The Depop Algorithm – How It Works

depop algorithm

The new depop algorithm should be your top priority as a depop seller.

Before all you had to do was refresh your listings on depop as often as you possibly could to get closer to your dreams of being on Forbes 30 under 30.

depop algorithm

Suddenly you start hearing that refreshing doesn’t work all the time anymore!

Now you’ve learned an important rule in business: Good times don’t last forever.

The depop algorithm change coupled with the large amount of new sellers on depop means depop has become far more competitive.

Luckily for you we did some research to help uncover what you can do in addition to refreshing in order to boost your sales on depop.

How the Depop Search Algorithm works:

The depop algorithm considers a few things:

  • How new your items on depop are.
  • The quality of your listings descriptions.
  • Characteristics of your depop listings and profile

There are some things about the depop algorithm that can be revealed simply by having a look at the app. Ultimately you’re here because you care about what will make the depop algorithm put your listings at the top of search.

Let’s search for a “hat” on depop. You can see in the image that when we click “Sort By” you see three sorting options: Relevance, Most Popular, Newly Listed. Your position in search will depend on which of these sorting options buyers have selected and how well your listing ranks for the sorting option.

depop algorithm

Newly listed:

Let’s start with this sort option because this is related to the most familiar way depop sellers are used to increasing their sales: “Refreshing/Bumping your items”.

Overtime depop may reduce the impact of refreshing (as it is easy one dimensional), so if that’s all your store relies on then you need to quickly test other methods. This is important so you aren’t left wondering why your sales are slowing down over time.

So here is how to do a little better than just refreshing/bumping your items on depop:

1) Relist Your Items on Depop

Have you ever wondered why listing new items sometimes gives you an extra boost in search on depop ? No one wants to buy old stale listings.

So far one thing that we are pretty sure of is that the new depop algorithm tends to favour newly listed items. The keyword here is “NEWLY LISTED” not items that have simply been updated (refreshed).

This means items that are completely relisted and have the old version of the item deleted can give you a chance of increasing your visibility in search.

This can explain why sometimes when you search for something on depop, some of the items on the top may not have been updated/refreshed in a while if you look at the very bottom. Especially if you compare it to some items that are below them but have been refreshed recently.

However, these if we look a bit deeper, what we have noticed is that, there is one thing that each of these posts have in common:

The time that they were initially posted. (Very few were posted more than a month ago).

Here’s how you can start experimenting with Relisting your items on depop.
  • Use depop’s copy function to relist items.
  • Use a depop automation tool.

Firstly, you can relist items on depop by using the copy listing function.

copylisting button depop

Don’t forget to DELETE the old listing

Yes, deleting does mean that it is treated as a new post by depop and any likes or comments you may have gotten will be COMPLETELY REMOVED ๐Ÿ™

But likes do not pay your bills, do they ?

A caveat is that, this does not copy over images as well so you have to do that manually, if you have a lot of items, this takes a very long time unless you use a automation tool to that can help copy your images over.

Before you rush and delete all the items in your entire shop, consider starting out by running tests with some of your older items on depop that haven’t sold in a while.

2) Post new items as often as you can

Being a depop seller isn’t a one and done thing, the best way to move items is to make sure your store stays “fresh” and “active”. One way to do this is by listing new products on your depop shop.

So far, the best approach is to frequently list new items, whether you do a few new items items daily or weekly, the key is to have a consistent flow of new products. We recommend posting new items at least once a week.

“What if I can’t afford new inventory ? I have no sales! :O”, you ask ?

You’re in luck, deleting and relisting an existing item technically counts as a new listing, so you don’t need new inventory. “New” in this case simply means a listing you’ve created from scratch.


Okay let’s move on to relevance. Relevance simply relates to how much your listing relates to what the user is searching. You obviously cannot control what a user searches so that’s out of the question.

Depop doesn’t follow the usual pattern of having a product “title”. So while other platforms use a combination of titles/descriptions/tags, depop uses product descriptions + tags to determine the relevance of a post.

So what is it about your description that you can change ?

1) Use relevant words/phrases & move them to the very top of your description !

If you aren’t doing this already, you need to start doing it. If you have ever written content for the internet you would be familiar with search optimization but the basic idea for most search platforms is that “The first words are pretty important”.

This means that you should probably be moving the most relevant words to the beginning. Items at the top of search on depop also share this in common. Most of the items are pretty simple and IMMEDIATELY relevant.

Go to one of your listings on depop and look at the very first line.

Is it something that clearly represents your product ? or is it filled with useless filler that nobody looking to buy something really cares about ?

Here’s an example of a bad first line of a listing description:

“Cute hot perfect top that will literally save cure all illnesses”

This spends far too much time on unimportant stuff, cute is subjective. Unfortunately we see this far too often.

Think about it most people aren’t searching by terms like “cute or hot”, your description is the first place the new depop algorithm will looking to determine how relevant it is to what people search.

Here’s an example of a much better first line of a listing description:

“Red 90s vintage sweatshirt”

This description includes objective facts that DESCRIBE the item. Think about how you search for items, make the first sentence in your description sound like how a human would actually search for an item.

Most Popular

Now we have “popularity”, this is pretty much exactly what it sounds like. To rank here the depop algorithm takes into account, how interested people seem to be in your listing.

There are a few obvious markers of popularity on a depop listing, that is: the number of likes & the number of comments (potentially also the number of people that “save” your item but this isn’t a metric available to the public)

1) Increase your likes on depop

Increasing the number of likes your product has can be a catch 22, because the more exposure (via search) your product has the more likes you get. So to increase your likes you have to take advantage of a few things previously talked about such as refreshing/bumping your listings on depop. However, you can also do a few more things:

Follow the reviewers on shops with similar items: when you follow people, some % of those people will check out your shop and like some of your items, some may follow back as well. Plus you’ll be in more people’s feed. Following reviewers makes sense people these people are proven buyers and the best case scenario is that they’ll buy something from you.

Like other users items: liking people’s products can help as long as you don’t over do it and only like products that you genuinely find interesting.

2) Increase your comments on depop

Not many depop users leave comments, when was the last time you left a comment on a depop listing ? Comments can be good markers to the depop algorithm of your listing’s popularity, yes, even those annoying comments asking you for your “lowest price” ๐Ÿ™„.

Since comments are quite rare: you have to do a little bit more to increase you chances of getting comments:

  • You can add an open ended question about your listing directly in the description e.g “how cute is this shirt ?”, “where would you wear this to ?”
  • You can comment on your own posts to stimulate discussion and to boost the number of comments. Instead of putting the question in your description.
  • Make your photos visually interesting or silly: I’m sure if you’ve been a depop seller long enough you’ve likely seen photos with people holding random objects, making weird poses, posing in weird locations etc. This is something that definitely attracts comments on your listing, of course it’s added work and may not fit the theme of your shop!

Tips for the depop algorithm

  • Make the first 3 words of your description an exact match for what a buyer would search for
  • Keep your descriptions very objective and do not use spammy tags
  • Refresh your listings on depop to bump them to the top of search
  • Stay active on the app and list items frequently (Active users are more likely to be at the top of search)
  • Engage with other users on depop
  • Crosslist to other marketplaces outside of depop, you can use a free tool like Crosslister to get started with crosslisting

Want to learn more about the new depop algorithm ?

We help depop sellers grow their sales. If you want to know more about the depop algorithm and changes that occur going forwards, you can do the following things:

Step 1: Sign up to our mailing list where we share information to depop sellers

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Step 2: Join Our Reddit community๐Ÿ‘‡

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