For those looking to purchase coveted pairs of kicks on the aftermarket, the big three players in the game, StockX, GOAT, and eBay, each offer a different experience to the customer. While the latter of the three marketplaces has always offered users the ability to purchase sneakers on their platform, the company has made a large push in the last few years by offering authentication services through SneakerCon and introducing eBay Top Star. You may have seen pairs like the Travis Scott x Air Jordan 6 on eBay’s Top Star program for a price near its original retail and wondered “how can I have the opportunity to purchase this?” Well, let's go over everything you need to know about the eBay Top Star rewards program.
What is Topstar eBay?
Launched in the May of 2021, eBay Top Star is eBay’s exclusive invite-only rewards program that allows members to purchase hype sneakers for at or slightly above retail. Throughout the year, seasonal collections drop and give Top Star users “exclusive access to a curated collection of covetable sneakers,” special events go down that feature sneaker celebrities and the opportunity to converse with other sneakerheads in the program.
How to get into eBay Topstar
eBay’s Top Star Program is invite-only and eBay has never publicly shared the criteria to join. Users that are in the program have reported having to spend thousands of dollars and the sellers who have been invited have had to move some serious inventory through the online marketplace before being admitted. Directly from the FAQ, in regards to being selected for the program, eBay states, “You have been selected based on your level and nature of patronage on eBay. Thank you for being a valued buyer on eBay.”
Even with these high standards, anyone can apply to join eBay Top Star, but if you’re not moving hundreds of pairs of sneakers or dropping a bag on shoes through eBay, don’t expect to get in.
How to maintain eBay Top Star Status?
Those currently enrolled in the eBay Top Star program have been sent emails that state they are required to spend $1,500 per quarter (approx $500 a month) to maintain the Top Star Status. Even after spending such a large amount of money on eBay, you’ll still have to shell out more cash throughout to year to have access to the limited drops they offer.
When are Top Star drops?
As previously mentioned, eBay Top Star does “Seasonal Collections,” curated drops that go down throughout the year and are announced to Top Star members prior to the sale going live. Lately, however, Flash Drops have gone down that mimic that of a shock drop you’d see from retailers like Nike, a random release on an unspecified date and time. When these drops do go down, they are sold through power sellers on the platform, like Sole Stage, and released in very limited quantities.
With that said, just being a Top Star doesn't guarantee you will cop sneakers. Users have to be fast in order to secure the sneakers they want in their desired size!
What sneakers release on Top Star?
In eBay’s own words, “covetable sneakers” are released through drops, usually, pairs that are sold out at retailers and garner higher-than-normal resale prices. During the last drop, pairs like the Travis Scott x Air Jordan 6, Supreme x Nike Air Force 1, and a variety of Nike Dunks were offered at prices under the aftermarket value.
Our Take on eBay’s Top Star Rewards Program
We all know how difficult it is to secure a pair of sneakers through regular retailers like Foot Locker or Finish Line even when you spent a lot of cash with them. They may offer rewards points to redeem coupons or give you a better shot at winning a raffle, but you’re still fighting against thousands or even hundreds of thousands of people to cop a single pair of sneakers. With eBay’s Top Star program, those that buy and/or sell in high volumes on the platform get access to pairs of sneakers at below-market prices. While this is a great opportunity to reward loyal eBay customers, considering you still have to spend around $500 a month to stay in the program, it’s definitely not something everyone should strive to get into.
Considering that most power sellers are moving such a large amount of inventory and have connections to people throughout the sneaker scene, being limited to just a single pair per drop and having to fight for the most coveted pairs (since sizes and quantities are limited) could be more of a hassle than just calling up someone you know.