Post Date: Nov 14 2016
Once again we have had another record breaking event for e-commerce in China as we wrapped up a successful Single Day 2016 last Friday. As many would already by now, Alibaba sold a massive RMB ¥120.7 billion through their e-commerce platforms, measured in GMV (Gross Market Value) in just 24 hours. But we mustn't forget that Alibaba alone does not represent the entirety of e-commerce in China, it is just one player (albeit a very big player) in the vast Chinese digital ecosystem.
While many of Alibaba's competitors have not made official announcements on their sales volumes, we thankfully have Chinese big data research and development companies like Syntun in Beijing to help us keep track. So what is the grand total consumers spent online over Singles Day?
RMB ¥177.04 billion (USD $26.11 billion) on 1.07 billion packages.
So the top grossing platforms are:
Alibaba: ¥120.74 billion
JD.com: ¥40.18 billion
Suning: ¥3.89 billion
Guomei: ¥3.36 billion
1号店: ¥2.3 billion
Amazon.cn: ¥1.77 billion
Others: ¥4.78 billion
The breakdown of the top grossing categories include large home appliances 20.1% (such as TVs, white goods, and kitchen appliances), mobile phones 12.1% (top 3 being Apple, Huawei and Xiaomi), Cosmetics 12% (14.9% through cross-border), and maternity & dairy products 6.4% (of which 93.1% was infant formula! Domestic consumption of imported infant formula was over 70% as of June 2016)
Other interesting facts include:
82% of all transactions happened on mobile
5.6% of all transactions were cross-border sales
6.4% of all transactions were on dairy products (RMB ¥7.65 billion), of which infant formula accounted for 93.1%!
While there is no indication of what proportion of infant formula was imported, we do know that imported product account for more than 70% market share in the high end market (as of July, according to the China Chamber of Commerce of Foodstuff and Native Produce)
So Alibaba is still the king of Singles day with JD.com being the only one able to put up a decent fight. Perhaps JD's efforts to avoid the price wars and differentiate themselves by prioritising quality and services is starting to resonate more with consumers (its slogan "take your shopping seriously, buy only quality"). We are also seeing growth in the level of cross-border sales in many consumer products except for electronics, where local brands reign supreme due to their value for money offerings.