide customers with the best quality products to avoid any complaints.
However, customers can request a refund if they find the product:
- Different from the images
- Missing a key feature
- Not authentic
In such cases, buyers can contact the Support Team within 3 days of receiving the product. If the claim is verified, GOAT will issue a refund on the amount of the item in our GOAT credit minus any shipping costs. We can use the credit to make future purchases from our GOAT account.
It is important to note that GOAT does not issue any refunds in the following instances:
- Any special items that include but are not limited to vintage and pre-released items
- Using the product upon receiving
- Any GOAT storage items
- Items listed as “Final Sale” upon checkout
- Any items shipped to a delivery address in the People’s Republic of China
Are there any Alternatives to GOAT
As sneaker enthusiasts, we might want to see if other platforms offer better or similar services to GOAT.
I have listed below the top alternatives of GOAT that you can check out for yourself.
StockX is an online marketplace that sells sneakers, shoes, apparel, electronics, and accessories. Users can also buy trading cards and collectibles on the platform. Each item sold on the website undergoes multi-step verification to ensure that only the authentic product reaches the customer.
Buyers can purchase the desired product at the lowest ask in real time or place a bid on the amount they wish to buy. StockX alerts buyers with updates on how their bid is working and helps make the purchases run smoothly.
Launched in 2008, Kicks Crew is another popular e-commerce platform that sells new sneakers and apparel. All items sold on the platform are Kicks Crew verified i.e., contain a unique tag to track each pair to the retailer it came from.
Kicks Crew carries strict quality assurance tests to ensure that only authentic products reach the customer. It inspects sneaker pairs for dents, scratches, discoloration, stains, and rips.
Stadium Goods is an online platform selling sneakers, streetwear, and apparel. It works with trusted suppliers to deliver authentic products to customers.
It uses an experienced team to develop techniques to inspect sneakers for any damage or dupes. Stadium Goods uses physical and technological verification to instantly catch any changes in design, stitching, and color.
The platform collects all inventory in one place and constantly monitors it for quality control. This makes it easier to dispatch an order as soon as it is received.
Is GOAT worth it?
In the world of dupes and fakes, GOAT is a popular marketplace for sneakerheads passionate about genuine products.
Here’s a list of benefits and drawbacks to help you decide whether to buy or sell on this platform:
- Provides accessibility to shoe lovers: GOAT has created a strong network of buyers and sellers that allows users to shop in one place, no matter where they are.
- Expert authentication process: The top-notch verification system makes it easier for users to trust in the authenticity of the product.
- Pricing transparency: All prices include the shipping costs and taxes before heading over to the checkout, so you know what you’re going to pay throughout the whole process.
- Handy Mobile app: GOAT uses augmented reality to help users decide how the selected kicks will look on them so you know you’re buying an item you’ll love.
- Slow shipping: Reused items generally go through verification before being dispatched. This can cause delays in customers receiving products.
- High shipping costs: Some buyers find the cost of shipping to be very high depending on their location
- Restrictive refund policy: GOAT has limitations on products that qualify for refunds. This combined with the GOAT credit refund policy can come as a hindrance for some users.
What do the customers have to say?
Let’s take a look at how well GOAT is performing in terms of customer satisfaction. I’ve searched different third-party websites for reviews and will discuss how pleased sneakerheads are with GOAT’s service.
Many buyers have praised customer service for its prompt response to different issues.
GOAT’s performance on the Google Play store is also very commendable. Users appreciate the design of the mobile app, which has made buying and selling convenient for its users.
Are there any negative reviews?
A few buyers have complained of a negative experience with GOAT due to the following limitations:
- The brief time frame to request a refund is a cause of concern for some buyers. Some users also blamed the app for not processing requests for return labels.
- Long delivery times
- Some sellers cancel their orders after finalizing a sale. The lack of professionality on behalf of some sellers can look bad for GOAT
Is GOAT legit?
GOAT has been in the marketplace for more than 7 years. Many users praise the platform for verifying products before dispatching.
In cases where GOAT cannot verify the product, it makes it a priority to deliver the next best alternative, even if it means spending more. GOAT endures the extra balance itself.
GOAT has received a star rating of 4.3 on Trust Pilot and 4.9 on the Apple store. The responsible handling of customer accounts and the passion to deliver the best authentic products guarantee its legitimacy.
What makes GOAT special?
Apart from delivering authentic products, GOAT has invested in different ways to connect with the sneakerhead community.
It publishes a 150-page print magazine called GREATEST twice a year. The magazine describes GOAT’s point of view on style and culture.
With the majority of the world turning towards paperless modes, GOAT took a smarter approach. It uses old-school techniques to reach customers and keep them engaged.
GOAT also partners with fashion celebrities to host quiz shows on its mobile app and rewards users with amazing prices and discounts.
With a comprehensive protocol, Eddy Lu and Daishin Sugano have created an advanced sneaker commerce solution to guarantee customers never experience disappointment. The multiple options for buying sneakers ensure that there is a perfect fit for everyone who joins the platform.
So, if you are searching for a one-stop solution for your kicks, I’d recommend you try GOAT.
The user-friendly design, expert authentication, and diligent customer service will make your shopping experience memorable.